2-yr postdoc on "Novel spatial approaches to elephant and rhino conservation and restoration" 969728

Research Area and Project Description: This postdoc project is part of a project “Megafauna ecosystem ecology from the deep prehistory to a human-dominated future” (MegaPast2Future: http://projects.au.dk/mega/), funded by the Carlsberg Foundation. Elephants and rhinos are ecologically highly important megaherbivores. While formerly widespread and abundant, they have declined precipitously from prehistory to the present day, and are under tremendous pressure, with several of the remaining species at risk from global extinction and all species functionally extirpated from most of their historical ranges. To help turn this negative trend, there is a strong need for novel approaches to conserve and restore elephants and rhino, with spatial approaches key for promoting their coexistence with a growing human population. This postdoc will focus on developing such novel spatial approaches, working both globally using macroecological approaches to assess current and future priorities and possibilities and with select key elephant and/or rhino landscapes. The postdoc is expected to lead at least 2 papers per year in this research area, contribute to the project’s public outreach and teaching (e.g., co-organizing and co-teaching an annual international PhD course in megafauna ecosystem ecology), as well as collaborate with other team members, including students, sharing skills, helping solving problems in her/his area of expertise and more generally contributing ideas and concepts to the project.

Qualifications and Specific Competences: Applicants to the postdoc positions must have PhD degree in ecology (or equivalent) or have submitted their PhD thesis for assessment before the application deadline. The successful candidate should have solid experience with quantitative ecological methods, ideally in macroecology, movement ecology, systematic conservation planning and/or landscape ecology, strong collaborative skills, proven abilities to publish at a high international level, and good skills in English. Prior experience with research on elephants or rhinos is an advantage. International applicants who do not have English as their first language must prove strong English language writing skills.

Supervisors and collaborators: Project PI prof. Jens-Christian Svenning will be the main supervisor. The postdoc will join a team working on megafauna ecosystem ecology and restoration (see project webside), within the Center for Biodiversity Dynamics in a Changing World (BIOCHANGE) and the Section for Ecoinformatics & Biodiversity (ECOINF). BIOCHANGE is a center of excellence focused on improving our understanding, predictive capacity, and responses to the ongoing and future dynamics in biodiversity under global change. ECOINF harbors strong expertise in macroecology as well as ecology and biodiversity broadly. Together BIOCHANGE and ECOINF constitute an ambitious, collaborative and highly international research community. The project will involve collaboration with local conservation organizations. Research visits to the labs of international collaborators will be supported.

Place of Employment and Work: The place of employment and work is Center for Biodiversity Dynamics in a Changing World (BIOCHANGE) and Section for Ecoinformatics & Biodiversity (ECOINF), Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Ny Munkegade 114, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.

Application deadline: May 1st 2018. Starting date: August 1st 2018, but flexible.

Contacts: Applicants seeking further information are invited to contact: Professor Jens-Christian Svenning, phone +45 28992304, e-mail: svenning@bios.au.dk.

Application procedure
Shortlisting is used. This means that after the deadline for applications – and with the assistance from the assessment committee chairman, and the appointment committee if necessary, – the head of department selects the candidates to be evaluated. All applicants will be notified whether or not their applications have been sent to an expert assessment committee for evaluation. The selected applicants will be informed about the composition of the committee, and each applicant is given the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that concerns him/her self. Once the recruitment process is completed a final letter of rejection is sent to the deselected applicants, including the main considerations emphasized during the selection process.

Formalities and salary range
Science and Technology refers to the Ministerial Order on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Danish Universities under the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation. (http://www.au.dk/fileadmin/www.au.dk/Regelsamlingen/Bekendtgoerelse_nr__242_af_a3__MARTS_2012_-_ENGELSK_UDGAVE.pdf)

The application must be in English and include a curriculum vitae, degree certificate, a complete list of publications, a statement of future research plans and information about research activities. Guidelines for applicants can be found here. (http://scitech.au.dk/en/about-science-and-technology/vacant-positions/application-form-guide/)

Appointment shall be in accordance with the collective labour agreement between the Danish Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. Further information on qualification requirements and job content may be found in the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff at Danish Universities. (http://jobsys.au.dk/link2/stillingsstrukturnotatet_en) Salary depends on seniority as agreed between the Danish Ministry of Finance and the Confederation of Professional Associations.

All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal background. Research activities will be evaluated in relation to actual research time. Thus, we encourage applicants to specify periods of leave without research activities, in order to be able to subtract these periods from the span of the scientific career during the evaluation of scientific productivity.

Aarhus University offers Relocation service to International researchers. You can read more about it here. (http://ias.au.dk/au-relocation-service/)


All applications must be made online and received by: 01.05.2018
Aarhus University is an academically diverse and research-intensive university with a strong commitment to high-quality research and education and the development of society nationally and globally. The university offers an inspiring research and teaching environment to its 40,000 students and 8,000 employees, and has an annual budget of EUR 860 million Learn more at http://www.au.dk/en (http://www.au.dk/en/).


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