Research Scientist in Land Surface Processes

University of Reading - National Centre for Atmospheric Science

The post holder will join the University of Reading to work within Work Package 3b of the EU PRIMAVERA project on Land Surface processes and interactions. The main duty of the post holder will be to configure GCM experiments to exploit new observations of the land surface state and function (in-situ, remote sensing), suitable for use as boundary conditions in simulations with very high mesh refinement (down to 10km in coupled mode and 1km in offline mode).

The primary scientific focus is on the understanding of local versus remote drivers of land-atmosphere coupling, for instance the relative contribution of moisture transport versus evapotranspiration as model resolution is increased. Focus will be on (large) catchment-level moisture convergence and precipitation/evaporation ratio, as well as surface and sub-surface runoff and their routing into major river networks worldwide, as these processes couple the land-atmosphere and ocean components in the PRIMAVERA GCMs. Assessment will be carried out in collaboration with the other working members of WP3, entailing detailed model intercomparisons and the use of independent verification experiments and observational data. The collaboration with the other PRIMAVERA groups (20 across Europe) will include the application of process-based land surface metrics (WP1) and analyses of precipitation formation and governing mechanisms (WP2). The post holder will also coordinate with WP3 counterparts and report to WP6 in the construction and testing of high-resolution versions of the land surface component in the PRIMAVERA GCMs.

You will have:

  • A proven track record in atmospheric, land surface and/or climate science, demonstrating advanced analytical skills.
  • Excellent computational and programming skills including FORTRAN (90, 95), Python and UNIX/Linux shell scripting.
  • Experience of working with large, complex environmental simulation systems and underlying infrastructure, including code management and documentation for large collaborative groups.
  • Experience of working with Large Data, including data standards (e.g. NetCDF4, HDF5, GRIB2).
  • Knowledge of High Performance Computing (HPC), parallel programming and numerical modelling.
  • First degree in a scientific or mathematical discipline.
  • Strong analytic and communication skills.

Informal Contact Details
Contact role: Principal Investigator
Contact name: Prof P.L. Vidale
Contact phone: +44 (0)118 378 7844
Contact email:

Alternative Informal Contact Details
Contact role: Co-Investigator
Contact name: Dr R. Schiemann
Contact phone: +44 (0)118 378 7841
Contact email:

Interview date to be confirmed.

The University is committed to having a diverse and inclusive workforce, is a Stonewall Diversity and Global Diversity Champion, and supports the principles of the Race Equality Charter and Athena SWAN. Applications for job-share, part-time and flexible working arrangements are welcomed and will be considered in line with business needs.

Share this job
  Share by Email   Print this job   More sharing options
We value your feedback on the quality of our adverts. If you have a comment to make about the overall quality of this advert, or its categorisation then please send us your feedback
Advert information

Type / Role:


South East England