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  • Species Distribution Modeling of Birds in Fennoscandia

    • Employer: Norwegian Institute for Nature Research
      Location: Trondheim
      Country: Norway
      Last Date to Apply: 02/01/2019
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Job description
    We are seeking applicants for a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship to join a research consortium for species distribution modeling of birds in northern Europe. Our Future Bird Scenarios project is scheduled to begin in 2019 with new funding from the BiodivERsA-Belmont Forum. The goals for our international project are to understand how future environmental change will affect avian distributions and the important ecosystem services that birds provide to human society. We will combine information on bird numbers from national survey programs and citizen science projects along with geographic data on land use, climatic conditions, and networks of conservation reserves. The main project for the postdoctoral fellow at NINA will be to: 1) assess the risks for mountain birds where changes in land use and climate change are impacting alpine habitats (Brett Sandercock, NINA, Norway, and Åke Lindström, Lund Univ., Sweden). The postdoc will also have the chance to contribute to three other related projects in our collaborative network: 2) identifying the functional traits that the best predictors of the effects of environmental change on bird distributions (Jon Brommer, Univ. Turku, Finland); 3) determining if current networks of protected areas are sufficient for future conservation needs (Aleksi Lehikoinen, Univ. Helsinki, Finland), and 4) identifying whether cross-seasonal interactions between breeding and nonbreeding seasons will affect avian responses to global change (Tomas Pärt, SLU, Sweden).  The postdocs will work in collaborative teams across the consortium partners and with our collaborators at Cornell University (Wesley Hochachka, Cornell, USA). 

    Essential qualifications for all applicants will include:
    1) A PhD degree in quantitative ecology, statistics, or a related discipline;
    2) Evidence of research productivity, with publications in the peer-reviewed literature; and
    3) Good communication skills, including successful research grants and oral presentations at scientific conferences. 

    Applicants must be fluent in English. Language skills in Norwegian or one of the other Scandinavian languages are not required but will be considered an asset. 

    Desired qualifications will include technical skills in one or more of the following areas:
    1) Ornithology, with a foundation of knowledge in the ecology of migratory birds;
    2) Quantitative ecology, with experience in computer programming, hierarchical models in a Bayesian framework, and testing for ecological predictors of organismal responses;
    3) Data science, with experience in working with species distribution modeling or with large complex datasets; and
    4) Geographic sciences, with experience at acquiring and compiling geographic data and GIS layers from different sources. 

    Evaluation of the applicants will be based on the technical research experience and fit to the project of objectives. Emphasis will also be placed on research productivity, including peer-reviewed publications, project funding, presentations of academic work at conferences, and previous experience from terrestrial ecological field work on vertebrates. Excellent communication skills and a demonstrated ability for interdisciplinary collaboration will be considered an advantage. 

    Terms of employment:
    We offer a two-year full-time contract as a post. doctoral fellow.
    • Salary will start on Norwegian pay scale level 66 (currently about 586 500 NOK annually). 
    • Flexible working hours
    • Good pension and collective life insurance
    • Good opportunities for professional development

    The postdoctoral position is open to both international and domestic candidates and we encourage all qualified individuals to apply.  NINA has a long-standing policy objective that our staff should represent the composition of the general population in Norway.  NINA would like to increase the number of women among our research scientists and we especially welcome applications from female candidates.  Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.  Start dates are flexible but will ideally be during the first six months of 2019. 

    An application should contain:
    • A 2-3 page cover letter describing how the candidate’s past experience is a good fit to the research project, and contact details for three referees.
    • A curriculum vitae with a full list of peer-reviewed publications, and oral presentations at scientific conferences.  If relevant, the CV should also include list of research funding with information on funding agency, years of duration and the funds received.
    • A selection of up to five publications - published or unpublished - that have relevance to the evaluation of the applicant’s qualifications.

    Applications should be prepared in English and submitted as a single compiled PDF file to: Personnel Consultant Siri Svendsen at siri.svendsen@nina.no.

    Selected candidates will be invited to interview via Skype or in person at the NINA office in Trondheim. For further information on this opportunity, please contact Senior Research Scientist Brett K. Sandercock, e-mail: brett.sandercock@nina.no, tel. +47 452 16 480, or Research Director Svein-Håkon Lorentsen, e-mail: shl@nina.no,
    tel. +47 934 66 770.

    Closing date:  1 February 2019

    More information at NINA website:


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