Would you like to create AI algorithms to automatically detect hundreds of animal and plant species in the wild? To help monitor biodiversity across Europe? To collaborate with AI and biodiversity experts, as part of a team and with partners in many European countries?

as part of projects funded by Horizon Europe. At Naturalis, you will work in a team with experts in both AI and biodiversity, and you will also collaborate with project partners in other European institutions.

Machine learning (“AI”) automatic recognition has a huge potential for large-scale biodiversity monitoring. In this project you will work on creating algorithms that perform highly accurate recognition in the wild, across a wide range of species of European importance (such as birds, bats, pollinators, molluscs, indicator species, invasive alien species), across multiple countries and habitats. You will implement and validate algorithms for high accuracy, robustness and generality, focussing on the species and habitats identified as important by our consortium. You will co-curate audio/image datasets from collections and other media, for robust algorithm training and validation. You will work with software developers and IT staff to deploy these algorithms as live services.

You may specialise in images, or sounds, or both, according to the mix of skills in the team and the demands of the project.

The work will be carried out in the Evolutionary Ecology research group, which focuses on contemporary evolution. Its 6 principal investigators, 2 postdocs and 4 PhD students all study how man-made environments create selective landscapes that invoke adaptations of wild animals and plants.

General Requirements and Skills

Essential knowledge, skills and experience:

  • A PhD* in a topic such as machine learning, quantitative ecology, quantitative biology, signal processing, bioinformatics or similar
  • Evidence of the ability to conduct high-quality research and write publications for high impact scientific journals/proceedings
  • Excellence in written and oral communication in English
  • Self-directed planning and time management skills
  • The ability to work independently as well as collaboratively within the research group
  • Proficient in programming e.g. Python, PyTorch, or Tensorflow

Desirable knowledge, skills and experience:

  • Experience of working with media data (audio and/or images), ideally within the context of automatic recognition
  • Proven experience collaborating with colleagues in other research disciplines
  • You have an interest in/affinity with biodiversity, and the field of natural sciences and biology
  • Experience in grant writing/demonstrated ability to acquire external funding
  • Work experience in multiple research environments
  • Experience in teaching and/or supervising student projects