Research Associate

Research Associate – Impacts of Marine Ecosystem Variability on the Southern Resident Killer Whale (SRKW) Population in the Salish Sea

A full time Research Associate (RA) position is available with the Marine Mammal Research Unit, Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries at The University of British Columbia. The research that will be undertaken contributes to understanding why Chinook salmon have declined, the factors that influence their numbers, distributions and quality as prey, and factors affecting their accessibility to southern resident killer whales.

The successful candidate will have a PhD in Oceanography with knowledge of biological and physical oceanographic processes, and experience in net sampling and remote sensing techniques as well as acoustic data analysis. The applicant must be skilled in using and calibrating scientific echosounders on research vessels, and be able to undertake spatial and temporal analysis of multi-frequency echosounders across multiple trophic levels. The applicant must also be able to analyze hydroacoustic data using Echoview and Matlab, and have experience using zooplankton nets and midwater trawls.

The applicant should be self-motivated and able to work independently. The applicant must have a strong research publication record and proven record of collaborative research, excellent verbal and written communication with a strong research publication record in peer reviewed scientific journals.


  • Undertaking summer and winter research cruises to collect hydroacoustic and biological data to characterize sub-regional, regional and seasonal variability in the habitat and prey of southern resident killer whales with respect to primary food web constituents. Key activities to include conducting hydroacoustic and trawl surveys to map prey distribution and conducting visual surveys to identify foraging hotspots.
  • Collaborating with colleagues on the planning and collection of data.
  • Communicating results at departmental seminars, and at regional, national and international meetings.
  • Preparing and publishing papers in scientific journals on the above.
  • Miscellaneous other duties.

This position will begin on January 1, 2018. Deadline for applications: December 3, 2017

To apply, please visit
Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.