Postdoctoral Associate - Miller Lab
Job Details
St. Louis - Saint Louis, MO
Full Time
Graduate Degree

The Miller Lab at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center (DDPSC), in collaboration with The Land Institute in Salina (KS) is currently seeking a highly motivated Post-Doctoral Associate to explore whether phenomic-derived predictors – phenomic estimated breeding values – can match or even outperform the prediction of elite individuals of perennial species compared to pedigree and genomic prediction.  Key outcomes of this research will be to determine whether phenomic estimated breeding values can enhance or substitute for genomic selection and to build an efficient, effective, generalizable phenomic selection pipelines to expedite new crop development.  This is a 12-month, 100% research position established for a one-year provisional period with annual renewal for up to four and a half years.  We anticipate that the candidate will be based in St. Louis, MO or Salina, KS or within a two hour drive of these two locations. The Post-Doctoral Associate will be co-mentored by Allison MIller (Danforth Plant Science Center) and Brandon Schlautman (The Land Institute). To learn more about the Miller Lab, visit our webpage. For more about The Land Institute, please see here: 

Review of applications will begin February 11th and continue until a candidate is identified.



  • Collaborating with a team of researchers from the DDPSC and The Land Institute to conduct “phenomic selection” studies in three emerging perennial grain crops: intermediate wheatgrass (Thinopyrum intermedium), sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia), and silphium (Silphium integrifolium)
  • Identifying and characterizing cost-effective phenotyping methods (e.g., images, NIR spectra, etc.) and statistical learning approaches to model kinship, yield, and agronomic traits
  • Use cross-validation schemes to evaluate the prediction accuracy of models generated using 1) pedigree 2) genomic and 3) phenomic data and to perform simulations to estimate genetic gain possible in each scenario


Required knowledge, skills, and abilities: 

  • Able to organize, multitask time efficiently and work both independently and collaboratively within a multidisciplinary and interactive research environment
  • Effective writing and communication skills, meticulous record keeping
  • Advanced knowledge of quantitative, population, and statistical genetics with experience in training and using genomic prediction models
  • Evidence of capacity for program management, collaborative research, and interactions with stakeholders
  • Live the Danforth Center values: Collaboration, Diversity & Inclusion, Innovation, Integrity & Respect, Environmental Sustainability, and Stewardship


  • Ph.D. in plant breeding, quantitative/statistical/population genetics, or a related discipline
  • Experience with project management and experimental design preferred
  • Experience using proximal sensing (e.g., NIR) for plant phenotyping helpful
  • Demonstrated expertise analyzing highly-dimensional genomic and phenomic datasets preferred



  • Cover letter that describes past research experience and interest in the position
  • CV 
  • Contact information for three (3) professional references


About the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center:

Founded in 1998, The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is an independent, non-profit organization with a mission to improve the human condition through plant science. Our focus is scientific research at the nexus of food, energy and the environment to improve the productivity and sustainability of agriculture. We assemble interactive teams of scientists and develop unique platforms to discover underlying principles about how plants work. We then convert that knowledge into useful crops and products, and partner with organizations that are best positioned to solve problems where they exist around the world. The Center’s work is funded through competitive grants from many sources, including the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Energy, National Science Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is proudly an equal employment opportunity employer. Employment decisions at the Danforth Center are based on merit, qualifications, and abilities. It is our policy that the Danforth Center does not discriminate in employment opportunities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or national origin and status as protected veterans or individuals with disabilities. As a federal contractor, the Danforth Center is required to comply with the 2021 Executive Order mandating full vaccination status of employees by December 8, 2021 unless the employee is legally entitled to an accommodation due to physical disability or sincerely held religious belief.  If you need a reasonable accommodation to access the information provided on this web site, please contact Human Resources, at 314-587-1033 or, for further assistance.