Postdoctoral Research Associate
Adaptive Management of Federal Investments to Great Lakes Restoration Activities
The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) is a large US Federal program aimed at protecting and restoring the largest system of surface freshwater in the world. Participating federal agencies are committed to implement a science-based “adaptive management framework” to prioritize ecosystem problems to be targeted, select projects to address the problems, and assess the effectiveness of projects that are carried out. The framework describes an iterative process of planning, project implementation, monitoring of restoration effectiveness and ecosystem health,
and prioritization of ecosystem threats. The framework further outlines a general process by which learning feedbacks should be incorporated into future iterations of project selection.
Position Description: We seek a postdoctoral research associate to lead development of an adaptive approach to the selection of restoration project portfolios. The research will draw heavily on principles of decision analysis, in which the valuation of decision outcomes and the building of models to predict those outcomes are co-equal endeavors. The incumbent will work with decision stakeholders from the participating agencies to frame the decision making context, identify restoration priorities, characterize uncertainties in predicting project outcomes, and design systems of monitoring to assess satisfaction of project goals. The incumbent’s work will focus on the western basin of Lake Erie, the pilot geography for this effort. This project will result in protocols and technical tools for the selection of projects, monitoring designs to focus learning feedbacks into decision making, and publications to synthesize the work. The incumbent will work under the direction of Dr. Clint Moore (USGS, Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, http://www.coopunits.org/Georgia/People/Clinton_Moore) and will work closely with other members of the research team, Dr. Peter Esselman (USGS – Great Lakes Science Center) and Dr. Seth Guikema (University of Michigan, http://ioeguikema.engin.umich.edu).
Qualifications: Applicants must hold a Ph.D. in ecology, natural resource management, biometrics, natural resource economics, applied mathematics, statistics, operations research, or related field. Candidates should be able to demonstrate through study, work experience, or publications the application of decision analysis to problems in natural resources management.
Competitive candidates will have one or more of the following qualifications: a background in structured decision making and/or adaptive management, knowledge of ecosystem restoration, skills and experience with stakeholder workshops and facilitation, and facility in modeling, estimation, and optimization. The candidate must have excellent writing and interpersonal communication skills, and he/she must demonstrate commitment to timely completion of deliverables, commitment to publication of results in peer-reviewed outlets, and strong potential to work collaboratively with multiple agencies on a highly visible research topic. Occasional travel to stakeholder meetings and scientific conferences is required. The candidate will be employed by the Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at the University of Georgia and based in Athens GA during part of the year (up to 2 months) or periodically throughout the year (depending on work load). The need for a high degree of contact and face-to-face collaboration with USGS and other partner agencies requires that the candidate work from the USGS – Great Lakes Science Center in Ann Arbor, MI for the remaining 9-10 months of the year. The candidate selected for the position must be able to meet eligibility requirements for work in the United States at the time the appointment is scheduled to begin and continue working legally for the proposed term of the appointment.
Compensation: This is a full-time, fixed-term, non-tenure-track appointment for up to 18 months. Extension of the appointment beyond 12 months is possible depending on funding availability and satisfactory performance of the candidate. Annual salary is competitive and commensurate with education and experience. Benefits include health insurance options and paid leave; a full list of benefits offered by the University of Georgia may be found at
To Apply: Interested candidates should provide in a single PDF document (1) a cover letter that addresses qualifications and skills in the areas of expertise listed above, (2) a current vita, (3) a transcript of PhD work indicating degree award date, and (4) the names and contact information of three references who can attest to the candidate’s qualifications. Send applications and inquiries by email to Dr. Clint Moore, Assistant Unit Leader, Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will be accepted until a suitable candidate is found.