First listed on: 02 October 2021

Molecular Laboratory Research Technician


The Opportunity

  • Leverage novel technology to sequence whole genomes from old specimens and research collections
  • Use your initiative to drive platform development 
  • Help revolutionise the monitoring of Australia’s natural environment and biosecurity

Powered by developments from the CSIRO’s Environomics Future Science Platform, the National Biodiversity DNA Library will be a globally unique and significant national infrastructure. Using novel platform technology for high-throughput collection genomics, the National Biodiversity DNA Library initiative involves large-scale sequencing of whole genomes from old specimens in the National Research Collections Australia (NRCA) and other collections. 

As the Molecular Laboratory Research Technician, you will be based in the Australian National Insect Collection (ANIC) in Canberra.  Working closely with research scientists and technicians from key collections, you will support the National Biodiversity DNA Library initiative in building a library of DNA reference sequences based on taxonomically identified collection specimens.  The eDNA sampling of aquatic and terrestrial environments is poised to revolutionise the way we monitor Australia’s natural environment, but it relies on a complete reference library of DNA barcodes.

As part of a team, you will carry-out the molecular lab work for the National Biodiversity DNA Library and related projects. Primarily this includes the use of established protocols, robotic systems and high-tech laboratory equipment to generate whole genome shotgun sequence data for many thousands of Australian animal and plant specimens in a high-throughput fashion (up to 1,536 samples at a time). The combination of degraded / fragmented DNA from up to 150y old samples and high-throughput DNA sequencing poses a unique challenge, and cutting-edge technology like acoustic liquid handling is used to reduce potential cross-contaminants and to miniaturise reactions to the nano-litre scale.

In this role you will:

  • Liaise with stakeholders to understand their needs and carry out molecular laboratory work, including high-throughput DNA extractions and DNA library building.
  • Contribute to the communication of research techniques and to the improvement and development of cutting-edge platform technology.
  • Help establish and use a Laboratory Inventory Management System (LIMS).
  • Work collaboratively across the collections to support the relocation to the new facility. 
  • Participate in planning projects and accept responsibility for the scheduling and completion of major parts of projects.
  • Provide coaching, on-the-job training and instruction to colleagues, as required.

Location:   Black Mountain (Canberra) ACT
Salary:   AU$85k - AU$96k per annum, plus up to 15.4% superannuation
Tenure:  Specified term of 2 years (with possibility for extension), full-time
Reference:  77868

To be considered you will need:

  • A relevant qualification or equivalent work experience in molecular genetics / biology.
  • Extensive practical experience in molecular genetics laboratory work.
  • The ability to carry out long, complex workflows according to protocol and in a reliable and reproducible manner.
  • The ability to work efficiently on multiple projects in parallel.
  • A history of both successful teamwork and working independently to meet agreed objectives.

For full details about this role please view the Position Details 


Applications are open to:

  • Australian Citizens and Permanent Residents
  • New Zealand Citizens
  • Australian temporary residents who have the right to work for the expected duration of the term (at least to end of December, 2023), with no requirement for sponsorship.

The successful applicant will be required to obtain and provide a National Police Clearance or equivalent.

Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. 

Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit people representing the diversity across our society, and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. 


At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to Apply

Please apply online and provide a CV and cover letter outlining your motivations for applying and your suitability for the role, paying particular attention to the requirements outlined in the Position Details.

Applications Close

Sunday 24 October, 2021 (11pm AEDT)

We reserve the right to withdraw this ad prior to the closing date.

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