Postdoctoral Scholar (INFEWS)

Sierra Nevada Research Institute
Merced, CA, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
University/Academia/Research/Think tank
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 


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The University of California, Merced, is the newest of the University of California system’s 10 campuses and the first American research university built in the 21st century. With more than 7,500 undergraduate and graduate students, UC Merced offers an environment that combines a commitment to diversity, inclusion, collaboration and professional development. With bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs, strong research and academic partnerships, and community involvement, the UC Merced campus is continually evolving and requires talented, knowledgeable and dynamic educators, researchers, management and staff.

Ranked among the best public universities in the nation by U.S. News and World Report, UC Merced is uniquely equipped to provide educational opportunities to highly qualified students from the San Joaquin Valley and throughout California. The campus enjoys a special connection with nearby Yosemite National Park, is on the cutting edge of sustainability in construction and design, and supports the economic development of Merced and the region.

In Fall 2016, UC Merced broke ground on a $1.3 billion public-private partnership that is unprecedented in higher education. The Merced 2020 Project will nearly double the physical capacity of the campus by 2020, enhancing academic distinction, student success and research excellence. In 2018, UC Merced opened the Downtown Campus Center, a $33 million, three-story administrative building in the heart of Merced.

The Mountain Hydrology Research Group at University of California Merced seeks applications for a full-time postdoctoral scholar research position to work at the intersection of food, energy, and water in the California’s central valley. The project is funded by the USDA/NIFA under INFEWS program ( A successful candidate will develop a detailed, coupled groundwater-surface water simulation model for the Central Valley (from mountain crest to the valley floor). A key focus of this project is to improve evapotranspiration estimates and asses different strategies for enhancing groundwater recharge and storage for both the forest and valley floor. This position will involve assembling historical and real-time in-situ field measurements and remote sensing data to both test and validate numerical models that are increasingly important in understanding, modeling, and forecasting of hydrologic processes. This position will be located at the UC Merced campus; however, the successful candidate will join an interdisciplinary group working at this project, particularly the ENVISION ( modeling team at Oregon State University. The scholar will meet with stakeholders and water managers, prepare manuscripts and reports based on the research. Some travel and fieldwork in remote locations may be necessary.

Required qualifications:
Ph.D. in hydrology, water resources engineering or closely related field. Ph.D. must be conferred by the start date of the position. The candidate must have hydrologic modeling experience as well as ability to write and understand code (preferably in C++ and Fortran). Prior experience in surface and/or groundwater modeling (preferably using MODFLOW) and working in Unix/Linux environments are also required.

Additional qualifications:
Experience with fieldwork is desirable. Ability to work independently with guidance from principal investigator and collaborators. Excellent written communication skills; good organizational and interpersonal skills. Ability to work in a team environment and interact with a broad range of colleagues. Experience with backcounty travel to include hiking in the snow or rough terrain.

Interested applicants are required to submit 1) a cover letter 2) curriculum vitae and 3) a list of three to five agreed references with contact information including mailing address, phone number and e-mail address; this will be submitted through the Recruit system.

Review of applications will begin immediately. Position is open until filled with a final closing date of November 17, 2018. Starting dates are negotiable with the appointment duration of up to five years (renewed annually subject to performance and continued funding).

The University of California, Merced is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer with a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of diversity among its faculty, staff, and students. The University is supportive of dual career couples.

Salary is based on the University of California Academic Salary Scales.