Postdoc (theoretical neuroscience: neural networks &
machine learning)
Andrea Benucci Lab. for Neural Circuits and Behavior (W459) Contact RIKEN BSI for Careers


Research field

The research focus of the laboratory is to study how the dynamics of neurons in large cortical networks gives rise to a sensory percept, as well as to complex cognitive processes such as decision-making. We address this question using a combination of experimental and computational methods. Experimentally, we work with the mouse animal model and use cutting-edge techniques for the interrogation of neural circuits, such as fluorescence imaging and optogenetics. Computationally, we use the framework of recurrent neural networks (RNN), considered as an ideal tool to study the dynamics of biological recurrent neuronal networks (bRNN).

Job title and description

Postdoctoral position. The project will focus on implementing a large-scale RNN to capture key computational aspects of cortical processing using data recorded from the cerebral cortex of mice while engaged in a behavioral task. This work will be done in close collaboration with experimentalists to jointly design new experimental paradigms based on observations and predictions spurring from the theoretical simulations.


We seek candidates with a strong computational background, especially in the field of machine learning and recurrent neural network simulations. Candidates should have a Ph.D. in a relevant field (e.g., Computational Neuroscience, Computer Science, Math, Physics). Proficiency in programming (e.g., MATLAB, Python) is necessary. The ideal candidate will be comfortable working in an international environment, where researchers communicate primarily in English.

Work location

The Neural Circuits and Behavior Team is located at the following address: RIKEN Brain Science Institute, 2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama, Japan. The institute is located in the greater Tokyo area, about 30 min from the center of the city by train.

Salary and benefits

A one-year fixed-term employment contract, renewable based on evaluation, to a maximum of the end of the fiscal year (March 31) in which the employee completes 7 years of employment.
RIKEN may adjust the above maximum period of renewability based on a) the employee's abilities, work load at the time of contract completion, performance and work attitude and b) the continuation of the employee's center, laboratory or project and RIKEN's management situation and budget at the time.
The employee's period of fixed-term employment cannot exceed 10 years from the initial date of hire (or 10 years from April 1, 2013 for fixed-term employees already at RIKEN prior to this date).
Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. Social insurance will be applied. Free, mandatory membership in the RIKEN Mutual Benefit Society (RIKEN Kyosaikai) will be provided. These and other provisions are in accordance with RIKEN regulations. RIKEN is promoting a Gender Equity Program by taking various measures to create a workplace where both men and women are able to give full rein to their talents and abilities.
Postdocs are eligible for an exemption from repayment for category 1 scholarship loans provided by the Japan Student Services Organization before fiscal year 2003, and are eligible to apply for the MEXT Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Kakenhi).


Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for external funds.

Application and required documents

Interested applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Candidates should provide (1) cover letter, (2) CV and bibliography, (3) the names and contact information of three references (including the current supervisor, if available) with a brief description of your relationship to each reference.

[Handling Personal Data]
Handling of Personal Data: All private data sent to RIKEN in application for employment is handled in strict confidentiality, and such data is not utilized for any other purpose or disclosed to any third party. Application documents will not be returned.

Selection process

Applications will be reviewed as they are received. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to RIKEN-BSI for an in-person interview.

Start of employment


Send application to

, subject: postdoctoral position benuccilab

Contact information

Laboratory for Neural Circuit and Behavior
RIKEN Brain Science Institute
Room 101b, BSI Neural Circuit Genetics Research Building
2-1 Hirosawa, Wako-shi, Saitama 351-0198, Japan