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USGS Postdoctoral Research Opportunity on Effects of Streamflow & Temperature

Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) Oak Ridge Participation Programs (OPP) Outreach Team
Turner Falls, MA
$68,299.00 - $88,792.00 yearly
Closing date
Dec 27, 2023

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A research opportunity is currently available with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) at the Eastern Ecological Science Center located in Turners Falls, Massachusetts.

The USGS mission is to monitor, analyze, and predict current and evolving dynamics of complex human and natural Earth-system interactions and to deliver actionable intelligence at scales and timeframes relevant to decision makers. As the Nation's largest water, earth, and biological science and civilian mapping agency, USGS collects, monitors, analyzes, and provides science about natural resource conditions, issues, and problems.

Research ProjectThe USGS Eastern Ecological Science Center is searching for a highly motivated and talented quantitative researcher and data visualization candidate interested in the interplay of streamflow (particularly drought), stream temperature, and fish population dynamics in headwater (1st to 3rd Order) streams, and the sensitivity of these factors to climate change. This opportunity will consist primarily of co-leading an interdisciplinary physical-process modeling and statistical analysis investigating the effects of streamflow and stream temperature on fish population dynamics across various catchment sizes and ecoregions (Appalachia, Rocky Mountains, Great Basin), with an emphasis on potential drought impacts to these relationships and systems. This project is the capstone effort of a 5 year USGS effort, the USGS EcoDrought Project, designed to better understand the sensitivity of crucial headwater stream habitats to warming temperatures and increases in hydrologic extremes, thus will benefit from an ongoing very unique monitoring program collecting rare continuous streamflow and temperature data from headwaters in several ecoregions. There would be opportunities to participate in field research if desired, though this is not a requirement of the appointment. Additional information about our broader scope of ongoing work can be found at and

Learning ObjectivesAs a result of training associated with this research the participant will improve skills in

  • Hydrological modeling
  • Fish population dynamics modeling
  • Data visualization
  • Interdisciplinary research with the option to join teams developing related AI modeling approaches for these systems

MentorsThe mentors for this opportunity are Jenn Fair (, Ben Letcher ( and Than Hitt ( If you have questions about the nature of the research, please contact the mentors.

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Early or mid 2024.  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year but may be extended upon recommendation of USGS and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time.

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a monthly stipend based on education and experience. The stipend rate for this opportunity is $68,299.00 - $88,792.00 yearly with Washington D.C. area adjustment. Link to OPM Pay Table for information about locality adjustment.

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