Research Associate (Fixed Term)

University of Cambridge - McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research

The Department of Archaeology and Anthropology seeks to appoint an experienced researcher to join a collaborative research project investigating the effects of mobility and physical activity on human postcranial skeletal variation. This postdoc position is part of a SBE-RCUK: Collaborative Research project entitled: The effects of mobility and physical activity on human postcranial skeletal variation.  The work is supervised by Dr. Jay Stock, in collaboration with Dr. Tim Ryan (Penn State University). 

Modern humans have relatively lightly built skeletons compared to other primates and earlier hominins.  Recent work demonstrates that hunter-gatherers are significantly more robust compared to sedentary agriculturalists, implicating a lack of mobility following the adoption of agriculture as a critical factor driving skeletal gracilization in Holocene humans. This project will evaluate the contributions of physical activity, mobility, body size, diet, and ancestry on cortical and trabecular bone structural variation within our species. 

Working closely with the PI, the postholder will play a key role in data collection and analysis, manuscript preparation and impact activities, and will have opportunities for lead authorship of papers and presentation of work at international conferences.

We are looking for an independent, creative and highly motivated individual with experience in the quantitative analysis of trabecular and cortical bone variation. Candidates should have experience in either microCT or pQCT imaging, processing, and analysis. Experience with software packages such as Avizo, ImageJ, and R preferred but not required. Qualified candidates should hold a Ph.D. degree or have completed the requirements for a Ph.D. by the time of appointment. Please direct questions regarding this postdoctoral opportunity to Jay Stock (

The Research Associate will be based in the McDonald Institute and the PAVE research group of the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 3 years in the first instance.

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit: This will take you to the role on the University’s Job Opportunities pages. There you will need to click on the 'Apply online' button and register an account with the University's Web Recruitment System (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

The application deadline for this post is  Sunday 8 October 2017.  We anticipate that interviews will be held on Tuesday 17 October 2017.

Please quote reference JC13258 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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