Aug. 31, 2023

Seeking Research Scientist /Postdoctoral Researcher
Laboratory for Motor Circuit Plasticity
Center for Brain Science (W23131)


Laboratory for Motor Circuit Plasticity, Center for Brain Science (Team Leader:Aya Takeoka)

Research Area

Engineering, Computational Science, Biology, Interdisciplinary


Neurocircuits, motor control, motor learning, in-vivo electrophysiology, in-vitro electrophysiology, kinematic analysis, single-cell RNA sequencing, virus-mediated circuit tracing, mouse genetics, circuit activity manipulation

Research Field

Neurocircuit mechanisms of motor control

Job title and job description

Job title, available positions

Postdoctoral Researcher or Research Scientist:   2 position(s)
The Laboratory of Motor circuit plasticity (PI: Aya Takeoka) at RIKEN Center for Brain Science is seeking an organized and highly motivated lab technician to join our group. Our lab employs multi-disciplinary approaches, including genetics, quantitative behavior analysis, electrophysiology, and neural circuit mapping and manipulation to study the basic mechanisms underlying how we learn to control movements.

Job description

We are seeking a candidate with a strong drive to succeed, a positive attitude and a strong quantitative background in at least one of the disciplines of Neuroscience (electrophysiology or bioinformatics). The computational background is a big plus. The candidate should also be a team player with good communication skills. In addition to scientific excellence and integrity, we value mentorship, collaboration, innovation and above all, a strong passion for embracing exciting and challenging research projects.



  • Ph.D. degree in Engineering, biotechnology, biology or related fields.
  • The ideal candidate will have a strong drive to succeed, a team-player, and a positive attitude.
  • Applicants should be interested in circuit/systems neuroscience and motor control, and have some of the following skills:
    • strong quantitative background with programming skills.
    • rodent stereotaxic surgery.
    • In vivo and/or in vitro electrophysiological recordings and/or optogenetics
    • movement analysis using video-tracking
    • RNA sequencing and genomic data analysis ideally at the single cell or single nucleus level.
  • Good verbal and written English communication skills.

Work location

Branch and address

RIKEN Wako (2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama 351-0198)
RIKEN has implemented a work-from-home system. Employees can work from home in accordance with the prescribed procedures.

Salary and benefits

  1. 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. (Maximum employment duration for a Postdoctoral Researcher is 5 years)
  2. 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. In principle, employment contracts will not be renewed for individuals older than 65 years.

In principle, the first two months of employment is considered a trial period.
Salary will be a monthly salary based on experience, ability, and performance, and will consist of a base salary and a variable salary. The variable salary will be determined each fiscal year based on experience, ability, and performance. The monthly base salary is 295,100 JPY for Postdoctoral Researcher and 350,300 JPY for Research Scientist as of April 1st 2023. The monthly base salary and variable salary are subject to change due to amendments to RIKEN regulations.

Discretionary work, commuting and housing allowances will be provided. Social insurance will be applied.

The approximate amount of monthly salary at the time of employment:
The monthly salary including discretionary work allowance at the time of employment will be 335,000 JPY or more for Postdoctoral Researcher, and 397,000 JPY or more for Research Scientist.

Mandatory membership in the RIKEN Mutual Benefit Society (RIKEN Kyosaikai).

This position falls under the specialized duties discretionary work system; one working day will be calculated as 7 hours and 30 minutes.

Days off include public holidays, New Year's holidays (Dec. 29 - Jan 3), and RIKEN Foundation Day.
Paid leave includes annual paid leave (up to 20 days depending on the month of employment), special paid leave (childcare, family nursing care, etc.), and work life balance holidays (up to 7 days depending on the month of employment).
There are also additional leave systems such as maternity leave, childcare leave, and family nursing care leave.
Smoking is not permitted on site except in designated smoking areas. Smoking will be entirely prohibited on site from April 2024.
These and other provisions are in accordance with RIKEN regulations.
RIKEN is actively undertaking initiatives to promote gender equality and diversity, and moving forward with the establishment of a diverse and vibrant research environment. If multiple candidates are found to have the same aptitude following a fair assessment, active efforts will be made to recruit female candidates.

Also, eligible for an exemption from repayment for category 1 scholarship loans provided by the Japan Student Services Organization before fiscal year 2003, and eligible applying for the MEXT Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Kakenhi).
The Wako Campus has an on-site daycare, RIKEN Kids Wako. For details, please send an email to the HR at kids [at]

Application and required documents

Required documents

  1. Complete CV (Format: WORD(56KB) or EXCEL(159KB) , with photo and email address)
    (RIKEN CV) *Write the RIKEN job ad number “W23130”, indicated in the parentheses next to the job title, in the RIKEN job ad number section in the upper right corner of your CV.
    (Original CV)*Write down in the notes section of your CV the number written next to the title of the job position (e.g. W23130).
  2. List of research achievement
  3. External funding awarded
  4. Summary of research experience to date
  5. Reason for applying for the post (personal strengths, motivation, future research plans, career aspirations, etc.)
  6. 3 references, including one from the current supervisor (If unavailable, a letter from a substitute reference will be acceptable.)
    *Please specify the referee’s contact information (Name, affiliation, job title, phone number, and email address)
  7. Consent form for handling personal information based on GDPR
    If you are a resident of the European Economic Area (EEA), you are required to submit the document, “Consent form for handling personal information based on GDPR” with your signature.

    *You will find detailed information about General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on the following website:
  8. (Optional) any additional information you think may be useful (e.g. skills, experience, and background; hobbies, general interests, and so on)

How to apply

The above documents except the recommendation letters combined into a single ZIP file should be uploaded to the following website:
For Research Scientist position, Laboratory for Motor Circuit Plasticity Team, Center for Brain Science, RIKEN

The file name of the ZIP should contain your contact email address.
After you uploaded the ZIP file, please let us (aya.takeoka [at] know the file name of the uploaded file.

Note: All the submitted documents will not be returned.


Open until the position is filled

Handling personal data

Submitted documents are strictly protected under the RIKEN Privacy Policy and will be used only for the purpose of applicant screening. Personal information will not be disclosed, transferred or loaned to a third party under any circumstances without just cause.

Selection process

Postdoctoral fellows/Research Scientists: Application screening and interview and oral presentation by selected applicants.

Start of Employment

As early as possible

Contact Information

RIKEN Center for Brain Science
Laboratory for Motor Circuit Plasticity
Email: aya.takeoka[at]
For inquiries, please send an email.