PhD student position in plant responses to the environment, CIG, UNIL (CH)

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UNIL is a leading international teaching and research institution, with over 5,000 employees and 15,500 students split between its Dorigny campus, CHUV and Epalinges. As an employer, UNIL encourages excellence, individual recognition and responsibility.


The Center for Integrative Genomics of the University of Lausanne invites applications for the position of PhD student in plant responses to the environment – photobiology.

Plant growth and development are strongly influenced by light. This resource is essential for photoautotrophic plants but its availability is strongly influenced by the surrounding vegetation. In response to neighbor proximity or shade cues plants initiate low light responses such as shade-avoidance and phototropism. The Fankhauser lab ( studies the molecular and physiological mechanisms enabling plants to adapt to such unfavorable light conditions.

Job information

Expected start date in position: 01.03.2021 or to be agreed

Contract length : 1 year, renewable 2 x 2 years, max. 5 years

Activity rate: 85% (minimum of 50% of the activity rate for research thesis, maximum of 50% of the activity for the institute)

Workplace: University of Lausanne, Dorigny, Center for Integrative Genomics

Your responsibilities

The successful candidate will work within the framework of the project entitled “Phototropism in green seedlings: studying its regulation in open versus shaded environments”. The candidate will use a combination of molecular genetics, plant photobiology, cell biology and biochemical approaches and work as part of a team to address the overall research question.

The successful candidate will also have the opportunity to gain teaching and mentoring experience through contributions to undergraduate and graduate teaching programs and the supervision of student projects. The University of Lausanne offers a world-class international research environment with state-of-the-art facilities

Your qualifications

Dynamic, enthusiastic and dedicated scientist with a Master degree in biology or a related discipline. Critical thinker with good reasoning and logic skills. Team player eager to participate in scientific discussions. A background in plant biology, protein biochemistry, computational skills (e.g. statistical computing using R) are strong assets.

What the position offers you

We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diversified and dynamic academic environment, opportunities for professional training.

Contact for further information

For further information please contact Prof. Christian Fankhauser (

Your application

Deadline: 31.01.2021

Please submit your full application as a single PDF document comprising:

– a cover letter detailing your research interests and experience, and clearly explaining why you are interested in this particular position

– a CV

– a copy of your Master’s degree certificate

– contact details for 2 or more referees

Only applications received through this website will be considered.