Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Flood Hazard)

San Luis Obispo, CA, US

The Civil and Environmental Engineering Department in the College of Engineering at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo is seeking a postdoctoral research fellow that will use a combination of theory, numerical modeling, and historical oceanographic records to assess how flood hazard changes when the bathymetry of an estuary is altered. The Postdoctoral Research Fellow will join a multi-university, collaborative effort funded by the National Science Foundation that is investigating the climatic and geomorphic drivers of changing tides and storm surge in estuaries.  Specific responsibilities may include (a) analyzing flood hazard using our unique historical records back to the mid-1800s; (b) developing and running numerical model simulations to test the effects of channel deepening and wetland reclamation on flood hazard; (c) exploring the physical mechanisms of changed flood hazard via idealized and realistic models. The post-doctoral scholar will have the opportunity to work with atmospheric scientists to determine what types of storms are most sensitive to changing estuary shape, and with statisticians to determine the implications of results to hazard analysis.  The researcher will be expected to lead in the development of peer-reviewed publications and will have the opportunity to present results at conferences. In addition, the post-doctoral fellow will help mentor undergraduate and graduate students.

At California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, we believe that cultivating an environment that embraces and promotes diversity is fundamental to the success of our students, our employees and our community. Bringing people together from different backgrounds, experiences and value systems fosters the innovative and creative thinking that exemplifies Cal Poly’s values of free inquiry, cultural and intellectual diversity, mutual respect, civic engagement, and social and environmental responsibility. Cal Poly’s commitment to diversity informs our efforts in recruitment, hiring and retention. California Polytechnic State University is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.


A Ph.D. in Physical Oceanography, Coastal Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, or closely related field, or nearing completion of such degree.

The following experience is required:
o Hydrodynamic modeling experience
o Strong analytical and data management skills
o Research experience related to project scope (e.g., physical oceanography, coastal engineering, water resources)


The person holding this position is considered a ‘mandated reporter’ under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act and is required to comply with the requirements set forth in CSU Executive Order 1083 as a condition of employment.

Following a conditional offer of employment, a background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed satisfactorily before any candidate may start work with Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may result in the withdrawal of the offer of employment. Note: Cal Poly cannot deny an applicant a position solely or in part due to a criminal conviction history until it has performed an individualized assessment and linked the relevant conviction history with specific job duties in the position being sought.

Please note: Current employees who are offered positions on campus will be required to undergo a background check for any position where a background check is required by law or that Cal Poly has designated as sensitive. Sensitive positions are those requiring heightened scrutiny of individuals holding the position based on potential for harm to children, concerns for the safety and security of people, animals, or property, or heightened risk of financial loss to Cal Poly or individuals in the university community.

For health and well-being, Cal Poly is a smoke & tobacco-free campus. The university is committed to promoting a healthy environment for all members of our community.


Interested candidates must attach (1) a cover letter, (2) curriculum vitae, and (3) a statement of research experience and interests. Please be prepared to provide three professional references with names and email address when completing the online faculty application. Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo will not sponsor an H-1B for this classification.The term of employment is 1 year, with a second-year possible based on performance and funding. For full consideration, please apply by the review begin date; March 6, 2020. Open until filled.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, is located on the central California Coast, with many recreational opportunities and opportunities for local oceanographic research.

Advertised: Pacific Standard Time
Applications close: Open Until Filled