Post-doc, Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study (Olso, Norway)

We have an exciting three-year position available to lead a postdoctoral research project on the intergenerational transmission of eating disorders. The successful candidate will work on data from more than 100,000 children and their parents in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study (MoBa,, including genotype data and longitudinal follow-up from pregnancy onwards.

The research fellow will lead the project from Nic Waals Institute in Oslo in collaboration with Alexandra Havdahl (PI) and will become part of an international and multi-institutional research environment. The candidate will collaborate with internationally recognized experts on eating disorders, genetics, epidemiology, and cohort studies, including George Davey Smith (University of Bristol), Cynthia Bulik (Karolinska Institutet and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), David Evans (University of Queensland), Ted Reichborn-Kjennerud (Norwegian Institute of Public Health), and Anita Thapar (Cardiff University).

The position includes an exchange fellowship to spend 12 months at the MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit at the University of Bristol (

Closing date for applications: April 8th 2019.

Desired start date is in May or June 2019, but the date is flexible.

Interested applicants should submit an application with all required application materials using this link: See below for required application materials.


Scientific responsibilities

  • Develop analysis plans.
  • Quality control of genotype data.
  • Perform statistical analyses, including polygenic risk scoring and Mendelian randomization using transmitted and non-transmitted genetic variants.
  • Write papers for publication both as first author and co-author.
  • Present findings at international research conferences and in popular media.
  • Maintain and develop own research skills by participation in seminars, journal clubs, research meetings, and short courses, as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with other team members across all aspects of the project.


Research administration responsibilities

  • Keep clear records of analyses.
  • Ensure that all work adheres to the research governance, data protection and confidentiality protocols.
  • Assist with the co-ordination of project team meetings and prepare and circulate minutes where appropriate.
  • Assist with the organisation of research seminars and conferences.


Essential experience, skills and knowledge

  • Completed PhD in a relevant field (e.g., epidemiology, genetics, statistics, medicine or psychology).
  • Strong publication record, including in international peer-reviewed journals as first author.
  • Experience in using one or more genetic epidemiological methods (e.g., polygenic risk scoring, Mendelian Randomization, GWAS).
  • Excellent statistical and quantitative skills.
  • Demonstrable expertise in the use of statistical software (e.g., Stata, R, SPSS) for data management and statistical analysis.


Desirable experience, skills and knowledge

  • Education and/or research experience in psychology/mental health.
  • Experience with analysis of large data sets and family data.
  • Experience with UNIX/Linux and cluster computing.


Essential communication and personal skills

  • Excellent English written and oral communication skills.
  • Self-motivated, proactive, and able to use initiative where appropriate.
  • Evidence of good organisational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability to plan and prioritise workload and track record of being able to work independently and take responsibility for project completion.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with colleagues from multiple scientific disciplines


We offer

  • Fixed term (3-year) fellowship funded by the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority. Yearly salary: NOK 500,000-560,000 (approx. equivalent £44,930-£50,321, €51,278 – €57,431 as of Feb 18th 2019).
  • 12-month exchange fellowship to receive relevant training and work closely with our collaborators at the University of Bristol. The exchange fellowship is up to NOK 399,000 (approx. equivalent to £35,853, €40,919 as of Feb 18th 2019).
  • An inspiring working environment with highly qualified national and international collaborators.
  • Use of unique data sources such as the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study and national registries.
  • Support in career development.
  • Flexible working conditions.
  • Attractive welfare benefits and a generous salary pension scheme through KLP (
  • A wide range of company sports teams and Oslo’s rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities.


Required application materials

  • Cover letter explaining past experiences in the field, research interests, and reasons for an interest in the position.
  • CV and complete list of publications.
  • PhD diploma and transcript of grades from relevant graduate/undergraduate degrees.
  • List of 2-3 referee persons (name, relation to candidate, email and phone number).


Contact person for informal questions before submitting an application: Alexandra Havdahl, email: