Research and Employment Opportunities

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Updated 2018-07-23

Post-Doctoral Position in Centre for Urban Environments - University of Toronto Mississauga
3359 Mississauga Rd. Mississauga ON L5L 1C6,
Canada web:
twitter: @CUE_
U of T phone: 905-569-4484 

The Centre for Urban Environments (CUE) ( is seeking applications for two post-doctoral researchers to study any topic related to urban environments (including cities, towns and villages) in the social sciences, natural sciences or humanities at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM). CUE is a new academic centre with the mission of providing local, national and global leadership in research, education, policy and outreach on urban environmental issues. Topics of research by CUE post-docs may include, but are not restricted to: policy related to the impact of climate change on cities, urban ecology and conservation, urban socioecology, pollution and ecosystem health in cities, urban evolutionary biology, urban anthropology including historical and contemporary indigenous communities, human health in cities, the economy of the city environment, the role of art in urban landscapes, and more. Proposed research that bridges traditional disciplines is an asset and should be highlighted in the cover letter and research statement. Before applying, applicants should identify and contact at least two potential supervisors at UTM, who will jointly supervise and are willing to support their application.To find potential supervisors, please see faculty listed in the following UTM departments:

Department of Anthropology -
Department of Biology -
Department of Geography -
Department of Political Science -

Faculty from other UTM departments are also eligible to sponsor applications provided they are open to working on urban environmental issues.

In addition to conducting original research, the CUE post-docs are expected to contribute to the broader mission of CUE, which may include giving academic and public lectures, hosting seminar speakers or organizing a workshop.

The University of Toronto is the leading academic institution in Canada and among the top universities in the world. The UTM campus offers excellent facilities for research (wet and dry lab infrastructure, growth chambers, greenhouses), high performance cluster computing, geospatial computing labs, access to census and other social data products, online survey tools (e.g. Qualtrics), world-class libraries, housing, and 90 hectares of fields, forests, trails and a wild salmon/trout river for research and recreation. We also have strong relationships with local and regional governments, conservation authorities, NGOs and private industry. The cities of Toronto and Mississauga are interconnected and culturally diverse, with many restaurants, excellent transit systems, a diversity of cultural activities (galleries, museums, theatres, sports, bars, clubs), and an abundance of parks and water.

Please submit applications to the Director of CUE, Prof. Marc Johnson ( Questions about CUE can be directed to the Director, including a list of faculty.

Additional details are as follows:

Starting salary: $45,000 CDN + benefits and $5,000/year in research funds (more research funds may be provided by supervisors)
Start date: Flexible, but preferably before Dec. 1, 2018

Duration: 2 years (conditional on favourable annual performance review)

Application Deadline: Review of applications will commence August 15

Applications should include: i) a cover letter (please identify the potential supervisors in this letter); ii) full CV; iii) a one-page research statement indicating the planned research and how the applicant plans to contribute to the mission of CUE; iv) examples of up to three publications and/or creative works; and iv) contact information for three references.

Employment as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto is covered by the terms of the CUPE 3902 Unit 5 Collective Agreement and this job is posted in accordance with the collective agreement. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.



The Baltimore Ecosystem Study (BES) is now accepting applications for two Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) positions for the summer of 2018! 


Students will perform cutting-edge research of immediate relevance to people in urban areas as part of the BES Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program in Baltimore, MD ( In addition to their individual research projects, students will participate in BES seminars, and in selected activities in the Urban Water Innovation Network (UWIN) Undergraduate Research Program ( and the Cary Institute REU program ( Students with interests in urban social ecological systems, aquatic or terrestrial ecology or related fields are encouraged to apply.


To apply:

Application deadline: Rolling. Applications will be reviewed starting February 12, 2018.

Dates: Up to 10 weeks between June 4 and August 10, 2018. Specific dates to be determined by student and mentor.

Eligibility:  Undergraduate freshmen, sophomores, juniors or first semester seniors. Must be citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. or its possessions.

Support: $525/week stipend, assistance with room and board on-campus or in nearby housing, travel assistance.


Projects for 2018:

A) Baltimore Old Forests Project.

Mentors: Dr. John Lagrosa (Center for Urban Environmental Research and Education (CUERE), University of Maryland Baltimore County) and Nancy Sonti (US Forest Service Baltimore Field Station).

B) The Effect of Urbanization on Riparian Spiders.

Mentors: Dr. Christine Hawn (University of Maryland Baltimore County), Dr. Emma Rosi (Cary Institute) and Dr. Chris Swan (University of Maryland Baltimore County).


