Research Associate/Senior Research Associate

Bristol, United Kingdom
£33,797 - £42,792
17 May 2020
End of advertisement period
15 Jun 2020
Contract Type
Full Time

Division/School School of Earth Sciences
Contract type Open Ended
Working pattern Full time
Salary £33,797 - £42,792
Closing date for applications 15-Jun-2020

Flash floods and debris flows are major global hazards, with impacts ranging from catastrophic events with thousands of fatalities (e.g. Nevado del Ruiz, Colombia in 1985), to frequent small-scale events associated with seasonal rainfall. Recently there has been a step-change in the modelling their hazards through the emergence of predictive dynamic models based on the physics of shallow flows on topography, but significant fundamental questions remain about the dynamics of flow initiation and impacts. Applications are invited for a 2-year RA position at University of Bristol to work on two projects funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund: ‘From Everyday to Extreme: Strengthening Resilience to Frequent Flash Floods in Perú’ and the GCRF Urban Disaster Risk Hub ‘Tomorrow’s Cities’. Both projects are focused on flash flood and mudflow impacts in the urban environments of Lima and Quito, and are partnered with local scientific and risk management institutions and affected communities.

The RA position will be based in the Schools of Earth Sciences and Mathematics and will conduct fundamental research to underpin the application of predictive models to flash flood and mudflow hazard and risk. This will include: (i) mathematical modelling of the initiation of sediment flows from rainfall in arid and urban environments; (ii) mathematical modelling of fluid-structure and suspended solid-structure interaction to identify and quantify the dominant damage mechanisms; (iii) mathematical modelling of the flow around deflecting dams and through porous nets to inform strategies for constructing and maintaining these structures; (iv) developing effective strategies for running a dynamic sediment flow hazard model at high resolution in urban environments.

The successful candidate will have a strong mathematical and physical science background. Essential attributes are a PhD in mathematical modelling or relevant physical science, applied to environmental processes, to be proficient in the use and development of numerical strategies for integrating mathematical models, and experience of knowledge exchange with key stakeholders and end-users of research. Desirable attributes include: experience of field campaigns including geological measurements or observation of natural hazards; excellent communication skills and evidence of the ability to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team. This post is available at Postdoctoral or Senior Postdoctoral Research Associate level dependent on expertise and experience.

The Schools of Earth Sciences and Mathematics and the University offer considerable opportunities for ongoing professional development and mentoring of Early Career Researchers. The University of Bristol is committed to the Concordat to support the career development of researchers (see:

For further enquiries regarding this position, please contact Dr Jeremy Phillips ( or Prof Andrew Hogg (

We welcome applications from all members of our community and are particularly encouraging those from diverse groups, such as members of the LGBT+ and BAME communities, to join us.

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