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Research Fellow in Synthetic Biology


We have now appointed for this position. Please feel free to get in touch to know more about this project and the progress we make with it.

We invite applications for a three-year post as a Research Fellow in the Department of Computer Science, University of Warwick. The position is funded by EPSRC under a three-year multi-disciplinary research project exploring semantic issues in Synthetic Biology. The principal investigator will be Dr Sara Kalvala, and the research will involve close collaboration with biologists and computer scientists at the University of Nottingham and the University of Sheffield. The overall lead for the project is Prof Natalio Krasnogor from Nottingham.

The goal of the ROADBLOCK project is to develop biological coatings, based on modified bacteria, which act as shields against colonisation by other organisms. Within the overall remit of ROADBLOCK, the activity at Warwick will focus on developing software tools to create and analyse the synthetic or semi-synthetic components of the coating. The project will be based around a tool developed by our partners called the Infobiotics Workbench. We will explore ways of providing a type-theoretical semantics to the representation of genetic parts and develop strategies for using such semantics to develop better designs in a more efficient way. These logic-based tools will be integrated into the Infobiotics Workbench, and the results of applying these tools will be tested by the lab-based partners in Nottingham and Sheffield. The result activities will therefore include extensive collaboration with scientists in different fields and different sites. However, it is also expected that the Researcher will develop an independent research portfolio. The project also includes provision for presenting results through publications and at international conferences.

Applicants must have a PhD degree in Computer Science, Mathematics, or a related discipline. In order to accomplish the project's goal, the Researcher must demonstrate strong skills in theoretical computer science, particularly in semantics of programming languages or automated deduction, as well as demonstrable programming skills. Furthermore, the successful applicant is expected to have more than a cursory knowledge of biology, and understand the basis of Cell and Molecular Biology. Candidates who have completed their PhDs within an interdisciplinary doctoral or research centre are especially encouraged to apply.

The University of Warwick is located in the outskirts of Coventry, about 100 miles from London and within easy reach of Birmingham International Airport and well connected by road and train. The campus is modern and provides a high standard of living. More information about the University is available on the web.

The researcher will be appointed at grade FA6, currently £27,428 - £35,788 pa.

Informal enquiries may be made directly to Dr Sara Kalvala by email or by phone.


The University does not automatically acknowledge applications sent via the application procedure. In order to obtain an acknowledgement, please email Dr Kalvala a copy of the application form directly as well.

For further details on how to apply for a post at Warwick, the employee benefits that we offer, what it is like working at Warwick, and more, please see our jobs introduction page.

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