Opportunities to Work and Study with the Complex Systems Informatics Laboratory at NAU

Faculty Sabbatical, EPSCoR, and Fulbright Fellows

  • Junior Faculty from US EPSCoR States are eligible to apply for the Research Fellows program, funding up to 6 months of collaboration at a FEWSION partner institution.
  • Fulbright Scholars from non-US countries are invited to study with a FEWSION partner.
  • Faculty on Sabbatical are invited to study with a FEWSION partner.

Student Opportunities

Northern Arizona University’s School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems (SICCS, http://nau.edu/siccs/) is recruiting Ph.D. students with graduate research fellowships supported by the FEWSION project. Study Food, Water, and Energy Systems resilience in an interdisciplinary Informatics graduate program, alongside the FEWSION project office and scientists, in beautiful Flagstaff, Arizona! Allied graduate programs and centers at NAU provide additional collaborative and degree opportunities, including the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society (Ecoss, http://ecoss.nau.edu/) and the School of Earth Sciences and Environmental Sustainability (SESES, http://nau.edu/cefns/natsci/seses/). Women and minorities are particularly encouraged to apply. Self-funded Professional M.S. students are also welcome. Contact the FEWSION Project Office at FEWSION@nau.edu with inquiries. The final application deadline is in mid-January, but you should inquire and apply immediately for full consideration on fellowship and teaching assistantship opportunities. See the SICCS website for more information (http://nau.edu/SICCS/Academics/PhD-INF/).

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.

Staff Opportunities

The FEWSION Project Office at Northern Arizona University (Flagstaff, AZ), in partnership with the Desert Research Institute (Reno, NV) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL, Golden, CO) is informally seeking to hire one researcher at the PhD student, Postdoctoral, or Professional rank to lead a nationally scoped PLEXOS modeling study of the U.S. power grid. The duty location and rank have not yet been determined and may be flexible, but the position will likely involve travel to NREL for some period of time. Potentially interested researchers should contact the FEWSION project’s Director, Ben Ruddell, with informal inquiries, at benjamin.ruddell (at) nau.edu. A formal job description may be released in early 2018, and the position will be likely be based out of DRI or NAU; there is no application deadline at this time.

FEWSION is seeking to fill a Postdoctoral position based out of the project office at Northern Arizona University (NAU) in beautiful Flagstaff, Arizona, with temporary duty locations possibly including Reno, NV (DRI) and Tempe, AZ (ASU). The position is open immediately until filled. Candidates should demonstrate strong scientific writing, quantitative analysis, and programming skills. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply; NAU is an AA/EEO/MWDV employer. A background check is required. Direct inquiries to Ben Ruddell at benjamin.ruddell (at) nau.edu.  Salary Range:  $45,000 - $55,000 (postdoctoral) Depending Upon Qualifications, Job ID: 603514, visit https://nau.edu/Human-Resources/Careers/Staff-Welcome-Page/

FEWSION is seeking a Data Scientist to take a leadership role on the construction and curation of core FEWSION project datasets, and on their documentation and accessibility via data models and API’s. The position is based out of the FEWSION project office at Northern Arizona University (NAU) in beautiful Flagstaff, Arizona. The position is open immediately until filled. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply; NAU is an AA/EEO/MWDV employer. A background check is required. Direct inquiries to Ben Ruddell at benjamin.ruddell (at) nau.edu. Salary Range:  $41,000 - $64,000 (grade 52) Depending Upon Qualifications, Job ID: 603516, visit https://nau.edu/Human-Resources/Careers/Staff-Welcome-Page/

PLACE4FEWS is a citizen science project that is extending FEWSION to map and study local community food, energy, and water critical infrastructures. FEWSION is seeking a Senior Systems Programmer to lead the integration of FEWSION data with critical infrastructure software transportation models, including models developed at the national laboratories. The position is based out of the FEWSION project office at Northern Arizona University (NAU) in beautiful Flagstaff, Arizona. The position is open immediately until filled. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply; NAU is an AA/EEO/MWDV employer. A background check is required. Direct inquiries to Ben Ruddell at benjamin.ruddell (at) nau.edu. Salary Range:  $69,000-$88,000 (grade 66) Depending Upon Qualifications, Job ID:  603515, visit https://nau.edu/Human-Resources/Careers/Staff-Welcome-Page/

Master Classes

CUAHSI (www.cuahsi.org) offered a Master Class on Water Sustainability in a Global Economy on May 16-29, 2017 in Flagstaff, Arizona (Link to: https://www.cuahsi.org/education/training/past-trainings-and-workshops/)

The class is open to graduate students interested in the FEWSION project’s methods and data. The class is taught by Megan Konar (UIUC) and Ben Ruddell (NAU), along with other participating FEWSION scientists. The course charges a modest fee and requires that students cover travel costs, but some discounts and scholarships may be available for early registrants. The class will probably be offered biannually; send an email inquiry to Ben Ruddell and/or the CUAHSI staff to be placed on the interest list for information about the next offering.

Courses at NAU

Informatics for Smart and Sustainable Cities, INF622 at NAU

This course offers a problem-oriented and project-based curriculum, focused on analytics and data that inform the sustainability, policies, planning, and management of a modern city. Students will learn to use data and analysis tools to quantitatively study city resource use, footprints, productivity, safety, demographics, and development, including GIS applications and use of databases, sensor data, and the synthesis and fusion of diverse local, state, and federal datasets. Students will engage with staff from the City of Flagstaff and NAU’s Facilities and Sustainability offices to learn about problems and solutions, and to complete projects to help solve current campus and city problems. This course is relevant to quantitatively-oriented students of engineering, planning, sustainability, and policy.

INF599: Informatics for Community Food, Energy, and Water Systems

This course deploys a process originally developed by NAU researchers under NSF funding (PLACE4FEWS) and later translated into a curriculum meant for broad use in university classrooms and communities, offering that curriculum to NAU students for credit. This course engages students in collecting data on the physical structure and stakeholder networks of their local critical infrastructure Food, Energy, and Water (FEW) systems in Flagstaff. Students will network with community leaders and stakeholders, NGO’s, private sector FEW businesses, utilities, infrastructure planners and engineers, emergency managers, and volunteers who contribute to the successful operation of the system. Students will employ field work to construct a detailed map of the system and contribute to an ongoing annual effort to quantify Flagstaff’s FEW systems. Training on software and data systems specialized for FEW supply chains will be delivered. The sustainability, equity, and security of the system will be studied and measured. Student projects will employ these relationships and data to study how policy and action can improve the local FEW system. Graduate students with interests in sustainability, public policy and leadership, planning, electrical/environmental/civil engineering, geography, infrastructure, logistics, business continuity, military science, or emergency management will benefit the most from this class.

Living and Studying in Flagstaff

  • Northern Arizona University is a world class research community for earth science, ecology, climate science, and now informatics, among other disciplines.
  • Flagstaff is a top small college town for quality of life.
  • Flagstaff has some of the best weather in the U.S., with its southern latitude and 7000’ high elevation.
  • Flagstaff has a great ski resort.
  • Flagstaff is less than an hour from the world-class outdoor destinations in the Grand Canyon and Sedona, and 2-3 hours from the winter sports and entertainment venues of Phoenix and Las Vegas; both Alpine and Sonoran Desert weather are less than an hour away.
  • Flagstaff is a “dark sky city” and a hotspot for astronomy
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