Opportunities

PhD Position – September 2019: Quantifying coral reef ecosystem services

Human activities pose severe threats to coral reef ecosystems, putting them at severe risk of decline over the coming decades. These losses also pose threats to the people that rely on reefs and the ecosystem services they provide. What should be prioritized is actively debated, with a marked dichotomy between human-centric conservationists, who focus on human well- being, and biocentric conservationists, who focus on avoiding biodiversity erosion. Led by David Mouillot at Université de Montpellier, and involving 12 partner institutions, this  international, interdisciplinary project aims to resolve these tradeoffs between people- and biodiversity-oriented management to explore, through the modelling of scenarios, novel ‘win-win’ strategies that can secure several key ecosystem services on shallow reefs. 

This position will be within the Department of Biology at Dalhousie University, developing statistical models to quantify the social-ecological structure and function of coral reef ecosystem services. The ideal candidate will have a Masters degree in ecology, fisheries, or wildlife modelling, human geography, or a related discipline and a strong background or interest in Bayesian modelling. They should also have (i) the ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary team; (ii) strong written and oral communication skills; and (iii) previous experience with statistical models. Candidates must have a demonstrated ability to work as a constructive and positive member of a research group. We are particularly interested in recruitment of candidates from developing nations with coral-reef resources, however people from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Start date: 2019. Contact: a.macneil@dal.ca

PhD Position – September 2019: Quantifying small-scale social-ecological fisheries systems.

As a transnational hub for ocean research, the Ocean Frontier Institute brings together researchers from both sides of the North Atlantic to explore and understand our changing ocean and create safe, sustainable solutions for development of a blue and sustainable economy. The research module Ecosystem Indicators for Changing Oceans partners researchers at Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), in St. John’s NL and Dalhousie University in Halifax, NS. We are developing a team of 6 OFI Postdoctoral Researchers, 7 PhD students and 2 MSc students who will work together to identify indicators of ocean status and function from microbes to humans. Specifically we will work together to develop, operationalize, integrate, and evaluate indicators relevant to managing ecosystem use in coastal Labrador, Canada. The team will work with Indigenous rights holders and other stakeholders to identify strategies for sustainable oceans.

This position will be within the Department of Biology at Dalhousie University, working with fisheries stakeholders in Northern Labrador to understand the social-ecological structure and function of their small-scale fisheries. The ideal candidate will have a Masters degree in ecology, fisheries, wildlife management, social science, human geography, or a related discipline and a strong background or interest in Bayesian modelling. They should also have (i) the ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary team; (ii) strong written and oral communication skills; and (iii) experience conducting fieldwork. Candidates must have a demonstrated ability to work as a constructive and positive member of a research group. We are particularly interested in recruitment of Inuit candidates, and will work with candidates to ensure their program of study and supervisory committee is supportive of their personal and professional backgrounds. People from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

 Start date: 2019. Contact: a.macneil@dal.ca