Careers at Virginia Tech

Postdoctoral Associate

Apply now Job no: 517787
Work type: Research Faculty
Senior management: College of Science
Department: Biological Sciences
Location: Blacksburg Area
Categories: Research / Scientific

Job Description

A new position for a postdoctoral research associate is available in the Ecosystem Dynamics and Forecasting Lab led by Quinn Thomas at Virginia Tech ( The lab is part of a larger vibrant, highly collaborative, interdisciplinary research team working on ecological forecasting at Virginia Tech. This position will be at the center of many ongoing forecasting projects, including water quality forecasting (, the National Ecological Observatory Network Ecological Forecasting Challenge (, and forest productivity forecasting. We envision the postdoc will leverage these efforts to creatively advance the field of ecological forecasting in aquatic and/or terrestrial ecosystems (depending on the applicant’s interests), while helping to organize interdisciplinary strengths in environmental forecasting across Virginia Tech. Research activities will include: generating aquatic and/or terrestrial forecasts with NEON (National Ecological Observatory Network) and GLEON (Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network) data; developing cyberinfrastructure to support forecasting; leading communicating forecasts and research findings via peer-reviewed publications; and engaging forecast stakeholders. The position start date will be flexible, aiming for July 1, 2022. Funding is available for up to two years, contingent upon a successful one-year review.

Required Qualifications

-Ph.D. in ecology, environmental science, or related field with significant quantitative research experience in ecological forecasting, ecosystem science, and/or data analysis. PhD must be awarded no more than four years prior to the effective date of appointment with a minimum of one year eligibility remaining.
-Experience working in the R programming language.

Preferred Qualifications

-Experience working with ecosystem models
-Experience developing ecological forecasts
-Substantial experience in R or equivalent programming languages (e.g., Matlab, Python)
-Experience with collaborative coding projects and using versioning control tools (e.g., Git)
-Experience in statistical analysis and/or probability
-Experience in analyzing long-term and high-frequency sensor environmental data
-Experience in publishing peer-reviewed journal articles
- Experience with open-science workflows (e.g., Docker Containers, R package development)
-Demonstrated ability to work in interdisciplinary collaborative teams

Appointment Type


Salary Information

Commensurate with experience but within budget maximum

Review Date

November 15, 2021

Additional Information

Candidates should submit: 1) a cover letter explaining their research experience and how it fits the required and preferred qualifications of the postdoctoral position, as well as how they envision the position to align with their future goals; 2) a CV; and 3) names and contact information for three references to the website.

The successful candidate must be able to legally work in the U.S.

The successful candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check as well as documentation of COVID-19 vaccination or receive approval from the university for a vaccination exemption due to a medical condition or sincerely held religious belief.


About Virginia Tech

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually.

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or military status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Dreama Price at during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event.

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