U.K./E.U. nationals: Climate Change and Environmental Science Researcher

Forestry Commission

London, , GB

About the job


Forest Research (FR) is the research agency of the Forestry Commission, and a world leader in applied forest science and recognised provider of expertise, data, products and services for governments and the tree, wood, forest and natural resource sectors. Please explore www.forestresearch.gov.uk to find out more information about our organisation. This post is an opportunity to work in FR’s team of climate change researchers, using your expertise to help us understand the impact of climate and other environmental changes on forests, and how trees and forests can improve our environment and provide ecological, environmental and societal benefits.

The Climate Change Research Group works to improve understanding of: the impact of climate change on forests and forestry; what role forestry can have in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and climate change; and how forestry can adapt to reduce the impact of climate change and to benefit from any opportunities. The research is across the spectrum from more fundamental measurements, through developing methods and tools, undertaking practical action and demonstration, and providing advice and evidence to underpin policy. We have many external collaborations in the UK and internationally.

The job will involve a varied mixture of desk, laboratory and field work, primarily within the UK. Field work will involve taking measurements, installing and maintaining complex instrumentation for measuring environmental conditions, greenhouse gas fluxes and tree characteristics. Laboratory work will involve measurements and analysing plant and soil samples. The post holder will also be required to carry out data analysis, visualisation, summary and report writing and communicating results to different audiences, on their own and with colleagues.

Job description

The main purposes of the role are:
· Setting up, maintaining and running a range of field experiments in forest environments including: canopy light interception studies, meteorological instruments, greenhouse gas flux and sampling measurements.
· Carrying out data processing and statistical analysis of large/complex data sets and summarise the main results of these analyses in both a scientific and non-technical manner.
· Contributing to internal reports, trade and scientific journal articles.
Talking to a wide range of audiences, both at seminars and during field visits.
· Carrying out routine ab work, sample preparation and basic analysis.
· Assisting in vegetation and soil surveying studies.


Essential Criteria

The candidate must:
• Minimum of 2.1 in science degree in an environmental or closely related subject or equivalent
• Interest in both UK forestry and climate change
• Be able to write clearly, concisely and appropriately for different audiences
• Good numerical skills
• Be well organised and carry out to time, be thorough and maintain high standards of accuracy
• Able both to work on their own and demonstrate effective team working
• Able to process and analyse large and complex data sets
• Be prepared to work outside in all seasons
• Hold a current UK driving licence
• Be willing to travel for field work within the UK, requiring some nights away occasionally
• Working at heights is an essential part of this role

Desirable Criteria
Ideally, the candidate will have:
• Completed a relevant higher degree (eg MSc or diploma)
• Demonstrable individual research experience
• Knowledge and experience of environmental monitoring, soils and vegetation survey methods
• Experience of conducting field experiments and laboratory work
• Experience of using data loggers and field instrumentation for micro-climate, meteorology and
greenhouse gas flux analysis
• Competent in a relevant modern data processing language such as R or Python
• A good level of competency and understanding of GIS methods and analysis tools


We require the applicant to have a full current driving licence that enables them to drive in the UK. We will consider any proposals that would allow applicants to do the job by other means.


Minimum of 2.1 in science degree in an environmental or closely related subject or equivalent


We’ll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Changing and Improving
  • Working Together
  • Managing a Quality Service



• Access to learning and development tailored to your role
• A working environment that supports a range of flexible working options
• A working culture which encourages inclusion and diversity
• A civil service pension
• 25 days annual leave per year rising to 30 days annual leave after 5 years’ service. Plus 10.5 days public and additional holidays.

For more information on the benefits of working for Forest Research please visit out website: https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/about-us/careers/

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.
Selection process is by interview.
Sift date: week commencing 3 February 2020.
Interview Dates: 19/20 February 2020.
Interviews will be held at Forest Research, Alice Holt Lodge, Farnham, Surrey GU10 4LH

If a large volume of applications is received, then we will sift on Experience Expertise and the Lead Behaviour, Working Together. However, candidates will be expected to answer questions on all behaviours at the interview stage.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles.

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :
Name : FR HR Services
Email : [email protected]
Recruitment team :
Email : [email protected]

Further information

If you are an external candidate, and you believe that the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles have been breached, you may submit a complaint to the Head of HR, clearly explaining the way in which you believe the Recruitment Principles have been breached. The Head of HR will assess compliance with the Recruitment Principles but will not review the decision(s) of the selection board. Complaints Procedure: If you are not satisfied with the response from the Head of HR, you may submit an appeal to the Civil Service Commission, as set out in the complaint outcome letter from the Head of HR.