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Postdoctoral Research Fellowship: Modeling Watershed-Scale Wetland Nutrient Mitigation

Cincinnati, Ohio
Closing date
Dec 20, 2021

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Biogeosciences, Hydrology, Interdisciplinary/Other
Career Level
Education Level
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Relocation Cost
No Relocation
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Job Details

Postdoc Opportunity: Wetland nutrient modeling across multiple watershed scales

A postdoctoral fellowship opportunity is available via the Oak Ridge Institute of Science & Education (ORISE) and located at the US EPA’s Office of Research and Development in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Applications for the postdoc fellowship on “Wetland nutrient mitigation modeling across multiple watershed scales” will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Further details and additional application information are located at this link ( and below. Only US citizens may be considered at this time.


The postdoctoral research opportunity is available through ORISE at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), Center for Environmental Measurements and Modeling Division (CEMM). The appointment is with the Watershed and Ecosystem Characterization Division (WECD), Ecosystem Condition Branch (ECB) in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Nutrient-driven harmful algal blooms and hypoxia events in lakes, estuaries, and other downgradient receiving waters (e.g., the Gulf of Mexico, Lake Erie) are increasing in their frequency, magnitude, and duration, with excess nutrients as a primary cause. Wetland restoration and creation, as part of a suite of conservation practices, have been advanced to mitigate excess nutrient (nitrogen, phosphorus) effects on downstream water quality. However, discerning the effects or “signal” of nutrient-mitigating wetland-based conservation practices (alone and coupled with “best management practices” or BMPs) at the watershed outlet from the “noise” inherent in landscape biogeochemical processing, downgradient transport, and source- and sink-dynamics in receiving waters has been challenging.

This research project aims to better understand and characterize these wetland-mitigation effects on downstream nutrient levels via process-based watershed modeling. The project focuses on coupling wetland spatial locations and potential local, landscape-, and watershed-scale processes influencing the efficacy of wetlands as nutrient mitigation strategies. Specifically, the applicant may be involved with the following activities:

- Applying and modifying process-based watershed models (e.g., SWAT) to answer key research questions

- Analyzing and interpreting model outputs in the context of current literature

- Developing research manuscripts and presentations at professional society conferences

- Collaborating with research scientists in other federal agencies and academia

- Developing new research questions and directions related to the project’s goals

The candidate will have the opportunity to achieve research objectives by developing and applying process-based watershed modeling approaches (e.g., APEX, APEX + SWAT, or similar models) coupled with state-of-the-science big data (i.e., monitored gage, geospatial, and remote sensing data). The candidate will join our productive and enthusiastic research team of watershed hydrologists, biogeochemists, and systems ecologists for an up to two-year postdoctoral research appointment. They will gain experience with cross-agency collaboration (e.g., with US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Natural Resources Conservation Service). The research participant will lead multiple publications of the study outcomes in leading scientific journals, as well as present research findings at multiple professional conferences.


The mission of US EPA is to protect human health and the environment. EPA is an equal opportunity employer. Selection for positions with the agency is based solely on merit without regard to race, color, religion, age, gender, national origin, political affiliation, disability, sexual orientation, marital or family status or other differences.
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