The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), steward of agriculture for the nation, has long been concerned about the impacts of environmental variability and weather extremes. Changes in the environmental and weather patterns can lead to unprecedented changes in the Ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface, raising the concern of direct and indirect effects to crops, ecosystems and humans.
The UV-B Monitoring and Research Program (UVMRP) is guided by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) mission to invest in and advance agricultural research, education, and extension to solve societal challenges and vision to catalyze transformative discoveries, education, and engagement to address agricultural challenges. Specifically, the UVMRP addresses NIFA’s Strategic Plan goal to advance the development and delivery of science for agricultural, forest, and range systems adapted to climate variability and to mitigate climate impacts.
The UVMRP fulfills these mandates by establishing three program areas:
•Monitor and examine UV-B radiation (with an emphasis on UV) at the Earth’s surface
•Study the interaction among UV-B radiation, agriculture crops/production, forest, ecosystem, and climate
•Develop an Integrated Agricultural Impact Assessment System
The post-doctoral research fellow will focus on the development, validation, and application of an advanced dynamic large-scale ecological modeling system using theoretical concepts and techniques from numerical modeling. This will involve incorporating solar UV radiation as a new abiotic stress factor into an ecological model. The calibrated UV version of the ecological model will be coupled with a regional climate model or climate observations to evaluate the effects of ambient and projected solar UV radiation as well as other stress factors on ecosystems at regional scales (such as the Western U.S.). The research will help to develop management strategies that can enhance crop growth in regional scales under different climate environments. This position is part of an ongoing project to develop an integrated modeling framework that couples state-of-the-art climate, hydrology, agriculture, and economic models. This position will conduct research and publish scientific findings in refereed journals, and present them at scientific conferences on ecology-modeling and impact assessment.Required Job Qualifications
Ph.D. in ecosystem ecology, agronomy sciences, or mathematics/statistics, and a strong background in numerical modeling.Preferred Job Qualifications
Demonstrated experience and skills with programming languages such as C/C++, FORTRAN, Matlab, Python, and/or PERL for numerical computation.
Analytical skills in model testing/data-assimilation/validation with biogeochemical models like DayCent, GOSSYM, DSSAT, Pnet.
Knowledge of plant physiology such as production, nutrient cycling, decomposition and other related processes and their sensitivity to environmental and climatic variability.
Reflecting departmental and institutional values, candidates are expected to have the ability to advance the Department’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.Essential Duties Job Duty Category Research Duty/Responsibility
Design and conduct collaborative research that investigates different crop/ecological models as to growth patterns under complex climate conditions and within various ecoregions.
Collaborate with UVMRP scientists to incorporate laboratory experiment findings regarding UV radiation effects on crops’ growth and development (such as photosynthesis, leaf area expansion, and biomass) into an ecological model (i.e. DayCent-UV).
Calibrate the UV version of the ecological model with field observations.
Couple the calibrated UV model with a regional climate model or regional climate observations to investigate the effects of solar UV radiation alone or in combination with other environmental stress factors on ecosystems at regional scales (such as the Western U.S.).
Ensure all data and scientific findings are documented.Percentage Of Time 85 Job Duty Category Project reporting / Meeting organization / Scientific Coordination Duty/Responsibility
This position will conduct research and publish scientific findings in refereed journals, and make oral presentations at scientific conferences, and work with collaborators on all publications.
Communicate with the principal investigator, scientists and staff on projects regarding progress to ensure all deliverables are completed in a timely manner.Percentage Of Time 15 Application Details Special Instructions to Applicants
For full consideration, applications should be submitted by April 21, 2018, 11:59 pm (MT).
Application materials consist of the following:
A statement of interest in this position, including how your experience fulfills qualification requirements
Names and contact information for three references, including, but not limited to, current and/or past supervisors
References will not be contacted without prior notification of candidates.Conditions of Employment Pre-employment Criminal Background Check (required for new hires) Search Contact Jonathan.Straube@colostate.edu EEO Statement
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Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).
Will you have a Ph.D. in ecosystem ecology, agronomy sciences, or mathematics/statistics, and a strong background in numerical modeling by the anticipated start date of June 1, 2018?
- Cover Letter