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Assistant Research Professor, Geomorphology

Reno, Nevada
Minimum annual starting salary is $82,000 and is commensurate with experience and education.
Closing date
Mar 23, 2023

The Desert Research Institute’s (DRI) Division of Earth and Ecosystem Sciences (DEES) is accepting applications for an Assistant Research Professor in Geomorphology. The successful candidate will have experience as a Geomorphologist with a strong background in fluvial systems. Experience in field-based methods of inquiry is preferred. A combination of technical and interpersonal communication skills is required. The candidate will perform primary job functions in the Integrated Terrain Analysis Program (ITAP) which provides important soil, geomorphic, and terrain analysis capabilities within DEES, principally on Department of Defense (DOD) funded projects. Examples of ongoing work within ITAP include cross-country vehicle mobility studies, applications of remote predictive soil/landform mapping, and evaluation of terrain controls on dust emissivity. The ability and interest in collaborating with colleagues in DEES, and DRI’s Division of Hydrological Sciences (DHS), and Division of Atmospheric Sciences (DAS) is strongly desired.

Required Qualifications

  • U.S. citizenship (Must have the ability to work on DOD installations)
  • Ph.D. in appropriate field (e.g., Geology, Earth and Environmental Science, Geography, Geotechnical or Geological Engineering) from an accredited institution
  • 1 year postdoc or professional experience conducting geomorphic research with a background in fluvial systems.
  • Strong knowledge of fluvial systems, processes, and landforms
  • Demonstrated ability to publish in peer-reviewed journals
  • Strong potential to secure external research funding
  • Demonstrated ability to work individually or as part of a team

Preferred Qualifications

  • Demonstrated experience working on applied geoscience research projects
  • Demonstrated experience applying analytical and/or modeling approaches to quantify fluvial processes at the watershed scale
  • Experience and/or interest producing surficial geologic maps and map products
  • Strong record of obtaining competitive federal funding (e.g., NSF, USGS, USDA, NASA, etc.)
  • Strong record of publication in peer-reviewed journals

Conditions of Employment

  • Ability to travel for fieldwork, meetings, conferences, and workshops.
  • Due to security requirements associated with accessing essential project sites and information, ALL applicants MUST be citizens of the United States
  • Employment is contingent upon successful completion of a background check
  • Exerting up to 10 pounds of force occasionally to lift, carry, push, pull, or otherwise move objects. Sedentary work involves sitting most of the time but may involve walking or standing for brief periods of time. Jobs are sedentary if walking and standing are required only occasionally, and all other sedentary criteria are met.


Minimum annual starting salary is $82,000 and is commensurate with experience and education. 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.

Organizational Summary

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. With campuses in Las Vegas and Reno, DRI serves as the non-profit research arm of the Nevada System of Higher Education.

Required Attachments

Please upload the following documents in the specified section on the DRI career website:

  • A cover letter detailing how your experience and professional qualifications prepare you to succeed in this role within ITAP and 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 775-673-7431.

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