For more information: Contact Dr. Alan R. Berkowitz, BES Education Team Leader, Phone: (845)-677-7600 ext. 311, Email:


Detailed Project Descriptions:

A) Baltimore Old Forests Project.

Mentors: Dr. John Lagrosa (Center for Urban Environmental Research and Education (CUERE), University of Maryland Baltimore County) and Nancy Sonti (US Forest Service Baltimore Field Station).


We are working to understand the relationships among people, communities, and forests in Baltimore over the past 100 years. The distribution of landscapes that seem like “nature” or “wilderness” are actually the result of complex social histories. These insights will help contribute to local agency and non-profit goals for a more equitable future urban forest landscape for Baltimore City. The REU student will use several sources of historical aerial imagery to characterize change in Baltimore City’s forest cover over time (1926-27, 1937-38, 1952-53, 1964, and 1972). The student will gain skills in archival research, georectification, and land use classification using ArcGIS software. In addition, the student will have the opportunity to analyze the resulting historical forest patch data alongside other long-term social, economic, and ecological data sets for insights into which forest patches have been relatively stable or dynamic, and why. Finally, the student may work with scientists from the US Forest Service and the University of Maryland Baltimore County to expand the project onto a crowdsourced citizen science platform. Students with an interest in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), forest ecology, history, and/or citizen science are encouraged to apply.


B) The Effect of Urbanization on Riparian Spiders.

Mentors: Dr. Christine Hawn (University of Maryland Baltimore County), Dr. Emma Rosi (Cary Institute) and Dr. Chris Swan (University of Maryland Baltimore County).

Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) have been detected in a variety of natural environments across the world. Although reported concentrations are generally low, PPCPs can persist in the environment for months to years. PPCPS are biologically active compounds that are designed to influence specific functions and behaviors in target humans and animals. The potential effects of active PPCPs in the environment on human and environmental health are a major concern for groups like the World Health Organization. BES researchers have detected PPCPs in Baltimore streams, however, the extent of exposure throughout the urban environment is unknown. The REU student will design a study to explore the effects of urban stream subsidies on riparian spiders and examine the concentrations of PPCPs in spiders, as indicators of the movement of these contaminants from urban streams to terrestrial consumers.  The student will sample tetragnathid spiders from streams along an urban rural gradient to measure the effects of urbanization in general on spider population density, body condition, and food availability. In addition, analysis of PPCPs levels in spider tissues can help determine whether there are relationships between these variables and PPCP concentrations.



Four Positions Available: Three Postdocs and a Research Support Specialist ("RA") for social-ecological assessment of green infrastructure.

Our interdisciplinary, social-ecological research team is pleased to announce the availability of four research positions to assist with a project entitled, "Environment, Health, and Poverty: is Green Infrastructure a Universal Good?"

We use green infrastructure to investigate the relationships between environment, health, and poverty in cities. Improved scientific knowledge is required to support better use of green infrastructure in light of the needs and constraints in underserved neighborhoods. To support this goal, the project identifies three objectives: 1) to document the biophysical environment and social context of existing and proposed green infrastructure projects in Baltimore, MD, where we have a long history of research and engagement, and which is home to significant underserved populations; 2) to understand how residents, particularly those in underserved neighborhoods, perceive and relate to existing and potential green infrastructure projects; and 3) to evaluate how sustainability plans in various cities conceive of green infrastructure and its relationship to social processes. Our research is intended to support a civic outcome of an improved and more equitable use of green infrastructure.

 A brief overview of the currently available positions and links to the formal, detailed advertisements with equal opportunity statements, are below:

 We will employ three postdoctoral associates, one for each of the three objectives:

·         Post Doc I: Postdoctoral Research Associate -Spatial Context of Green Infrastructure in an Urban Landscape (AJL ID# 833942), housed at UC Davis (;

·         Post Doc II: Social Perceptions of Green Infrastructure in Baltimore Neighborhoods (; and

·         Post Doc III: Document Analysis of the Sustainability or Other Relevant Plans of Baltimore and 15 Additional Cities (  Post Docs II and III will be housed at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook NY.  All will occasionally travel to Baltimore as part of the project.

 We are currently seeking the first of several Research Support Specialists to assist with Objective III, and this person will be housed at either the Cary Institute in Millbrook, or The New School University in New York City (

 The senior research team consists of Joshua Ginsberg, Steward Pickett, Emma Rosi, and Shannon LaDeau at the Cary Institute, Timon McPhearson at the Cary Institute and the New School University, Mary Cadenasso at the University of California Davis, Peter Groffman at the Advanced Science Research Center of the City University of New York, and Morgan Grove at the USDA Forest Service.