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Assistant Research Professor, Cloud Microphysics

Desert Research Institute
Reno, Nevada (US)
$82,000-$95,000 depending on experience and education
Closing date
May 18, 2022

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Atmospheric Sciences
Career Level
Early Career (up to 10 years past degree)
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
Sector Type
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Job Details

The Desert Research Institute (DRI) Division of Atmospheric Sciences (DAS) is seeking an Assistant Research Professor to advance a research program in cloud microphysics. This position will be located in DRI’s Northern Nevada Science Center in Reno, NV and will entail climate model development/ improvements in cloud microphysics and dynamics, especially pertaining to ice clouds where climate model deficiencies have been identified.  Thus, experience with developing and testing new code in global climate models and a strong background in cloud microphysics is a must.  Expertise in regional climate modeling and an ability to work creatively with satellite data is also of great interest.

DRI’s faculty members bring a unique blend of academic rigor and private-sector pragmatism that has earned DRI a reputation for delivering rapid, high-quality environmental science in a businesslike fashion. The successful candidate will be encouraged to collaborate broadly with DRI’s faculty and external colleagues. Faculty members are encouraged to collaborate with DRI's research laboratories across DRI Divisions (i.e., Hydrologic Sciences and Earth and Ecosystems Sciences), and with the Atmospheric Sciences Division laboratories including the Environmental Analysis Facility, Organic Analytical Laboratory, Carter Family Optics and Acoustics Laboratory and the Airborne Systems Testing and Environmental Research lab, among others. The successful candidate will also have the opportunity to join the graduate faculty of the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) Interdisciplinary Program in Atmospheric Sciences, which offers graduate degrees in atmospheric sciences. This program is jointly administered by UNR and DRI, offering DAS faculty the opportunity to teach courses and advise graduate students.

Required Qualifications

  • Ph.D. in atmospheric sciences, or a related discipline from an accredited institution.
  • 2-years minimum post-graduate experience in atmospheric science research.
  • Demonstrated expertise in cloud microphysics for ice, mixed phase and liquid water clouds.
  • Demonstrated expertise in global climate modeling.
  • Demonstrated experience with atmospheric dynamics.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to publish in the peer-reviewed scientific literature.
  • Demonstrated ability to present research results at professional meetings.
  • Demonstrated experience contributing to program development through networking and collaborative proposal writing.
  • Potential for ability to initiate, plan, obtain funding, and carry out research projects.
  • Due to the current health and safety emergency declaration, anyone hired must receive a complete (and verified) COVID-19 vaccination series or an approved medical or religious waiver request as a term and condition of employment prior to any start date at any Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) institution.



Preferred Qualifications

  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with others in an interdisciplinary environment.
  • Experience with programming in Matlab, IDL, Python, R, NCL, or related analytical tools.
  • Experience with programming in Fortran, C, or other languages commonly used for numerical modeling.
  • Comfortable using high-performance computing and Big Data systems.
  • Demonstrated expertise in regional climate modeling.
  • Experience in satellite remote sensing and the ability to creatively work with satellite data for testing new remote sensing approaches.
  • Demonstrated experience with climate intervention research.


Salary is commensurate with experience and education. Early career Scientific Staff receive compensation support and start up packages as they develop their independent research portfolios.

DRI offers a benefits package that includes health, dental, vision, and life insurance; including 15.50% retirement match, 24 annual leave days, beginning balance of 30 sick leave days, 11 paid holidays, educational benefits, and the choice of three health insurance plans that can be supplemented with flexible spending accounts or health savings accounts. Additionally, there is no state income tax and no social security deduction. This position is eligible for relocation assistance.

Conditions of Employment

  • Due to the current health and safety emergency declaration, anyone hired must receive a complete (and verified) COVID-19 vaccination series or an approved medical or religious waiver request as a term and condition of employment prior to any start date at any Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) institution.

Organizational Summary

The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is a recognized world leader in basic and applied environmental research. Committed to scientific excellence and integrity, DRI faculty, students who work alongside them, and staff have developed scientific knowledge and innovative technologies in research projects around the globe.

Since 1959, DRI’s research has advanced scientific knowledge on topics ranging from humans’ impact on the environment to the environment’s impact on humans. DRI’s impactful science and inspiring solutions support Nevada’s diverse economy, provide science-based educational opportunities, and inform policymakers, business leaders, and community members.

The position will be based in Reno situated in northwestern Nevada at the base of the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains, 25 minutes from Lake Tahoe. Reno boasts 300+ days of sunshine and offers unparalleled opportunities for outdoor activities ranging from mountain biking, hiking, fishing, hunting, whitewater paddling, and golfing in the summer and fall to alpine skiing, snowboarding, and cross-country skiing in the winter.

Required Attachments

Please upload the following documents in the specified section:

  • A cover letter detailing how your experience and professional qualifications prepare you to succeed in this role at DRI
  • A current curriculum vita
  • Contact information for three professional references who will be contacted at the appropriate phase of the recruitment process based on applicant permission.

Qualified individuals are encouraged to apply immediately and provide all required attachments to receive full consideration. Lists of eligible candidates will be established and hiring may occur early in the recruiting process. Recruitment will close without notice when a sufficient number of applications are received or a hiring decision has been made.

For more detailed information about DRI and DRI faculty, research projects, and publications, please visit us at For questions regarding this position or assistance with your application, please call the recruiting office at 775-674-7114.

The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is an equal opportunity/ affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law. DRI employs only U.S. citizens and persons lawfully authorized to work in the United States.


Since 1959, DRI has stood at the forefront of understanding Earth's complex environmental systems, promoting preservation of diverse ecosystems, advancing responsible natural resource management, and improving human health and welfare throughout Nevada and around the world. Research at DRI calls on the expertise and methods of multiple scientific disciplines. More than 500 highly-skilled scientists, engineers, technicians and students are collaboratively focused on understanding and answering critical questions about global climate change, water quality and availability, air quality, sustainability of desert lands, life in extreme environments, and more.

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