Postdoc in Human Geography

1 day left

Lund (Stad), Skåne (SE)
11 Nov 2020
End of advertisement period
30 Nov 2020
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Geography
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Postdoc in Human Geography

Lund University, Department of Human Geography

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top 100 universities. The University has 40 000 students and more than 8 000 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition. 

The Faculty of Social Sciences at Lund University is one of the leading education and research institutions in Sweden and operates both in Lund and Helsingborg.

The Department of Human Geography with about 55 employees, 400 fulltime students and approximately 25 Ph.D. students combines tradition with modern and highly internationalized research and education. Geography has repeatedly been the highest ranked subject at Lund University, currently ranked 16th in the world and 1st among the Nordic countries according to the QS ranking of 2018. For decades, the department has been very successful in the competition for external research funding. In addition to being embedded in numerous national and international research networks, the department of human geography has close ties with a broad spectrum of departments and faculties at Lund University. The key areas of research and teaching at the department are economic geography, development geography, urban, landscape and social geography, and GIS. The department has a Human Ecology Division (with a doctoral program of its own).

The Department is looking for a Postdoc in Human Geography specialised in Development Geography, Remote Sensing and GIS

Job assignments
The position (100 %) involves research (minimum 80%) and teaching at all levels (max 20%).

This position is primarily connected to the research project Combining Deep Learning, Transfer Learning and Satellite Imagery to Estimate Agricultural Intensification in Data Poor Regions of the World financed by Crafoord Foundation and A Bird’s-Eye View on Agricultural Transformation in sub-Saharan Africa: An analysis of living standards indicators combining panel data, satellite imagery and deep learning financed by the Swedish Research Council.

The aim of this project is to estimate indicators of agricultural intensification using satellite imagery and machine learning. We intend do this through an innovative framework featuring a new application of machine learning in a manner similar to that used by face recognition technology. More precisely, we apply deep learning and transfer learning to satellite-based rich proxies for agricultural productivity and conventional household survey data containing information on management practices and crop yields. The overarching aim is broken down into one main research questions. To what extent can agricultural intensification be estimated from daytime satellite imagery alone?

Drawing on a rich combination of data sources and methods, we will be able to identify villages and regions that have not been mapped before and estimate their level of intensification. This innovative approach will also provide a real-life contribution to addressing a practical problem of collecting statistics on the ground in developing countries that lack infrastructure or administrative resources. The project hence will be able to fill the data-collection needs inherent in monitoring a number of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The postdoc to be hired is expected to contribute to the main project in two main aspects: Firstly, further the work on identifying relevant indicators from household surveys and linking them to physical features on the ground. Secondly, to carry out a scientific review of existing knowledge on agricultural intensification, and particularly as studied with remote sensing techniques. However, within this scope, the postdoc will have extensive freedom to decide on research issues, develop theoretical ideas and choose research methods. The postdoc is also expected to contribute to other eventual tasks in relation to the project.

Qualifications and assessment
To be appointed as a postdoc requires a PhD in a field of relevance to the position, i.e. human geography, other relevant social science disciplines or interdisciplinary research. The PhD is to have been obtained within the past three (3) years at the time of the application deadline. You are expected to have research experience in at least one of the following fields: human geography or development geography. Furthermore, candidates are expected to have both qualitative and quantitative research experience, as well as documented experience working with remote sensing and GIS,

The basis for assessment is the ability to develop and conduct high quality research, as well as teaching skills. Research expertise is primarily considered. The applicants must be able to demonstrate documented research expertise through the quality of their doctoral thesis and/or other publications.

The applications are assessed with regard to the following criteria:

  • the relevance and strength of the research plan, and its relevance for the project described above, the quality of previous research output, and its links to the topic of the postdoc
  • other qualifications proving the applicant’s research skills
  • teaching expertise within subjects of relevance to the Department of Human Geography 

Fluent English (written and spoken) is a requirement.

Applications must be written in English and include:

  1. CV
  2. Copies of grades and examination certificates
  3. List of publications
  4. Up to 3 representative publications (e.g. PhD thesis and academic papers) 
  5. Research plan (maximum 5 pages), showing what research the applicant intends to pursue, and how it relates to the project described above. 
  6. Two letters from academic references 
  7. Account of other experience and competences of relevance to the position (not covered elsewhere in the application), e.g. policy work. 

Applicants are expected to indicate in the application when – if offered the position – they would be able to start.

Terms of employment
This is a 2 year temporary employment according to the Agreement on fixed-term postdoctoral position (Swedish Agency for Government Employers).
Terms A postdoc fellowship is a career development position specialising in research, and is to be an initial step in the applicant’s career. Please note that a person who has previously been employed as a postdoc at Lund University for more than a year cannot be employed as a postdoc again within the same or similar subject at the University.

The postdoc to be hired is expected to live in or relocate to the region.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset. We kindly decline all sales and marketing contacts. 

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