The Faculty of Science and Engineering at University of Groningen (RUG) invites applications for a fully-funded, four-year PhD position Quantitative Genetics of Human Life-History.

About the position:
  • For the PhD, candidate will investigate the relative impact of environmental and genetic factors on senescence using two exceptional human archive datasets from rural Finland and the Swiss canton of Glarus.
  • The first investigation will be the accuracy of selection measures by asking how well standard fitness measures, such as lifetime reproductive success and the number of grand-offspring, reflect expected genetic contribution to future generations.
  • Secondly, investigate though a quantitative genetic framework, the heritability of fitness metrics and genetic trade-offs in life-history traits, such as the age of first reproduction and longevity.
  • Lastly the candidate will then test whether these genetic trade-offs vary across environmental conditions, between the sexes and with age and quantify how quantitative genetic parameters change in relation to the demographic transition.


  • Applicant must hold a (research) master’s degree (or will graduate before appointment date) in a relevant field, such as Evolutionary Biology.
  • Applicant must be curiosity driven and passionate about fundamental research in the context of quantitative genetics and life-history evolution
  • Applicant must have strong quantitative skills (training will be provided)
  • Applicant must ideally have experience in extracting and analysing data from databases or large datasets (training will be provided)
  • Applicant must be a team player, willing to work with a diverse group of researchers and technicians, and can also work independently
  • Applicant must have strong communication skills and are motivated to disseminate results to both scientific peers and a broad audience
  • Applicant must be proficient in the English language (oral and written) e.g. with a minimum IELTS score of 7.0 overall and 6.5 on parts
  • Applicant must be strongly motivated to obtain a PhD degree.

The preferred starting date is 1 February 2021


Apply online and submit the following requested documents:

  • A motivation letter
  • Complete curriculum vitae
  • Names and email addresses of two referees
  • An example research paper (if available)
—————–Quick Overview————-
Organization University of Groningen (RUG)
Country Netherlands
Fellowship Level Doctoral
Subject areas Evolutionary Biology
Fellowship amount Varies
Eligibility Master’s degree
Deadline 1 October 2020

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