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Postdoctoral Research Assistant in Food System Environmental Modelling

University of Oxford

Location: Oxford
Salary: £36,024 to £44,263 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Permanent
Placed On: 1st February 2024
Closes: 28th February 2024
Job Ref: 170275

We seek a candidate on a Wellcome Trust funded project to model the impact of food system interventions and policy scenarios on environment, health, and/or economic outcomes, and the disparities these interventions may create across demographic groups, focusing on the UK context. This could include, for instance: identifying the ‘policy gap’ between ambition and reality with regard to achieving food-related targets for environment and human health; scenario analyses investigating how different food system scenarios affect environment and health outcomes; and the impact that food system interventions might have on different scales of the food system, from individuals to the entire UK.

This role is part of a larger 3-year Wellcome Trust funded project named SHIFT: Sustainable and Healthy Interventions for Food Transitions. With SHIFT, we aim to co-design research with public, civil society, policy makers, and food industry stakeholders to produce evidence on the environmental, health, and economic impacts of different policy pathways and food system interventions that might be implemented in the UK. This position is part of Work Package 3 (WP3; Modelling health and environmental impacts), and will work closely with the other work packages which focus on understanding UK food policy priorities (WP1), implementing and evaluating food system interventions in real-world settings (WP2), and engagement with public and policy (WP4).

This position builds on the unique data and modelling infrastructure developed by Oxford researchers under a previous Wellcome funded project named LEAP (Livestock Environment and People). This infrastructure captures the health and environmental impacts of the UK food system at highly granular levels, including: food products available at food retailer stores (foodDB; Harrington et al BMJ Open 2019); an approach to link food products to their impacts on nutrition and environment (Clark et al 2022 PNAS); a comprehensive review of the environmental impacts of agrifood systems (Poore and Nemecek 2018 Science; HESTIA); and a proportional multi-state life table model of the UK population that assesses the impact of diet transitions on health, health inequities, and healthcare costs (PRIMEtime; Briggs et al BMC Health 2019).

The candidate will be part of the Smith School’s Sustainable Food Solutions (SFS) research programme, a rapidly growing programme started in June 2022. SFS aims to use data and evidence to identify transition pathways to more sustainable food systems, and then work with external partners to implement these potential solutions.

Applications for this vacancy are to be made online. You will be required to upload a CV and supporting statement as part of your online application.

The closing date for application is 12 noon on Wednesday 28 February 2024, the interview will be held in Mid-March 2024.

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