IceLab Multidisciplinary Postdoctoral Fellowships

Call for Multidisciplinary Project Applications

Application deadline:

May 26, 2022

Many challenging research questions exist in the under-explored terrain between traditional disciplines. At Integrated Science Lab (IceLab), we promote and facilitate transdisciplinary collaborations that integrate theoretical, computational, and empirical work. Current IceLab researchers combine mathematical and computational modelling expertise with a deep interest in working with empirical researchers across the shared campus of Umeå University and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.  

Open call: Multidisciplinary research projects

With financial support from the Kempe Foundation, we invite applications from multidisciplinary teams representing different departments at Umeå University or SLU for research projects that require novel collaboration across disciplines and methodologies. Three teams will be awarded funding to cover one 2-year postdoctoral fellowship and running and recruitment costs. The newly funded postdoctoral fellows will be based in IceLab and the funded research team will become IceLab affiliates and should contribute to building and strengthening IceLab. This multidisciplinary project call is the third annual call of this kind. 

Application process

We invite you to an information session in IceLab on April 26th at 13:30, one month before the submission deadline, in KBC Glasburen or in Zoom. We will present IceLab and this multidisciplinary project call. We encourage researchers who do not have a project partner yet to consider giving a pitch if they wish during this session or at a regularly scheduled IceLab Lunch Pitch.

Project and Postdoctoral Fellow Selection Process 

Multidisciplinary projects and postdoctoral candidates will be selected in a multi-phase process. 

In phase 1, a team of researchers who will act as co-advisors of the future postdoctoral fellow write a project proposal and submit it through our application portal. The team should consist of two or more researchers from at least two different departments at Umeå University or SLU. An external review committee will evaluate the project proposals and recommend 4-6 top projects to proceed to phase 2. 

More information on contents of the phase 1 application, evaluation criteria, and a link to the application portal below.

In phase 2, to identify top postdoctoral candidates who match the required expertise of each project, we will announce a call that includes all 4-6 top-ranked projects. Researchers involved in the top-ranked projects select the best candidate for their project. IceLab will assist in advertising the positions but strongly advise top-ranked project teams to be proactive in searching for candidates in parallel. 

In phase 3, the 4-6 top projects submit their top candidates and give a presentation motivating their candidate selection and project, to an internal review committee. The internal review committee will select the 3 project and postdoctoral fellowship candidate pairings to fund. 

Timeline 

2022-04-26 Call opens: Information Session  

2022-05-26 Application deadline  

2022-06-06 4-6 projects selected for phase 2 in external review 

2022-06-20 4-6 projects seek postdoctoral candidates 

2022-09-20 Application deadline for postdoctoral candidates for 4-6 selected projects  

2022-10-18 Submit project + top candidate to internal review committee for 4-6 selected projects 

2022-11-15 Top 3 project + candidate selected and offered funding 

2023-01-01 3 postdoctoral fellows can start 

Dates may change slightly 

Application Content and Evaluation Criteria 

To be considered, an application must include the following information (in English): 

In the online application form: 

  • Project title 
  • Names and contact information of the applicants 
  • Project summary with a research question (max 500 words)
  • Description of the multidisciplinary approach (max 500 words) 
  • Added value – how does a shared postdoc critically contribute to your collaborative project 
  • Statement supporting the likelihood of your finding a high-quality candidate for this project 
  • Research areas involved 
  • Description of past or potential future collaborations and synergies with IceLab members and activities 
  • Uploaded team description including CVs for all applicants (max 3 pages per applicant), and details regarding applicants’ roles and responsibilities in the project (one PDF document) 
  • Uploaded detailed project description including scientific background, research plan and feasibility. (one PDF document, max 3 pages) 

Note: The project does not need to be computational nor does it need to involve a current affiliate of IceLab. 

Evaluation criteria and guiding questions for phase 1 external review 

Once the application window has closed, an external review team will review and rank the applications according to the following criteria and guiding questions:  

Project originality, scientific quality and feasibility 

  • Are the project’s design and questions of high scientific quality? 
  • Is the project well-described? Are the research problem, prior research, methods and other components clear? 
  • Is the project feasible for a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship? 
  • Is the project likely to be successful in finding an appropriate candidate for the postdoctoral fellowship? 
  • Does the proposed project show potential for novel research discoveries through its results or potential to open new research fields and approaches? 

Interdisciplinary added value 

  • Does the project include novel ways of combining theories, disciplines, data or methods? 
  • Do the applicants form a new, genuinely interdisciplinary grouping?  
  • Does the project show a genuine need for collaboration between the applicants to succeed? 
  • Is the addition of a shared postdoctoral fellow a necessary step for this collaborative project idea to flourish? 
  • Does the team include at least two researchers from different research areas and departments from UmU or SLU? 
  • Is the division of work and collaboration between the participants in the project clearly described? 
  • Can this project strengthen IceLab’s environment by, for example, supporting its interdisciplinary activities and giving access to new scientific disciplines and departments not previously explored by IceLab’s core members? 
  • Do the applicants demonstrate a willingness and ability to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries? 

The external review team will identify 4-6 projects that can go on to search for candidates for the postdoctoral fellowships.  

Internal review of project and candidate pairings 

An internal review committee will review the top 4-6 projects along with their chosen candidates for the postdoctoral fellowship. The committee will consist of principal investigators of the candidate projects, current IceLab multidisciplinary postdoctoral fellows and other postdocs and PhD students.  They will review the projects and top candidates to identify the top three project and candidate pairings. They will interview the candidates as part of this process and assess how candidates may fit and contribute to the IceLab environment.  

To create a strong multidisciplinary postdoctoral community, the postdoctoral fellows will be based in IceLab. IceLab has ten years of experience in this type of research and can ensure that every researcher in the program will be connected through IceLab’s physical space and activities. Researchers who receive funding from this program, but are not yet full IceLab members, will become affiliates of the research environment, participate in IceLab activities and maintain an open and collaborative focus throughout the project lifetimes and beyond.  

Selected postdoctoral fellows should be able start the projects in early January 2023. 

Contact

Gabrielle Beans, IceLab Communications

Submit online application

Only applications written in the dedicated online application form will be considered. Applications should be completed jointly by all members of the team of applicants. Please make sure you have completed the form correctly before submitting, as there is no edit option. If you have made a mistake and would like to submit a revised application before the deadline, contact Gabrielle Beans, IceLab communications.

Apply by May 26 2022