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  • System change postoc

    Melanie Colón
    • Employer: USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
      Location: Laurel, MD
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: No value
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Position Title: Post-doctoral Research Associate

    Salary: GS-12 salary (approximately $80K annually) and benefits

    Location: Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD

    Performance Period: 13 months (anticipate start date August 2019)

    Application Deadline:

    Position Summary:

    USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center anticipates hiring a post-doctoral research associate to develop and evaluate novel approaches for management decision making for dynamic systems. Decision making for natural resource management often relies on the assumption of a relatively stable system in which the effects of both stressors and management strategies are not changing over time and can be predicted. Human and natural systems are governed by dynamic processes, however, and there is increasing evidence that these processes are no longer stationary. One implication of this realization is that the best available science and empirical observations of the past may represent conditions that no longer exist and have little relevance to future conditions. Therefore, we need new frameworks for management decision making that do not rely on the assumption of stationary dynamics of, for example, climate and land-use change. Migratory bird management in the context of climate change is an excellent context in which to examine questions related to system dynamics: migratory birds are important resources of management concern; migratory bird populations and their habitats are sensitive to climate change in ways that may negatively impact management outcomes; there are a variety of different decision making contexts, including land acquisition, harvest management, and regulatory permitting; and, finally, data and models are available to inform the development of novel management strategies.

    Minimum Requirements:

    1. Ph.D. in biology (wildlife), ecology, or related field, with a focus on quantitative methods

    in population ecology.

    2. Applicant must be within 5 years of receiving PhD.

    3. Applicant must be a US citizen.

    4. Demonstrated familiarity with concepts of decision analysis.

    5. Demonstrated proficiency with computing platforms such as R and MATLAB.

    6. Demonstrated desire and ability to publish in the peer-reviewed literature.

    Desired Abilities:

    Competitive candidates will have a strong background in decision analysis and population modeling. Strong programming skills are required, including proficiency with R or similar platforms for data manipulation and conceptual modeling, proficiency with MATLAB or similar platforms for dynamic optimization. The successful candidate will have excellent written and personal communication skills and demonstrated success in working closely with management agencies on applied questions in wildlife conservation.


    Applicants should email: (1) a letter describing your background and interests – the letter should address specifically how the applicant meets both the minimum requirements and the desired abilities, (2) curriculum vitae, and (3) the names and contact information for 3 references to Dr. Jim Lyons (jelyons@usgs.gov). Please include “System change postdoc” in the subject line.

    For further information, contact:

    Jim Lyons (jelyons@usgs.gov, 301-497-5567) or Mike Runge (mrunge@usgs.gov, 301-497-5748), USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, 12100 Beech Forest Road, Laurel, MD 20708.



    Jim Lyons

    USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center

    12100 Beech Forest Road

    Laurel, MD 20708

    tel: (301) 497-5567

    fax: (301) 497-5545

    email: jelyons@usgs.gov

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