University of Helsinki, Department of Mathematics and Statistics

Position ID: 568-POSTDOC [#12347]
Position Title: POSTDOC­TORAL RE­SEARCHER (stat­ist­ics / ma­chine learn­ing)
Position Type: Postdoctoral
Position Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland, Finland [map]
Subject Areas: Statistics / machine learning
Application Deadline: 2018/09/09help popup* finished (2018/08/23, finished 2019/03/10, listed until 2019/02/23)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed. ***

The University of Helsinki, founded in 1640, is one of the world’s leading universities for multidisciplinary research. The university has an international academic community of 40,000 students and staff members. The University of Helsinki offers comprehensive services to its employees, including occupational health care and health insurance, sports facilities, and opportunities for professional development. The International Staff Services office assists employees from abroad with their transition to work and life in Finland.

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics, at the Faculty of Science, is the biggest department of mathematical sciences in Finland. The department invites applications for a

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER (statistics / machine learning)

for a full-time three-year position with a possible extension to four years. The full-time position can start in September 2018 or upon mutual agreement. The work will be conducted in the research group of Assistant Professor Jarno Vanhatalo and in a project funded by Academy of Finland. The objective of the project is to develop novel hierarchical Bayesian models and computational methods for analyzing long-term spatially structured ecological and environmental data sets.

The research group of Vanhatalo consists of nine post-doctoral researchers and PhD students and is affiliated with the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the Organismal and Evolutionary Biology research program at the Faculty of Bio and Environmental Sciences. The research of the group concentrates on statistics and probabilistic modeling in ecology and environmental sciences. The group is also part of the Research Centre for Ecological Change that provides a fertile ground for applied and theoretical work in statistical ecology by uniting statisticians, mathematicians and ecologists to work on long term, big data sets.

The work focuses on development of novel Bayesian joint species distribution models and approximate computational methods for them. Joint species distribution models can be used for the statistical analysis of data on species occurrence and abundance in relation to environmental covariates and species interactions. In addition to ecological research they are widely used in natural resource management and spatial planning.

A successful post doc candidate will have experience in the development and application of Bayesian methods for computationally challenging problems. In particular, prior experience in multivariate generalized linear mixed models, factor models and/or Gaussian processes is highly valued. A successful candidate will also have experience in scientific computing. Prior experience in ecology is not necessary, but is counted as an advantage. The exact direction to which the post doc will develop the models can be agreed upon based on the experience and interests of the candidate.

For more information, contact assistant Professor Jarno Vanhatalo by email:


The salary of successful candidate will be based on level 5 of the demands level chart for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition, the appointee will be paid a salary component based on personal performance. The starting salary will be approximately 3300 – 3700 €/month.

How to apply

Please submit your application using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System. See

Please attach the following documents as a single pdf file: motivational letter (max 1 page), CV (max 2 pages) and a publication list. Include also contact information of two persons who can provide a reference letter on request.

The deadline for submitting the application is September 9th, 2018.

Please submit your application using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System via the the Apply for the position link below. Applicants who are employees of the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application via the SAP HR portal.

This employer is not accepting applications for this position through Mathjobs.Org. Please see the job description above on how to apply.
Postal Mail:
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
P.O.Box 68
00014 University of Helsinki
Web Page:

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