ISG Capuchin Genomics Post Doc Fellowship, 2017-2018

The UCLA Institute for Society and Genetics (ISG) is recruiting a post-doctoral scholar with a proposed start date of July 1, 2017, to help lead research on a capuchin monkey comparative and population genomics study funded in part by a FAPESP grant on “Phenotypic plasticity in robust capuchin monkeys (Sapajus): effects of distinct ontogenetic trajectories and context-dependent activation.” This one-year position (renewable for one additional year pending positive review) is for a researcher who can (1) engage in genomic and bioinformatics analyses of capuchin genomes to understand evolutionary changes and functional differences across ten species and in comparison to other Neotropical primates and more broadly; and (2) use recently available techniques to design and implement a genome-wide sampling approach for neutral and coding markers, to be used for non-invasive genomic sampling for wild capuchin monkey populations, in collaboration with Brazilian colleagues who will collect samples and perform sample preparation and sequencing in São Paulo, Brazil. The postdoc will lead population genomics analyses to test hypotheses about phenotypic plasticity versus genetic variation in individually identified wild capuchins, in conjunction with an extensive behavioral dataset on these populations.

We encourage applicants from fields in genetics, biomathematics, biological sciences and biological anthropology. The most competitive candidates will have a strong background in population or evolutionary genetics and expertise acquired from working with NextGen sequencing platforms (e.g. Illumina) for sequence analysis in a Unix environment. Background in computer sciences, mathematics and/or bioinformatics is a plus, due to the use of perl or python scripts and downstream analyses using R. Brazilian Portuguese language skills preferred but not required. This position is primarily based at UCLA in Los Angeles, but a short field research component in Brazil would be a possibility for this position.

Candidates are expected to collaborate with Jessica Lynch Alfaro and Patrícia Izar on the FAPESP-funded project, producing publications and public presentations related to capuchin functional and population genomics, development, biology and behavior. Candidates will be expected to actively participate in ISG activities, which will include teaching or co-teaching one quarter-length class (10 weeks) per year in the Human Biology and Society undergraduate major (B.A. and B.S., course can be cross-listed with another major; seminar format with 15-20 students).

The salary is competitive and includes health insurance, plus a $1500 stipend for conference fees, travel, research equipment/supplies, and other approved research-related expenses. Salary will be determined based on experience and percent time of the position. Eligibility: Applicants who received the Ph.D. degree after September 2008, or who will complete all Ph.D. requirements by June 30, 2017, are eligible to apply. Certification of completion of Ph.D. degree requirements must be in hand at the time of the appointment start.

Applicants are requested to submit a letter of application, curriculum vitae, research statement, writing sample, and the names and addresses of three references. Please submit all applications and application materials online via UCLA’s Academic Recruit Online at the following URL: Any questions about the position or the application process may be addressed to Jessica Lynch Alfaro ( The research statement should include an explanation of the candidate’s research experience and interest in the topic, as well as methodological orientation and skills. The cover letter should include a description of a course the candidate would be interested to teach in the Institute. The deadline for applying is February 15, 2017.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, see: UC Nondiscrimination & Affirmative Action Policy (

Application deadline is February 15, 2017