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Vacatures

Postdoctoral Researcher

Topic: Neuro-imaging of the visual system using 7T (f)MRI

Job description

The University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) , in collaboration with the Spinoza Centre (SC) for Neuroimaging in Amsterdam has a position available for a postdoctoral researcher (0.78-1.0 fte = 28-36 hrs per week) to investigate fundamental and applied aspects of human visual perception using, amongst others, ultra-high field MR (7T)  imaging in combination with population receptive field dynamics and further analyses methods. The position will be supervised by Frans W. Cornelissen of UMCG and Serge Dumoulin (SC).

Vision is the dominant sense in humans and is a great scientific ‘playground’ for studying the innermost working of our perceptual system and the brain at large. Moreover, a large number of ophthalmic, neurological and psychiatric diseases come with visual impairments or distortions of perception. Therefore, deeper understanding of how vision works will have translational potential in medical-technical applications. A fundamental property of brain cells is that they process a limited region of either the visual scene, known as their receptive field (RF), or in a different cortical area, known as their connective field (CF). With non-invasive neuro-imaging techniques such as fMRI, we can measure the aggregated receptive and connective fields of populations of neurons. We have developed a series of tools to study these fields in great detail. The project aims to use these new tools to investigate the neural circuitry underlying pRFs and CFs, their plasticity, how (dynamic) pRF properties relate to both normal and distorted visual perceptual abilities. The projects, that will be decided on with postdoc and PIs, are expected to combine the interests and expertise of both involved groups. Experience with stimulus programming and data analysis is required, as these will be integral and substantial part of any project. You will collaborate with and co-supervise a PhD student working within the same collaboration.

Working environment

University Medical Center Groningen

At UMCG, the position is with the Laboratory of Experimental Ophthalmology (LEO). You will be part of a team of visual neuroscientists who want to solve the problem of how vision enables us to comprehend the enormous complexity of the world around us. Additionally, we want to understand how vision loss – due to retinal or cortical lesions or neurological disorders – interferes with this process. In this way, we aim to contribute to the goal of improving visual rehabilitation, augmenting and even restoring vision. The UMCG is one of the largest academic hospitals in the Netherlands. More than 13,000 employees provide patient care, are involved in medical education, and perform cutting-edge scientific research focused around the theme of ‘Healthy and Active Ageing’. The LEO closely collaborates with the Cognitive Neuroscience Center and has access to a 3 Tesla MR-scanner, EEG and TMS equipment, equipment for psychophysics and eyetracking and associated data analysis facilities. We have access to a 7T MRI scanner through the SC.

Spinoza Centre

The Spinoza Centre (SC) for Neuroimaging, in partnership with the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, is an institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences. SC aims to provide deep and mechanistic insights into brain function in health and disease by focussing on the mesoscopic organisation scale that bridges the microscopic (cellular) and macroscopic (brain area) organisation scales of the human brain. SC has a unique focus on and bridging function between cognitive neuroscience, i.e. the neural mechanisms underlying human e cognition and behaviour, and clinical neuroscience, i.e. the neural mechanisms underlying diseases and disorders of the human brain. The SC offers a resourceful and stimulating scientific environment. The SC houses 3T and 7T whole-body Philips scanners that are fully dedicated to research. 

Requirements

  • a PhD and a background in neuroscience, experimental psychology, artificial intelligence, biomedical imaging or a related field.
  • well-developed skills in data-analysis, statistics, scientific computing and programming are critical (Matlab and/or Python).
  • a computational attitude towards doing neuroscience.
  • an academic track record with first author papers on topics relevant to the position.
  • you can communicate clearly and enthusiastically about your science in English, both verbally and in writing.
  • enjoy working in an international environment and with professionals of various backgrounds.
  • willingness to work in two different labs, about 2,5 hours by train apart.

We strive for a diverse workforce and welcome applications from candidates who might further widen our already diverse teams. The UMCG has a preventive Hepatitis B policy. The UMCG can provide you with the vaccination, should it be required for your position. In case of specific professions a ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ is required.

What do we offer

You will be appointed by the UMCG. The appointment is initially for 2 years (when full-time) with a possible extension depending on performance and budget. Starting date is flexible.

Salary

Gross monthly salaries are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement of the University Medical Centres (CAO- UMC), increasing from € 3361,- gross per month initially, to € 3505,- gross per month in the second year (scale 10), when fulltime) excluding 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus. We offer an extensive package of fringe benefits.
 

Location

The UMCG is located on Hanzeplein 1, 9713 GZ Groningen, The Netherlands.
The SC is located on Meibergdreef 75, 1105 BK Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Inquiries

See www.visualneuroscience.nl for more information on the research of the LEO/UMCG and www.spinozacentre.nl for more information on the research of the Spinoza Centre.

For questions about the position

Any questions? Do contact us.

- Frans  Cornelissen, Professor , [email protected]
- Serge Dumoulin, Professor, [email protected].

Applying for a job

Please use the the digital application form at the bottom of this page - only these will be processed. You can apply until 15 August 2021. 

In the application, please include a curriculum vitae, names and contact information of two references and a statement that summarizes experience, accomplishment and research interests. We will start evaluating applications from August 15st, 2021, until suitable candidates have been identified. Within half an hour after sending the digital application form you will receive an email- confirmation with further information.

Apply