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Junior Specialist in Land Systems Science for the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management

Position overview

Position title: Junior Specialist in Land Systems Science
Percent time: 100
Anticipated start: May 15, 2022
Position duration: May 15, 2022 - May 14, 2023 (1 year)

Application Window

Open date: April 5th, 2022

Most recent review date: Wednesday, Apr 20, 2022 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: Friday, Jul 1, 2022 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.

Position description

The Bren School of Environmental Science & Management is seeking to hire a highly qualified Junior Specialist in land systems science with a particular focus on the ecological impacts of land use and land cover change in managed landscapes. The incumbent will be supervised by Dr. Ashley Larsen and will collaborate on projects with Dr. Andrew MacDonald. The position will involve three primary job duties: 1) contribute to leading research efforts in spatial ecology and land use modeling (e.g. machine learning, connectivity modeling, econometric analyses), 2) contribute to management and advising of undergraduate student researchers on research projects in the lab groups of Drs. Larsen and MacDonald, and 3) contribute to writing of peer reviewed manuscripts and research grants relevant to the research projects that the incumbent will contribute to. The incumbent will be highly self-motivated and self-sufficient in an academic research setting with diverse responsibilities.

Possible projects that the incumbent will contribute to leading include: 1) assessing the ecological determinants and impacts of agricultural land abandonment (e.g., succession and revegetation of abandoned crop fields); 2) identifying the effects of agricultural land fallowing and management (e.g., irrigation, cropping patterns) on microclimate conditions and arbovirus risk, or invasion of Aedes aegypti in California’s Central Valley.

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 the position.


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)

Bachelor’s degree in ecology or related field at time of application.

Additional qualifications (required at time of start)

Two years of experience in coding and statistical computing (e.g. in R, Stata, or similar)

Preferred qualifications

-Experience managing and analyzing large spatial data
-Experience writing peer reviewed manuscripts
-Experience with machine learning, connectivity modeling with application to ecological questions
-Familiarity with ecology theory as applied to human health and agricultural systems
-Familiarity with applied econometrics/causal inference
-Prior experience working on the ecology of natural and managed systems in California
-Excellent oral and written communication skills
-Well developed coding skills with application to data science problems and a strong ability to trouble shoot novel coding problems (e.g., in R, Stata, Python, Google Earth Engine platform, etc.).

Application Requirements

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

  • Cover Letter

  • Statement of Research (Optional)

Reference requirements
  • 3-5 required (contact information only)

References will be contacted only if the candidate becomes the finalist.

Apply link:

Help contact:

Campus Information

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.

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Policy: All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of Full Vaccination or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, and/or Religious Objection) or Deferral (based on pregnancy) no later than the applicable deadline. Please refer to Appendix F, Section II.C. of the policy for the deadlines applicable to new University of California employees. (Capitalized terms in this paragraph are defined in the policy.) Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.

Job location

Santa Barbara, CA