Faculty Position (open rank): Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona

The Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona seeks to fill a faculty position in areas related to processes, interactions and feedbacks among tree and forest growth, the carbon cycle and climate. We seek promising candidates at any career stage to build a successful and vibrant program that will contribute to vigorous multifaceted interdisciplinary research, teaching and service in environmental and earth system sciences on our campus. A Ph.D. in an applicable field of research expertise is required.

We are especially interested in individuals whose research utilizes dendrochronology and/or tree-ring data in novel and effective combination with other analytical tools, methods and disciplines to address basic or applied questions, particularly related to our understanding of the processes controlling forest dynamics from the cellular to the global scale.Substantive areas of research could include linking ecophysiological or genomic processes to long-term tree growth; carbon budgets of forest ecosystems on intra-annual to centennial time-scales; tree-ring data and vegetation / climate model assimilation; carbon-cycle climate interactions; disturbance and dynamics in forest ecosystems. The new faculty member will demonstrate an exceptional record of research, evidenced by publications, grants, and mentorship, that advances UA’s strengths in environmental science and its commitment to mentoring and training its diverse student body.

The University of Arizona is located in Tucson, Arizona, a culturally diverse, family-friendly city set in the natural beauty of the desert southwest. The University of Arizona is home to one of the largest and broadest concentrations of earth system research and education in the US, with world-class programs in fields including hydrology, atmospheric science, paleoclimatology, ecosystem ecology, earth system sciences and climate. This position is part of the University of Arizona’s WEES (Water, Energy and Environmental Solutions) Climate and Earth System initiative. This new faculty member will be based in the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research  with potential joint appointments in affiliated departments throughout campus.

Duties include research, teaching and service. The successful candidate is expected to establish and maintain a highly visible, productive, collaborative, and externally funded research program, and disseminate research outcomes to the scientific community and the general public. They will contribute to bolstering an inclusive environment that encourages diversity and the integration of members of underrepresented groups within the university. The University of Arizona is a committed Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

To Apply: Candidates should submit statements of research and teaching interests, curriculum vitae, publication list and contact information for three referees by March 1, 2017, following instructions at the online job portal where further details may be found. Other questions may be directed to Dr. Malcolm Hughes (mkh1@email.arizona.edu ), Search Committee Chair.

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MS Position: Forest Hydrology, Mississippi State University

Dr. Courtney Siegert at Mississippi State University is seeking a highly motivated MS student to join the Forest Hydrology and Soils Lab in the College of Forest Resources (Starkville, MS). The student will conduct research in the discipline of forest hydrology with specific attention to the interface between the atmospheric environment and the forest canopy in a simulated bark beetle mortality experiment. The student will participate in extensive field research at the nearby John W. Starr Memorial Forest in addition to laboratory work in the Forest Hydrology and Soils Lab on campus. The prospective student should possess enthusiasm for field work, strong analytical and communication skills, and attention to detail.  The desired start date is June 2017, but August 2017 will also be considered. Financial support is available for two years, including a stipend, tuition waiver, and health insurance.

To apply: If interested, please contact Dr. Courtney Siegert at courtney.siegert@msstate.edu and provide (1) a cover letter discussing interest in the research and applicable background experience; (2) a CV; and (3) unofficial transcripts and/or GREs. Details on the application process for graduate school at MS State can be reviewed here.
Deadline: Review of applications will begin February 1, 2017.
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MS and PhD Positions: Fire regimes in Rocky Mountain forests; U Montana, U Idaho, U Wyoming, Kansas State.

A collaborative group of researchers spanning multiple universities is seeking enthusiastic and curious graduate students to join a new research project studying the causes and consequences of wildfire activity in Rocky Mountain subalpine forests over the past 2500 years. Two PhD (4 yr) and two MS (2 yr) positions are available for this collaborative project involving field work in subalpine forests in Montana and Colorado, analysis of lake-sediment cores, and ecosystem modeling.

Students will be based at one of four institutions: University of Montana, University of Idaho, University of Wyoming, or Kansas State University. Potential research projects for students will focus on vegetation and fire history in the Northern Rockies, synthesizing existing paleorecords in the Southern Rockies, developing paleoclimate records, developing biogeochemical proxies from new and existing sites, and ecosystem modeling. Prior experience in these topics is not required.

