Research Associate

Research Associate

Type of offer:

The CO2RE programme is recruiting a postdoctoral researcher (PDRA) to investigate the socioeconomic and ecological (including biodiversity) outcomes of different pathways to achieving net zero in the UK. The research will blend empirical work with simulation modelling to understand the timeframes and spatial scales over which the different, biological approaches to GGR can enhance carbon stores and reduce GHG emissions, whilst also supporting biodiversity, human adaptation to climate change and food security.

To robustly assess sustainability criteria for all GGR options, the PDRA will work with other CO2RE team members to define a set of social and ecological criteria in the context of UK landscapes based on i) existing criteria, ii) feedback from local and national stakeholders during workshops and visits to demonstrator sites, and iii) by systematically reviewing existing grey and peer-reviewed literature on the efficacy and broader social- ecological outcomes of land-based and other GGR approaches. They will ensure coherent evaluation of the Demonstrators against these criteria and seek to fill priority evidence gaps.  In tandem, to develop a systems view of GGR scale-up that fully accounts for broader outcomes, the PDRA integrate social-ecological criteria using the FABLE-UK calculator and will explore models to account for international trade in food, biomass and minerals. Using this systems approach, they will assess GGR deployment in the UK under a set of scenarios in line with the analysis of policy options and business models generated by other team members. They will then test findings with stakeholders to develop policy insights and tools for practitioners. These insights and tools will be used to create a new, expanded section of the policy and evidence platforms) focussed on UK land-based GGR.

The work conducted by the PDRA will contribute to the development of targets for inclusion in the Nationally Determined Contributions, as well as to ongoing processes involving the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Sustainable Development Goals and Environmental Land Management (ELM) under Defra’s 25 Year Environment Plan. The focus will be targets and indicators for GGR that support both adaptation to and mitigation of climate change, as well as targets that enable policy cohesion between UNFCCC and the CBD. The PDRA will also input into government road maps for scaling up NbS in the UK and will help develop investor guidelines on value and limits of working with nature to support net zero pathways.

The post holder will be based in the Nature-based Solutions Initiative (NbSI, Department of Zoology), but will work as part of a large team of natural, social and physical scientists based in the School of Geography, as part of the CO2RE team, as well as colleagues in Bristol. Achieving impact with this initiative will involve engagement with NGOs, industry and regulators, and the public. Building on existing funding and consortia, the Fellow will help to establish a stake-holder forum where knowledge can be exchanged, and best practices carried forward. Outreach and scientific communication will be delivered through public lectures, documentaries, web material, etc.

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates who are under-represented in academic posts in Oxford.

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