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Do you want to do a PhD with us? 

We have had a bumper year with three PhD students starting in Autumn 2023. However, we are accepting applications for a 2024 start. We have general projects advertised (see link) but feel free to propose your own project via emailing We would have to find funding for your studies, and there are opportunities such as Chinese Scholarship Council or Sheffield's Faculty Prize Scholarship (UK applicants only)- details for which can be found here. Deadlines are usually around December for a start the following year. Looking forward to discussing project ideas!



There has been a surge of interest in recent years to characterize the composition of microbiomes using DNA sequencing technologies. Now, with rapid advances in systems biology approaches and omics tools, the exciting prospect of controlling the functionality of microbiomes has emerged. However, a real challenge is whether we can design functionally desirable and stable microbial consortia. Here, the student will focus on studying ecological and evolutionary changes in consortia of bacteria and microalgae, as they adapt to new environments. The successful student will enrich microbiomes from relevant environments. They will subject enriched consortia to two relevant stressors and apply a series of advanced computational and experimental tools (metagenomics and metaproteomics) to map community composition changes, locating favourable genetic mutations, and characterise major enzymes, metabolic changes and interaction mechanisms. The project will also help generate design rules to create synthetic microbial communities, e.g., for sustainable bioremediation.

This project is a collaboration between the University of Sheffield and Dr. Nagarajan at the A*STAR Genome Institute, Singapore. Therefore, the student will spend time in Sheffield, UK and Singapore.

More info on the project and how to apply is here.

Deadline to apply: Thursday, May 12, 2023

Funding information:

Funding is for UK applicants only.

For each student admitted to the 4-year programme, A*Star will provide the following financial support, whilst the student is in Singapore:

  • Monthly stipend of S$2,700

  • Monthly housing allowance of S$600

  • One-time airfare grant of S$1,500

  • One-time settling-in allowance of S$1,000

  • One-time IT allowance of S$800

  • Medical insurance

  • Conference allowance

Whilst in Sheffield, students receive fees and stipend at the UKRI rate. Currently these are £4,596 fees and £17,668 stipend per annum.

Sheffield will supplement the A*STAR one-time airfare grant of S$1,500 to a maximum of £500 should students be unable to secure flights within the amount offered by A*STAR. This is subject to advance bookings and provision of receipts.

 In addition, students will be able to claim up to £500 from Sheffield towards the costs of an airfare back to the UK whilst they are in Singapore in order to make a home visit. This will normally be available for students who meet the normal expectations of spending approximately half of the programme in Singapore. This allowance is not available for those NOT spending 50% of the programme time in Singapore



We are looking to recruit PhD students for an EPSRC DTP! We are interested in developing projects with you, that suit your career aspirations and interests, and our skills. We are looking at projects to develop microbial cell factories, using genomics and proteomics, metaproteomics to investigate microbial communities and of course algal biotechnology for sustainable manufacturing. 

For funding, we can support you for Chinese Scholarship Council applications, or even the Faculty Prize Award for excellent Home based candidates (deadlines are January 2023). There are also opportunities to fund Overseas applicants. Further info is available here 

Please contact Jags Pandhal in the first instance to discuss options. 


CLOSED: Postdoc in Microalgae Biotechnology & Optical Sensing. 


Fixed Term from 03.10.2022 until 02.06.2024. 

Deadline: 19th August 2022

This is an exciting Postdoctoral Research Associate position working in research and development at the interface of biological engineering and optical systems engineering. The focus is on developing a brand-new carbon capture technology, based on microalgae and aerosols, and is in partnership with global steel manufacturer, TATA Steel Ltd. The aim is to utilise our state-of-the-art aerosol research facilities to biologically-activate aerosols with photosynthetic microbes and design a new process that could play a major part in industrial carbon dioxide capture and help mitigate climate change. The position is supported 100% by a research technician with expertise in aerosolization.

More info here.


CLOSED: Postdoctoral Research Associate in Proteomics of Synthetic Microbial Consortia

-Start date: 1st May 2022.

-Department of Energy funded, Salary £32,344-£40,927, 18 months role.

-Collaboration with University of Michigan and Princeton University

Apply here:

CLOSED: A BBSRC funded DTP iCASE studentship on community metaproteomics in the oral microbiome with GSK is available, working in both Professor Stafford (Dentistry in Sheffeld) and our group. Deadline of 28th February 2022.

For PhD opportunities for self/external sponsored students, please see below for open projects. These projects are also open for competitive funding through EPSRC DTP's so get in touch if interested, or even if you want to propose your own idea that fits with our expertise.

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