Qualifications:

  • BS or BA, or MS (preferred, for PhD students) degree in ecology, biology, Earth sciences, geography, geology, or related field.
  • Field work experience; experience working in remote settings is an asset.
  • Research experience including quant. analysis; computer prog. in Matlab or R is an asset.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills; publication record is an asset

To apply: For further information, interested students should contact Dr. Philip Higuera (philip.higuera@umontana.edu). Please include (1) a brief description of your research interests and relevant experience, and (2) a resume or CV that includes your undergraduate/graduate GPA and GRE scores (with percentiles). Potential advisors include Dr. Higuera, Dr. Tara Hudiburg (thudiburg@uidaho.edu), Dr. Kendra McLauchlan (mclauch@ksu.edu), and Dr. Bryan Shuman (bshuman@uwyo.edu). Further steps will include applying to graduate school at the relevant university, as soon as January 2017. Successful candidates could start in June 2017.

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Research Highlight: Fires: the main human impact on past environments in Patagonia?

Novus participant Andrés Holz (Portland State University) and colleagues recently published a study in PAGES Magazine on fire dynamics in Patagonia over the last 20,000 years. The study combined archaeological, anthropological, paleo-, dendro- and neoecological studies to review the combined climate-human-fire-vegetation dynamics across Patagonia. The authors identify regional ecological benchmarks of fire activity and vegetation response and conclude that climatic factors primarily drove fire activity on large scales, with anthropogenic fire setting producing regional pulses in fire frequency.

Full Citation
Holz, A, C Méndez, L Borrero, A Prieto, F Torrejón, A Madonado (2016) Fires: the main human impact on past environments in Patagonia? PAGES Magazine 24: 72-73.

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PAGES Workshop: Measuring Components of Resilience in Long-term Ecological Datasets

“Measuring Components of Resilience in Long-Term Ecological Datasets is the first workshop of PAGES’ Resistance, Recovery and Resilience in Long-term Ecological Systems (EcoRe3) working group. The workshop will be held at the Finse Alpine Research Station near Bergen, Norway, from 27-31 March 2017.

Overview

Resilience is a key attribute needed to ensure the persistence of Earth’s ecosystems in the face of increasing anthropogenic stressors and climate change. The paleorecord provides a long-term record of ecological responses to disturbance. However, definitions of resilience, and the methods used to measure it, can differ markedly between studies due to the variety of components that can be identified (Hodgson et al. 2015). These disagreements make it difficult to compare and identify systems with more or less resilience and to plan future mitigation strategies, and to understand the underlying biotic and abiotic controls of resilience along ecological and climatological gradients.

EcoRe3 is a new PAGES working group aiming to devise a set of standardised approaches for comparing components of resilience from the paleorecord. In a preliminary workshop in March 2016, we outlined the theoretical basis of two alternative approaches for deriving components of ecological resilience in sediment data. One approach is based on measuring resistance (the amount of change following a disturbance) and recovery rates (the speed to return to equilibrium following a disturbance) (e.g. Hodgson et al. 2015) in individual proxy records. A second combines statistical modeling, present day and past information on vegetation distributions to infer probabilities of biome transitions for a given set of climate conditions.

Workshop aims

EcoRe3 aims to further develop these ideas, and implement the quantitative approaches to put these ideas into practice. Therefore, the first workshop has the following objectives:

1. Explore further the theoretical ideas behind different ways to measure resilience in long-term ecological records.
2. Work to develop quantitative approaches designed to measure and compare resilience to climate and other disturbance in long-term ecological data based on these different theoretical approaches.
3. Use a series of high-resolution multi-proxy records to test the applicability and implementation of these methods in a range of environmental settings.

The workshop represents the first of a series of three workshops planned by EcoRe3 within the next three years.

Confirmed speakers/EcoRe3 Steering Committee members

Dr Alistair Seddon (University of Bergen, Norway)
Dr Lydia Cole (Rezatec Ltd., Harwell, and University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, ECR)
Dr Michael-Shawn Fletcher (University of Melbourne, Australia)
Dr Jesse Morris (University of Utah, USA, ECR)
Prof. Kathy Willis (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London and University of Oxford, Oxford, UK)

Logistics

Participants, selected via an application process, will be limited to 20.

