TFS Environmental and Spatial Data Center Manager (JOB19-04)

Apply now Job no: 509872
Classification:Research Professional 4
Grade:Grade 81
Work type:Staff Full-time
Administrative Unit:University of Alaska Fairbanks
School/Business unit:Institute of Arctic Biology
Location: Fairbanks
Categories: Other, Research/Science/Grants

Position Summary:

The Toolik Field Station (TFS) at the Institute of Arctic Biology (IAB) is seeking an enthusiastic and experienced individual to manage our Environmental Data Center (EDC). TFS is a world-renowned Arctic field station located 360 road miles north of Fairbanks on the rural Dalton Highway. The remote station supports researchers, students, and others from around the world. The population of the station can vary from 3 to 150 residents (over 400 different individuals annually) and is open 365 days a year.


15Collaborate with faculty to prepare and submit proposals that can enhance the science support mission of TFS. Prepare written reports and oral presentations on combined TFS science support activities (including EDC and GIS). Assist in completing annual project reports to meet requirements of funding agencies. Contribute results to papers intended for publication in peer-reviewed journals related to global change, arctic ecology and biogeosciences. Provide intellectual content and editorial comments on manuscripts prior to submission for publication. When present at UAF attend weekly TFS management meetings and when at TFS user group meetings, participate in TFS Steering Committee and other meetings. Schedule, coordinate, and attend EDC/GIS Science Advisory committee meetings, summarize outcomes, and prepare action items. Become knowledgeable and stay up to date on the research conducted at TFS. Provide overviews of TFS research for outreach initiatives, educational programs, and interested researchers. Provide scientific support and expertise to other TFS departments when needed.Essential
20Manage core and general use field and laboratory equipment for TFS scientists through supervision of a Lab coordinator; ensure that equipment is maintained in good working condition; coordinate with external companies to arrange calibrations and schedule equipment use through web based reservation system; maintain manuals, use logs, order new equipment and supplies. When at TFS, interact daily with on-site scientists on core equipment needs and field support needs. Assure survey protocols; oversee data collection, entry and coordinate with web-based server team to make data available on the TFS website. Collect information relevant to, and participate in, annual assignment of lab space at TFS. Monitor, track, evaluate, and if necessary, adjust the assignment of lab space to research projects. Make recommendations and participate in planning for the development and improvement of laboratory and other science support facilities and infrastructure.Essential
40Solve complex questions in development and production of data products for TFS researchers that are derived from EDC and GIS data. Lead analysis and publication of trends in EDC data over the past 10 years. Manage and participate in the continued collection of data on plant phenology and arrival, departure, status and abundance of birds, and winter snow depth and density at selected observation sites in the Toolik region. Summarize and analyze EDC data, statistically provide quality assurance and quality control, and provide metadata. Integrate availability of all EDC data with GIS data and web-based server team and make them available to the public via the TFS website. Maintain snow cameras and process snow cover images. Develop and refine additional measures for monitoring diversity and phenology of key plant and animal species, including coordination with NEON. Ensure that EDC and GIS data are accessible to the public through collaboration with external entities such as the Arctic Data Center. When needed, provide support to TFS GIS personnel and TFS management in site selections for new research. Lead the further development of the combined Science Support Services offered by TFS, including the Biodiversity/phenology program and GIS support programs, with guidance from TFS management and the external EDC/GIS science advisory committee.Essential
50Supervise TFS GIS Manager and GIS Analyst (2 full-time, year-round employees), seasonal TFS Environmental Data Center (EDC) technicians (2 seasonal employees), and one seasonal lab coordinator whose duties are split between the EDC and GIS departments. Coordinate with part-time TFS Meteorological Manager, and with TFS Science Support/Maintenance Manager with regards to science support offered by that department, including custom building of science tools and support for autonomous instruments and power supplies. Train seasonal EDC technicians.Essential

The goal of the EDC is to collect and manage data on key environmental drivers and biological responders to climate change in the local Toolik environs. This baseline data is provided to the science community of Toolik for their use as background and context for framing specific questions and hypotheses about plant and animal adaptation to the Arctic, the structure and function of arctic ecosystems, and responses and feedback of the arctic environment to climate change. Please see and for more information.

The desired candidate will possess:

  • Knowledge of plant ecology, ecosystem ecology, remote sensing as applied to ecology.
  • Knowledge of QA/QC standards and procedures for ecological and spatial data analyses.
  • Knowledge of statistics as appropriate for ecological data.
  • Knowledge of the use of remote sensing data, and familiarity with GIS methods.
  • Knowledge of ecological research methods. Advanced analytical skills.
  • The ability to effectively communicate findings to the public.
  • The proven ability to get scientific work published in a refereed journal.
  • The ability to work outdoors for extended periods in Arctic conditions.
  • The ability to lead and supervise a diverse staff.
  • At least five years experience with ecological research and field work.
  • Fluent with the manipulation and statistical analysis of ecological data.
  • Experience working as a team leader or supervisor.
  • Prior experience in the Arctic is preferred.

Desired qualifications include:

  • Master’s Degree in plant ecology, or ecosystem ecology, earth system science, remote sensing, or related field is required; a Ph.D. is preferred.
  • Consideration will be given for applicants who have a minimum of three years of experience performing fieldwork and analysis in the Arctic.

This position requires residence at TFS half to three-quarters time from mid-May through September of each year; otherwise the job location is at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

For more information about the position, contact Dr. Syndonia Bret-Harte, the supervisor for this position.

The first review of applications will begin on August 11, 2018. Please upload a cover letter, resume/CV, and the contact information for at least 3 professional references on or before 11:59 pm (Alaska time) on August 10, 2018 for consideration in the first review.

Background Check:
The successful applicant is required to complete a background check. Any offer of employment is contingent on the background check.
Term Position:
This position is a term-funded position and is reviewed annually for contract renewal at the University's discretion.
Pursuant to University Regulation 04.07.020, new employees of the University are employed in an at-will probationary status for the first six months of employment. During the probationary period, employment may be terminated for no reason or any reason. Promoted employees also serve a probationary period with limited rights of retreat.
Training Policy:
It is the policy of the University of Alaska Fairbanks that all employees are required to attend training to meet the requirements of the positions they hold, and to complete the required training within a specified period of time to remain employed at UAF. The policy can be located at:
Tobacco-Free Campus:
UAF Campus is a tobacco free campus. For more information, please go to:
Notice of Nondiscrimination:
The University of Alaska is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution. The University of Alaska does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, citizenship, age, sex, physical or mental disability, status as a protected veteran, marital status, changes in marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, parent hood, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation or belief, genetic information, or other legally protected status. The University's commitment to nondiscrimination, including against sex discrimination, applies to students, employees, and applicants for admission and employment. Contact information, applicable laws, and complaint procedures are included on UA's statement of nondiscrimination available at

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