Postdoctoral Fellow Position at the University of Calgary

Our research group has an exciting opportunity for a Postdoctoral Fellow (PDF) in Calgary, AB. This position involves applying existing as well as developing new methods for the analyses of large, complex and linked patient data obtained from questionnaires, electronic medical records, and provincial cancer screening databases.  A micro-simulation study will also be carried out, where the development of several types of cancer will need to be simulated and the effects of risk factors and interventions such as screening taken into account. Preparation of manuscripts and presentations is also expected.

Anticipated methodological topics that could be addressed by the successful applicant include feature selection with varying amounts and types of measurement error and incomplete information, spatial methods to account for geographical differences in cancer outcomes, and incorporation of time-varying patient medical and health histories.

This Post-doctoral Fellowship will be located at the University of Calgary (UC) in Calgary, AB, with primary office space in the Department of Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Research (CEPR), Alberta Health Services. Secondary office space is available in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, UC. Primary supervision will be by Dr. Karen Kopciuk (Research Scientist at CEPR, Associate Adjunct Professor at UC), with additional supervision provided by Dr. John Spinelli (Professor at UBC and Distinguished Scientist with the BC Cancer Agency). Regular biostatistics seminars at the UC as well as ones in oncology and public health provide opportunities to continue to learn and to develop. The biostatistics group at the UC ( has research interests in survival data analysis, generalized linear mixed models, Monte Carlo inference, administrative health data and infectious disease modelling. Teaching opportunities in Statistics are also possible if that suits an applicant’s career plan.

The successful candidate must have a Ph.D. in Statistics or Biostatistics (defended within 5 years of starting this position and before commencing this position). Expertise and research experience with feature selection methods, GLM or GLMM models, and simulation studies is required. Strong programming skills in the R language is also necessary. Epidemiological or cancer biology knowledge is an asset but can be acquired in this position. Funding will be provided through a CIHR operating grant for one year, with the option for extension based on acceptable performance and available funds. Annual salary will be a minimum of $42,500 to start, with a higher salary possible with successful application to external funding agencies. Possible funding agencies include the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions, NSERC, or the Canadian Statistical Sciences Institute (CANSSI). Benefits such as extended Health and Family coverage ( as well as funding to attend and present at scientific conferences and a new laptop is also provided.

Applications – comprised of a current CV (include publications, presentations, project experience and graduate courses taken), research statement, career plan, sample of R code and contact information for three referees – should be sent to Dr. Karen Kopciuk ( In your cover letter, please describe in detail your expertise and specific research experience in the required areas mentioned above. Also explain how this position fits into your career plan. The position is available immediately and applications will be evaluated on an ongoing basis until the position is filled.

Posted: August 20, 2016

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