We seek an Assistant breeder for barley and wheat

Assistant breeder for barley and wheat

Want to adapt grains to the extreme environment of Iceland?


The Faculty of Agricultural Sciences at the Agricultural University of Iceland (AUI) seeks an Assistant breeder for barley and wheat for a new breeding program financed by the Icelandic government. The open position is for an assistant specialist in field trials in a two-step genomic selection program. The breeding program is located at the AUI campus of Hvanneyri Iceland while the field trials are conducted in multiple environments in Iceland. The assistant breeder has accountability for the phenotyping aspect of the breeding program. The assistant breeder will work closely with a genomic breeder. The breeding program is hosted by the AUI and the position involves collaborations in research projects related to the program.


Vala plant breeding program

The Icelandic government is financing a breeding program in barley and wheat called Vala. The program is in accordance with an action plan to increase grain cultivation in Iceland. The goal is to increase Iceland s self-sufficiency and food security. The program is a two-step breeding program where the results from the field phenotyping are used to predict the breeding values for desired traits relevant for Icelandic farmers using genomic data. Data that is collected by collaborators and analyzed by the genomic breeder in the program.



  • Preparation of seed stock and design field experiments for multiple environments.

  • Data collection and curation for all relevant traits throughout the growing season, harvest plots and conduct post-harvest seed analyzes

  • Conduct site visits during the growing season to monitor trials and take agronomic and disease notes

  • Calculation and analysis of results from each trail for breeding program colleagues and for stakeholders when relevant

  • Development and implementation of GPS sowing schemes

  • Participation in other projects and responsibilities as assigned by the program leadership


  • BSc in plant science, agronomy, or agricultural sciences and preferably a MSc related discipline

  • Statistical and computational skills, with understanding of statistical models applied to agronomy trials

  • Programming skills in e.g. R, Python and/or other relevant languages

  • Maintain pesticide applicator s license is preferred

  • Experience with tractor driving as well as maintain tractors license

  • Fluent Icelandic and English

  • Be a reliable team member

  • Exceptional communication skills

  • Positive attitude and initiative


Further information

About the Agricultural University of Iceland

The Agricultural University of Iceland (AUI) is an educational and research institution in the fields of agriculture, land resources, environmental sciences, urban and regional planning, and landscape architecture. AUI plays a key role in developing societal issues in the fields. AUI awards BSc, MSc and PhD degrees and provides vocational training in agriculture.

About the faculty

The position is within in the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences. The faculty's primary responsibility is to share and preserve knowledge while improving understanding in the field of land use and livestock management. Moreover, it seeks to foster innovation through research, dissemination, and education. The covered topics are diverse and span interdisciplinary aspects, encompassing biological, technical, economic, and social factors associated with agricultural production and its broader impact on the environment and society.

This is a full-time position

Application deadline is 08.03.2024


For more information contact

Hrannar Smári Hilmarsson, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sími: 433 5000

Guðmunda Smáradóttir, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sími: 433 5000


Knowledge in the field of sustainable use of resources, environment, planning and food production.


Hvanneyri - 311 Borgarbyggð
Phone 433-5000
Kt. 411204-3590
Electronic invoices



Social media