First listed on: 01 July 2020

CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellowship in Comparative Genomics of Rust Fungi

The Opportunity
  • Address important questions in rust virulence evolution.
  • Develop genomic resources to define the genetic diversity of rust fungi that hinder wheat productivity.
  • Join CSIRO - Australia's premier science and technology research organisation.

CSIRO Early Research Career (CERC) Postdoctoral Fellowships provide opportunities to scientists and engineers who have completed their doctorate and have less than three years relevant postdoctoral work experience.  

As the CERC Postdoctoral Fellow, you will work with Dr Melania Figueroa as part of the rust resistance research group, whose goals are to prevent losses in wheat production due to the impact of rust diseases. Rust fungi are important pathogens of plants and display diverse complex lifestyles and genome structure. You will develop genomic resources to define the genetic diversity of rust fungi that hinder wheat productivity across Australia and the world. Such resources will provide you with a world-leading position to address important questions in rust virulence evolution. In this role, you will develop tools to enable molecular diagnostic technologies for rust fungi to rapidly monitor pathogen populations in the field and forecast disease outbreaks.

You will be part of a large multidisciplinary team conducting research at the leading edge of the field of plant-pathogen interactions and with a strong record of high impact publications. Benefit from working within a world-leading team and through exposure to a broad scientific context spanning the spectrum from basic biology to applied delivery of science research to achieve industry outcomes.

Your duties will include:
  • Carry out innovative, impactful research of strategic importance to CSIRO that will, where possible, lead to novel and important scientific outcomes.
  • Contribute to a research program aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms of wheat rust resistance and pathogen virulence through research on rust genomics and effector biology.
  • Undertake regular reviews of relevant literature and patents.
  • Communicate results through regular team meetings and group level presentations.

Location: Canberra, ACT 
Tenure: Specified term of 3 years
Salary:  AU$86K – AU$94K + up to 15.4% superannuation
Reference:  67772

To be considered you will need:
  1. A doctorate (or will shortly satisfy the requirements of a PhD) in a relevant discipline area, such as biological data science (e.g. genomics, bioinformatics, computer science, etc.) Please note: To be eligible for this role you must have no more than 3 years (or part time equivalent) of postdoctoral research experience.
  2. Evidence of experience that includes the application of biological data science methodology to problems in biology and especially genetics of pathogens and/or comparative genomics.
  3. Evidence of experience with low-cost, rapid sequencing platforms as well as data wrangling, analysis and visualisation.
  4. High level written and oral communication skills with the ability to represent the research team effectively internally and externally, including the presentation of research outcomes at national and international conferences.
  5. A sound history of publication in peer-reviewed journals and/or authorship of scientific papers, reports, grant applications or patents.
  6. A record of science innovation and creativity, including the ability & willingness to incorporate novel ideas and approaches into scientific investigations.

For more information please view the Position Description.


The successful applicant will be required to obtain and provide a National Police Check or equivalent and be able to commence in late 2020/early 2021.

Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. Talk to us about how this role could be flexible for you. Balance

Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit diverse people and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

We are committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people.


At CSIRO, Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology.

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to Apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.

Applications Close

Sunday, 2nd August 2020 at 11:59PM AEST

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