Postdoctoral position in Remote Sensing of Land cover and Ecosystems

Postdoctoral Position in Remote Sensing of Land cover and Ecosystems

Country-level ecosystem extent and change mapping in Sub-Saharan Africa


We are seeking a Visiting Scientist at the postdoctoral level to work on ecosystem extent and change mapping in sub-Saharan Africa using remotely sensed data. The aim of the research project is to develop country-wide ecosystem extent maps for 3 to 4 countries across Africa in support of ecosystem valuation and naturalness Index development initiatives spearheaded by Conservation International. The successful candidate will pursue innovative research questions in the fields of land cover and land use change dynamics, biodiversity remote sensing, and spatial ecology.



  • Collaborate with colleagues from NASA, Conservation International and various in-country institutions to develop and conduct research to ecosystem and agricultural area extent, type and changes, in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Assess ecosystem extent and naturalness and assess how land use / land cover change, and projected climate change, may affect these ecosystems.
  • Asses crop extent and type
  • Link research activities to regional issues of concern by developing applied tools and solutions that benefit both scientific research and partner groups.
  • Build regional technical capacity by coordinating and teaching workshops (and other educational events) on data management, remote sensing and GIS analysis, and other spatial analysis skills.
  • Participate in scientific meetings, develop scientific papers, and engage with colleagues and collaborators pursuing related research questions.
  • Provide guidance and assistance to technicians, students, fellow postdocs, and others carrying out related work.
  • Publish at least one peer-reviewed scientific paper per year



·         A Ph.D. or comparable expertise in Ecology, Geography, Remote Sensing, Environmental Sciences, or a related academic field.

·         Expertise and experience in remote sensing and GIS, especially multi-temporal analysis of land use and land cover change and management of large databases.

·         Excellent data management skills, knowledge of big data processing and analysis, batch processing hundreds to thousands of images to fulfill the country-scale deliverables

·         Expertise in active (SAR and Lidar) and passive (Landsat and Sentinel) and high resolution (Digital Globe and Planet) remote sensing data a plus

·         Significant programming skills (eg in: IDL, Python, Java, Google Earth Engine, R)

·         Ability to work in diverse and interdisciplinary teams across multiple institutions and countries

·         Experience working internationally, especially in Africa is advantageous

·         Willing and able to travel internationally to conduct field work.


Preferred start date is September 2017. Interested applicants should submit a CV, names and contact information for 3 references, and cover letter to The cover letter should include (i) the applicant’s earliest possible start date; (ii) a summary of the applicant’s research and analysis experience in remote sensing, GIS, mapping land cover and land use change; and (iii) 1-3 examples of how the applicant has worked successfully with international collaborators, or how they would plan to do so.