Group of Population and Speciation Genetics

A postdoc position is available!

Inferring the history of speciation from the whole genome data

Available from June 2019 to December 2021 (the starting date is flexible)
Evaluation of applications starts on 1st of May 2019 and will continue until the position is filled.

Patterns of genetic variation within and between species enable to make inferences about demographic history of species, levels of post-divergence gene flow as well as evolutionary forces acting on specific genes. Such information can provide a valuable insight into the history and mechanisms of speciation. This project aims at understanding the complex history of speciation in two closely related passerines, the Common Nightingale and the Thrush Nightingale, that hybridize in a zone of secondary contact. The successful candidate will use the whole-genome sequences from multiple individuals of both nightingale species from sympatric as well as allopatric populations. These data will be used to (1) model the demographic history of species divergence, (2) explore the genomic landscape of interspecific differentiation and divergence and identify specific genomic regions with reduced introgression between species that underlie reproductive isolation, (4) identify specific genes with signs of adaptive introgression, and (3) seek for signatures of selection on sympatric populations, which might unravel mechanisms of reinforcement and/or ecological character displacement at the genetic level. The results will provide a unique insight into the mechanisms or species origin as well as the role of genetic introgression in adaptive evolution.

The successful candidate will be mainly responsible for the bioinformatic part of the project. The position requires experience in analysis of large-scale next-generation sequence data and the ideal candidate should have background in population genetics. Programming skills are desirable. Experience in the wet lab is a plus, but is not necessary. The candidate may be involved in the fieldwork if he/she wishes.

The selected candidate will work in a young independent research group of population and speciation genetics. The group is based at the Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, Charles University, which belongs to the leading research institutions in the Czech Republic. The Faculty of Science is situated in the center of Prague, one of the world's most beautiful and monumental cities.

How to apply: If interested, please, send (1) CV including a list of publications, (2) copy of PhD diploma, (3) motivation letter, and (3) contact details for 2–3 references to Radka Reifova ( The evaluation of applications starts on 1st of May 2019 and will continue until the position is filled.