MSc/PhD positions on the biogeography of plasticity and social organization in Nearctic and Neotropical ants

We are recruiting one or more MSc/PhD students to work on several projects related to
the geography of social organization in ants. The projects aim to understand how
broad-scale variation in the biotic and abiotic environment affects the social
organization and functional trait diversity within ant colonies and between populations.
These projects could involve fieldwork in the Tropical Rainforest and Andean
Mountains of Ecuador and Colombia in collaboration with the labs of Drs. David A.
Donoso (Ecuador) and Inge Armbrecht (Colombia). There are possibilities of
expanding this work in the USA in collaboration with labs in Indiana and Vermont.
Work associated with these projects will involve raising ant colonies in the laboratory,
extensive fieldwork and analyses of large databases on ant functional traits and social
structure.

Potential applicants interested in these projects should meet one or several of the
following criteria: previous experience (1) conducting field work in tropical
ecosystems or remote areas (for up to 4 months), (2) raising ants or other insects in
laboratory conditions, (3) performing manipulative field experiments, (4) performing
statistical analyses in R and (5) being very excited about studying ants! Selected
student(s) will spend long hours doing field work in difficult and isolated condition,
performing taxonomic identification of arthropods, and counting and measuring ants
under the microscope. The ability to speak French and/or Spanish is a good asset, but
not obligatory. Potential candidates(s) must possess a valid driver license.

Expected starting date is August 2020, but could be as early as May 2020. The
positions include funding for stipend and research activities, but students that are
competitive for external funding will have priority. Concordia University also offers
entrance fellowship for students with strong academic and/or research experience
record. Funded positions involve some teaching in the Department of Biology at
Concordia University. Selected applicant(s) is/are expected to apply for external
funding, participate in regular lab meetings, attend departmental seminars, publish
results in peer-reviewed journals and present their research in national and international
meetings. Demonstrated experience publishing in peer-reviewed journals is a must.

Applicants should email Dr. Jean-Philippe Lessard (jp.lessard@concordia.ca). This
email should include: (i) 3-4 paragraphs describing research interests, relevant past
experiences, and fit for the position (ii) an updated CV, and (iii) all unofficial
transcripts pertaining to your previous or ongoing studies. Complete applications must
be received by the school of graduate studies
(http://www.concordia.ca/admissions/graduate.html) by February 1st, 2020. Applicants
from minorities and/or Latin countries are encouraged to apply.

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