Pasa el verano en los Pirineos participando de investigación (prácticas + voluntariado con gastos pagados) ~

1 de marzo de 2022

Pasa el verano en los Pirineos participando de investigación (prácticas + voluntariado con gastos pagados)

Oferta compartida por Nuria

Nick Barton's group at the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria ( is currently recruiting two paid scientific interns to assist with a long-term study of plant speciation in the common snapdragon, Antirrhinum majus. The positions will begin in early-mid May 2022, for a minimum of 6 months and up to 12 months (open to discussion). The group is also looking for volunteers to assist with fieldwork on plant speciation in the Spanish Pyrenees this coming summer (late May - early August). This is a great opportunity for anyone looking to obtain experience in fieldwork related to evolutionary biology, speciation and plant ecology.

The project
We study evolutionary dynamics and speciation in snapdragons. The study, which has been running since 2009, involves fieldwork in natural hybrid zones between two subspecies with flower colour differences. The goal is to understand how different evolutionary forces—like natural selection—have shaped this diversity.

Scientific intern positions
We are looking for people to help support the project by (i) participating in fieldwork, (ii) assisting with the daily management of field volunteers, and (iii) providing technical and scientific support after the fieldwork is complete. The internship will have 2 phases: for the first 3 months (during the field work), the applicants will be based in the Spanish Pyrenees near the town of Planoles; the second phase will be based at the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria. All costs of the fieldwork (travel, food, accommodation, covid testing, and insurance) are covered, and affordable accommodation in Austria is available through IST Austria (at the expense of the applicant).
Essential skills
Applicants must be enthusiastic, hardworking, and be comfortable working outdoors. Strong communication skills, organization skills, and the ability to live and work well with others are a must. A driving license is essential.
Desirable skills
Ideal applicants will have some fieldwork experience and have a strong interest in evolution, ecology and/or speciation. Prior research experience, including the curation and analysis of data, would be helpful. The ability to speak Catalan and/or Spanish is very useful. Applicants from Catalonia and Spain are especially welcome.
How to apply
Applicants should send a motivation letter (addressing the skills mentioned above), CV and the names two references to Sean Stankowski ( The review of applications will start on the 10th of March and will remain open until filled.

Volunteer positions:
We are seeking volunteers to assist with the fieldwork, which involves working in teams to map locations of individual plants (GPS) (the plants are primarily found on the roadsides), tag and sample them for leaves and flowers, measure traits, and process material for later DNA extraction. There may also be opportunities to be involved in other projects focusing on pollinator behaviour and plant-insect interactions. The work is outdoors as well as indoors - about one-third of the of time will be spent indoors curating leaf samples and organizing and preparing sampling equipment. The work is highly team orientated, typically in groups of 2-3 in the field and larger groups processing samples back at the research station. Since we aim to sample all living individuals in the hybrid zone during the flowering season, the daily workload can vary significantly. At peak season, we are often very busy and our daily routines change accordingly.
The location
The field site is near Planoles in a beautiful part of the Pyrenees in North Eastern Spain (Catalonia). We stay in comfortable apartments overlooking a picturesque valley, with close access to hiking trails and small villages.
The ideal applicant is an enthusiastic, hard-working biology student with strong interest in working outdoors. You must be meticulous with recording data and also be comfortable working as part of a team. Experience with field-based projects and plants is helpful but not essential. Climbing experience is useful as a small amount work is conducted on ropes. We are looking for volunteers between the 29th May and the 1st of August. We ask people to commit to stay for 3 weeks. Applicants must be located in Europe or the UK.
What we cover: All food, lodgings, Covid testing and travel within Europe/UK are covered.
How to apply? By the closing date of March 20th please send (i) your CV, (ii) a short explanation about why you are interested, and (iii) your availability between the above dates to Please send any questions to the same address.

For fieldwork photos and more information, please visit the Barton Group
field work page:

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