Open Postdoc position on "Addressing multiple uncertainties in spatiotemporal statistical modelling of global land-use dynamics" (iDiv, Deadline: 20 May)

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Postdoctoral Researcher on “Addressing multiple uncertainties in spatiotemporal statistical modelling of global land-use dynamics”

Location : German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research Halle-Jena-Leipzig (iDiv), Leipzig, Germany

Supervisor : Carsten Meyer

Collaborators : Ralf Seppelt, Lars Bernhard, and others

New gridded information on global land-use dynamics offers exciting avenues for studying issues in biodiversity, climate, food security, and many other research fields. However, these data products inherit tremendous uncertainties that challenge their downstream application. Addressing these uncertainties requires using advanced modelling techniques and powerful computing resources. To model and analyze recent land-use dynamics using cutting-edge methodologies in a highly interdisciplinary and collaborative environment, we offer an exciting three-year postdoctoral researcher position at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv). The project is supervised by Dr. Carsten Meyer (head of iDiv’s Macroecology & Society group) in collaboration with Prof. Lars Bernhard (TU Dresden’s Geoinformatics group), Prof. Ralf Seppelt ( Computational Landscape Ecology department, Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research), and others at iDiv and beyond.

Job description:

  • ​carrying out research developing/applying statistical/computational tools for modelling recent land-use dynamics while addressing multiple sources of uncertainty
  • implementing these tools to improve newly developed spatiotemporal land-use data products; these products represent annual time-series of global high-resolution maps for multiple land-use variables related to cropping, grazing, and forestry systems, derived via a model-based integration of remote sensing, statistical census, and field data; overarching goal : address multiple sources of uncertainties throughout the modelling workflow and represent these at pixel-level in the final modelled data products
  • contributing to the development of standardized vocabularies and best practices for quality assurance in modelled data products
  • leading the dissemination of project results via high-quality journal publications and conference presentations
  • contributing to the further development of open-science, collaborative IT solutions as part of longer-lasting tools for global land-use analysis
  • contributing to the management of the collaborative project (co-organization of project meetings, etc.)

Requirements / expected profile:

  • ​successfully completed a PhD in a project-related field and interested in developing a career in science
  • broad experience in statistical modelling evident, for instance, from a PhD project emphasizing statistical modelling or computational analysis, or from formal education in a stats-related field (e.g., (geo)statistics, environmental modelling, computer science, remote sensing)
  • experience in command-line based data analysis, open-source programming languages (e.g., Julia, Python, C++, R), and version control (Git)
  • prior experience in addressing uncertainties in large/complex modelling workflows (e.g., Bayesian techniques for Big Data applications), predictive modelling, and/or spatiotemporal modelling will be an advantage
  • prior experience in working with gridded environmental information (e.g., land-cover, land-use, climate) will be an advantage, but is not a prerequisite
  • proactive, results-oriented, and with excellent team and communication skills (English)

We offer:

  • ​3-year postdoc position with a competitive salary in a highly dynamic, collaborative, and interdisciplinary working environment; note that benefits like health insurance, parental leave, and pension plans are standard parts of university jobs in Germany

  • career-building support (e.g. in proposal writing, teaching opportunities, networking at iDiv and beyond) over the course of the project, incl. regular interaction with an international network of land-use mapping experts

  • access to powerful computing resources and support by iDiv’s informatics units and collaborators

  • Salary: Entgeltgruppe 13 TV-L (standard German postdoc funding, which is more than adequate to live comfortably in Leipzig)

  • The working language at iDiv is English. IDiv is a highly international centre with employees from 30 countries and various forms of support for foreign-language employees (Welcome Centre, German classes, etc.). Leipzig is an attractive city with rich culture and beautiful surroundings, and international visitors usually find it easy to settle in.

Applications are accepted until 20 May 2019.

Link to full job ad:

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