Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment
Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment

Post-doc Position in Design and Evaluation of Pathways of Future Development of Deltas, Utrecht University

Application deadline: 25 January 2019

Water, Climate and Future Deltas is the research programme of one of the hubs in the Utrecht University Strategic theme ‘Pathways to Sustainability’ . In the hub, researchers from varying disciplines at Utrecht University cooperate with external partners to design and evaluate pathways to sustainable delta development. We will provide policy makers and delta managers with the essential scientific basis for informed decision-making on pathways towards sustainable deltas. Finding pathways to sustainable delta development requires understanding both the external drivers of change and the functioning and interaction of natural and social systems that can be managed in a delta. Therefore, the research programme comprises three lines that together are required for sustainable development:

  1. Understanding the global external drivers of change that deltas will be facing in the future, such as climate and sea-level change, socio-economic and technological change, hydrological change, and how these translate to delta-scale scenarios.
  2. Understanding the functioning and interaction of natural and social systems that can be managed in a delta.
  3. Designing and evaluating the actions, knowledge and instruments to develop pathways for long-term development leading to resilient deltas, using the knowledge, scenarios and models from the first two research lines.

We work closely together with stakeholders in a co-creative process across a range of delta environments with long-term challenges, both in the Netherlands and internationally.

We are currently offering a post-doc position in research line C:

Post-doc Design and Evaluation of Pathways of Future Development of Deltas (0.8 FTE)

In the Faculty of Geosciences (Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development and the Department of Physical Geography).

Project description

This postdoc works in research line C in which we focus on design and evaluation of adaptation pathways, and finding pathways to sustainability in deltas. This theme will integrate information, knowledge and instruments developed in line A and B, and will explore how we can use these to find sustainable pathways. To gain insight and experience in how these integrative exercises in the hub Water, Climate and Future Deltas could be done and to keep it feasible at the same time we will limit ourselves to three (existing) delta cases. One of these is in The Netherlands; a second and a third case is to be found in a delta abroad. These cases allow addressing a specific challenge, real-world data, models, and including delta/water managers and local stakeholders. Activities The postdoc will investigate pathways of change and develop and test management strategies for deltas using scenarios, knowledge and models from the first two lines. The following activities are foreseen:

  • develop and test a conceptual model for exploring, analysing and integrating the components of research line A and B into the research programme of C;
  • design and evaluate pathways for a Dutch case, based on existing knowledge and models, to explore the method of pathway design and analysis;
  • develop methods to evaluate different pathways and to identify sustainable strategies. Work closely together with stakeholders in a co-creative process across a range of delta environments in the Netherlands and abroad;

Qualifications

We are looking for applicants who:

  • have a PhD in physical geography, hydrology or environmental sciences;
  • have experience in inter- or trans-disciplinary teams;
  • are able to closely work together with stakeholders in a co-creative process across a range of delta environments in the Netherlands and abroad;
  • are able to organise activities and processes for ‘living labs’ to estimate hazards, to develop tailor-made decision support tools and science–policy communication tools for the chosen deltas and define novel strategies towards a sustainable future for these deltas;
  • have hands-on experience in developing or working with Integrated Assessment Modeling, Decision Support Systems, Serious Gaming or other decision support tools;
  • have affinity with science-policy processes, stakeholder involvement or participatory decision making.

> More information

Wednesday 16 January 2019