Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Exeter, Devon (GB)
From £35,845 up to £46,718 on Grade F, depending on qualifications and experience
October 17 2019
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

College of Medicine and Health & College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences  

The starting salary will be from £35,845 up to £46,718 on Grade F, depending on qualifications and experience.  

This new full time post is available from 15 January 2020 on a fixed term basis until 14 January 2023.  

Summary of the role

The College of Medicine and Health and the College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences bring together scientists who are active in internationally recognised research across disciplines. One of the key interdisciplinary research themes within the University's Science Strategy is systems biology.  

The Postdoctoral Research Fellow will work with Dr Joel Tabak and Professor Roman Borisyuk on a BBSRC funded interdisciplinary project: “Dynamic network reconfiguration at the transition between motor programs”. The Research Fellow post forms part of a new and exciting research effort on how neural circuits in the tadpole spinal cord switch between different rhythmic activity patterns in response to sensory stimuli. This way, we aim to uncover principles of how vertebrate neural systems reconfigure their connectome to generate different behaviours. The research Fellow in Exeter will develop computational models of connectivity and neuronal activity in close collaboration with experimental partners at the University of St Andrews.  

This BBSRC-funded post is available early January 2020 for a fixed-term period of 36 months.

We are seeking an outstanding scientist with qualifications in mathematics, physics, computer science, engineering or related disciplines. A PhD in Computational Neuroscience (or a closely aligned subject) is required. Excellent programming skills (in languages such as C++, Python, Matlab) are expected. Experience in developing models of electrically excitable cells (e.g. Hodgkin-Huxley models) or population models of network activity is desirable. In addition, experience in fitting models to experimental data to estimate model parameters, and analysing models using techniques from bifurcation theory is important.

Applicant should be highly motivated for research, have excellent organizational skills, and be able to communicate effectively with outstanding writing ability.   Working closely with experimental physiologists at the University of St-Andrews, they will possess excellent communication skills and a willingness to learn about the critical underpinning biology. Additionally the successful candidate will have a strong track record of writing up scientific findings succinctly for publication.  

As a multidisciplinary project involving two institutions, a willingness to travel is also essential, with the applicant being expected to visit experimental collaborators in St-Andrews (all travel costs will be covered). The successful applicant will learn the basic biology of the system in order to facilitate effective communication with experimental collaborators.  

The University of Exeter
We are a member of the prestigious Russell Group of research-intensive universities and in the top 150 universities in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019). We combine world-class teaching with world-class research, achieving a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework Award 2017.  

Our research income in recent years means we’re fastest growing UK Research University and we seek to answer some of the most fundamental issues facing humankind today through this. 98% of our research is international quality (2014 Research Excellence Framework) and we encourage proactive engagement with industry, business and community partners to enhance the impact of research and education and improve the employability of our students.  

With over 22,000 students and 5,500 staff from 180 different countries we offer a diverse and engaging environment in which to work. We are an equal opportunity employer, a Disability Confident employer and an Athena Swan accredited institution. Whilst all applicants will be judged on merit alone, we particularly welcome applications from groups currently underrepresented in the workforce. 


We offer some fantastic benefits including: - 41 days leave per year
- options for flexible working
- numerous discounts at leading retailers
- onsite gyms on all of our campus’ and a cycle to work scheme
- sector leading policies around maternity, adoption and shared parental leave (up to 26 weeks full pay), paternity leave (up to six weeks full pay) and a new Fertility Treatment Policy
- stunning campus environments in Exeter and Cornwall, in the beautiful South West of England  

Further information
Please contact Dr Joel Tabak, or Professor Roman Borisyuk,  

Applications should be made via our website. For more information and to apply online please go to It is anticipated that interviews will take place in the week commencing 9 December 2019.  

We welcome applications from candidates interested in working part-time hours or job-sharing arrangements.  

This role may be subject to additional background screening.  

The College is proud to have a Silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our commitment and impact to providing equality of opportunity and advancing the representation of women in STEM/M subjects.  Our Inspiring Stories tell you more about how we support our staff, including through a mentoring programme to help our staff learn from the professional and life experience of colleagues and explore opportunities and actions for career progression.