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Post-Doctoral Position in Energy Modeling - Marine Science Institute, University of California Santa Barbara

Recruitment Period

Open date: April 14th, 2020

Last review date: Monday, May 4, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Saturday, Oct 31, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


We are seeking a postdoctoral researcher in energy modeling to join a vibrant interdisciplinary team of researchers at UC Santa Barbara working on developing rigorous research to inform innovative and equitable climate and energy solutions. Among other contributions, the postdoc will contribute to a current carbon neutrality research project focused on California’s transportation sector, evaluating how equitable and cost-effective outcomes can be achieved through actionable innovations in state climate policies that regulate and influence fossil fuel supply. The postdoctoral researcher will have the flexibility to contribute to various dimensions of the carbon neutrality project, and can also allocate a fraction of their time to their own research.

The ideal candidate will have a PhD in engineering, environmental or resource economics, interdisciplinary energy and/or climate studies, or a related field, with excellent integrated assessment or optimization modeling skills and expertise in climate and energy transitions. The scholar will work closely with UC Santa Barbara principal investigators across multiple departments and will be a team member of the Clean Energy Transformation Lab (CETlab) and the Environmental Market Solutions Lab (emLab). The CETlab focuses on low carbon and just transitions in energy systems by applying energy modeling and empirical analyses. emLab is an interdisciplinary team of economists and natural scientists based at UC Santa Barbara dedicated to bringing market-based solutions to the world's most pressing environmental problems.

The successful candidate will lead the development and programming of an energy transition and emissions modeling framework to evaluate potential pathways to carbon neutrality in California’s transportation sector. The model will focus on the fossil fuel supply sector, potential low or zero-carbon substitutes for fossil fuels, and the potential role of negative carbon emissions strategies including carbon capture and storage. The result and analytical approach developed in this study will inform state policy and management strategies to phase out fossil fuel-based transportation supply in a way that is socially equitable, economically responsible, and environmentally sustainable. Other project-related responsibilities include collecting and managing data, identifying modeling parameters to forecast energy use and greenhouse gas emissions under a range of policy scenarios, summarizing scientific findings in the form of peer-reviewed journal articles and oral presentations, and assisting with the development of reports to funders and agencies.

Basic Qualifications:
● Applicants must have completed all requirements for a PhD (or equivalent) except the dissertation in interdisciplinary energy, economics, and/or climate studies or a closely related discipline at the time of application.

Additional Qualifications:
● PhD in interdisciplinary energy, economics, and/or climate studies or a closely related discipline by the time of appointment

Preferred Qualifications:
● Expertise and knowledge in energy and climate studies
● Strong quantitative modeling skills and experience, especially with integrated assessment and/or optimization models
● Excellent programming skills, especially in R or Python
● Strong scientific writing and presentation skills
● An interest and track record in publishing in top academic journals
● Strong interpersonal skills to build and maintain strong relationships with academic, NGO and government partners, and to work effectively as part of a highly collaborative research team

Salary: Competitive with other universities and commensurate with the applicant’s qualifications. Full benefits package included.

Start date and term: Start date is negotiable, but ideally would be no later than July 31, 2020. emLab strives to create an adaptive, supportive environment, especially during circumstances caused by the COVID-19 coronavirus. As such, this postdoctoral researcher may be remote for the beginning of this appointment. Initial appointment is for one year with potential renewal based on performance and availability of funding.

To apply applicants should submit a cover letter addressing your interest in the topic and how you meet the qualifications, your CV, one to three writing samples of published material, and contact information for three references to:

For primary consideration, apply by May 4, 2020

Position will remain open until filled.

The University is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching and service as appropriate to this position.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Job location

Santa Barbara, California


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter - Addressing your interest in the topic and how you meet the qualifications

  • One writing sample of published material

  • Second writing sample of published material (Optional)

  • Third writing sample of published material (Optional)

Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)