Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellow Opportunity

Assessing sustainable agriculture/forestry commodity standards

The Luc Hoffmann Institute seeks a post-doctoral fellow to be based at the University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment and the WWF-US Conservation Science Program. This fellow will work with an interdisciplinary Collaborative Research Team (CRT) to assess the degree to which such sustainability standards are leading to better environmental, economic and social outcomes and whether these standards can help society meet the future demand for agriculture products while sustaining important environmental services and biodiversity. Results of analysis will be used to recommend improvements in the design of standards for better conservation outcomes. The goal is to assess the potential environmental, economic and social benefits and costs of WWF’s publically supported commodity sustainability standards with models that translate producer-level actions into predictions of landscape-scale environmental and social impacts.

This is a 24-month position that can begin as early as January 2014 and is based in St. Paul, Minnesota and DC, mentored by Dr. Derric Pennington at WWF-US and Dr. Jon Foley and Dr. Steve Polasky at the University of Minnesota.

Major Duties & Responsibilities

In collaboration with the mentoring team, the Fellow will:

  • Lead and coordinate collaborative research team activities
  • Develop and apply an integrated biophysical (e.g., agriculture yields, water use and quality, carbon emissions, habitat for biodiversity) and economic modeling approach that includes identifying and linking sustainability commodity standards to measurable indicators
  • Develop alternative land use/land cover scenarios of land-use change under different climate and demand projections
  • Conduct post hoc empirical analyses to inform model assumptions given available data and research needs
  • Manage research intern to collect necessary data

Required Qualifications, Skills and Competencies

  • PhD in ecology, geography, economics, conservation science, ecosystem science or related field
  • Strong skills in quantitative modeling, statistics, economic valuation, systems thinking, geographic information systems, computer programing (preferred)
  • Demonstrated experience with agriculture and environmental issues, project management, statistical software programs (e.g., R, Matlab)
  • Strong research and writing skills, excellent command of English, other languages an asset
  • Strong interest in applied, real-world conservation problem-solving
  • Ability to work both independently and cooperatively in a team.
  • Adheres to WWF’s values, which are: Knowledgeable, Optimistic, Determined and Engaging.

Eligibility

This fellow opportunity is open to candidates of all nationalities, gender and age. We are specifically interested in hearing from those who have deep roots in the regions of the globe where conservation-science leadership is most needed, such as Africa and Madagascar, the Asia-Pacific region, Latin America and the Caribbean. Regardless of background, we are looking for highly skilled, interdisciplinary, action oriented candidates.

To Apply

Preference will be given to applications received by November 30, 2103. Please submit cover letter, CV, and two professional references to: Sandrine Jimenez, Assistant to the Director, Luc Hoffmann Institute: sjimenez@wwfint.org.

The Luc Hoffmann Institute Mission

The Luc Hoffmann Institute was created by WWF, the world’s largest conservation organization, to respond to the most important questions facing conservation and sustainable development. A boundary organization by design, the Luc Hoffmann Institute connects research capacity and multi-disciplinary thought leaders from around the world with WWF’s global network of practitioners and scientists. Together, we synthesize existing knowledge, create new ideas and support collaborative innovation. In co-creating evidence-based solutions, we link the best available science to better policy planning and more effective field practices, to enable people and nature to thrive together on a living planet.