Cornell University, CALS Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Position ID:Cornell-CALS Ecology and Evolutionary Biology-POSTDOCANURAG [#21969, WDR-00032010]
Position Title: Postdoctoral Associate
Position Type:Postdoctoral
Position Location:Ithaca, New York 14853, United States [map] sort by distance
Subject Area: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Appl Deadline:2022/09/01 11:59PMhelp popup finished (2022/06/24, finished 2023/04/28)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***

Academic Job Description

Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Postdoctoral Associate 

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) is a pioneer of purpose-driven science and home to Cornell University’s second largest population of students, faculty and staff. We work across disciplines to tackle the challenges of our time through world-renowned research, education and outreach. The questions we probe and the answers we seek focus on three overlapping concerns: natural and human systems; food, energy and environmental resources; and social, physical and economic well-being.  CALS is fundamentally invested in improving the lives of people, their environments and their communities both in New York state and around the world.

Position Function       

This grant-supported postdoctoral position involves primary research and related professional activities associated with an NSF grant on the chemical ecology of interactions between plants and their specialized herbivorous insects. The position involves laboratory-based research and field work on the interactions between specific toxins present in milkweed plants and their impact on insects. This position requires an experienced scientist to use experimental methods in plant and insect ecology, chemical analysis, and evolutionary biology. This is a one-year position, renewable for one additional year depending on performance. 

Anticipated Division of Time

The role of the Postdoctoral Associate is 100% research.  The job is to engage in innovative research related to the NSF grant on chemical ecology.  This will be broken down roughly as follows.

Conducting experiments (~40%) Run research project isolating plant toxins and dosing them through feeding assays, injections, and in vitro enzymatic assays on insects, manipulating phytochemical composition. Experiments to be conducted in laboratory and to complement whole-organism assays in field experiments.

Laboratory sample processing (~10%) Coordinate the preparation and assay of samples, and the extraction and isolation of toxin samples collected during the project.

Data analysis (~20%) Work with PI and collaborators to develop and implement analyses of the physiological, behavioral, and fitness data collected during the project.

Student mentoring (~5%) Mentor undergraduate and graduate students involved in both field and laboratory research related to the project.

Developing leadership in and publishing products on the research funded by NSF (~25%) Provide intellectual leadership in conceptualizing hypotheses about coevolution and specificity of interactions and developing new capabilities within the lab to address those questions. Draft and submit multiple manuscripts for publication in top-level peer-reviewed scientific journals; present results at professional meetings, conferences, and popular seminars. Engage in ongoing academic and intellectual life within relevant scientific programs at the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and other relevant units on campus.


  •       Ph.D. in biology with specific concentration in chemical ecology or related areas in plant and insect ecology is required 
  •   Record of high-quality publications

Supervision Exercised

The postdoc will supervise undergraduate research students.

Salary: commensurate with experience

Application Instructions:

Interested applicants should submit a CV, cover letter (including research interests), contact information for 3 references and a statement of contribution to diversity, equity, and inclusion via Academic Jobs Online at the following link:  Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until a candidate is selected or the application deadline of September 1st, 2022.

Diversity and inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We’re an employer and educator recognized for valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations.

Familiarize yourself with Cornell’s COVID-19 workplace guidance as well as the university’s COVID-19 services and information.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
email address
CALS Surge Facility
525 Tower Road
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853