Postdoctoral researcher: EASMO (reference number 221-EASMO)

The Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT) in Bremen is a member of the Leibniz Association, which is supported by the German Federal and State Governments. Through its research, ZMT contributes to developing strategies for sustainable use of tropical coastal systems.

Project rationale and summary:

Species are “on the move” throughout the planet escaping hostile climatic conditions. These movements have advanced four times faster in the ocean than on land, causing dramatic ecosystem changes and redistributing resources across borders. The ecological, food security, and governance implications are obvious. Yet, two persistent gaps hinder our capacity to effectively manage coastal social-ecological systems to safeguard both fisheries and human wellbeing in the face of such challenges: i) regional studies documenting recent species redistributions have not quantified the societal repercussions, and ii) future projections have mapped expected catches and metrics of socio-economic impact (e.g. fisheries revenue) globally and at coarse resolutions, unfitting to support local or regional decision-making. Fish redistributions are particularly concerning, as three billion people depend on them for 15% of their animal protein intake and essential nutrients to tackle malnutrition. Although fish range shifts should be urgently investigated in the Global South, studies have focused disproportionately on wealthy parts of the world. EASMO will investigate for the first time the impact of climate change on the distribution of reef fish throughout the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean (ETP) considering cascading effects on biodiversity, ecosystem function, reefs’ contributions to people, climate feedbacks, and socio-economic wellbeing. Ultimately, it will deliver several layers of new scientific knowledge that can be directly integrated into decision-making tools, support adaptive transboundary governance approaches, and propel actions for meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2 Zero hunger, 13 Climate action, and 14 Life below water. Find more details on the project here.

Selection criteria:

  • PhD degree on marine fish ecophysiology, species distribution modelling and climate change ecology
  • Knowledge on behavioural and physiological responses of fish to climate stressors (ocean warming and acidification)
  • Practical experience in fish husbandry and experimental ecology and conducting single and/or multi-stressor climate change experiments on fish
  • Research experience integrating empirical datasets across biological levels and/or into statistical models
  • Familiarity and experience in modelling future climate change effects on species distribution
  • Interest and knowledge on the effects of ocean acidification on fish and the pathways through which fish may affect the ocean’s carbonate chemistry
  • Attention to detail and demonstrated proficiency in managing large datasets
  • Strong analytical skills including demonstrated proficiency in applying a broad range of basic to advanced modelling and statistical analysis tools
  • Demonstrated excellence in English scientific writing and oral communication
  • A positive collaborative work ethics that promotes diversity, equality, and inclusiveness

Responsibilities of the successful candidate within EASMO:

  • Support the development and data analysis of a lab-based climate change experiment on reef fish
  • Collaborate with other postdocs in the EASMO consortium in the analysis and integration of climate projections, local fish abundance and biodiversity estimates, and experiment results into species distribution models
  • Write scientific manuscripts and present project results at project consortium meetings and conferences
  • Mentor undergraduate and graduate students within the project

Please contact Dr Sonia Bejarano (sonia.bejarano(at) for further information.

Leibniz Association, 20 January 2022. More information.

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