PhD Graduate Assistantships at the University of Idaho, Michigan Technological University and SUNY-ESF

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PhD Graduate Research Assistantship in Ecosystem Services Economics at the University of Idaho

A 3-year PhD assistantship is being offered in the areas of ecosystem services and economics at the University of Idaho as part of a large interdisciplinary project focused on feedbacks and interactions in coupled social-ecohydrological systems in Mexico. The selected PhD student will contribute to this project through economic analysis on (1) institutional design and behavioral changes in payments for hydrological services programs and (2) valuation of ecosystem services outcomes. Desired skills for this position include interdisciplinary problem solving skills, experience with geospatial, statistical, and economic analyses, and Spanish language skills. Preference will be given to students already holding a master’s degree. To apply to this position, please send your CV and a 1-page letter describing your qualifications by February 15th, 2014 to Dr. Kelly Wendland at kwendland@uidaho.edu. Please put “PhD Assistantship” in the subject line. Review of applications will begin on February 15th and continue until this position is filled. Only short listed applicants will be contacted. The Ph.D. assistantship at UI includes tuition, fees and health insurance for 3 years; the selected student will complete their degree program in the Department of Conservation Social Sciences in the University of Idaho’s College of Natural Resources. The start date is fall 2014.

PhD Graduate Research Assistantship in Natural Resource Policy at Michigan Technological University (MTU)

A 4-year PhD assistantship is being offered in the areas of bioenergy and water policy at Michigan Technological University as part of two large interdisciplinary projects focused on policy dimensions of socio-ecological impacts from bioenergy development across the Americas and interactions in coupled socio-ecohydrological systems in Mexico.  The selected PhD student will spend two years focusing on an Americas bioenergy project in Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, and the United States.  This project involves over 40 social, natural, and engineering scientists across the six study countries.  Their work will focus on policy analysis through textual assessment, qualitative interview collection and analysis, and quantitative household survey collection and analysis.  They will function as part of an international team of students and scientists with wide purview to choose a dissertation topic.

The other two years of their research assistantship will focus on Mexico’s payment for hydrologic services policy and its effectiveness in Southern Mexico’s cloud forests.  This work will entail working on an interdisciplinary, international team of social and natural scientists and students.  The student will assist with qualitative interviewing, survey collection, and participatory modeling workshops that present community members with research results and gain local insights in improving the models.  Desired attributes include a passion for policy and social science research, a strong interest in interdisciplinary science teamwork, background in social or environmental science, and Spanish language skills.  Preference will be given to students already holding a master’s degree.  To apply for this position, please send your CV and a 1-page letter describing your qualifications by February 15th, 2014 to Dr. Kathleen Halvorsen at kehalvor@mtu.edu. Please put “PhD Assistantship” in the subject line.  Review of applications will begin on February 15th and continue until this position is filled. The PhD assistantship at MTU includes a stipend, tuition, and most fees for 4 full years.  The selected student will complete their PhD in the Environmental and Energy Policy in the Social Sciences Department at MTU. The start date is fall 2014.  Questions are welcome – contact Kathy at kehalvor@mtu.edu.

MTU has a strong focus on the interdisciplinary study of environmental problems, particularly in the areas of energy, water, and climate change.  The university is in the beautiful Keweenaw Peninsula on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, surrounded by Lake Superior and exceptional hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, and cross-country skiing opportunities.

Two PhD Positions at SUNY ESF Environment and Natural Resources Policy Program

1) PhD Position – Social Impacts of Biofuels Development in Latin America
A 3-year PhD research assistantship and tuition is available for a NSF funded interdisciplinary study on Sustainability, Ecosystem Services, and Bioenergy Development across the Americas. The student at SUNY-ESF will enroll in the Environment and Natural Resources Policy PhD program, an interdepartmental program that combines social science, biophysical science and policy analysis. The assistant for this project will be involved in data collection and analysis related to the social impacts of bioenergy development in communities near forested regions undergoing land use change to bioenergy crops in Brazil and Argentina. The assistant will have the opportunity to collaborate on data collection with faculty and graduate students from several universities across the U.S, Brazil, Mexico, Canada, and Argentina. Desired skills are qualitative research methods (interviewing, ethnographic and document analysis) and survey research. Interest and background in social and political dimensions of land use change, biomass energy development, certification systems for biofuels sustainability, political ecology, or sociology of agriculture and food systems, would be valued. Statistical and GIS skills and proficiency in Spanish and/or Portuguese are highly desired. The student will be expected to develop their own dissertation research projects within the larger project and will have an opportunity to do field research in Brazil and/or Argentina.

2) PhD Position- Social Dimensions of Payments for Hydrologic Services Programs in Mexico
A 3-year PhD assistantship is being offered in the areas of ecosystem services at SUNY ESF as part of a large interdisciplinary project focused on feedbacks and interactions in coupled social-ecohydrological systems in Mexico. The student at SUNY-ESF will enroll in the Environment and Natural Resources Policy PhD program, an interdepartmental program that combines social science, biophysical science and policy analysis. The assistant for this project will be involved in data collection and analysis related to the community dimensions and impacts of payments for hydrologic services programs in southern Mexico. The assistant will have the opportunity to collaborate on data collection with an interdisciplinary group of faculty and graduate students from several universities across the U.S and Mexico. Desired skills are qualitative research methods (interviewing, ethnographic and document analysis) and survey research. Interest and background in social and political dimensions of land use change, political ecology, or sociology of agriculture and food systems, would be valued. Statistical and GIS skills and proficiency in Spanish are highly desired. The student will be expected to develop his/her own dissertation research projects within the larger project and will have an opportunity to do field research in Mexico.

The College of Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY-ESF, is a doctoral granting university with a high level of research. With a total enrollment of about 1,700 undergraduates and 600 graduate students, ESF provides an intimate small-college atmosphere while hosting several graduate programs. SUNY- ESF and Syracuse University (SU) have adjacent campuses. ESF students have access to all SU libraries and other facilities. Graduate students have the opportunity to pursue several concurrent degrees with SU. See ESF at a glance for more information: http://www.esf.edu/welcome/facts.htm.

Syracuse is a mid-sized city centrally located in the state. Re-emerging from its industrial past, the city promotes a growing green technology sector, strong health care and higher educational systems, and is a leader in urban green infrastructure. The region possesses numerous physical, cultural and recreational amenities that make it a stimulating place to live. The Adirondack and Catskill Mountains, St. Lawrence and Hudson Rivers, Finger Lakes, Erie Canal and Great Lakes regions, New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal are all within easy travel distances.

To apply please send GRE scores, statement of interest and qualifications for either position, CV, and arrange for 3 letters of reference to be sent under separate cover. Send applications to tselfa@esf.edu, and put “PhD Application” in the subject line.  Applications will be reviewed beginning February 15, 2014.

For more information about the positions and the projects, please contact:
Dr. Theresa Selfa
Associate Professor, tselfa@esf.edu