Opportunity Type:

The Ecosystems Center of the Marine Biological Laboratory is seeking applicants for a Research Assistant position. The successful applicant would join an ongoing research project focused on understanding environmental and genetic controls on seasonal patterns of plant growth in arctic tundra ecosystems. This project is based in the summertime at Toolik Field Station in northern Alaska and during the wintertime at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA. The Principal Investigator at the MBL is Gaius R Shaver, working in collaboration with investigators at Wilkes University and University of Texas El Paso. For additional information about the Ecosystems Center and its programs, visit our web site at http://www.mbl.edu/ecosystems. Information about the Toolik Field Station is available at http://www.uaf.edu/toolik/.


During the summer the Research Assistant will work with a crew of 2-5 people collecting data and samples on seasonal plant growth, photosynthesis, flowering, and senescence in experimental gardens distributed along a north-south transect in central and northern Alaska. At each garden the work will include maintaining, monitoring, and measuring the effects of experimental manipulations of the light and temperature environment on plant growth.

During the winter the Research Assistant will work in Woods Hole, MA, analyzing the data and samples collected during the previous summer with a particular focus on analyses of plant growth and senescence using imagery and a range of multispectral indices.

At present funds are available to support this position full time for 16 months starting in May or June 2022 (two summers plus the intervening winter); extension for a further 8-12 months may be possible pending renewed funding.


Applicants should be college graduates (BS or MS), with significant course work and/or field experience in ecology. A strong background in terrestrial plant ecology, plant physiology, environmental measurement and monitoring, and/or ecosystem ecology is preferred. Applicants with skills and experience that are particularly suited to our research (e.g., data management and statistical analysis, use of field photosynthesis systems, environmental monitoring of radiation regimes, remote sensing, and use of data logging systems) are particularly preferred.


Applicants should be in good health, capable of rigorous outdoor activity, and prepared to live in a field camp where cooperation with others is essential, personal privacy is limited, and living accommodations are spare and simple.


Candidates for this position should be available to live at Toolik Field Station for at least 3 months during each summer (mid-May-late August). In addition to a salary, the costs of travel to and from Toolik Field Station will be paid by the project as well as the cost of room and board at the field station. Room and board in Woods Hole will NOT be provided.

More information and application instructions may be found online: https://tinyurl.com/yc3a83pp