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Research Associate in Fire Ecology

Imperial College London

Location: London, Hybrid
Salary: £45,593 to £53,630 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 19th February 2024
Closes: 15th March 2024
Job Ref: NAT01649
 

Location: Silwood Park Campus 

Job Summary: 

The Leverhulme Centre for Wildfires, Environment and Society (https://centreforwildfires.org/) has recently restructured its activities around a small number of interdisciplinary, cross-institutional teams. One of these is the Fire-Vegetation Interactions team, which aims to combine information and approaches from ecology, biogeography, ecosystem science and remote sensing to develop a new generation of global models for wildfire prediction, which will be suitable both for stand-alone applications and for interfacing with a land-surface model. 

We are seeking a Research Associate in Fire Ecology, who will facilitate the team’s work in incorporating aspects of fire ecology (including fire behaviour and adaptations in different ecosystems) into the new models, and into the JULES land surface model (a component of the UK Earth System Model). You will be part of the research group led by Professor Colin Prentice, Director of the Leverhulme Centre, at Imperial College. 

You will spend around a quarter of your time at the University of Reading as a participant in the Fire-Vegetation Interactions team, led by Professor Sandy Harrison, an Associate Director of the Centre.

Duties and responsibilities:

You will carry out research to address the challenge of integrating data and information on fire-ecological plant traits, and fire behaviour in plant communities, into the framework of a new predictive fire model. You will help to conceptualize and implement new process representations of the relationships between fire properties and fire-related plant adaptations, and work with scientists at the University of Reading on the development of model code for the inclusion of fire-ecological components in JULES. You will be actively engaged in collaboration in the framework of the Fire-Vegetation Interactions team. You will also contribute to the training of early-career researchers in the Leverhulme Centre, and help develop a strategy to disseminate the Centre’s findings to the international community of wildfire scientists.

Essential requirements:

  • Hold, or be near completion of, a PhD in fire ecology or a closely related discipline
  • Programming and computational experience commensurate with the demands of the role
  • Practical experience in handling large global data sets
  • Broad knowledge of plant geography, plant functional ecology, and ecosystem processes and measurements
  • Familiarity with the main current approaches to wildfire modelling

Further Information:

This is a full time, fixed term position for two years. It will involve extensive collaboration with other groups in the Leverhulme Centre as well as close interactions with Professor Harrison’s research group. You will be based at Silwood Park Campus, with travel to other sites.

Candidates who have not yet been officially awarded their PhD will be appointed as a Research Assistant.

The pattern of work will be flexible, with monthly (three day) in-person meetings of the team at Reading, and other meetings either in-person (at Imperial, Reading or one of the other institutions belonging to the Leverhulme Centre) or online.

Candidates must fill in an online application form in order to be considered for the post.

Should you require any further details on the role please contact Professor Prentice (c.prentice@imperial.ac.uk) and/or Professor Harrison (s.p.harrison@reading.ac.uk).

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