Postdoc positions available/Memory Research Unit

The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST; see is a dynamic new graduate university of science and technology in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. The university is located on 85 hectares of protected forestland overlooking beautiful shoreline and coral reefs. The campus is striking architecturally, and the facilities are outstanding (OIST campus video tour). There are no academic departments, which facilitates multidisciplinary research. Outstanding resources and equipment are provided and managed to encourage easy access and collaboration. English is the official language of the University, and the university research community is fully international, with more than 50 countries represented. OIST is rapidly gaining recognition in the worldwide academic community as a model for excellence in education and research.

Position summary

OIST Memory Research Unit (PI: Kazumasa Z. Tanaka) actively seeks postdoc researchers. Using mice, our unit aims to understand neuronal/physiological mechanisms of memory. Currently, our approaches include tetrode recording/Ca2+ imaging in freely moving mice, combined with genetic interventions and behavior. Our specific questions are,

1. Why are the hippocampal representations not stable?

2. Why are the hippocampal representations not homogeneous?

3. What would be specific roles of the hippocampus and its surrounding areas for memory?

(ref. Tanaka et al., Neuron 2014; Tanaka* et al., Science 2018; Tanaka and McHugh., J Exp Neurosci 2018)

Our unit supports postdoc researchers to conduct an independent project(s) in addition to a lab project.


1919-1 Tancha, Onna-son, Okinawa, Japan 904-0495


1. Research activities in Memory Research Unit

2. Help on supervising graduate students



1. Ph.D. in a related area (e.g. neuroscience, biology, physiology, etc)

2. Communication skills in English

Report to 

Professor Kazumasa Z. Tanaka/ Memory Research Unit

Starting Date 

As early as possible after April 2020 (negotiable)

Term & Working Hours 

Term: Full-time, fixed term appointment for 2 years in the first instance (negotiable). This contract may be renewed up to total of 5 years with review at the end of 3rd year.  

Working hours: 9:00-17:30 (Discretionary, It is not recommended to work long hours and on holidays. Our unit makes best efforts to maintain a work-life balance.)

Compensation & Benefits 

Compensation in accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulations.


  • Relocation, housing and commuting allowances
  • Annual paid leave and summer holidays, parental leave, family-care leave
  • Health insurance (Private School Mutual Aid )
  • Welfare pension insurance (kousei-nenkin)
  • Worker’s accident compensation insurance (roudousha-saigai-hoshou-hoken)

OIST has a career development program designed for postdoc scholars:


OIST provides family-friendly environments including preschool/after school daycares on campus, full-time care during school holidays, and transportation for children:

How To Apply 

Apply by emailing your Submission Documents to:
(Please replace [at] with @ before using this email address)

Successful applicants will be selected after an initial screening based on the documents followed by a Skype interview.


Submission Documents 

  • Curriculum vitae (English), or a link to your updated researchgate, researchmap, google scholar, or ORCID
  • A brief summary of your research interests (English or Japanese, 1 page)
  • Names and contact information of 2 referees, one of which should be a previous employer

* Please be sure to indicate where you first saw the job advertisement.

Application Due Date 

October 15, 2019 (Applications will be screened after the due date)


* OIST Graduate University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educator and employer and is committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty, students and staff. The University strongly encourages women and minority candidates to apply.

* Information provided by applicants or references will be kept confidential, documents will not be returned. All applicants will be notified regarding the status of their applications.

*  Please view our policy for rules on external professional activities


* Further details about the University can be viewed on our website (