2016: Engineer position in statistics to work on phytoplankton and ocean dynamics decadal variability, IRD

Project: PHYTOplankton DEcadal Variability (PHYTODEV)

The PhytoDeV project aims to investigate the phytoplankton time variability at (past and future) decadal and longer time scales and the underpinning physical processes in the Global Ocean. To answer these questions and fully apprehend oceanic and phytoplankton dynamics at the decadal scale, observations have to be available over sufficiently long time series at the basin scale (i.e., via remote sensing). However, radiometric ocean color observations are only available over the last 20 years (1997-2016). In addition, modeling the decadal variability of biological compartments remains uncertain.
Here an innovative method is proposed to overcome these obstacles. The underlying idea is that the distribution of phytoplankton is to a large extent controlled by physical process and that a statistical model can be constructed using observed physical satellite and in situ data. The question is to best construct a statistical model based on these variables. A number of options are possible. These methods range from classical multivariate methods (e.g GLMs) to non-linear methods (e.g GAMs, neural network, SVM etc…). In any case, the fellow will explore a number of linear to non linear Statistical Models using the physical parameters to explain phytoplankton data.
Desired skills and experience
Given the task of the PhytoDev project
1/ formatting a coherent dataset for observed satellite and in situ data to fit the satellite chlorophyll
2/ implementing a series of statistical models to perform these fits
3/ manipulating the series of model outputs from analyses to climate change simulations
We are seeking for an engineer position. The candidate will have an engineer degree with a good background in statistics and few years of experience or a PhD.
Workplace and Financial Support
The position will be based at IRD Tahiti, French Polynesia in the UMR EIO (Ecosystèmes Insulaires Océaniens, FORDIV team, http://wwz.ifremer.fr/umr_eio/Equipes/Equipe-4-FORDIV).
The fellow will be under the supervision of Dr. Elodie Martinez, who is a research scientist at IRD-EIO and in collaboration with several researchers from EIO and from the Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche (Dr. J. Uitz), Georgia Tech Institute (Pr E. DiLorenzo) and LOCEAN (Drs C. Menkes and M. Lengaigne).
The position is funded by the CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales) for 1 year (possibly to 1,5) for the first step of the project. According to the first results, an extend for another 1,5 year will be asked to apply these methods to climate projections. The annual salary is currently €32K (with no supplemental taxes).
Beginning: 1st of August 2016
To apply
Applicants should send the following information:
A cover letter explaining how the candidate meets the essential selection criteria;
A Curriculum vitae;
A brief statement of research interests;
Names and contact information of three references.
For more information, please contact:
Dr. Elodie Martinez
elodie.martinez@ird.fr Tél.: +689 87 22 55 90
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement
BP529, 98713 Papeete, Polynésie française