University of Turku

Doctoral researcher position in AI-assisted photosynthetic devices

2024-07-01 (Europe/Helsinki)
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We are seeking a doctoral researcher to join the Photosynthetic Microbes group led by Professor Yagut Allahverdiyeva. The positions are part of the PhotoFactory consortium, which has recently received > 2.2 Mil EUR from the Erkko Foundation. The positions will be based in the Faculty of Technology within the Department of Life Technologies in Turku, Finland. Employment starts on 1.8.2024, or as agreed upon. The successful doctoral researcher will be offered a fixed two-year contract, with the possibility of extension until the completion of the PhD thesis.

About the Photosynthetic Microbes Research Group: We are studying the regulation of photosynthesis and applying photosynthetic principles to develop sustainable biotechnologies. The research areas encompass various aspects, including the understanding of alternative electron transport routes, utilizing photosynthetic microbes as biocatalysts for production of solar chemicals (including photoH2), biophotovoltaics (BPV) and developing solid-state photosynthetic cell factories, as well as large-scale algae cultivation for phytoremediation and the production of solar chemicals (such as biostimulants and biopesticides). The PhotoMicrobes group is involved in several EU, Nordic, and national projects and regularly publishes research outcomes in hihghly respected journals. We have established a large research network with connections to well-known international laboratories and industrial partners. Our team members not only active participants in international conferences but also regularly organise symposia and conferences (e.g. Nordic Photosynthesis Congress and the Nordic Algae Symposium). In addition, we have several talented post-doctoral and senior researchers who will provide step-by-step guidance to the PhD students in the lab.

To learn more about the Photosynthetic Microbes research group, you can visit our website at or follow us on LinkedIN and Twitter at @PhotoMicrobes.

Job description

Our group is pioneering cutting-edge technology for photosynthetic production of chemicals and fuels using 3-D printed biocatalysts, also known as solid-state photosynthetic cell factories. For this purpose, we are developing intelligent matrices comprising photosynthetic cells and functional nanomaterials integrated with a network of sensors for monitoring and controlling photosynthetic production. The PhD student will play a pivotal role in establishing infrastructure for AI-assisted cultivation and developing protocols for data collection, processing, and digitalization, enabling data-driven modelling and optimization. The PhD project involves a close collaboration with Prof. Milica Todorovic, head of the Materials Informatics Laboratory at the University of Turku. Her research combines artificial intelligence algorithms and first-principles simulations with the objective to optimize functional materials and their performance in devices.

Who we are looking for

We seek a highly motivated candidate with a passion for sustainability and a keen interest in data-driven systems at the edge of cross-disciplinary technologies. The ideal candidate should possess a robust background in data-driven systems and artificial intelligence, along with experience in programming, data collection, and organization. Knowledge of photosynthesis, microalgae or cyanobacteria would be advantageous.

Applicants should have an MSc in data sciences, or related fields (a good GPA is considered). If you have not completed your MSc, you can still apply and start as a Research Assistant until the MSc degree is completed,  and you are accepted to the UTUGS graduate school. Proficiency in written and verbal English communication is essential for this position.

Read more about University of Turku’s Graduate school UTUGS) and its programmes.

Our selection criteria are based on the principle of finding the most qualified and suitable candidate for the positions. In practice, this means that not only education, scientific merits and working experience but also personal qualities, communication, motivation, and other relevant criteria will be considered.


We offer you responsible and interesting tasks and the opportunity to develop your professional skills in a versatile operating environment. You get a professional and inspiring team to support your work. We take care of your well-being at work and the functionality of your everyday life, e.g. with the help of flexible working hours and our well-being services.

Please read more about University of Turku as an employee from our Come work with us! pages.

The European Commission has awarded the University of Turku the right to use the HR Excellence in Research logo. The logo is a token of the University's commitment to continuous development of the position and working conditions of researchers according to the guidelines set forth in the European Charter for Researchers. 

The university offers good support and orientation for international hires. Please learn more about the Finnish culture and relocation to Finland:

Salary and Application Guidelines

The salary is determined by the collective agreement system of the Finnish universities. The positions belong to our research personnel and the salary for a Doctoral Researcher or a Project Researcher is in the range of 2500–2600 €/month and for a Research Assistant in the range of 2200 - 2300 €/month on average and the trial period is 6 months.

Please write your application and accompanying documents in English. 

Applicants should enclose with their application:

  • motivation letter, including statement of motivation, summarizing scientific work and research interest (max 1 page)
  • CV, including education, positions, professional experience, names and contact details of two academic referees (max 2 pages)
  • list of publications (please do not attach your thesis or papers)
  • degree certificate(s) in English or in Finnish

For further information about the position, please contact: professor Yagut Allahverdiyeva, allahve(at)

With questions about the application process, please contact: HR-specialist Paula Luoma paula.luoma(at)

This is an enriching job opportunity in a rapidly evolving field  - we warmly welcome you to join our multicultural working community.



Department of Life Technologies

The Department of Life Technologies is one of the largest teaching and research units at the University of Turku. Professionals of both science and professionals are educated in four mutually supportive fields: biochemistry, biotechnology, food sciences, and molecular plant biology. The research focuses on biomolecules and their reactions as well as aims to find out how nature functions at the cellular and molecular levels. This information is used in the applications of different fields and at the same time it enables versatile collaboration between research communities, businesses and industry.

The Faculty of Technology is the newest faculty of the University of Turku, it was established in the beginning of 2021. The Faculty consists of the Department of Computing, Department of Biotechnology and the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. We have more than 2,000 graduate and postgraduate students and circa 400 employees, 50 of whom are professors. Our faculty is an international, multicultural and diverse work community.

The University of Turku is an inspiring and international academic community of 25,000 students and staff in Southwest Finland. We build a sustainable future with multidisciplinary research, education, and collaboration. With us, your work will have a significant impact and relevance in the changing world.

See our open vacancies

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Information for the applicant

The application form cannot be saved as a draft. However, after submitting you can return to edit your application via the link you receive by email. The application can be edited until the application deadline.

You have 6 hours to complete your application before the timeout.

Instructions for submitting a job application

Dettagli del lavoro

Doctoral researcher position in AI-assisted photosynthetic devices
Datore di lavoro
Tykistökatu 6 Turku, Finlandia
Scadenza candidatura
2024-07-01 16:00 (Europe/Helsinki)
2024-07-01 15:00 (CET)
Tipo di lavoro
Salva lavoro

Informazioni sul datore di lavoro

The University of Turku has a unique, creative and inspirational work environment. Here you will work with top experts, pedagogues and researchers.

Visita la pagina del datore di lavoro

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