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Scientist - Tree & Stand Modelling

Forest Research

Location: United Kingdom
Salary: £35,870 to £38,842 pro-rata if applicable
Hours: Full Time, Part Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 24th November 2022
Closes: 6th December 2022
Job Ref: 250709

Reference number: 250709

Salary: £35,870 - £38,842

Job grade: Higher Executive Officer, Pay Band 4

Contract type: Fixed-term appointment until end of March 2025 with the possibility of extension or permanency but no guarantee.

Working pattern: Flexible working, Full-time, Part-time

Closing Date: Tuesday 6th December 2022

Location: Alice Holt Research Station, GU10 4LH or Northern Research Station, EH25 9SY or Forestry Commission Office BS16 1EJ, with blended working available.

Job description

Forest Research seeks to appoint a Scientist to undertake tree and forest modelling, providing evidence and interpretation to support robust policy on managing forests for sustainable and secure wood production and climate change mitigation. The post holder will lead project tasks commissioned as part of research under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between FR and BEIS to better understand the climate change mitigation potential of UK forests and improve the way in which greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from removals by UK forests are estimated. The successful applicant will lead on developing growth models to underpin forest carbon accounting, producing reports for the BEIS project steering group, and articles for peer-reviewed publications. The post holder will also work with and support other forest growth modelling and carbon research in the Science Group.

The post holder will be a member of the Mensuration, Growth and Yield Science Group, within the Centre for Forest Management. The Centre uses applied interdisciplinary research to underpin the sustainable management of Britain’s trees, woods and forests. Work in the Science Group focuses on five main areas: tree and timber measurement; forest growth modelling; forest carbon balance modelling; evaluation of wood supply chains; development of practical decision support tools. The research underpins scientific understanding of the contribution of forests to sustainable and secure wood supply, climate change mitigation and reaching NetZero targets.

Person specification

The successful candidate will lead on research into modelling tree and stand growth, yield and carbon balance under future climate scenarios and develop models using new data sources. They will explore how data from the National Forest Inventory (NFI) and other sources might support the regular updating of growth and yield models based on the best available evidence, quantifying the impact of applying updated growth and yield models as part of forest carbon modelling on National GHG Inventories.

The successful applicant will have significant experience in mathematical modelling and/or computer simulation. The applicant will also have a track record of delivering projects and disseminating science outcomes to a range of audiences. The post holder will communicate their work and its significance verbally and in written reports to policy leads in BEIS, to colleagues across FR, and the forestry sector.

Essential Criteria

  • Proficient modeller with demonstratable experience of modelling in R and C++
  • A postgraduate degree in data, environmental or mathematical science, or equivalent experience
  • A track record leading on written reports for a wide range of audiences
  • Experience of communicating verbally in person and online to audiences at all levels
  • Demonstrate excellent organisational and record keeping skills and a high attention to detail
  • Proven ability to collaborate with colleagues and be a team player
  • Proven ability to work independently
  • Knowledge of forestry or an interest and willingness to learn

Desirable Criteria

  • Experience in forestry modelling
  • Understanding of forest management and the forestry sector

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