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Postdoctoral Scholar – Forest Remote Sensing

Northern Arizona University

Job detailsJob TypeFull-timeLocation525 E Pine Knoll Dr, Flagstaff, AZ 86011+ Leaflet | OpenStreetMap contributorsBenefitsPulled from the full job descriptionDental insuranceHealth insuranceRetirement planVision insuranceFull Job Description

Workplace Culture

NAU aims to be the nations preeminent engine of opportunity, vehicle of economic mobility, and driver of social impact by delivering equitable postsecondary value in Arizona and beyond.

Special Information

This position is subject to the availability of funding. The incumbent is not eligible for Service Professional non-renewal notice, or Classified Staff layoff or recall status.
This position is an on-site position which requires the incumbent to complete their work primarily at an NAU site, campus, or facility with or without accommodation. Opportunities for remote work are rare.

Job Description

The Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics Lab in the School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems (SICCS) at Northern Arizona Universitys Flagstaff campus seeks a Postdoctoral Scholar to support a project funded by NASA. The postdoctoral scholar will conduct research to quantify the impacts of forest restoration treatments (e.g, mechanical thinning and prescribed burning) across Arizona on ecohydrological responses especially during drought periods. The postdoctoral scholar will work with extensive remote sensing data including ECOSTRESS and Landsat satellite images to map, monitor, and model forest responses to drought and will collaborate with an interdisciplinary team of ecologists, ecophysiologists, and remote sensing scientists. The position will be based in beautiful Flagstaff, AZ and the expected start date is June 2023.
The scholar will serve as scientific lead on this project, with primary responsibility for guiding the intellectual development of the methodology for scaling field-based and UAV-based measurements at the stand level to regional scales. Key activities will include: (a) working with PI Sankey to analyze dense time-series images and developing statistical models for upscaling stand-level observations of canopy temperature, moisture content, and evapotranspiration to regional-scale satellite-based estimates, (b) developing remote sensing-based models of ecohydrological responses to forest management, (c) developing peer-reviewed manuscripts and presentations.
Research and Publications – 80%

Compile and merge data from multiple sources at various scales.
Perform spatial and statistical analysis.
Final results will be presented in peer-reviewed publications in disciplinary journals and at professional conferences.

Academic & Lab Liason – 15%

Collaborate with several different labs across campus and will coordinate efforts from these labs.

Other – 5%

Lead specific tasks in the grant-funded project and will coordinate with other members of the team to deliver final outcomes in a timely manner.
Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

PhD in environmental sciences, ecology, ecophysiology, and/or remote sensing.

Preferred Qualifications

Experience in geospatial and remote sensing image analysis.
Experience in large data analysis and management.
Peer-reviewed publications.

Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities


Knowledge of the use of laboratory/field instruments and tools.
Knowledge of the principles and techniques of the subject disciplines.


Organizational and project management skills.
Leadership, coordination, and/or supervision skills.
Data collection, processing and analysis.
Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and R.


Highly motivated to perform research in a collaborative environment.
Establishes and maintains effective working relationships.
Communicates effectively.
Possesses strong problem solving, organizational, and analytical capabilities.
Promotes a diverse, inclusive environment.

Background Information

Northern Arizona University requires satisfactory results for the following: a criminal background investigation, an employment history verification and a degree verification (in some cases) prior to employment. You may also be required to complete a fingerprint background check. Additionally, as an employer in the state of Arizona, NAU is required to participate in the federal E-Verify program that assists employers with verifying new employees’ right to work in the United States. Finally, each year Northern Arizona University releases an Annual Security Report. The report is a result of a federal law known as the Clery Act. The report includes Clery reportable crime statistics for the three most recent completed calendar years and discloses procedures, practices and programs NAU uses to keep students and employees safe including how to report crimes or other emergencies occurring on campus. In addition, the Fire Safety Report is combined with the Annual Security Report for the NAU Flagstaff Mountain Campus as this campus has on-campus student housing. This report discloses fire safety policies and procedures related to on-campus student housing and statistics for fires that occurred in those facilities. If you would like a free paper copy of the report, please contact the NAUPD Records Department at (928) 523-8884 or by visiting the department at 525 E. Pine Knoll Drive in Flagstaff.


Salary range begins at $54,799. Annual salary commensurate with candidate’s qualifications and related experience.

FLSA Status

This position is exempt from the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and therefore will not earn overtime or compensatory time for additional time worked.


Post-Doctoral Scholars are hired on a contract basis, renewable each fiscal year for a maximum of 4 renewals (5 years) according to terms of the Arizona Board of Regents’ Conditions of Post-Doctoral Service. NAU offers an excellent benefit package to Post-Doctoral Scholars including generous health, dental and vision insurance; 10 days of vacation and 10 holidays per year; and tuition reduction for employees and qualified family members. New employees are eligible for benefits on the first day of the pay period following their enrollment, after their employment date. Employees will have 31 days from their start date to enroll in benefits. Participation in NAU retirement plans is not available to Post-Doctoral Scholars. More information on benefits at NAU is available at the NAU HR benefits page.

Learning and Development

Your career at Northern Arizona University includes the opportunity for professional development. New employee on-boarding training includes courses to be completed within the first 30 days.

Application Deadline

February 27, 2023 at 11:59 p.m.

How to Apply

To apply for this position, please click on the “Apply” button on this page. You must submit your application by clicking on the “Submit” button by midnight of the application deadline. If you need assistance completing your application there are instructions available on the Human Resources website or in person in the Human Resources Department located in Building 91 on the NAU Campus – on the corner of Beaver and DuPont Streets. If you are an individual with a disability and need reasonable accommodation to participate in the hiring process, please contact the Disability Resources Office at 928-523-8773,, or PO Box 5633, Flagstaff AZ 86011.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Northern Arizona University is a committed Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. NAU is responsive to the needs of dual career couples.
Know Your Rights Poster and Supplements
NAU is an Employer of National Service. AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and other National Service alumni are encouraged to apply.

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