We will meet in Bergen on the afternoon of Monday 27 March and take the two-hour train to Finse, where the workshop will take place in the Alpine Research Station. The workshop will finish on the Friday morning, and we will return to Bergen by lunchtime.

All travel within Norway (i.e. trains to Finse and back), in addition to food and accommodation at the Finse Research Station, is provided. Some funds are available to support travel of early-career researchers. Please specify if you would like to be considered for this support on the application form.

Applications

All participants wanting to attend need to fill in this application form and email it to Alistair Seddon by 27 January 2017.

Preference will be given to researchers with a combination of specific study system expertise and data access, analysis skills and theoretical ecological understanding. Preference will be given to early-career researchers and for non-European attendees.

Further information

Sign up to the EcoRe3 mailing list for updates and announcements or contact group leader Alistair Seddon: alistair.seddon@uib.no

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2016 AGU Sessions of Interest

The 49th Annual Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union will be held December 12-16th in San Francisco, California. Below are some sessions that may be of interest to Novus participants.

B12D: The Bioatmospheric N Cycle: N Emissions, Transformations, Deposition, and Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystem Impacts I
Monday, December 12: 10:20-12:20, Moscone West 2008
This session contains contributions by Novus participants

B13F: The Bioatmospheric N Cycle: N Emissions, Transformations, Deposition, and Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecosystem Impacts II (Posters)
Monday, December 12: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members

B21H: Investigating Biological Processes: Insights from New Stable Isotope Methods I (Posters)
Tuesday, December 15: 8:00-12:20, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members and Novus participants

B23D: The Role of Fire in the Carbon Cycle: Quantification and Characterization of Emissions, Fluxes and Sequestration Potential III (Posters)
Tuesday December 13: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session contains contributions by Novus participants

B23H: Investigating Biological Processes: Insights from New Stable Isotope Methods II
Tuesday, December 13: 13:40-15:40, Moscone West 2010

B41J: Vulnerability of Permafrost Carbon to Climate Change I
Thursday, December 15: 8:00-10:00, Moscone West 2004
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members

GC41I: The Role of Fire in the Earth System: Understanding Drivers, Feedbacks, and Interactions with the Land, Atmosphere, and Society I
Thursday, December 15: 8:00-10:00, Moscone West 2020
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members and Novus participants

H41G: Disturbance Hydrology: Exploring Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Abrupt Changes on Hydrological Processes and Earth Systems I
Thursday, December 15: 8:00-10:00, Moscone West 3022

B41G: Tree Mortality: Causes, Patterns, and Implications II (Posters)
Thursday, December 15: 8:00-12:20, Moscone South Poster Hall

H42A: Disturbance Hydrology: Exploring Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Abrupt Changes on Hydrological Processes and Earth Systems II
Thursday, December 15: 10:20-12:20, Moscone West 3022

B43H: Tree Mortality: Causes, Patterns, and Implications I
Thursday, December 15: 13:40-15:40, Moscone West 2020

B43A: Advancing Understanding of Ecosystem Structure and Function Through Remote Sensing I (Posters)
Thursday, December 15: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall

H43G: Disturbance Hydrology: Exploring Immediate and Long-Term Impacts of Abrupt Changes on Hydrological Processes and Earth Systems III (Posters)
Thursday, December 15: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall

B44D: The Resilience & Vulnerability of Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems to Climate Change I
Thursday, December 15: 16:00-18:00, Moscone West 2020
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Michelle Mack

B51J: Alteration of Disturbance-Driven Forest Dynamics Under a Changing Climate I
Friday, December 16: 8:00-10:00, Moscone West 2004
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Philip Higuera and Novus participant Tara Hudiburg, and contains contributions by Novus participants

GC51E: The Role of Fire in the Earth System: Understanding Drivers, Feedbacks, and Interactions with the Land, Atmosphere, and Society IV (Posters)
Friday, December 16: 8:00-12:20, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members and Novus participants

B52C: The Resilience & Vulnerability of Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems to Climate Change II
Friday, December 16: 10:20-12:20, Moscone West 2020
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Michelle Mack and

