Research Associate - Resilient Agriculture

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The Global Institute for Food Security (GIFS) is a rapidly expanding Institute based at the University of Saskatchewan. Our Vision is a world where everyone has access to safe and nutritious food. This is a bold vision, one that we will strive to achieve through investing in out talent. In line with our Mission, we will work with our employees, partners, and stakeholders to discover, develop, and deliver innovative solutions for the production of globally sustainable food.


We are guided by our Values of: Innovation. Excellence. Collaboration. Integrity. Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.


As a Research Associate you apply your expertise in advanced tools and technologies currently used in basic and applied plant biology research to make new discoveries and important research advancements, which produce high quality scientific research measure both in project deliverable and publications in peer reviewed journals. You further GIFS knowledge in plant genomics and continue to grow and apply your knowledge in computation and bioinformatics tools and technologies.


Reporting to the Program Lead, Resilient Agriculture, you will be key member of team supporting GIFS and advancing the research and advancement


You will be part of the GIFS team and your work is highly interconnected with other programs within GIFS. Day-to-day decisions are made independently with a high degree of autonomy, while strategy decisions are made with direction from the supervisor. Work volume is high with a moderate to high degree of judgement required for day-to-day technical decision-making. The impact of error is moderate as it could result in lost time or replacement of materials and supplies.

You understand the values, culture, challenges, and operational needs of GIFS. You understand the interconnectedness of GIFS and the impact changes and operations have on all the platforms, programs, clients, and overall reputation of GIFS. You demonstrate a strong safety acumen. You develop and maintain strong long-lasting relationships.


§  Lead by example.

§  Promotes GIFS through the production of high-quality scientific research.

§  Apply advanced plant genomics in plant biology and agriculture to establish GIFS as an expert in crop genomics.

§  Conduct population genomics analysis.

§  Apply advanced tools and technologies currently used in basic and applied plant biology research to make new discoveries and important research advances in plant biology.

§  Apply computation and bioinformatics tools and technologies to plant biology, including but not limited to, genetic networks, global transcriptome analysis, quantitative traits, crop germplasm resources, gene expression, transferring performance traits into elite crop varieties, and greenhouse and field analysis of advanced Brassica lines.

§  Deliver and contribute to high impact research results and publications

§  Contribute to or co-lead experimental design.

§  Assist or co-lead with the drafting of reports, proposals, and manuscripts.

§  Publish original research results obtained in appropriate journals and other recognized media; and attend scientific conferences and present scientific knowledge gained to a wide audience.

§  Training and/or mentoring of technicians and students, may be required.


§  A PhD or master’s degree in plant physiology or biotechnology with excellent knowledge of plant genetics, genomics, and related sciences (post-harvest).

§  Minimum 3 – 5 years’ directly related experience, post-PhD, in a non-profit organization, foundation, government agency, and / or private company.

§  Broad technical and research expertise in key fields like genetics, physiology, molecular biology, development, genomics, QTLs, GWAS is required.

§  Experience in computational and bioinformatics tools and technologies required.

§  Experience with writing R codes and bash scripting and in processing NGS datasets using bioinformatics servers.

§  Experience in working with NAM populations, doubled haploid populations in Brassica and analysis of their large-scale biological datasets.

§  Experience in performing population genomics analysis.

§  Demonstrated expertise in various genotyping platforms, such as GBS, SNParray, whole-genome sequencing data and transcriptome data.


§  Highly motivated with the proven ability to be self-directed.

§  Sound judgment, discretion, diplomacy, and professional integrity.

§  Ability to be effective in interactions with senior leaders and scientists locally, nationally, and internationally.

§  A skilled communicator with the ability to establish and maintain effective, respectful relationships to ensure a culture of collaboration.

§  A track record of peer reviewed publications, delivering superior results and developing respect in previous organizations via a collaborative and team based working styles and a demonstrated ability to deliver quality results while meeting demanding timelines.

§  A deep commitment to enacting equity, diversity, inclusion.

§  Strong influencing, communication, negotiation, and advocacy skills, with the ability to motivate, influence and gain commitment.

§  An exceptional listener and communicator in diverse modes, whose balanced approach and thoughtful manner grows mutual respect, and trust with colleagues.

§  Effective organizational skills and the acumen to handle complex situations and manage multiple projects with competing deadlines.

§  Ability to identify issues and develop and implement creative and outcomes-oriented solutions.

§  Proficiency with MS Office applications (particularly Word and Excel).

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Department: Global Inst for Food Security
Status: Term 2 years
Employment Group: Research
Full Time Equivalent (FTE): 1.0
Salary: Salary will be commensurate with the successful candidate’s education and experience, and in keeping with the provisions of the Usask Employee Handbook for Non-Union Employees (2019)
Posted Date: 11/4/2021
Closing Date: 11/10/2021
Number of Openings: 1
Remote Status: Yes - Temporarily due to COVID-19

The successful applicant will be required to provide the following current verification(s) where 'Yes' is indicated below. Further information is available at:

Criminal Record Check: Not Applicable
Driver's License and Abstract Check: Not Applicable
Education/Credential Verification: Not Applicable
Vulnerable Sector Check: Not Applicable

Learn more about what we are doing to keep our campus community safe.

The University believes equity, diversity, and inclusion strengthen the community and enhance excellence, innovation and creativity. We are dedicated to recruiting individuals who will enrich our work and learning environments. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, in accordance with Canadian immigration requirements, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority. We are committed to providing accommodations to those with a disability or medical necessity. If you require an accommodation in order to participate in the recruitment process, please notify us and we will work together on the accommodation request. The University of Saskatchewan’s main campus is situated on Treaty 6 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis. We pay our respects to the First Nations and Métis ancestors of this place and reaffirm our relationship with one another. Together, we are uplifting Indigenization to a place of prominence at the University of Saskatchewan.