Postdoctoral Fellowships

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Postdoctoral Fellowships

Students and postdoc staking part in our two-day Future Leaders Programme

Students and postdocs taking part in our two-day Future Leaders Programme

Our Postdoctoral Fellowships allow early career scientists to focus on developing their research with the support and collaboration of some of the top researchers in New Zealand.

Postdoctoral Fellowships are in place across our partner institutes and our Fellows are encouraged and financially supported to take advantage of the many opportunities we provide to broaden their experience and skills. Activities on offer include:

  • Annual multi-day workshops on specialist topics such as communication, commercialisation and leadership
  • Intensive annual multi-day bootcamps (held in remote and beautiful locations) where experts share their knowledge in an important current research area
  • Public engagement events, working with school teachers or children
  • Membership of the MacDiarmid Emerging Scientists Association (MESA), run by students and postdocs, which organises additional activities.


Externally funded postdoctoral posititions

Research Fellow - The School of Chemical Science, The University of Auckland

We aim to recruit a highly motivated Research Fellow to develop novel catalysts for photothermal CO2 reduction to C2+ hydrocarbons. This position is jointly funded by the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology (a New Zealand Centre of Research Excellence) and the Energy Education Trust of New Zealand (a New Zealand Charitable Trust).

This project seeks to develop supported metal nanoparticle catalysts capable of driving CO2 hydrogenation to valuable hydrocarbons (ethylene and longer chain olefins or alkanes) under concentrated sunlight via light-driven Fischer-Tropsch processes. These catalysts will absorb strongly at UV-Vis-NIR wavelengths under concentrated sunlight, resulting in catalyst heating to several hundred degrees (i.e. into the temperature range where thermal Fischer-Tropsch reactions become possible). The project supports global decarbonization efforts and seek the valorize CO2 as part of New Zealand’s emerging circular economy.

The successful candidate will be responsible for the screening of photothermal catalysts using DFT calculations, development of new photothermal catalytic materials, building new capability around testing of catalysts, testing catalyst performance, and writing manuscripts for publication.

The successful candidate will report to Principal Investigator, Associate Professor Geoffrey Waterhouse and Dr. Ziyun Wang. The successful candidate would be expected to start between Nov 1, 2022 and Feb 1, 2023, subject to meeting all visa requirements for working in New Zealand.


  • PhD in chemistry, engineering, materials science
  • A strong track record of high impact research in thermal/photothermal catalysis/photocatalysis, and ideally Fischer-Tropsch catalysis. This track record should be demonstrated, in the main, by high impact journal articles as the first or corresponding author.
  • Candidates should have strong written and verbal communication skills in English.
  • Expertise in the synthesis of catalysts/photocatalysts and the techniques relevant to catalyst or photocatalyst characterization, including SEM, TEM, HRTEM, XRD, XPS, and X-ray absorption techniques (XANES, EXAFS).
  • Competence in the performance testing of thermal/photothermal catalysts and product characterization by GC/GC-MS and HPLC/HPLC-MS.
  • Prior experience in performing DFT calculations would be an advantage.

How to apply

Applications should be submitted online here via the University of Auckland SmartRecruiters portal, before the closing date of Wednesday 31st August 2022. Please include your CV and cover letter outlining your suitability for this role.

More will be listed here as they become available.