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CIRES/NOAA PSL Postdoctoral Associate in Subseasonal Fire Predictions

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado





Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Date Posted:


Job Summary

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) in Boulder, Colorado is seeking a highly motivated Postdoctoral Research Associate to conduct research on wildland fire predictions at the NOAA Physical Sciences Laboratory (PSL). The successful candidate will join a team of CIRES and federal scientists in the Hydrology Applications Division, and their principal duties will include developing novel forecast methods relevant to wildland fire on subseasonal to seasonal time scales. The successful candidate will have excellent technical and communication skills and be comfortable working in a team environment. This is a two-year position with the possibility of extension based on performance and the availability of funding.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

CIRES is an internationally recognized leader in innovative environmental science and research and is located at the University of Colorado Boulder. At CIRES, more than 950 environmental science professionals work to understand the dynamic Earth system, including people’s relationship with the planet. CIRES has partnered with NOAA since 1967, and our areas of expertise include weather and climate, changes at Earth’s poles, air quality and atmospheric chemistry, water resources, solid Earth sciences, and more. Our vision is to be instrumental in ensuring a sustainable future environment by advancing scientific and societal understanding of the Earth system.

Physical Sciences Laboratory

Our mission is to conduct scientific research to observe, understand, model, predict and forecast weather, water and climate extremes and their impacts. Our vision is an informed society that uses science-based environmental intelligence to effectively anticipate and respond to threats and opportunities related to weather, water and climate extremes. Our research goals are as follows:

  • Rigorously characterize and predict weather, water, and climate extremes and their uncertainties to support NOAA's mission.
  • Develop new process understanding, observing, and modeling capabilities to predict conditions associated with too much or too little water for early warning, preparedness, resource management, and adaptation.
  • Improve monitoring and prediction of weather, climate, and water conditions impacting marine resources.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Develop novel machine learning algorithms (especially artificial neural network algorithms) to produce hydroclimatic forecasts two-to-six weeks in the future relevant to wildland fire that are pertinent to the missions of NOAA, PSL, and their partners.
  • Work collaboratively with researchers from many earth science disciplines.
  • Apply research expertise that is portable to different regions of the United States.
  • Effectively share research results with colleagues and the broader science community through white papers, peer-reviewed publications, and presentations.

What You Should Know

  • This is a 2-year appointment.
  • This position will be rostered in CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder but will be physically situated in the David Skaggs Research Center, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305.
  • If you are selected for this position you will be required to pass a federal laboratory background clearance for site access. Non-US citizens without green cards may have limited building access, and require an escort in the building.
  • Normal working hours will be observed except for occasional irregular hours during data collection or conferences/workshops conducted at remote sites.

What We Can Offer

  • CIRES can offer a generous compensation package.
  • The annual hiring salary range for this position is $63,000 - $70,000. Salary is commensurate with experience and determined based on our CIRES internal career track classification
  • Relocation funds are available for this position following CIRES and the University of Colorado’s relocation processes and procedures.
  • This position can accommodate a hybrid work modality.
  • CIRES and the University of Colorado Boulder offer a robust training curriculum, opportunities for professional development and a Mentorship Program.
  • Boulder is a vibrant community with access to mountain parks, dog parks, miles of trails, rivers, lakes, cafes, restaurants, boutiques, theaters, museums, and sports venues. Boulder was recently ranked as one of the top places to live in the U.S. by U.S. News.
  • As an employee at CU Boulder, you receive a pass allowing free access to the regional public transit system, which is an outstanding network of buses and light rail systems that provide service within Boulder and connect to Denver, the Denver airport, and surrounding communities.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be ambitious. Be groundbreaking. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • A Ph.D. in a physical science, mathematics, statistics, computer science, or related discipline with expertise in subseasonal forecasting.
  • At least one year of experience implementing machine learning and or deep learning techniques to environmental science data.
  • A strong publication and presentation record that is commensurate with experience.
  • Experience developing structured code in commonly used languages.

What You Will Need

  • Excellence in oral and written communication
  • Excellence in self-guided, motivated, and original research
  • Strong interpersonal skills to facilitate team building and knowledge sharing
  • Ability to work in an inclusive and collaborative team environment.

Special Instructions

Please include the following materials with your application:

  1. CV or Resume.
  2. Cover Letter addressed to the Hiring Committee describing your qualifications and specific interest in this position. The cover letter should not exceed two pages.
  3. If you are selected as a finalist, we will ask you to contact 5 professional references (including 2 supervisors/professors) and ask them to complete a SkillSurvey questionnaire on your behalf. SkillSurvey is an online automated reference check solution. This information will be kept confidential and viewable only by the search committee members.

If you are selected for the position, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources department using an approved online vendor. If your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version as an optional attachment.

Applications will be reviewed as they are received. This position will remain posted until finalists have been identified.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Nachiketa Acharya

Posting Contact Email: