Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Queen Mary University of London - Biological & Chemical Science

A Postdoctoral Research Assistant position is available at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL), to undertake research on the navigation of flying bees and its neural underpinnings. This research position is offered within the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences at QMUL and forms part of the project entitled ‘Brains-On-Board – Neuromorphic Control of Flying Robots’, a multi-university collaboration aiming to create robotic controllers that will enable autonomous robots with the navigational and learning abilities of a honeybee.

It involves five research groups at the University of Sheffield, Queen Mary University of London, and the University of Sussex performing research whose goal is biomimetic robot control and which will combine the study of insect visual orientation with autonomous robotics, computational neuroscience, and accelerated neural network simulations on GPU architectures.

The work will be performed under the supervision of Prof Lars Chittka (QMUL). The work involves both laboratory work on the orientation of bees (at QMUL) as well as field work which will mostly take place at Rothamsted Research near Harpenden, North of London. The main aim of this project will be to use newly developed radar technology to track multiple pollinating bees over large distances and over extended periods, to study mechanisms of their orientation, as well as their interactions with flowers and with other pollinators.

Specific tasks will include monitoring of bee behaviour using advanced tracking technology, data analysis and manuscript writing, maintenance of bee colonies, tagging bees, and the supervision of small teams of undergraduates and research technicians. Candidates should have a PhD in biology, computer science or a related discipline. Experience with the subject of bee behaviour, or computational neuroscience will be an advantage. A good record of peer-reviewed papers in the field is essential.

The position is full-time, fixed term for 24 months, with the possibility of an extension up to 5 years. The position is available from the 01/01/2017 or as soon as possible thereafter. 

The starting salary is £44,815 per annum depending on experience and is inclusive of London allowance. Benefits include 30 days annual leave, defined benefit pension scheme and an interest–free season ticket loan.

Candidates must be able to demonstrate their eligibility to work in the UK in accordance with the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006. Where required this may include entry clearance or continued leave to remain under the Points Based Immigration Scheme.

The School and Athena SWAN Charter for Women in Science

The School holds a Silver Athena SWAN Award and is committed to Athena SWAN principles to promote women in science

For further information about the School, please see

To apply, please visit the Human Resources website on and search for reference QMUL10311.

Application enquiries should be directed to

The closing date for applications is 28 December 2016 Interviews will be held shortly thereafter.

Valuing Diversity & Committed to Equality.

Share this job
  Share by Email   Print this job   More sharing options
We value your feedback on the quality of our adverts. If you have a comment to make about the overall quality of this advert, or its categorisation then please send us your feedback
Advert information

Type / Role: