Special opportunity to participate in the T3 PhD Program in Ecological and Environmental Informatics

NAU recently received funding from the National Science Foundation to support an innovative new PhD curriculum that blends environmental sciences with informatics, and I'm actively recruiting well-qualified students. Prospective students could work on one of the research questions below, or develop an related question, focused around the theme of how climate change affects the health and productivity of ecosystems. More information is available here.

Funding Opportunities: During the initial four years (2019-2022), the T3 program will provide 1- to 2-year fellowships that offer a competitive stipend (full funding of $30,000 per year) for about 6 incoming students per year. Additional research and travel funds are available through a competitive application process.

Please email me if you're interested in working with me and other faculty involved in this cohort-based Program at NAU.

Opportunities

Understanding abrupt change and tipping points in climate and ecosystems

We seek prospective Ph.D. students to work with Dr. Nick McKay and an international research team to pursue an interdisciplinary Ph.D. that blends paleoclimatology, paleoecology and data science. Potential projects include mapping abrupt change across timescales, investigating climate-forced, ecosystem-forced, and feedback-driven abrupt changes, and assessing the extent to which climate and ecosystem models can reproduce the types of abrupt shifts observed in past millennia.

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


Testing the resilience of US Food-Energy-Water systems to megadrought

We seek prospective Ph.D. students to work with Dr. Nick McKay and Dr. Ben Ruddell to pursue an interdisciplinary Ph.D. that blends paleoclimatology and sustainability research. This project focuses on investigating how modern food, water and economic infrastructure would cope with severe prehistoric droughts in the southwest US, which were both more extreme and longer-lived than anything observed during the past 200 years. Prospective students will be integrated with both the Paleoclimate Dynamics Laboratory and the Complex Systems Informatics Laboratory at NAU, as well as the larger FEWSion project, which is mapping the interconnectivity between food, energy and water, and their responses to shocks and stresses, for the United States.

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


Large-scale paleoproductivity in New Zealand

We seel prospective graduate students to work with Dr. Nick McKay and a large international team of sceintists on the Lakes380 project, focused on characterizing the health of New Zealand lakes by analysing sediment cores from 380 locations nationwide. This aspect of the project will focus on analyzing hyperspectral reflectance imagery from a large network of New Zealand lakes to infer prehistoric productivity, and how that's changed over the past several hundred years. Check out the Lakes380 website to learn more about the project.

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


High elevation paleoclimatology

We invite applications from prospective graduate students to work with Dr. Nick McKay and Dr. Cody Routson on high-elevation paleoclimatology in southern Colorado. There are multiple projects available investigating Holocene and last Millennium climate variability using lake sediments, tree rings, and bogs. Students will be involved in fieldwork, and trained in paleoclimate record development.

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


Holocene Data Assimilation

We seek prospective graduate students to work with Dr. Nick McKay and Dr. Michael Erb to help develop methodologies and reanalyses of Holocene paleoclimate. This research aims for optimal synthesis of paleoclimate data with model simulations, and potential research foci include investigation of Holocene temperature evolution, and the climate dynamics underlying extreme state shifts in aridity. For more information, please contact us.

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


Paleoclimate informatics

We have opportunities for students to work ongoing projects in paleoclimate informatics and data-intensive paleoclimatology. Projects include developing cyberinfrastructure for the paleogeosciences, advancing Semantic Web resources for paleoclimatology through the LinkedEarth project and developing and applying machine learning techniques to address paleoclimate dynamics questions. Students interested these topics would pursue a Ph.D. in Informatics and Computing, and should contact us for more information

Degree options include:

If interested, please contact us for more information.


Want to learn more?

Check out our team here!