Perennial Legume Breeder
The Land Institute is creating a perennial legume breeding position to accelerate the development of perennial grain polycultures. The new breeder will build a long-term research and selection program to develop novel germplasm for eventual release to regional breeders. Three main strategies could be chosen, depending on the successful applicant’s training and interests: (A) Develop a new class of perennial companion crops that supply nitrogen and other ecosystem services when intercropped with perennial grains. (B) Identify candidate wild species and domesticate them as edible perennial grain legumes. (C) Use wide hybridization to “perennialize” annual edible grain legumes or to “winterize” tropical perennial grain legumes such as pigeon pea.
In addition to having completed a Ph.D. and training in classical plant breeding, the most qualified candidates will have experience in one or more techniques that could help overcome some of the breeding challenges that are common in breeding perennial species: genomic selection, reverse genetics, embryo culture, cytogenetics, high throughput phenotyping, microbiomics, analytical biochemistry.
The Land Institute is located along the Smoky Hill River outside of Salina, Kansas. Founded in 1976, the Institute is a non-profit research organization focused on developing agroecosystems that are informed by the structure and function of native ecosystems. Total staff of The Land Institute is about 30 people, which includes six Ph.D. researchers, post-docs, lab and field technicians and administrative and development staff. Field, greenhouse and laboratory facilities are well suited to support a wide range of plant breeding techniques. The legume breeding position will include base funding and technician support. Salary is competitive with similar research positions in the Midwest, U.S., and includes health insurance.
To apply, please send a C.V. and a cover letter that conveys thoughts on strategies for breeding perennial legumes, and anticipated challenges. Review of applications will begin on Jan.15, but position will remain open to applications until filled. Materials can be sent to Tim Crews—Director of Research via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or via the postal service: The Land Institute, 2440 E. Water Well Rd., Salina, KS 67401