Junior Research Scientist on bee ecotoxicology


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INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (INRAE) is a public research establishment under the dual authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Research.

INRAE is recruiting researchers by open competition and offering permanent position.

It is a major player in research and innovation created on 1st of January 2020. INRAE is a research institute resulting from the merger of INRA and IRSTEA. It is a community of 12,000 people with more than 200 research units and 42 experimental units located throughout France.

The institute is among the world leaders in agricultural and food sciences, in plant and animal sciences, and is 11th in the world in ecology and environment. INRAE’s main goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. In the face of the increase in population, climate change, scarcity of resources and decline in biodiversity, the institute develops solutions for multiperformance agriculture, high quality food and sustainable management of resources and ecosystems.

Work environment, missions and activities

The Bees and the Environment research unit has 24 permanent staff (13 researchers and engineers and 11 technicians and assistant engineers), and regularly hosts student interns, PhD candidates and post-doctoral researchers. Its aim is to advance current knowledge and promote innovative, research-based solutions for the protection of honey bees and the conservation of wild bees in the context of the agroecological transition. This research program is founded on multidisciplinary expertise in ecology, toxicology, physiology and behavioral biology, with the scope of studies ranging from the gene to the landscape.

To achieve this goal, the unit needs to strengthen its expertise in the field of ecotoxicology, in order to move towards a more holistic and ecologically relevant risk assessment. This involves extending studies to a wider range of model species, gaining a better understanding of the exposome in these species and promoting assessment endpoints with greater ecological relevance.

You will develop fundamental research in ecotoxicology, with the aim of addressing three emerging issues:
1. Extending the range of model species beyond honey bees. Because of their specific ecological and behavioral characteristics, wild bees are not exposed to the same types of polluants and do not necessarily express the same sensitivities to pesticides, which means that the panel of studied species needs to be diversified.

2. Assessing and taking into account the large diversity of exposomes. The range of pollutants contaminating bees' food and environment (pollen, nectar, water, wax) is very diverse. You will be exploring new experimental approaches to better understand and anticipate the exposomes as a function of the different species life history traits.

3. Developing the ecological relevance of assessment endpoints for pesticide toxicity. You will examine the undesirable effects of pesticides using physiological and behavioral endpoints. These endpoints, particularly in the case of sublethal exposure, should be ecologically relevant (e.g. vitality, fertility, fitness) and take into account the long-term and/or delayed effects (e.g. transgenerational).

To develop your research activity, you will be required to interact with scientists from the ECOTOX network founded by INRAE with the objectives of bringing together a national and international community in terrestrial and aquatic ecotoxicology, discussing newly emerging fields, supporting projects and sharing dedicated tools. Your skills will cover the use of pesticide exposure models, the establishment of dose-response relationships and pesticide risk assessment, and the design of behavioral and physiological experiments on an individual scale.

Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

Position open to candidates with a PhD (or equivalent). You are trained in ecotoxicology.
You have developed work on the toxicity of pesticides in insects, using ecologically relevant assessment criteria.

Fluency in English is desirable as well as long-term international experience: successful candidates who do not have one yet will be required to spend a stay abroad at the end of their probationary year.

INRAE's life quality

By joining our teams, you benefit from:

- 30 days of annual leave + 15 days "Reduction of Working Time" (for a full time);
- parenting support: CESU childcare, leisure services;
- skills development systems: training, career advise;
- social support: advice and listening, social assistance and loans;
- holiday and leisure services: holiday vouchers, accommodation at preferential rates;
sports and cultural activities;
- collective catering.

For international scientists: please visit your guide to facilitate your arrival and stay at INRAE

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2024-SPE-2
  • Corps: CR
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 37
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