Postdoctoral Researcher: Incorporating LiDAR Remote Sensing of Forest Structure into Bird Species Distribution Models

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Aug 31, 2020

Start Date: Winter 2020
Review of Applications Begins: August 31, 2020

Position Details:

A two-year postdoctoral position is available to work with Dr. Andrew Elmore and Dr. Matt Fitzpatrick at the University of Maryland’s National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC). The postdoc will lead the development of methods that combine measurements of forest structure with spatial modeling methods to understand and predict changes in bird habitat and distribution resulting from forest management practices in Pennsylvania. The position is ideally suited to researchers with interests in combining Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) and other types of remote sensing with novel spatial modeling methods to better understand and forecast how forest birds respond to changes in forest and landscape structure.

The postdoctoral researcher will be based with Dr. Andrew Elmore at SESYNC, but will join a network of collaborators at the Appalachian Laboratory (Dr. Matt Fitzpatrick; spatial modeling), Indiana University of Pennsylvania (Dr. Jeff Larkin; wildlife ecology), and forest management agencies throughout the region. The successful candidate will be provided the opportunity to lead the research project, coordinate collaborations, and publish results. SESYNC is located in Annapolis, Maryland, and is home to approximately 10 postdoctoral researchers studying diverse socio-environmental systems. The successful candidate will be encouraged to become an active member of the SESYNC postdoctoral community and to participate in professional development programs offered.


A completed PhD in ecology, biogeography, statistics, or a related field is required. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated expertise in statistical modeling and spatial analysis, including species distribution modeling and LiDAR methods for measuring vegetation structure. A promising record of research productivity is highly valued and the successful applicant will be an independent, motivated scientist who communicates well and thrives in a collaborative setting. Due to the ongoing pandemic in the United States, only applications from U.S. citizens and permanent residents will be considered.

How to Apply: 

Applications should be received by August 31, 2020, but will be considered until the position is filled. To apply, please prepare a single PDF containing (1) a cover letter stating your interest in the position and names and contact information for up to 3 professional references; (2) a current CV; and (3) a research statement. To submit, go to:

The position is available starting now and ideally would be filled by December 2020. The initial appointment is for 1 year, and then renewable for a second year based on performance and funding availability. For questions, contact Andrew Elmore via email at:

The University of Maryland, College Park, an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, complies with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations regarding nondiscrimination and affirmative action; all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment. The University is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, physical or mental disability, protected veteran status, age, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, creed, marital status, political affiliation, personal appearance, or on the basis of rights secured by the First Amendment, in all aspects of employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions.

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