Skip to main content

Post Doctoral Scholar - Physics and Chemistry - Theoretical and Computational Electronic Structure

Recruitment Period

Open September 14th, 2018 through Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)


The University of California, Merced, is the newest of the University of California system’s 10 campuses and the first American research university built in the 21st century. With more than 7,500 undergraduate and graduate students, UC Merced offers an environment that combines a commitment to diversity, inclusion, collaboration and professional development. With bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs, strong research and academic partnerships, and community involvement, the UC Merced campus is continually evolving and requires talented, knowledgeable and dynamic educators, researchers, management and staff. Ranked among the best public universities in the nation by U.S. News and World Report, UC Merced is uniquely equipped to provide educational opportunities to highly qualified students from the San Joaquin Valley and throughout California. The campus enjoys a special connection with nearby Yosemite National Park, is on the cutting edge of sustainability in construction and design, and supports the economic development of Merced and the region. In Fall 2016, UC Merced broke ground on a $1.3 billion public-private partnership that is unprecedented in higher education. The Merced 2020 Project will nearly double the physical capacity of the campus by 2020, enhancing academic distinction, student success and research excellence. UC Merced has also built the Downtown Campus Center, a $33 million, three-story administrative building in the heart of Merced.

A postdoctoral position is available at UC Merced to work in the Consortium for High-Energy Density Science, with Professors David Strubbe (physics) and Aurora Pribram-Jones (chemistry). This Department of Energy-funded project is a collaboration with partners at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Florida A&M University, and Morehouse College, focusing on theoretical understanding of the electronic structure of matter under high temperature and pressure. Duties will include developing theoretical methods, writing code, calculating specific materials, communicating results in papers and conferences, mentoring graduate and undergraduate students, and collaborating with other partners in the consortium.

The specific projects include simulating pump-probe spectroscopy with time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) and density functional perturbation theory, formal development and analysis of thermal DFT and TDDFT via ensemble DFT and the strictly correlated limit, various code development projects, and calculating non-linear conductivities from real-time TDDFT.

There will be opportunities for interaction with other electronic structure groups at UC Merced (Hrant Hratchian, Christine Isborn, Liang Shi). We are looking for post-docs with strong expertise in electronic structure and excited states, condensed-phase dynamics, and/or spectroscopy. The postdoc may be jointly mentored by multiple PIs based on mutual interests.

Qualified applicants are required to have a recent Ph.D. in theoretical chemistry, physics, or a closely related field by the first day of their appointment. Excellent publication record; good written and spoken communication skills; experience developing, implementing, and validating models in electronic structure theory programs; background in spectroscopy, DFT, and TDDFT; experience with fundamentals of DFT theory; knowledge of high-energy density science and warm dense matter is preferred. In addition, candidates should be able to work both independently and in a team environment, have excellent written and spoken communication skills, and be interested in mentoring students at the undergraduate and graduate level.

Interested applicants are required to submit 1) a cover letter 2) a curriculum vitae 3) a list of two references with contact information including mailing address, phone number and e- mail address submitted through AP Recruit during the application process and 4) a statement of research no longer than 2 pages.

*Review of applications will begin on 9/24/2018 and will continue until the position is filled with a final closing date of June 30, 2019.

The University of California, Merced is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer with a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of diversity among its faculty, staff, and students. The University is supportive of dual career couples.

Salary is based on the University of California Academic Salary Scales. This is a full-time, one-year appointment with the possibility of renewal based on availability of funding, ongoing operational needs and satisfactory performance.

For more information, please contact David Strubbe at

Job location

Merced, CA


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter

  • Statement of Research

Reference requirements
  • 2 required (contact information only)

How to apply

  1. Create an ApplicantID
  2. Provide required information and documents
  3. If any, provide required reference information
Get started: press Apply Now