Modeling climate effects on human dispersals and mixtures in late Pleistocene Eurasia

  • Employer: IBS Center for Climate Physics, Busan, South Korea
  • Location: Busan, South Korea
  • Education Level: PhD
  • Job Type: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Salary: 54-58 million KRW/year (~40,000-45,000 USD/year)
  • Term: Full Time, 2 years, with possibility for renewal
  • Start time: May 1st, 2024 or Later

Applicants for this position should have a PhD in physics, mathematics, climatology, evolutionary anthropology, archeology, ecology, or relevant. Candidates are expected to have a good publication record, excitement to work on a new research subject, high levels of curiosity and creativity. He/she is capable in working in an international and interdisciplinary research environment. Computational skills and experience using Matlab, Python, or other programming languages ​​are desirable.

The successful candidate will work with Dr. Jiaoyang Ruan (IBS Young Scientist Fellow) and Prof. Axel Timmermann (Director) to explore the climate effects on human evolution in the late Pleistocene Eurasia. The candidate will be using the latest version of Hominin Dispersal Model (HDM version 3) that has been continuously developing in the center over the last few years. This partial differential equation model is capable to simulate simultaneously the population densities, as well as culture levels, of multiple human lineages on a global geographic grid and accounts for dispersal, climate-dependent habitat and food resources (Ruan et al. 2023 Science , Timmermann et al. 2022, Nature), population growth, competitive exclusion, and interbreeding (Timmermann 2020, QSR). The candidate will conduct simulations with different climatic / demographic forcings to quantify past climate effects on the mixtures of different human lineages. The project will identify spatiotemporal distributions of Denisovans and their interbreeding dynamics with Neanderthals and Homo sapiens. This project will involve collaborations with leading international experts in paleo-genomics.

The IBS Center for Climate Physics (ICCP), ( ) directed by Axel Timmermann, is dedicated to advancing the understanding of natural climate variability, man-made climate change and their impacts on life on Earth. The ICCP is generously funded through the Institute for Basic Science. 

The ICCP is located in Busan, the second largest city in South Korea. Busan has diverse natural landscape with beautiful coasts and mountains. From designer cafes, international movie and art festivals, award-winning restaurants to temples at the end of hiking trails, Busan has many to offer for everyone. 

Please submit a cover letter, a short statement of research interest, curriculum vitae, the name of 2 references, and up to three publications to Dr. Jiaoyang Ruan ( and Ms. Jenny Choi ( Application review will start immediately until the position is filled. Feel free to contact Dr. Jiaoyang Ruan if you have any questions about the project.