Research Associate in Remote Sensing for Land and Water Monitoring

University of Manchester

Manchester, UK 🇬🇧

Job reference: SAE-021208

Location: Sackville Street

Closing date (DD/MM/YYYY): 09/03/2023

Salary: £34,308 to £37,474 per annum, depending on relevant experience

Employment type: Fixed Term

Faculty/Organisation: Science and Engineering

Division: Department of Mechanical, Aero & Civ Eng

Hours Per Week: 1 FTE

Contract Duration: Fixed Term from 1 May 2023 (or as soon as possible thereafter) for a period of 36 months

School / Directorate: School of Engineering

The Agriculture, Water and Climate Research Group (, led by Dr Tim Foster, are seeking to appoint a Research Associate for an initial 3-year term as part of the TRANSCEND project (Transformational and robust adaptation to water scarcity and climate change under deep uncertainty) funded by UK Research and Innovation and the European Commission ( Over the next four years, TRANSCEND’s goal is to identify, design, and implement policy solutions that enable society to adapt sustainably to challenges posed by water scarcity, climate and socio-economic change.

As part of TRANSCEND, you will be responsible for conducting research to improve monitoring land and water use in a rapidly changing river basins (Work Package 4). A key focus of your work will be to deploy remote sensing data and machine learning techniques to quantify spatial and temporal patterns of land and water use, in particular related to agricultural production. You will combine these data-driven mapping approaches with existing monitoring infrastructure (e.g., meter records, meteorological data) to develop a water accounting and impact toolbox, which can be used by policymakers and practitioners to support the design, implementation, and enforcement of water allocation and risk management policies over space and time.

The TRANSCEND project will be implemented across a set of seven living labs in river basins facing growing water scarcity: the Júcar (Spain); Reno (Italy); Tympaki (Greece); Nitra (Slovakia); Caplina-Mauri-Desaguadero System (Peru, Chile and Bolivia); Orontes (Lebanon, Syria and Turkey); and Mahanadi (Indian states of Chhattisgarh and Odisha). In your role, you will work closely with local researchers and practitioners in some or all of these living labs to leverage tools developed by your research to solve immediate and long-term stakeholder-defined water management challenges. You will collaborate closely with other academic partners that are part of the TRANSCEND consortium, providing a unique opportunity to be embedded within an international network of world-leading researchers working on challenges of water management, climate adaptation, and socio-environmental modelling.

You will have a PhD or equivalent (or be close to completion) in a relevant field, such as remote sensing, land use science, hydrology, physical geography, environmental sciences, physics, computer science, or a related field. You will have demonstrated expertise in the use and analysis of earth observation imagery, and the ability to work effectively with geospatial data in programming languages such as R, Python, or Matlab. You will also have strong written and oral communication skills in English, and a passion for working on policy-oriented research in an interdisciplinary and multicultural team environment. A track record of peer-reviewed publications and development of data or software products will also be an asset.

You will be based in the Agriculture, Water and Climate Research Group based within the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering at the University of Manchester. You will be part of a dynamic and growing group of postdoctoral researchers and PhD students working on the agricultural water management, climate adaptation, and land use change in several regions around the world ( ).

The School/Department is strongly committed to promoting equality and diversity, including the Athena SWAN charter for gender equality in higher education. The School/Department holds a Bronze Award for their good practice in relation to gender; including flexible working arrangements, family-friendly policies, and support to allow staff to achieve a god work-life balance. We positively welcome applications from women for this post. All appointments will always be made on merit. For further information, please visit:                     

Our University is positive about flexible working – you can find out more here

Blended working arrangements may be considered

Please note that we are unable to respond to enquiries, accept CVs or applications from Recruitment Agencies.

Enquiries about the vacancy, shortlisting and interviews:

Name: Dr Tim Foster, Senior Lecturer in Water-Food Security


General enquiries:


Technical support:​​​​​​​

This vacancy will close for applications at midnight on the closing date.

Please see the link below for the Further Particulars document which contains the person specification criteria.





IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development