Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

Marie Sklodowska Fellowship - ESR 8

This job offer has expired

    Azotic Technologies
    Agricultural sciencesSoil science
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    03/07/2017 23:00 - Europe/London
    United Kingdom › Nottingham
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

ESR8 – Plant and bacterial factors determining host colonization by, and intracellular uptake of Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus.

Azotic Technologies Ltd was established to develop and commercialise a natural nitrogen technology that provides a sustainable solution to fertiliser overuse.

Azotic Technologies has identified a new platform nitrogen technology; the Company will commercialise technologies based on this platform through appropriate partnerships in R&D and routes to market.

Azotic Technologies N-Fix® technology is based on a food grade bacterium Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus (Gd) which is derived from sugarcane. N-Fix can be applied as an inoculant or as a seed dressing formulation. By inoculating plant seeds with this beneficial bacterium, it creates a symbiotic relationship for mutual benefit. This nitrogen-fixing bacterium is a patented disruptive technology which will have a huge impact on agriculture.

Job Description

The position is offered in the frame of the project INTERFUTURE - From microbial interactions to new-concept biopesticides and biofertilizers, a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network Action (link: http://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/207003_en.html)

The main objective of this ESR project is:

To monitor bacterial cell division in intercellular and intracellular environments by using reporter genes linked to cell cycle related transcriptional units. The researcher will assess the effect of quorum sensing on the ability of Gd to colonise plants such as Arabidopsis, focusing on the process of root meristematic cellular invasion and inter and intra-cellular movement. The applicant should also focus on the ability of Gd to replicate in the intracellular environment as well as establish whether the colonisation of plants not normally considered as hosts is inhibited by general defence responses.

In addition, the ESR will be required to undertake training according to the INTERFUTURE training programme that integrates traditional doctoral activities (research-oriented) with product development-oriented training:

  • network wide training activities (workshops, summer and winter schools, seminars) and courses, planned for all ESRs across the EU-wide network;
  • local training, based on the development of the individual research project, with a strong tutoring by highly qualified supervisors, also including important complementary skill training;
  • secondments, providing additional skills, networking and inter-sectoriality;
  • participation in international Conferences, which allow the ESRs to measure the relevance of their research in a wider scientific context and to disseminate their results.


Salary and benefits

An annual salary will be paid at UK/EU rates according to H2020-MSCA-ITN-2016 scheme and will vary depending on individual applicants situation at the appointment time.

The Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment, between the brackets of £29,708.00- £37,326.00 per annum in accordance with the EU Marie Sklodowska-Curie financial guidelines for this scheme.

Furthermore, PhD tuition fees for the ESR are covered and the research project is aimed at defending a thesis and obtaining a PhD degree. In addition to their individual scientific projects, all positions will benefit from further continuing training, which includes summer schools and secondments (All ESRs will be seconded at least once at another partner premises), a variety of training courses as well as transferable skill courses, active participation in workshops and conferences, and exposure to SMEs and Universities from the different European countries involved in INTERFUTURE.

More information on the Work Programme 2016/2017 can be found here:



Eligibility criteria

Requirements necessary for participation (eligibility criteria)

Applicants should meet the following:

  • be at the time of recruitment in the first four years of research career (full-time equivalent research experience*) calculated from the date on which the Master degree was obtained;
  • not have been awarded a Doctoral Degree;
  • not have resided or carried out his/her main activity in the country of the host institute for more than 12 months in the last three years immediately prior to the reference recruitment date;
  • be proficient in both written and spoken English (IELTS or similar tests that are approved by UKVI, or a degree completed in an English-speaking country). In the event that it is ascertained that the candidate does not have knowledge of English equivalent to level B2, the candidate will be excluded from the recruitment process.

*‘Full-time equivalent research experience’ is measured from the date when the researcher obtained the degree entitling him/her to embark on a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited or seconded) – even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged.


