Three Fully Funded Masters Positions in Human/Climate Interactions & Forecasting

Max Liboiron's picture
Type: 
Fellowship
Date: 
December 1, 2015
Location: 
Canada
Subject Fields: 
Anthropology, Environmental History / Studies, Geography, Public Health, Sociology

Three Fully Funded Masters Positions in Human/Climate Interactions & Forecasting

The Applied Climatology Lab with Memorial University’s Dept. of Geography is seeking graduate applicants for multiple MSc and MA positions. Successful candidates will research the intersection of natural and social sciences, while collaborating with partners in industry and government.  Any students with interests in weather, climate, and related impacts on society are encouraged to contact Joel Finnis (jfinnis@mun.ca). All positions are fully funded, and students can choose from several degree options (see below).

Current graduate opportunities

Improving forecasts of Grand Banks fog (MSc; Geography, Math & Stats, or Env Sci)

Located near the intersection of the cold Labrador Current and warm Gulf Stream, the Grand Banks of Newfoundland experience frequent heavy fog events. These pose a hazard to marine workers and a significant challenge to marine forecasters.  We are seeking an MSc student with interests in weather and marine hazards to test novel approaches to improving fog forecast reliability.  The successful candidate will have a unique opportunity to work across academic, industry, and government sectors, collaborating with partners at AMEC Environment and Infrastructure and Environment Canada. Funded through the Marine Environment Observation Prediction and Response (MEOPAR) Network.   

Forecast attitudes and application in Atlantic Canada (MA; Geography, Sociology, Anthropology, or Env Sci)

Even a perfect weather forecast is only useful if it is i) efficiently communicated and ii) acted upon.  Unfortunately, a range of factors can constrain the effectiveness of forecasts for particular uses and their uptake and application. These might include (among others):  limited understanding of user needs among forecasters, problems with spatial and temporal scale, or lack of capacity to respond to forecasts. The nature and consequences of these factors likely varies between forecast users (i.e. oil and gas companies vs fish harvesters), leading to different requirements for and approaches to forecast data across stakeholder groups.  We are seeking an MA candidate with strong interpersonal skills to examine the constraints on effectiveness of weather forecasting across industry sectors, and help identify strategies for addressing these constraints. Work experience and knowledge of the marine sector would be an asset. Funded through MEOPAR; partners include SafetyNet.

 

Climate variability perception (MA; Geography, Community Health, or Sociology)

Climate is never constant; from year to year, the state of the climate varies from cool to warm, wet to dry, stormy to sunny.  Although these variations are a prominent aspect of research in the natural sciences, they have largely been ignored in research into social science aspects of climate change (e.g. climate change perception, or attitudes towards climate action).  The result is a limited understanding of how or when to best communicate information on variability/change; this can lead to confusing climate science communication or discussion unusual events (e.g. the ‘polar vortex’ winter of 2013/14).  Our project aims to fill this knowledge gap by assessing ways people discuss variability, and assimilate experienced variability into a broader understanding of climate change.  Two MAs will assist this research, conducting interviews and focus groups in selected research communities. Funded through SSHRC.

Contact Info: 
Joel Finnis

Department of Geography
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John's, NL
A1B 3X9

 

Office: SN 1043
Tel: (709) 864-8987
Fax: (709) 864-3119

E mail: jfinnis@mun.ca

Contact Email: