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Postdoctoral Positions: Management of Cotton Pests & Invasive Pest of Tomatoes / Grettenberger Lab

Recruitment Period

Open date: June 12th, 2020

Last review date: Monday, Sep 21, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Wednesday, Sep 30, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


Postdoctoral Positions: Management of Cotton Pests & Invasive Pest of Tomatoes / Grettenberger Lab.

We are recruiting two full-time postdoctoral scientist positions at the University of California Davis to work in the Grettenberger lab (field and vegetable crop entomology IPM). One position will be in cotton pest management (primarily aphids and whiteflies) and one in management of the invasive pest of tomatoes, Tuta absoluta. Eligible applicants will be considered for both positions. Please indicate in the cover letter if you are interested in one or both positions. The start date for the cotton postdoc will be as soon as possible, while the start date for the T. abosluta postdoc would have more flexibility with a preferred start date in the fall. Both positions will be based in Davis, CA with field research conducted off-campus. The postdocs will work with other UC Davis and off-campus researchers as well as grower and pest control advisor cooperators. They will join a vibrant community addressing research and extension in entomology, agriculture, and ecology with opportunities to develop additional projects.

The successful applicant for the cotton postdoc will help implement and lead a project developing integrated pest management strategies in cotton for aphids and whiteflies, with the aim to reduce the threat of sticky cotton.

Primary activities will include:

  1. Using field studies to evaluate spray coverage achieved in typical applications in cotton for aphid and whitefly management.
  2. Linking coverage data to efficacy of newer, more selective materials in field spray trials and laboratory bioassays using a spray chamber.
  3. Integrating efficacy of insecticides on target pests and non-target effects on natural enemies.
  4. Collaborating with grower-cooperators on large-scale efficacy trials.
  5. Synthesizing results to provide recommended practices and generate extension materials for economical and effective pest management practices in cotton. The recommended practices will incorporate application parameters, material efficacy, and effects on natural enemies.

The successful applicant for the T. absoluta postdoc will help implement and lead a project developing tools to manage the South American tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta, should it be introduced into California.

Primary activities will include:

  1. Using bioassays at the Contained Research Facility to evaluate efficacy of organic and conventional insecticides.
  2. Identifying indigenous parasitoids that may attack T. abosoluta and the potential role of parasitoid control in California.
  3. Determining the host suitability of wild Solanum spp. from South America.
  4. Using research results to develop an integrated program for managing T. absoluta should it be introduced and develop extension materials.

Basic qualifications

  • Doctoral degree in entomology or ecological/agricultural discipline (e.g., agronomy, applied ecology, plant sciences).
  • Demonstrated scientific writing skills.

Additional qualifications

  • Must possess a valid driver's license and be willing and capable of driving to and working in outdoor agricultural locations in hot weather. Overnight travel associated with research may occasionally be required.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Field/agricultural/applied entomology research experience.
  • Experience working with pesticides and conducting bioassays.
  • Demonstrated publication record.
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a member of a team.
  • Evidence of successful communication through scientific and/or extension presentations and materials.
  • Demonstrated quantitative expertise and statistical skills.
  • Experience analyzing data using R.
  • Experience producing extension materials from scientific results.
  • Ability to work independently and cooperatively with stakeholders.

Salary and conditions
Full-time salary and benefits included. Salary and benefits are consistent with UC Davis policy and commensurate with applicant experience.
This position is for 1 year with the possibility of reappointment up to 3 years based on funding availability and satisfactory performance.

Applicants should submit their cover letter, CV, a 1 page summary of research interests, up to three representative publications (optional), and the names (with email addresses) of at least two references using the “Apply Now” button below as soon as possible, but latest June 29, 2020 for full consideration. Applicants are also encouraged to submit a brief Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Late applications will be accepted until positions are filled.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability age or protected veteran status. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

For further information, questions, or to discuss the position, please contact:
Ian Grettenberger, Department of Entomology & Nematology, University of California, Davis.

Job location
Davis, CA and various field research sites

2020 Forbes Award: Best Employers for Diversity 2019 Forbes Award: America

Job location

Davis, CA and various field research sites


Document requirements
  • Cover Letter

  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Statement of Research

  • Publication #1 (Optional)

  • Publication #2 (Optional)

  • Publication #3 (Optional)

  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion documented in the application file will be used to evaluate applicants. Visit for guidelines about writing a statement and why one is requested.

Reference requirements
  • 2-4 required (contact information only)