Now hiring: Postdoctoral Scholar

Post-Doctoral Scholar in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences and Climate Change

University of Washington: Academic Personnel: School of Public Health: Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences


Seattle, WA

Open Date

Nov 8, 2019


The Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS) at the University of Washington (UW) School of Public Health, in conjunction with the Climate Impacts Group (CIG) at the UW College of the Environment and the UW Center for Health and the Global Environment (CHanGE) seek an outstanding Post-Doctoral Scholar to assist in developing a cumulative impact analysis (CIA) to designate communities highly impacted by fossil fuel pollution and climate change in Washington State. This work will require both using climate model outputs to evaluate population impacts (including but not limited to health impacts) as well as health impacts assessment of fossil fuel pollution in the state; it represents a unique opportunity to work across the fields of public health and climate change, with access to leading experts in DEOHS, the CIG, and CHanGE. While the position will be housed under DEOHS, extensive cross-disciplinary interaction is anticipated. This effort is also an opportunity to conduct research in support of public policy objectives by collaborating with the Washington State Department of Health to implement the CIA provisions (section 24) of the Clean Energy Transformation Act.

This effort will require an outstanding candidate who can work creatively with a variety of climate, demographic, and health-related datasets and understood exposure-outcome associations to establish a solid and defensible foundation for version 1.0 of a CIA. We expect this effort to use the Washington Tracking Network’s (WTN) Information by Location (IBL) mapping tool. It will likely be similar in nature to the recently released Environmental Health Disparities Map. The project will involve both 1) establishing the differential environmental and health impacts of climate change, and 2) establishing the differential health impacts of fossil fuel pollution. The challenges posed by this effort are significant, and we need a creative, critical thinker to help work through them. Some of the technical challenges include (but are not limited to):

  • Which climate variables to include in the analysis
  • Which intermediate environmental and demographic variables to include 
  • Which health indicators to include
  • Which (and how many) timeframes and socioeconomic scenarios should be included
  • How to downscale, upscale, and/or interpolate existing data to census tract level
  • How to modify the existing WTN IBL tool to visualize future projections 
  • How to communicate potential bias based on variable selection and data availability
  • How to communicate uncertainty from various sources without undermining decision-utility

The successful candidate will be ready to engage with these considerations using a creative, data-driven approach. We are looking for a critical thinker who is comfortable working with the various datasets required for this project and consulting with topical experts as needed to make progress on developing the CIA. Foremost, this requires an entrepreneurial attitude and an ability to make steady progress independently while relying on key experts housed in different UW units and at the State for answering the challenging interdisciplinary questions raised by this project. 

The successful candidate will receive an academic appointment as a Post-Doctoral Scholar. The position is intended to extend professional training for a candidate who recently received a terminal Ph.D. degree or foreign equivalent. Opportunities for continued training are available. The fellow will work directly with Dr. Jeremy Hess of CHanGE and Dr. Jason Vogel of CIG, with regular and direct conversations with other DEOHS and CIG faculty and staff.

Postdoctoral scholars are represented by UAW 4121 and are subject to the collective bargaining agreement, unless agreed exclusion criteria apply. For more information, please visit the University of Washington Labor Relations website.


  • PhD or foreign equivalent in public health (e.g. environmental or occupational health sciences, epidemiology), climate sciences, or another related field (e.g. economics, demography, urban planning)
  • Strong quantitative analytical skills, particularly with large population level and/or climate model output  datasets 
  • Demonstrated proficiency with statistical programs such as R, Stata, SAS, or Python
  • Familiarity with the practice of health impact assessment and scenario-based modeling
  • Ability to work independently as well as part of an interdisciplinary research team
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills

Interest and/or experience with geographic information systems (GIS), data visualization, interdisciplinary work, manuscript-writing, grant-writing, student mentorship, and project management is preferred but not required.

Application Instructions

To apply for this position, please submit your application via Interfolio: CV, the names along with contact information of three professional references, and a statement of interest outlining your previous research experience and future career goals.

Questions can be directed to Dr. Jason Vogel ( 

The position will be open until filled. This is a grant- and project-funded, renewable, 18-month appointment and carries up to two years of funding starting as early as the fall of 2019. Salary will be competitive and based upon candidate qualifications and experience. Full University benefits are included.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

University of Washington is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, genetic information, gender identity or expression, age, disability, or protected veteran status.

Commitment to Diversity

The University of Washington is committed to building diversity among its faculty, librarian, staff, and student communities, and articulates that commitment in the UW Diversity Blueprint ( Additionally, the University’s Faculty Code recognizes faculty efforts in research, teaching and/or service that address diversity and equal opportunity as important contributions to a faculty member’s academic profile and responsibilities (

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