January 2018
Message 9

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[Met-jobs] Postdoctoral Opportunity — California and Western US Vegetation Dynamics

From Charlie Koven <>
Date Wed, 3 Jan 2018 15:57:00 -0800

The Climate and Ecosystem Sciences Division at Berkeley Lab seeks a California 
and Western US Vegetation Dynamics Postdoctoral Scholar to combine 
observations, ecological theory, and numerical model development to explore the 
impacts of and feedbacks between climate extremes and vegetation dynamics for 
ecosystems in California and throughout the western US. This role will work 
within a five-year project funded by the Department of Energy’s Regional and 
Global Climate Modeling program to assess the role of climate extremes in 
governing tree mortality, disturbance-recovery cycles, changing ecosystem 
function, and transient vegetation range shifts.

What You Will Do:
        • Explore how plant hydraulic and other traits govern vegetation 
distributions in California and the western US.
        • Develop and test process representation within the 
Functionally-Assembled Terrestrial Ecosystem Simulator (FATES), a demographic, 
dynamic, vegetation model for use within the land models of the Community Earth 
System Model (CESM) and the Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM).
        • Test model predictions against a wide variety of observational 
datasets, including eddy covariance, remote sensing, and forest inventory data.
        • Use the recent California drought as a test of model predictions of 
how climate extremes govern vegetation dynamical process rates.
        • Explore the roles of changing climate extremes over the historical 
period and future projections in governing ecosystem structure and process.
        • Explore the role of vegetation dynamics in governing biophysical and 
carbon cycle climate feedbacks in California and the Western US, using coupled 
land-atmosphere configurations within an Earth system model.

What is Required: 
        • PhD in relevant field (e.g., climate science, ecology, plant 
physiology, forestry, atmospheric dynamics).
        • Proficient coding skills in, at a minimum, data analysis languages 
(Python, R, matlab, etc), and ideally, in compiled languages such as Fortran.
        • Knowledge of and interest in land surface processes, atmospheric 
dynamics, and ecological science concepts.
        • Experience with analysis of both observational and model-derived 
        • Particularly interested in candidates with experience working with 
demographic vegetation models, plant hydraulic models, or variable-resolution 
climate models.
        • Ability to understand and use state-of-the-art land-surface and 
coupled land-atmosphere models.
        • Evidence of ability to publish research results in peer-reviewed 

The posting shall remain open until the position is filled, however for full 
consideration, please apply by close of business on January 15, 2018.

        • This is a full time, 1 year, postdoctoral appointment with the 
possibility of renewal based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing 
availability of funds and ongoing operational needs. You must have less than 4 
years paid postdoctoral experience. Salary for Postdoctoral positions depends 
on years of experience post-degree.
        • Full-time, M-F, exempt (monthly paid) from overtime pay.
        • This position is represented by a union for collective bargaining 
        • Salary will be predetermined based on postdoctoral step rates.
        • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions 
will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities 
and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not 
automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
        • Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.

Apply here:

For questions or further information, contact me at

Charlie Koven
Staff Scientist
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
Berkeley, CA

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