University of Alberta

Assistant Professor in Agricultural Plant-Microbe Interactions

Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science

Competition No.  -    A108135964
Closing Date  -    Will remain open until filled.

The Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science (AFNS) at the University of Alberta is inviting applications for a tenure track appointment at the Assistant Professor level in the area of plant-microbe interactions within agricultural production systems.

The focus of this position is to foster the development of new and innovative approaches to agricultural production systems by exploring fundamental and applied aspects of agro-ecology focusing on the plant and exploring the plant-microbe interface in the soil, which will ultimately optimize crop yield and quality, reduce production costs, address abiotic and biotic stress and minimize producer risk over the long-term. The candidate will also be expected to develop a strong collaborative research program in the Division of Plant BioSystems within the Department of AFNS, and play a leadership role in promoting Alberta’s bio-based economy. Alberta has a diverse agricultural economy, with a field crop sector generating about $6B annually at the farm gate. The successful candidate will provide scientific direction and coordination of a program aimed at delivering plant-based agricultural products into value-added production chains, thereby bolstering the value of these crops. 

The University of Alberta, one of Canada’s premier research institutions, offers an excellent research environment encompassing state-of-the-art facilities and  infrastructure, including laboratory equipment, plant growth facilities (field, greenhouse and controlled environment plant growth chambers), a comprehensive range of analytical research labs, leading-edge food safety and processing laboratories at Agri-Food Discovery Place, the Agricultural Genomics and Proteomics Unit, and the Human Nutrition Research Unit. In AFNS, interactions of the microbiome with Animals, Food, and Human Nutrition are studied and now also interaction with Plants.

The successful candidate must have a PhD in one or more appropriate disciplines, such as Agronomy, Crop Science, Applied Plant Science, Agro-Ecology or closely related fields with expertise in Microbiology. We are seeking an individual with an outstanding record of research accomplishments, a vibrant and growing research program, acknowledgement by peers as an emerging leader in their discipline, and a sound understanding of contemporary cropping systems. The candidate will have the vision and proven talent essential to build a successful collaborative research program that transcends institutional and disciplinary boundaries. The candidate will be expected to teach at all levels of the curriculum, from undergraduate to graduate level courses, and take on graduate supervision and other supervisory, service and administrative work.

The successful candidate's proposed research program should ideally conform to the University’s vision and "cornerstones" outlined in the UofA institutional plan “For the Public Good” document (

Candidates should send a letter of application outlining the proposed program of research, a statement of research interest, curriculum vitae, 3 sample publications, the names and contact information of 3 referees, and a teaching dossier with evaluations of teaching performance. Applications will begin to be considered on August 31, 2018, however the position will remain open until filled.  For further information on this position, or the department, please contact the Chair by email at or visit our website at

With more than 38,000 students and 15,000 staff, the University of Alberta ( grants over 8,500 degrees annually to graduates of 388 undergraduate and 500 graduate programs. A research, medical-doctoral, multi-campus institution, the University of Alberta offers a full range of academic and professional programs.

The Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences (ALES) is a science-based faculty that is uniquely positioned. Our professors and students draw from the natural sciences, the social sciences and the arts and humanities to seek comprehensive solutions to some of the key challenges our province, country and world face today. ALES was founded in 1915 and has a long and rich history, tracing back to one of the oldest Faculties and earliest Departments at the University of Alberta. Teaching, research and community engagement within the Faculty are focused on healthy human environments; the sustainability of land, forests and water; the biological, economic, social and technological underpinnings of the bio-products industry; and global food systems.

The Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science (AFNS) at the University of Alberta, is a vibrant, collegial and unique department, the first of its kind in North America. AFNS has a mission of serving the community through excellence in teaching and research in efficient and sustainable agricultural production, value added processing, food safety and human health to promote the health and quality of life. AFNS administers a budget of about $38 million, including approximately $24 million in research and trust funds.

The department has a total of 65 academic staff (including secondments); over 100 Research Associates, PDFs, Adjunct professors, and visiting scientists; 350 administrative/technical and Support staff. There are approximately 250 graduate students, and over 800 undergraduate students enrolled in the BSc in Agriculture, Animal Health, Nutrition & Food Science degree programs, administered at the Faculty level. 

Greater Edmonton, with nearly one million residents in the city and surrounding communities, is a beautiful city straddling a spectacular river valley park system. It is the capital of Alberta, with the lowest provincial tax regime in the country. Edmonton is known as Canada’s Festival City, with more than thirty major annual festivals celebrating its rich cultural diversity and community spirit. It has all the attractions of a big city, yet it is clean, safe, and livable, with excellent schools and health care. Edmonton is located only a few hours from Banff and Jasper National Parks, which offer skiing in winter and excellent hiking and sightseeing in summer (

To assist the University in complying with mandatory reporting requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (R203(3) (e)), please include the first digit of your Canadian Social Insurance Number in your application. If you do not have a Canadian Social Insurance Number, please indicate this in your application.

How to Apply

Apply Online

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. If suitable Canadian citizens or permanent residents cannot be found, other individuals will be considered.

The University of Alberta is committed to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workforce. We welcome applications from all qualified persons. We encourage women; First Nations, Métis and Inuit persons; members of visible minority groups; persons with disabilities; persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity and expression; and all those who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas and the University to apply.