The Glycobiology Section at PLEN invites applicants for a PhD fellowship in carbon allocation to improve our knowledge in resource allocation in plants. Start date is (expected to be) 2022-10-01 or as soon as possible thereafter.

The project
Plants fix carbon via photosynthesis; one of the key biochemical processes on Earth. This carbon is incorporated into sugar phosphates and subsequently used as a building block for virtually all molecules on Earth. The major portion of the carbon ends up in either starch or cell wall polysacchardies in plants. This project aims to deduce how sugar signalling controls, or determines, where the carbon will be allocated.

The successful candidate will use a range of molecular and physiological techniques to address this question, including an exciting new type of proximity labelling technique to tackle protein interaction schemes of some of the key proteins in sugar signalling. The outcomes of the project will provide key insights into alteration in carbon utilization in plants and thus new ways to mitigate climate change.

Who are we looking for?
We are looking for candidates within the field(s) of molecular plant biology and physiology. Extensive cloning experience will be a plus. Experience with proximity labelling techniques, heterologous protein expression & purification, and protein mass spectrometry data will also be considered relevant background. Applicants should hold an MSc degree, or equivalent, in any area of Plant Science with good results and good English skills. As criteria for the assessment of your qualifications, emphasis will also be laid on previous publications (if any), relevant work experience, reference letters and interviews.

Our group and research- and what do we offer?
The group is a part of PLEN, Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. The successful candidate will be part of a highly cross-disciplinary and exciting team that includes the full range of microscopy, proteomics, glycomics, biochemistry and molecular biology. This will ensure that you will receive a broad but cutting-edge experience that will build a solid foundation for your future scientific career. Together, we will generate an exciting environment to understand mechanisms that underpin carbon utilization in plants.

Principal supervisor is Professor Staffan Persson, PLEN (email: with Professor Thomas Roitsch, PLEN (email: as co-supervisor.

The PhD programme
Depending of your level of education, you can undertake the PhD programme as either:

Option A: A three year full-time study within the framework of the regular PhD programme (5+3 scheme), if you already have an education equivalent to a relevant Danish master’s degree.

Option A: Getting into a position on the regular PhD programme

Qualifications needed for the regular programme
To be eligible for the regular PhD programme, you must have completed a degree programme, equivalent to a Danish master’s degree (180 ECTS/3 FTE BSc + 120 ECTS/2 FTE MSc) related to the subject area of the project, e.g. Plant Science. For information of eligibility of completed programmes,

Terms of employment in the regular programme
Employment as PhD fellow is full time and for maximum 3 years.

Employment is conditional upon your successful enrolment as a PhD student at the PhD School at the Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. This requires submission and acceptance of an application for the specific project formulated by the applicant.

The terms of employment and salary are in accordance to the agreement between the Ministry of Taxation and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State (AC). The position is covered by the Protocol on Job Structure.

Responsibilities and tasks

  • Carry through an independent research project under supervision 
  • Complete PhD courses corresponding to approx. 30 ECTS / ½ FTE
  • Participate in active research environments, including a stay at another research institution, preferably abroad
  • Teaching and knowledge dissemination activities
  • Write scientific papers aimed at high-impact journals
  • Write and defend a PhD thesis on the basis of your project

We are looking for the following qualifications:

  • Professional qualifications relevant to the PhD project
  • Relevant publications
  • Relevant work experience
  • Other relevant professional activities
  • Curious mind-set with a strong interest in plant biology and how plants allocate their carbon resources
  • Good language skills

Application and Assessment Procedure
Your application including all attachments must be in English and submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Motivation letter of application (max. one page)
  • Your motivation for applying for the specific PhD project/Project proposal, i.e. how would you tackle the project as per description in this announcement
  • Curriculum vitae including information about your education, experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position
  • Original diplomas for Bachelor of Science or Master of Science and transcript of records in the original language, including an authorized English translation if issued in another language than English or Danish. If not completed, a certified/signed copy of a recent transcript of records or a written statement from the institution or supervisor is accepted.
  • Publication list (if possible)
  • Reference letters (if available), or contact details for references

Application deadline:

The deadline for applications is Sunday 3 July 2022, 23:59 GMT+1. 

We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.

The further process
After deadline, a number of applicants will be selected for academic assessment by an unbiased expert assessor. You are notified, whether you will be passed for assessment.

The assessor will assess the qualifications and experience of the shortlisted applicants with respect to the above mentioned research area, techniques, skills and other requirements. The assessor will conclude whether each applicant is qualified and, if so, for which of the two models. The assessed applicants will have the opportunity to comment on their assessment.

Interviews with selected candidates are expected to be held in week 29 (July 2022) 

For specific information about the PhD fellowship, please contact the principal supervisor.

The University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding community and invites all regardless of personal background to apply for the position. 

Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Staffan Persson


Apply now


Application deadline: 03-07-2022

Employment start: 01-10-2022

Working hours: Full time

Department/Location: Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: