Postdoctoral or Technical Staff position in the field of Cryo-EM

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

Applications are invited for a Postdoc position, or a Technical Staff position, in the Structural Cellular Biology Unit ( at OIST. Our research in biology spans from prokaryotic membrane biology to mammalian receptor complexes including signaling by synaptic vesicles, using mainly but not exclusively Cryo-Electron Tomography (ET). An equally strong research activity in the group is the development of novel methods in imaging, in particular not-averaged 3D-reconstructions at the molecular resolution level, and data analysis.


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


We are searching for a person with genuine interest in learning developments and applications in the area of Cryo-EM Tomography, a method we use in novel ways to analyze protein functions. 

The position-holder will be involved in preparing relevant samples via optimizing expression systems, protein purifications, modification and characterization of the protein structures we are analyzing. The position-holder will also be involved in the software applications and developments, from real data collections to Cryo-EM Tomography 3D reconstructions.



  • PhD in one or a combination of the following disciplines: (bio-)physics, applied computer science, structural biology, biochemistry, (biomedical) engineering or a closely related field.
  • The ability to work independently and to write research articles. The applicant should have a genuine interest in learning and applying new methods and techniques, and the use of state-of-the-art Cryo-EM facilities.
  • Proficiency in both written and spoken English, capability to interact well within a team, and to be able to work with two collaborating teams.


  • Understanding of Cryo-EM Tomography.
  • Understanding the basics of statistical physics and protein biophysics. Experience in protein purification and expressions systems.
  • Experience with Cryo-EM data collection, Tomography reconstruction or Molecular modeling.


Report to 

Professor Ulf Skoglund, Structural Cellular Biology Unit

Starting Date 

Earliest in Spring of 2020.

Term & Working Hours 

Term: The appointment is for either a full-time, fixed term (2+1-year) Postdoc position, or a full-time fixed term Technical Staff position.

Working hours: 9:00-17:30 (Discretionary)

Compensation & Benefits 


In accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulation. The salary is internationally competitive and complemented by allowances as listed below under Benefits:


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

Submission Documents 

  1. Cover letter.
  2. Curriculum Vitae with a list of publications
  3. Research statement, including research interests and future plan.

These 3 documents should be combined into 1 pdf file.

In addition, for the Postdoc position, we also ask those applicants scheduled for an interview, to arrange for 3 letters of reference to be sent to us directly from the referees (preferably by E-mail). Please indicate where you first saw the job advertisement. 

Email Address: (Please replace # with @ before using email addresses)

Address questions to:

Postal Address: 

Skoglund Unit,

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University,

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

Application Due Date 

Application window will remain open until the position is filled.


  • 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 OIST policy for rules on external professional activities
  • Further details about the University can be viewed on the OIST website