The Life & Mind Seminar Network

Postdoctoral fellowships in interdisciplinary research relating to origins of life

Posted in Seminars by N. Virgo on June 15, 2015

Some life-and-minders might be interested in the following opportunities at ELSI in Tokyo. They are for research relating to origins of life, but all approaches are welcome and I know there are some readers of this blog whose research is very relevant.

The ELSI Origins Network (EON) announces the availability of post-doctoral research fellowships for research related to the Origins of Life. Ten two-year positions will be funded, to take place within the period 2016-2018.

Successful candidates will split their time between the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) in Tokyo and another institution of the candidate’s choice, anywhere in the world. The fellowship will pay a salary for two years, which covers the time spent at both locations, as well as a generous research budget. The positions will start on or before 1st April 2016.

EON ( is an interdisciplinary international network which seeks to foster dialogue and collaboration within the Origins of Life community to articulate and answer fundamental questions about the nature and the reasons for the existence of life on Earth, and possibly elsewhere in the Universe. Its goal is to bring together leading-edge research in all areas of the physical, mathematical, computational, and life sciences that bears on the emergence of life. ELSI is chartered as a Japanese World Premier International Research Center, to study the origin of Earth-like planets and the origin of life as inter-related phenomena. ELSI is located at the Ookayama campus of Tokyo Institute of Technology.

EON-supported research addresses three overarching questions:

1. How did life emerge on Earth?

2. How common is life in the universe?

3. What fundamental principles explain the emergence of life?

Due to the split-time nature of these fellowships, the application process requires the applicant to choose a supervisor and host institution outside ELSI who will support the proposal. EON is designed to promote collaboration across disciplinary boundaries, and host institutions in all fields are welcome.

The goal of the fellowships is cross-fertilization between specialists in Origin of Life research around the world, with a central collaborative hub at ELSI. EON aims to build a research community in which postdoctoral fellows benefit from facilities not only at ELSI but also among the centers throughout the network.

The first deadline for applications is August 1st 2015, with a second deadline on 1st October to fill any remaining places. Please check our web site for more details, including the application procedure.

Details of the fellowships are as follows, with further details available on our web site at

Duration – 2 years, with a start date no later than April 1, 2016.

Salary – USD 70,000.00/yr. (approximate equivalent, paid in JPY.)

Research Budget – USD 30,000.00/yr. (approximate equivalent, paid in JPY.)

For more details, including the application procedure, please visit

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