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Position Announcement Issued May 1, 2019

Job Title: Postdoctoral Associate

Location: Cordova, Alaska


The mission of Prince William Sound Science Center is to advance community resilience and the understanding and sustainable use of ecosystems. Prince William Sound (PWS) is located in the northeast corner of the Pacific Ocean at 60° N and includes an intricate network of tidewater and inland glaciers, temperate rainforests, islands, barrier islands, wetlands, and freshwater and marine systems. PWS has 4900 km of shoreline and is surrounded by the Chugach Mountains that reach 4,300 m and contains the most extensive system of tidewater glaciers in North America. Most of the land area is in or adjacent to the Chugach National Forest. Of the five PWS communities, only Valdez and Whittier have highway access to the main road system. Access to Cordova is by boat or plane. The community is served by Alaska Marine Highway System ferries and an airport that receives daily commercial airline traffic. Commercial salmon fisheries are the cornerstone of the local economy. The region also supports subsistence and sport fisheries of various species.

The Herring Research and Monitoring program is a long-term research effort studying Pacific herring in Prince William Sound, Alaska.  The long-term goal of the program is to improve predictive models of herring stocks through research and monitoring.  The program is funded by the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council and coordinated by Prince William Sound Science Center.  The program has completed five years of research that focused on overwintering success of age-0 herring, and is three years into a second, five- year phase with a focus on the connection between herring and environmental conditions.

Job Description: The Prince William Sound Science Center (PWSSC; is accepting applications for a Postdoctoral Researcher.  The successful applicant will join the Herring Research and Monitoring (HRM) team.  The applicant will be expected to plan, lead and conduct a behavioral ecology project using acoustic telemetry on Pacific herring.   The goal of the acoustic telemetry project is to clarify the annual migration cycle of PWS adult herring.  The successful applicant will be expected to draw data from existing herring research, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the Gulf Watch Alaska program (, and other sources as necessary.

The successful applicant will be expected to generate peer-reviewed publications.  They will be responsible for submitting reports and annual proposals as required by the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council and NOAA.  They will be expected to assist in the HRM program coordination activities, which requires working with all members of the HRM research team, but their primary role is to conduct research.  The successful applicant must be willing to go to sea approximately twice a year for 6-12 d research cruises in PWS.

The position supervisor is Dr. Mary Anne Bishop.  Other HRM team members the person will be expected to work with include: Drs. Pegau, Gorman, and Rand at PWSSC, Dr. Branch (UW) and Dr. Hershberger (USGS).

The available funding covers salary, benefits, and some travel to interact with researchers at other locations.  The position is to be housed at Prince William Sound Science Center.  There may be an opportunity to transition to a soft money-funded Principal Investigator position, and that an ability in conducting other kinds of complementary research would be supported by the institution if the Principal Investigator wished to pursue it.


The applicant must have completed a Ph.D. in fisheries science, ecology, behavioral science, conservation or a related discipline.  Successful candidates will be expected to have a proven record of peer-reviewed publications.  Must be proficient analyzing data using line scripting language (R, python). Statistical background essential.  Applicants without a Ph.D., but over ten years of research with forage fish will also be considered.  Candidates must be authorized to work in the United States for any U.S. employer and must be prepared to prove their authorization to work in accordance with U.S. Department of Homeland Security requirements.

Compensation: Monthly wages: $5,000 plus benefits.  Benefits include medical insurance, paid leave, and employer matching up to 6% of salary in a 403B retirement savings plan.

Duration: This is a full-time, exempt position supported by a grant with two years of anticipated funding. Funding of the position is reviewed and committed annually.

Starting Date: Between August and October 2019

Review of applications begins: 20 June 2019

To apply:

Send a cover letter explaining your interest in the position and relevant skills, a curriculum vitae, and two or more references (including names, phone numbers and email addresses) to Dr. M.A. Bishop at  Contact Dr. Bishop with any questions you may have about this position.

Position open until filled.

The announcement is available for download as a PDF here.