Postdoctoral Researcher, Social Scientific Biodiversity Research job with UNIVERSITY OF HELSINKI

We are looking for highly motivated and qualified researchers with a PhD degree (or a late-stage PhD researcher). An ideal candidate has experience in biodiversity, qualitative research methods and EU policies (CAP, Green Deal/Farm to Fork, EU Biodiversity Strategy). Other combinations of social science expertise are also considered. The postdoc will be appointed for a 4-year fixed-term contract to work in a Horizon Europe-funded project entitled Advanced biodiversity monitoring for results-oriented and effective agricultural policy and transformation (BioMonitor4CAP) from December 1, 2022. The project aims to develop, test and support the implementation of effective, affordable and reliable methods, tools and technologies for monitoring the biodiversity of agricultural land or cropland.

We aim to advance the field of social science biodiversity research by assessing various biodiversity data, examining stakeholder perceptions of biodiversity, creating a framework for measures to improve agrobiodiversity together with rural stakeholders, and providing policy implications. The appointed researcher will collaborate with the other members of the multidisciplinary research team.


  • Identify, design, conduct and report qualitative social science research on biodiversity from a stakeholder perspective.
  • Take responsibility for the organization and implementation of a social science research task in the consortium.
  • Participation in the application for further research funding.
  • Interact with the scientific community, research partners and the wider public, internationally and domestically (scientific publications, conference presentations, press releases and blogs).

The candidate is expected to:

education and experience

  • A relevant PhD in social sciences or humanities, including experience in biodiversity, sustainability, EU policy frameworks or other related fields.
  • Experience in working with qualitative social science research methods.
  • Fluent in English and excellent writing skills.
  • Fluency in Finnish is considered an advantage.

Personal characteristics and competencies

  • Interest in qualitative social sciences and enthusiasm to better understand stakeholders’ perceptions of biodiversity.
  • Excellent analytical and innovative research planning skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, experience working in multicultural and multidisciplinary teams.
  • High motivation for an academic research career, initiative and the ability to work both independently and in a team environment.
  • Flexible mindset and ability to collaborate and communicate with people from different disciplines.

The salary of postdoc will be based on level 5 of the qualification level table for teaching and research staff in the Finnish university salary system. In addition, the person to be appointed receives a salary component based on personal performance. The starting salary of the postdoc is around 3,200-3,700 euros/month, depending on the qualifications and experience of the job holder. There is a six-month probationary period.

The workplace is mainly at Ruralia Institute in the city of Mikkeli (an opportunity for hybrid or remote work in Finland). The appointee is expected to reside in Finland while employed at the University of Helsinki.

The University of Helsinki offers its employees a wide range of services, including occupational healthcare and health insurance, sports facilities and opportunities for professional development. The University ( supports employees from abroad in the transition to working and living in Finland.


Applicants are requested to enclose the following documents in English with their application. Please provide all documents as single PDF file.

  1. Cover letter explaining the applicant’s motivation for the research work and a brief research plan (e.g. approach, research materials and methods) (maximum 3 pages).
  2. Curriculum vitae stating education, completed qualifications, work experience, list of publications and contact details of 2 people for references (up to 3 pages).
  3. Copies of doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s certificates and official transcripts of the certificates and their translations if the originals are not in Finnish, Swedish or English.
  4. Evidence of knowledge of Finnish, Swedish or English if the applicant is not a native speaker or has not been trained in any of them.

External applicantsplease submit your application through the University of Helsinki recruitment system via the Apply Now (Hae nyt) button.

Applicants who have a username and a valid employment contract, grant researcher contract, visiting researcher contract or visiting professor contract at the University of Helsinki are asked to leave their application via the staff login (Työntekijän kirjautuminen).

The closing date for applications is 10/26/2022 at 23:59 EEST.

The University of Helsinki welcomes applicants with different gender identities, language and cultural backgrounds.


For more information on the positions, please contact Senior Researcher Toni Ryynänen ([email protected]).

If you need assistance with the recruitment portal, please contact HR coordinator ([email protected]) or HR specialist Mirkka Juntunen ([email protected])


The Ruralia Institute of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry offers high-quality research and innovation partnerships for rural development. The focus of the institute is local development, sustainable food chains and new bioeconomy. The institute carries out extensive international, national and regional cooperation with about 50 experts in the university consortiums of Mikkeli and Seinäjoki (

The Human in Digital and Sustainable Economies research group, led by Senior Researcher Toni Ryynänen, is based at the Ruralia Institute, one of the six units of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry.

About Thelma Wilt

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