Spatio-temporal Isotope Analytics Lab (Spatial)
Professor Gabriel Bowen
University of Utah - Department of Geology & Geophysics








ORIGIN Graduate Fellows

The ORIGIN project for isotope-enabled movement research and University of Utah SPATIAL group invite applications for the ORIGIN graduate fellows program. These 1-semester fellowships will provide partial stipend support ($8,000) for graduate students to pursue research using data infrastructure and computational tools developed by the ORIGIN team, including water and Sr isoscapes (waterisotopes.org), the IsoMAP geospatial modeling platform (IsoMAP.org), and the assignR R-package. Fellowships projects will be conducted during spring semester (Jan - April), 2021, and we anticipate that all work will be occur remotely.

Applicants should prepare a short (1-2 page) project description describing the scientific problem and research design they would like to tackle during the fellowship period. Research areas of interest including movement ecology, conservation, forensic anthropology, and archaeology. Ideal projects will focus on the H, O, Sr or other biologically-relevant isotope systems and either 1) development and vetting of study design, or 2) analysis and interpretation of isotope data to assess movement history or origin. The program will not support the collection of new data. The ORIGIN team will provide training and support on existing tools and work with the fellows to develop any additional capacity required by the project. Projects are expected to involve substantive collaboration between the fellows and ORIGIN project members, lead to publishable scientific research, and potentially drive new software and/or database developments of use to the broader research community.

Applications can be submitted to Gabe Bowen, and should include the project description, a CV, and a brief letter of support from the student's primary advisor (which should be sent directly). Applications must be received by September 30th, 2020, and offers of support will be made by October 16th.

Postdoctoral Positions

The SPATIAL group at the University of Utah is recruiting as many as three postdoctoral researchers. Apply here

Position 1 - Data science for environmental isotopes.This individual will collaborate with members of the wiDB, IsoMAP, ORIGIN, and/or IsoBank projects to develop and apply data resources and software tools that support the ecological, forensic, and/or environmental sciences. We welcome applicants whose primary interests lie in databases and data management or scientific software development, as well as individuals interested in advancing the scientific applications of such resources. Preferred start: summer/fall 2020.

Position 2 - O isotope signatures of human bioapatite.This individual will help lead an effort to develop and analyze an unprecedented dataset documenting spatial patterns in human enamel and bone apatite oxygen isotope ratios as part of the HIS_ID project. We welcome applicants with background and interests in analytical geochemistry, forensic anthropology, or ecology who are eager to document and explore connections between environmental and human tissue isotopic compositions. Preferred start: fall/winter 2020-2021.

Position 3 - Isoscape modeling for human forensics.This individual will develop, validate, and apply predictive spatial models for human tissue isotope ratios in collaboration with the HIS_ID project. We welcome applications from creative, quantitatively-minded researchers with expertise in GIS-science or spatial ecology or environmental science who are motivated to explore problems related to human identification and provenance. Preferred start: 2021.

All positions require a doctorate degree in a relevant field. Prior experience with stable isotope applications is preferred. Successful applicants for all positions will be curious problem-solvers with strong quantitative, logical, and organizational skills, self-motivation and capacity for independent work, and the ability to communicate effectively and collaborate as part of a team.

Applications should include a brief cover letter describing the applicant's interest in and qualifications for one or more positions, a current CV, two samples of the applicant's scientific writing, and contact information for three professional references. Applications will be accepted immediately and until the positions are filled via this link. Appointments will be made for an initial one-year period, renewable assuming satisfactory performance and availability of funding.

All positions are based in the Department of Geology and Geophysics in beautiful Salt Lake City, Utah and offer competitive salary and medical benefits. Successful applicants will have opportunities to contribute to the SPATIAL summer course. The SPATIAL group values diversity and offers and promotes activities and organizations that mentor and support all of its members and their personal and professional development.

The University of Utah is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and is committed to diversity in its workforce. In compliance with applicable federal and state laws, University of Utah policy of equal employment opportunity prohibits discrimination on the basis of race or ethnicity, religion, color, national origin, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, veteran's status, status as a qualified person with a disability, or genetic information. Individuals from historically underrepresented groups, such as minorities, women, qualified persons with disabilities, and protected veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. Veterans' preference is extended to qualified applicants, upon request and consistent with University policy and Utah state law.

To inquire about this posting, email: gabe.bowen@utah.edu. Reasonable accommodations in the application process will be provided to qualified individuals with disabilities. To request an accommodation or for further information about University AA/EO policies, please contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, 201 S. Presidents Cr., Rm 135, (801) 581-8365 (V/TDD), email: oeo@umail.utah.edu.

Graduate Student Opportunities

We are always looking for smart, motivated, and curious students to join the SPATIAL group. If you have a strong background in geology, chemistry, hydrology, or ecology and are interested in pursuing interdisciplinary work focused on globally significant environmental issues please contact Gabe. Postdocs, graduate students, and undergraduates in the SPATIAL group have access to state-of-the-art isotope ratio mass spectrometric instrumentation through the UU-SIRFER facility and opportunities to interact and collaborate with a wide range of scholars through the campus-wide Global Change and Sustainability Center.


Geology & Geophysics
Fredrick Albert Sutton Building
115 S 1460 E
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
801-585-7925 gabe.bowen@utah.edu
University of Utah