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Lecturer / Senior Lecturer

Unviersity of Otago
Dunedin (Locality), Otago (NZ)
Closing date
Mar 19, 2023

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Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology
Career Level
Education Level
Relocation Cost
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The Department of Geology at the University of Otago is searching for a confirmation-path Lecturer / Senior Lecturer (equivalent to North American tenure-track Assistant Professor) in paleontology and/or paleoecology.

We are particularly interested in collaborative candidates with an interest in interdisciplinary Earth system science approaches. The ideal candidate will be able to capitalise on the globally significant fossil record found in and around New Zealand, which is featured in the world-class collections of the department.

The role - Te mahi

The successful candidate will contribute to our department’s excellent teaching and learning culture and to our diverse, international research profile. Responsibilities will include:
•  Contributing to the research activities of the department, including publishing in high-quality peer-reviewed journals, obtaining external funding support, and supervising research students.
•  Teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students, including developing new course content and teaching materials, participating in collaborative teaching activities, and assessing student performance.
•  Contributing to the effective and efficient administration of the department and its responsibilities within the university and wider community.

Skills and experience - Kā pūkeka me kā wheako

•  PhD (or equivalent) in Earth sciences (incl. paleontology, paleoecology, or a related field).
•  Excellent research record relative to opportunity.
•  Experience in or potential for collaborative, interdisciplinary and innovative research.
•  Enthusiasm for research-informed teaching approaches in paleontology and paleoecology.
•  Field and/or laboratory experience and expertise in specimen- or collection-based research.
•  Proven abilities in science communication at multiple levels (public, schools, media, government).
•  Ability and willingness to develop a firm commitment to the university’s Māori Strategic Framework and Pacific Strategic Framework.

About our team - Mō te tīma

The University of Otago is New Zealand’s oldest university. It is a comprehensive university offering undergraduate, postgraduate and professional programmes in the sciences, health sciences, commerce and humanities. Our Ōtepoti Dunedin campus has been ranked as one of the most beautiful in the world and the city offers a great variety of activities, ranging from arts and literature to outdoor adventure.

In addition to research and teaching excellence, the University of Otago is committed to local, national, and international betterment, strong external engagement, sustainability in all its activities, and outstanding and unique student experiences. We are committed to furthering the aspirations of Māori and of communities across the Pacific.

The Department of Geology, which dates back to the founding of the university in 1869, is located in the heart of the university’s Victorian campus. The staff in our collegial department cover a wide range of Earth Science disciplines. Together, we teach into well-regarded broad-reaching undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. We pride ourselves on research-informed teaching with substantial field and laboratory components and an emphasis on encouraging independent research.

This is an opportunity for an energetic, creative and committed individual to make a significant contribution in their chosen discipline while being well supported by a collegial and dynamic department and university.

Paleontology at Otago

Our paleontology facilities, including a substantial preparation laboratory, are world class. The Geology Museum and associated collections are integral to our teaching and research. These include the largest collection of fossil specimens in the South Island, and, in New Zealand, our collection is second in size only to that of GNS Science. It contains about 60,000 individual plant, invertebrate, and vertebrate specimens, as well as hundreds of locality collections of stratigraphically important material. The department supports a paleontology laboratory manager who manages the operations of our preparation laboratory and the substantial collections housed within the department.

The fossil records of New Zealand’s South Island are rich and distinctive, and we are in close proximity to significant study regions in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica. Local and regional opportunities in paleontology enable us to examine ancient and different environments, and they also highlight how different and variable (paleo)biodiversity has been in our relatively remote corner of the world. The department (and paleontology group in particular) have traditionally attracted excellent undergraduate and postgraduate students due to our location, facilities and resources.

Collaborative opportunities in research and teaching abound within the university. You will find enthusiastic collaborators across numerous other university departments, schools and programmes (e.g., Geography, Zoology, Botany, Marine Science, Archaeology and Dentistry), as well as local, national and international museums (e.g., Otago Museum, Te Papa, the Smithsonian), external agencies (e.g., GNS Science) and other universities in New Zealand, Australia, the Pacific Islands and beyond.

Further details - Pūroko

There is one full-time (1.0 FTE), permanent position available, located in Dunedin. This is a confirmation path role, equivalent to the North American tenure-track.

The appointment start date has some flexibility. We anticipate that the successful applicant will be able to start in late 2023 / early 2024; however, please indicate your availability in your cover letter.

The salary for this vacancy will range from Lecturer: $87,152- $103,550, to Senior Lecturer (below the bar) $108,732– $124,555.

Application - Tono

Applications are asked to provide:

  • A cover letter addressing your:
  • 1.  Active research programme, with potential to grow at Otago.
  • 2.  Teaching and communication skills and experience, with a strong commitment to teaching, mentoring and undergraduate and postgraduate research supervision.
  • 3.  Collaborative, cooperative and inclusive approach, including support for mātauranga Māori and multiculturalism.
  • Curriculum vitae (no more than six pages)
  • Names and email addresses of at least three referees

Applications quoting reference number 2300193 will close on Sunday, 12 March 2023.

Applications will be reviewed as they are received. The University reserves the right to close this vacancy at any time.


To view all current vacancies and to apply online go to:

Equal opportunity in employment is University policy.

E tautoko ana Te Whare Wananga o Otago i te kaupapa whakaorite whiwhinga mahi.

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