Postdoctoral researcher, changes in microbial CUE and C stabilization under global change

The Department of Forest Sciences at the Faculty of Agcriculture and Forestry invites applications for the position of a Postdoctoral researcher, changes in microbial CUE and C stabilization under global change


The full-time 24 month’s position starts in November 2022 (or flexibly as agreed with the person chosen for the position).


The research focuses on the effects of climate warming on microbial CUE, community composition, and C stabilisation under global change. We work with translocated soils samples (north to south translocation within boreal forest zone in Finland, and from high altitude to low altitude sites along a Kenyan altitude gradient in the moist montane rain forest) to look at the effects of warming on functioning of microbial communities, soil C stocks and C stabilisation. Specific hypothesis about microbial processes and functioning of the “soil microbial C pump” will be tested in controlled conditions, by combining isotope methods to laboratory incubations. The research is part of Kristiina Karhu’s Academy of Finland funded Research Fellow project: “Unraveling the mechanisms of the soil “microbial carbon pump” – soil C sequestration under global change”. We offer a possibility to participate in planning the exact experiments to be conducted during the post doc period.



- PhD degree in a suitable field (e.g. Soil science, Soil chemistry, Microbiology, Soil and Environmental Science, Forest Soil Science)

- Preferably some work experience as a post-doc, or showing a high level of independence and self-direction as a PhD student

- Experience in one or more the following methods is especially regarded as an advantage: use of stable 13C and 15N isotopes in studying soil processes, CO2 flux measurements, enzyme assays, CUE methods, soil organic matter fractionation methods, PLFA and/or DNA based microbial community analysis 

- Experience in or ability to learn isotope calculations

- Experience in contributing to planning of laboratory experiments

- Excellent communication, writing and other presentation skills. Publication record that shows independent writing skills and ability to publish in highly ranking international journals

- Advanced statistical analysis skills (SPSS, R or Matlab)

- Capability to work both independently and in a research team, in the laboratory and in the field

- Driver’s licence


The Post-doctoral researcher will be positioned in the Department of Forest Sciences at the University of Helsinki.


The salary is based on level 5 of the job requirement scheme for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition, the appointee shall be paid a salary component based on personal work performance. Depending on the appointee’s qualifications and experience, the starting salary is 3300-3600 € per month. The appointment starts with a probationary period of six months.


How to apply

The applicants are requested to submit as a SINGLE PDF FILE through the University of Helsinki electronic recruitment system:

  • a letter of motivation
  • a curriculum vitae
  • two names of possible references


The deadline for applications is October 9, 2022.


The University of Helsinki welcomes applicants from a variety of gender identities, and linguistic and cultural backgrounds.


External applicants, please submit your application using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System via the provided link (Apply Now button).


Applicants who have a username and a valid employment contract, a grant researcher's contract or a visiting researcher's contract at the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application by using the employee login.


Further information:

Assistant Professor Kristiina Karhu, Forest Soil Science, Department of Forest Sciences, University of Helsinki, tel. +358 50 530 3670, e-mail kristiina.karhu(at)


In case you need support with the recruitment portal, please contact HR Specialist Mirkka Juntunen (mirkka.juntunen(at)



The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry is located on the Viikki campus. The mission of the faculty is to promote the sustainable use of renewable natural resources through scientific research and research-based teaching. We focus on agricultural and forest sciences, food and nutrition, microbiology, as well as on economics and management. We cover the full natural resource chain from farm to fork, the entire field of forest sciences from soil chemistry to marketing, as well as the environmental effects of related activities. Graduates from the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry are versatile experts in biosciences and business, able to meet the needs of both the business sector and society at large.


The Department of Forest Sciences is a unit under the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, which employs circa 100 individuals. The Department conducts research of a high international standard in the forest sciences and provides the highest education based on this research. The focus areas of the Department’s research and teaching are forest ecology and forest resource management as well as forest economics, business and society. The goal of the Department’s multidisciplinary operations is to provide teaching in the sustainability and sustainable use of forests, as well as conduct related scholarly research and public engagement. The Faculty grants Bachelor and Master of Science (Agriculture and Forestry) degrees, as well as Doctor of Science (Agriculture and Forestry) degrees in the University’s doctoral programmes. The Department’s degree programmes have roughly 350 undergraduate and 60 postgraduate students. The Department of Forest Sciences is active in its public engagement and it has a long history of successful collaboration with research institutes in the field, other universities, public administration and businesses both nationally and internationally.



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Open position

Due Date:  9.10.2022
Unit:  Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry
Sub-unit:  Department of Forest Sciences
ID:  521

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