Post-doc : Mathematical modelling and simulations for evolutionary plant epidemiology in agricultural landscapes

 SysNum _Post-doc_ Modélisation mathématique et simulations pour l\'épidémiologie évolutive des plantes dans des paysages agricolesRef. - 2018_Post-doc_805/10/2018

Descriptionof the Cluster of ExcellenceSysNum (IdExuniversitédeBordeaux)

The SysNum cluster aims to develop top level research on the next generation of digital interconnected systems, going from sensor design to the decision processes. The project is divided into 4 methodological work packages and three transversal packages focused on providing demonstrators and on engineering applications.

Each of the 4 methodological work packages contains several tasks at the interface of mathematics, computer science and engineering:

  • Complex Systems and Interconnected Objects;
  •  Safety and Reliability;
  • Modelling, Computing and Simulating;
  • Massive and Heterogeneous Data.

The transverse work packages are aimed to develop various synergies between the methodological work packages in an engineering context of high interest at the regional, national or international level. These work packages are

  • Digital Ecological systems
  • Smart Campus
  • Robotics and drones

and they will provide experimental validation, proof of concept and demonstrators for the methodologies developed within the cluster.

More information sur : et

Description of the project, activities and work context

Context. Within the dynamics of the new cluster SysNum of Bordeaux university, we seek to hire from January 2019 a post-doctoral researcher in applied mathematics and/or scientific computing for a one year position. We developed an interdisciplinary project between a team of applied mathematicians at the Mathematical Institute of Bordeaux (IMB UMR CNRS 5251) and a team of biologists at INRA Bordeaux (SAVE UMR INRA 1065). The project aims at modelling the evolutionary epidemiology of a plant disease of a vineyard in order to manage the durability of plant resistance and decrease pesticide use. For airborne pathogens that spread over long distance like grapevine downy mildew, the most important grapevine disease in France, these management strategies must be devised at the scale of agricultural landscapes. Modelling approaches and in silico experiments nowadays complement field experiments in the design of new farming systems. In this context, we have recently obtained mathematical results for an integro-differential model in the case of a spatially homogeneous plant population (Djidjou-Demasse et al., 2017ab, Burie et al., to appear).

Objectives. Following our recent results for a homogeneous population, we wish to extend our work to handle the case of a population composed of several hosts corresponding to different pathogenicity traits of the pathogen. Preliminary analysis and simulations have been carried out that demonstrate the interest of this approach. Also we wish to take explicitly into account in our model the spatial structure with the dispersal of the disease at landscape scales. The spatial dispersal of the disease will be modelled either by a convolution operator or an advection diffusion operator. Simulations will explore the interplay between epidemiological and evolutionary mechanisms in heterogeneous landscapes. They will also help to devise optimal strategies of plant resistances deployments in realistic agricultural landscapes.

The study will be primarily carried out in the context of vine diseases but the results will be of interest for the management of fungi-like disease with resistance plants in several cropping systems.

This work will complement a PhD thesis in PDE analysis that started one year ago and which aims at investigating the dynamical behaviour of a simplified model and from a theoretical point of view.


Burie, J. B., Djidjou-Demasse, R,, Ducrot, A. (to appear) Asymptotic and transient behaviour for a non local problem arising in population genetics, Euro. Jnl of Applied Mathematics.

Djidjou-Demasse, R., Ducrot, A., Fabre, F. (2017a) Mathematical Models and Methods in Applied Sciences, 27, 385-426.

Djidjou-Demasse, R., Moury, B., Fabre, F. (2017b) New Phytologist, 216, 239-253.

Candidate Profile


The young researcher should have a strong background in applied mathematics and particularly in mathematical modelling applied to biology, structured PDE (reaction-diffusion, non local operators…) and dynamical systems. He also should be able to write simulation codes and perform numerical explorations of the model as well. He/She should be motivated to work in an interdisciplinary project involving mathematicians (2 researchers and 1 PhD students) and biologists (1 researcher).

Degree required and / or level of qualification

PhD Degree

Experience required

No postdoctoral experience required

Job Information

Location : Institut de Mathématiques de Bordeaux (IMB, UMR CNRS 5251)

Type of contract : Temporary

Job status : full-time

Duration: one year

Starting Date : January, 1st 2019

Remuneration: according to profile and experience


Jean-Baptiste Burie (

Frédéric Fabre (

CV and cover letter should be sent to the contact(s).

Apply now