Postdoctoral Researcher—Physical Climate Risk & Resilience

Falmouth, Massachusetts (US)
The salary range is $65,000-68,000.
May 28, 2021
Jun 27, 2021
Career Level
Education Level
Relocation Cost
No Relocation

Postdoctoral Researcher—Physical Climate Risk & Resilience
Falmouth, Massachusetts or Remote

SUMMARY: We seek a Postdoctoral Researcher to join our growing physical climate risk group for an initial three-year position (with the opportunity to extend based on funding). The successful candidate will conduct original research on near-term future climate risk and work alongside impacted communities at the intersection of physical climate risk with climate resilience.

Developing nations and under-resourced communities are disproportionately impacted by climate change, yet oftentimes lack the expertise and financial resources to anticipate and manage related risks. Woodwell’s vision is to address this critical need by providing climate risk assessments, pro bono publico, to under-resourced and over-exposed communities. You would join an ongoing project to refine, deliver and disseminate site-specific risk analyses to communities in the United States, Latin America and East Africa.

Your core task will be to develop granular assessments with thoughtful narratives for future climate change risks. You will work with our partners to understand potential downstream societal consequences. Your domain knowledge expertise will enhance Woodwell’s current analytical bandwidth across a broad and growing catalogue of climate perils: flood to famines, hurricanes to heat stress, and sea level rise to severe wildfire risk. Your communications savvy will allow for delivery of the consequences to policymakers, the public and in academic journals.

In addition to working with community leaders you will have the opportunity to engage with a range of external partners: businesses, asset management companies, environmental nongovernmental organizations and national security think tanks. This person will bring a creative and analytical approach to generating actionable climate insight. We seek an energetic, collaborative, mission-driven colleague who can successfully manage multiple projects and is motivated to apply their academic and professional experience to help fight climate change.

Woodwell values our postdocs and has a robust support system for this group of early career scientists, including mentoring, peer support, grant writing training, conference attendance and travel support, and much more. Woodwell postdocs meet bi-monthly to share ideas, resources, and network with each other across program areas. Woodwell postdocs and meet annually with all postdocs at the six scientific institutions in Woods Hole.


  • Research and model past, present and future physical and societal climate change impacts.
  • Process and analyze multi-temporal geospatial data, primarily climate model output and climate observations in NetCDF format.
  • Work with external and internal partners to match risk assessments with risk exposure.
  • Communicate research results to policymakers and the public, including publication in peer-reviewed literature and elsewhere.
  • Mentor research assistant(s).
  • Work in a highly collaborative, fast-paced, cross-disciplinary environment to analyze, synthesize, and present results.

Qualifications and Experience:

  • Ph.D. (granted or expected within 2 months) in earth system science, climate science or a related discipline with demonstrated data analysis skills and programming experience.
  • Advanced programming skills based on practical experience with high-level language and tools such as R, Python, C++, MATLAB, CDO, NCL and/or FORTRAN.
  • Experience with collaborative code development and system scripting and familiarity with version control is highly desirable.
  • Experience managing large (terabyte scale) data volumes for analysis and visualization in a Linux environment and/or Google Earth Engine and/or other cloud-based platform.
  • Experience analyzing the results of global and regional climate models. Training or experience in Earth system modeling is highly desirable.
  • Familiarity with downscaling and bias correction techniques preferred.
  • Highly motivated and self-directed in advancing complex projects and a record of successful research.
  • Familiarity with the scope of climate science literature and the ability to clearly and succinctly bring it to an informed audience.
  • Ability to work in a collaborative environment with minimal oversight.
  • Ability to lead a research project and independently develop new directions.
  • Experience or interest in interacting with stakeholders (e.g., policy makers, community members, natural resource managers) is highly desirable.
  • Experience or interest in data science and very large-scale data mining and analysis
  • (e.g., modeling of structured data, statistical computation, applied machine learning) is highly desirable.

Application Deadline: June 15, 2021, or until filled.    

Desired Start Date: As soon as possible.  

Classification and Compensation: This is a full-time, salaried, exempt position. The salary range is $65,000-68,000. This is a three-year employment opportunity with the potential to extend. Woodwell Climate offers a very generous benefits package.

Application Instructions: To apply, please send your cover letter, curriculum vitae, and contact information for three references as a single PDF to Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Please type CSPD-21 in the subject line.

Located on a 10-acre campus near the village of Woods Hole, the Woodwell Climate Research Center (Woodwell) is a private, non-profit research center. Woodwell is a leading source of climate science that drives the urgent action needed to solve climate change. Woodwell has 60+ staff members and is excited to welcome new employees to this work.

Woodwell is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, mental, or physical disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, familial status, veteran status, or genetic information. Woodwell is committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation for all individuals in employment practices, services, programs, and activities.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Woodwell


Climate change is the greatest challenge of our lifetimes. Woodwell Climate Research Center (Woodwell) understands that the climate crisis—from causes to consequences—is inextricably linked with persistent social injustice. Effectively addressing either requires addressing both. The climate crisis demands that we bring to bear all of the knowledge, expertise, innovation, and creativity that we can collectively muster, and those who have been marginalized and disproportionately impacted must be heard.

The work Woodwell does—the questions we ask, the ways we seek answers, and the strategies we put forward—is stronger when shaped by a diversity of knowledge, perspectives, and experiences. We strive to welcome, respect, and amplify differing voices. We value individuals as they are, with all their differences in race, age, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, language, and mental and physical abilities.

Woodwell acknowledges that our organization, and the scientific community more broadly, have a long way to go in living up to these ideals. We approach the work of improving our organization with the same ambition and commitment to systemic change that we bring to addressing climate change.

We will inevitably make mistakes, but we will continue to listen, learn, and do this critical work. We understand that this work requires an ongoing commitment from each and every one of us. We are actively engaged in building and sustaining an equitable and inclusive culture within our organization, and in fostering greater diversity in climate science.

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