B53A: Alteration of Disturbance-Driven Forest Dynamics Under a Changing Climate II (Posters)
Friday, December 16: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Philip Higuera and Novus participant Tara Hudiburg, and contains contributions by Novus participants

PP53C: Terrestrial Climate During Greenhouse Periods II (Posters)
Friday, December 16: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session contains contributions by Novus steering committee members and Novus participants

B53G: The Resilience and Vulnerability of Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems to Climate Change III (Posters)
Friday, December 16: 13:40-18:00, Moscone South Poster Hall
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Michelle Mack and contains contributions by Novus participants

B54F: The Resilience & Vulnerability of Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems to Climate Change IV
Friday, December 16: 16:00-18:00, Moscone West 2020
This session is convened by Novus steering committee member Michelle Mack and contains contributions by Novus participants

 

** Did I miss a session you think the Novus network might find interesting? Email me at rockchalk@ksu.edu to have it added to the list. **

 

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MS Positions: Dendroecology, Humboldt State University

Dr. Harold Zald is seeking 2-3 highly-motivated students interested joining the recently created Forest Measurements and Ecology Lab to pursue an MS degree in Forestry and Wildland Services at Humboldt State University.  Selected students will use dendrochronology (tree-rings) to quantify forest responses to drought stress in the Sierra Nevada and Klamath Ecoregions of California.  Two projects in the Southern Sierra Nevada will take place at Teakettle Experimental Forest, a long-term experiment studying how forest restoration treatments (thinning and prescribed burning) influence forest composition, structure, and function.  Projects at Teakettle will collect and analyze tree-ring data to quantify how restoration treatments influence tree growth, determine if treatments alter tree growth responses to drought stress, and characterize growth patterns between trees that have lived and died during the current California drought.  Additionally, one of the two projects at Teakettle will use carbon stable isotopes to understand fundamental physiological responses of trees to treatments and drought stress.  The student working on tree-ring stable isotopes will be co-advised by Dr. Lucy Kerhoulas at Humboldt State University.  The third project will occur in the Klamath Ecoregion of Northern California, integrating tree-ring data collected in old-growth forests with multi-temporal spectral information from Landsat imagery to validate and map changes in forest productivity over the past three decades.  For additional information regarding all three projects, please see the current projects section of the Forest Measurements and Ecology Lab website.

Minimum and Preferred Qualifications:

Strong candidates for admission to the HSU Department of Forestry and Wildland Resources Graduate Program should have a grade point average of 3.0 or greater on a 4.0 scale for all college and university work, and GRE scores in the top 50th percentile (>152 Verbal, >153 Quantitative, >4 Writing).  Minimum qualifications include a BS degree completed no later than May 2017 in Forestry, Forest Ecology, Ecology, or related fields. Candidates should have prior field experience in forestry and/or ecology, be competent using Excel, and possess a valid driver?s license.

Preferred candidates should have prior experience: identifying tree species of California and/or the Pacific Northwest, collecting and processing tree cores, using global positioning systems (GPS), geographic information systems (GIS), and conducting statistical analyses using various software (R, Python, SAS, etc.).  Selected students must be able to work independently and in team settings, thrive in adverse field conditions, and be willing to camp for extended periods of time during the field season.

Assistantship Benefits:

MS students will receive a stipend of $17,000 per year for 2-2.5 years. Additional funding may be available to cover tuition, travel, and lodging for 1-2 students to attend the summer 2017 dendro short course at the University of Arizona Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research.

How to Apply:

Applicants are being considered to begin field work in June 2017 and enroll in graduate school fall semester of 2017.  To apply, send the following (as a single PDF or Word Document) to Dr. Harold Zald (hsz16@humboldt.edu):

1. A CV (including GPA, GRE scores, prior relevant work experience, complete contact information).

2. A letter of interest (clearly stating your research interests and background).

3. The names and contact information for three references

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until 2-3 potential students have been selected for the positions.  After initial screening, 2-3 students will be asked to submit formal applications through CSUMentor.  The deadline for fall semester admission is February 1st.  Women and applicants from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds are especially encouraged to apply.  Students who do not have a previous degree in forestry are eligible for admission to the Department of Forestry and Wildland Resources graduate program.  However, students who are admitted may be required to take prerequisite undergraduate forestry courses (e.g. forest mensuration,
silviculture, etc.)

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