Postdoc - Civil and Environmental Engineering - (Superfund) (PFAS)

Monday, October 4, 2021
Job Type: 
Job Rank: 
Job Institution: 
University of California Berkeley
Job Description: 

Postdoc - Civil and Environmental Engineering - UC Berkeley (PFAS)
Postdoc - Civil and Environmental Engineering - UC Berkeley (Superfund)

The Alvarez-Cohen and Sedlak Labs in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley (UCB) are seeking two Postdoctoral Scholars. One with a focus on combined chemical and biological remediation of per-and polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS) and the other with a focus on CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing.


This is a twelve month, 100% time appointment with the possibility of extension being subject to performance and budgetary approval. Anticipated start: June 2021 or until the position is filled. Salary commensurate with experience and in accordance with the University of California Postdoctoral Union.

Duties of Position:

PFAS Specific:
This postdoctoral researcher will conduct research on two Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) funded projects on combined laccase-chemical oxidation treatment trains for PFAS and forensic chemistry for PFAS sources.
The Postdoctoral Scholar will be responsible for the following:

  • Perform experiments on remediation of PFAS with combined laccase-mediator systems and heat-activated persulfate oxidation.
  • Perform experiments on development of an updated total oxidizable precursor assay for unknown PFAS assessment, and develop forensic chemistry data science analysis of PFAS sources in the environment.

Superfund Specific:
The Postdoctoral Scholar will focus on two main projects:

  • Establishing a CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing platform in the bacterium Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough (DvH). Work has been done to construct plasmids and transform DvH, and there is still much to do to successfully edit the genome.
  • Study a tri-culture containing DvH, Dehalococcoides mccartyi (a bacterium that reduces chlorinated solvents), and Desulfosporosinus auripigmenti (a bacterium that reduces and mineralizes arsenic). The postdoc will study how these bacteria interact to enable the bioremediation of chlorinated solvents and arsenic combined.

Applies to both positions:

  • Prepare reports and perform project management with SERDP
  • Oversee day to day laboratory activities
  • Mentor students
  • Present at national conferences
  • Prepare results for publication
  • Assist with grant writing

Basic Qualifications:
PhD or equivalent international degree or enrolled in a PhD (or equivalent international degree) program at the time of application.

Additional Qualifications (by start date):
PhD or equivalent international degree
No more than four years of post-degree research experience

Preferred Qualifications: (PFAS)
Mass spectrometry and analytical chemistry experience highly desired
Experience with PFAS highly desired
Data Science and programming (Python, R)
Preferred Qualifications: (Superfund)
Molecular biology experience highly desired
RNA-Seq and bioinformatics experience are highly desired.

Salary and title will be commensurate with qualifications and experience and based on UC Berkeley salary scales. The salary range for this position is $54,540-$63,036.

This position is covered by the UC-UAW collective bargaining agreement for Academic Researchers. The current contract can be found here: Additional information can be found on the website:

Application Procedure:
To apply for the PFAS appointment go to:

To apply for the Superfund appointment go to:

Please direct all questions for this position to, with the subject line: [SERDP Postdoc Application]

Job will remain open until filled.

All letters will be treated as confidential per University of California policy and California state law. Please refer potential referees, including when letters are provided via a third party (i.e., dossier service or career center), to the UC Berkeley statement of confidentiality ( prior to submitting their letters.

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: