Job Details

University of California Santa Barbara
  • Position Number: 5405953
  • Location: Santa Barbara, CA
  • Position Type: Science - Geology, Earth Sciences & Oceanography

Gulf Ecosystem Initiative Postdoc (up to 2 positions)

University of California Santa Barbara

Position overview
Position title: Gulf Ecosystem Initiative Postdoc Salary range: The posted UC system-wide salary scales set the minimum pay based on prior months of postdoc service (both domestic and international) before the start of appointment. See Table 23 and 23N (Hourly) for experience level minimums. A reasonable estimated full-time rate for this position at 100% time is $64,480- $77,327. Salaries that are higher than the published system-wide salary at the designated experience level minimum, are offered when necessary to meet competitive conditions. Full UCSB postdoc benefits package included. Percent time: 100 Anticipated start: August 1, 2024 or later Position duration: Two-year long positions with the potential for a third year Application Window

Open date: November 20, 2023

Most recent review date: Friday, Mar 15, 2024 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Monday, Sep 30, 2024 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description


The National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at UCSB and NOAA RESTORE Science Program are partnering on a five-year initiative to synthesize data, science, and knowledge about the Gulf of Mexico to inform resource management and restoration efforts. As part of this initiative we will be supporting a growing community of post-docs and synthesis teams; we seek to fill an initial two postdoctoral positions that will work collaboratively with to-be selected synthesis science working groups to address critical, interdisciplinary, environmental questions in the Gulf of Mexico. These are two-year long positions with the potential for a third year and will be based at NCEAS in Santa Barbara, California.

This new Gulf Ecosystem Initiative is a partnership between the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) and The NOAA RESTORE Science Program designed to engage the Gulf of Mexico research community to tackle pressing scientific and societal challenges focused around three emerging research themes: fisheries; climate change; and the ecological impact of management actions.

Located at NCEAS, this postdoc position will offer you opportunities to participate in the research of one or more funded working groups currently being solicited (to be awarded by May 2023). You will split your time between supporting and collaborating with one or more working groups and developing your own independent synthesis project focused on a specific challenge facing the Gulf of Mexico. This position will give you significant opportunities to maximize the impact of your research and to work at the interface of ecological synthesis science and applied management solutions. You will be part of an initial cohort of two postdocs, and joined by a growing community of post-docs selected in following years.

Your proposed independent research project should focus on leveraging and reusing existing data to develop synthesis products around one or more of the initiative's three key research themes: fisheries; climate change, and the ecological impact of management actions. Within the fisheries theme, research should be aimed at utilizing the wealth of long-term fisheries and environmental datasets available across the Gulf to elucidate linkages between various fisheries and related ecological and social drivers. Climate change focused activities are expected to leverage large climate data sets as well as downscaled climate models to analyze climate change impacts in the Gulf and produce an ecosystem perspective that can inform future management and policy responses. And the ecological impact of management action-focused research should address a previous, recurring, or ongoing management action occurring in the Gulf and produce greater understanding around the system-wide impacts of those actions. Coproduction of synthesis products with working groups, practitioners, and stakeholders across the Gulf of Mexico is highly encouraged.
Duties and Responsibilities

Research related to the Gulf of Mexico synthesis working groups (50% time)
  • This postdoctoral researcher will participate in the work of one or more Gulf of Mexico synthesis working groups, as appropriate based on experience and interest.

Independent research (50% of time)
  • This postdoctoral researcher will be afforded significant time to pursue their own research interests, publish independent research in peer review journals, and attend scientific conferences.

Residency at NCEAS

NCEAS is located in scenic downtown Santa Barbara, California. The Center is known for fostering interaction and collaboration, a characteristic that leads to the success of its scientists. NCEAS has a growing and thriving community of postdocs, resident scientists, and analysts, and a frequent influx of leading scientists and practitioners from around the world participating in working group projects across a diverse range of initiatives. NCEAS is also a leader in data science training, offering courses and expertise in reproducible workflows, data infrastructure, and environmental statistics. We expect that postdocs will contribute their knowledge, interests, and enthusiasm to the intellectual atmosphere. The postdoc should anticipate spending the vast majority of their time in residence at the Center and will have the opportunity to travel to relevant national and international events and conferences, with a special focus on meeting and networking opportunities in the Gulf of Mexico region. Relationship building with Gulf-based researchers will also be accelerated by opportunities for postdocs to establish a regionally-based research mentor from NOAA, BOEM, USFWS or other relevant agencies.

NCEAS is committed to improving diversity and inclusion in science. We value the diversity of expertise, backgrounds, needs, and experiences reflected among our residents, visitors, and broader communities. We are committed to providing a safe, productive, and welcoming environment for everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, age, gender identity, parental status, sexual orientation, (dis)ability, citizenship status, and nationality. To see the steps we are taking to advance diversity and inclusion please see our full statement here:

The department is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching, and service.


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)
  • At the time of application, applicants must have completed all requirements expect the dissertation for a Ph.D. in environmental science, ecology, fisheries, climate science, environmental policy or a relevant discipline.
Additional qualifications (required at time of start)
  • Ph.D. in environmental science, fisheries, climate science, environmental policy or a relevant discipline at the time of hire.

Preferred qualifications
  • Strong analytical and modeling skills, including data science, database management, data visualization, etc.
  • Strong publication record
  • Experience working on subjects related to one or more of three main research themes: fisheries, climate change, and the ecological impact of management actions.
  • Regional knowledge of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem and people
  • Knowledge in policy, economics, and/or other social science related to marine and coastal systems
  • Ability to review and synthesis large amounts of literature and complex information
  • Ability to take initiative and work both independently and part of a research team
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to translate complex scientific information and effectively communicate with a variety of audiences
  • Strong networking and relationship-building skills and interest in building broad collaborations
  • Experience working with groups outside of academia (agency, industry, NGOs, etc.)
  • Demonstrates an understanding and acceptance of diversity, equity, and inclusion concepts that are broader than only race, ethnicity, and gender.

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter - We encourage your cover letter to include:

    Interest in the position
    Qualifications related to the position
    Experience supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Statement of Research - A short (3 page) proposal of research you would like to conduct
    as part of your independent project. We expect projects to primarily be synthesis and analysis research; the proposal should include a short section setting the context and motivating the work, a main section explaining the research questions and expected methods and data that will be used, and a short final section that addresses expected applied implications of the work.
Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)

Name and contact information for three references. The top candidate's references will be contacted before the final job offer.
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About UC Santa Barbara

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the University of California's Affirmative Action Policy please visit: For the University of California's Anti-Discrimination Policy, please visit:

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California Policy on Vaccination Programs, as may be amended or revised from time to time. Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.
Job location
Santa Barbara, CA

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