Selection process

How to apply. Deadline is 03/07/2017 at 23:59 (CET)

To apply for the position, please email the following documents to the hiring party at Azotic Technologies Ltd. (jobs@azotictechnologies.com) quoting reference "MSC-ESR8"

  • the curriculum vitae (CV), including contact details, education, work experience, technical and scientific publications, prizes/awards, language skills. The CV should reflect a representative array of achievements and qualifications appropriate to the post for which application is being made. The CV must be saved with file extension: Surname Name_CV.doc , or .pdf.
  • Official academic record of undertaken courses & grades for Bachelor (and Master if required in specific criteria) degree.
  • A motivational letter in which the applicant describes his or her motivation to pursue postgraduate studies and to conduct the research project applied for. The applicant is asked to mention the ESR position s/he apply for on the motivational letter. In case of application to multiple positions, the applicant is asked to motivate his interest in the projects selected.
  • Contact details of three referees willing to write confidential letters of recommendation.
  • Your application will be forwarded to the involved supervisor(s) for further evaluation.

The deadline is 03/07/2017.

Applications received shortly after the deadline are likely to be considered. Priority will be given to applications received before 15 June 2017. After this first round each institute will contact successful candidates.

The successful candidate will also need to submit a formal PhD application on the University of Nottingham system. Instructions will be sent after offers of employment have been accepted. Any offer is subject to eligibility to work in the UK.


Additional comments

Duration and start date

The candidate will be employed as a Junior Researcher at the Azotic Technologies Ltd for 36 months under the supervision of Dr. David Dent.

The candidate will be also enrolled as PhD student at the at the University of Nottingham under the supervision of Dr. Rupert Fray.


This position involves a secondment of 18 months to the Fondazione Edmund Mach (San Michele all’Adige, Italy) under the supervision of Dr. Ilaria Pertot, who will train the ESR.


For more information on this position, please contact the hiring party: Azotic Technologies Limited

Azotic Technologies is an equal opportunities employer, committed to promoting equality, diversity and fairness irrespective of age, disability, gender, pregnancy or marital status, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation or gender identity.


Offer Requirements


Ideal candidate

Prospective students should have the background and expertise required for the position (to be filled):

  • Master Degree in the field of biology, microbiology, biotechnology, or a related discipline
  • Experience in fundamental concepts of quorum sensing and/or tagging and imaging systems
  • Knowledge of microbiology, biology or biotechnology
  • Knowledge of Italian self-certified in the pre-selection process, will be considered as an additional selection criteria.

Excellent English writing and verbal communication skills as well as the ability to work in an international environment are essential


Specific Requirements

Criteria for the recruitment procedure

The results of the recruitment process will be based on the sum of points obtained from qualifications and interview. Applications will be evaluated by all the involved supervisors

On the basis of the information contained in the CV or demonstrated by candidates, based on the highest scores obtained following the criteria below, will be selected and admitted to the interview phase

  • experience in addition to the minimum requirements (eligibility) on the above mentioned ESR topics as researcher (Fellowships, Stipends, Grants), employee or stage in qualified labs/research organizations/universities
  • relatedness of master thesis (Title and abstract) to the above ESR topics

After this first round, successful candidates will be contacted for the interview.

During the interview, that will be held in English, the following knowledge will be verified:

  • The role played by microorganisms in plant growth, procedures to isolate microorganisms from plant tissues, microbial traits associated with control of plant diseases
  • Identification at species level of microorganisms, molecular markers for monitoring microorganisms in the environment, workflow for the determination of plant microbiome
  • Knowledge of the activities and organisation of Azotic Technologies Limited
  • Knowledge of written and spoken English, minimum level B2
  • The candidate, should have the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) or equivalent knowledge, knowledge of Office package or similar (Word, Excel, Power point), statistic software as R, SPSS or Statistica. Also in case of possession of the ECDL, the computer skills will be assessed during the interview

Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Azotic Technologies
United Kingdom
Pennyfoot Street

EURAXESS offer ID: 222662