Identifying Causes of Hydrological Disturbances Under Changing Climate: A Statistical Machine Learning approach

Posting Expiry

1 February 2021 - 12:00am

Please refer to reference number PDFO-54573 when applying for this position.


The Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences in collaboration with the Departments of Statistics at UBC and Simon Fraser University invite applications for a recently (CANSSI CRT) funded Post-Doc position on “Identifying Causes of Hydrological Disturbances Under Changing Climate: A Statistical Machine Learning approach”.

Project Aim:

Research will be conducted under the supervision of Dr. Ali Ameli and will include interactions with a collaborative mentoring team comprised of investigators at UBC’s Statistics and SFU’s Statistics spanning expertise in Hydrology, Climatology, Functional Data Analysis, and Gaussian Process. The successful candidate will develop new generalizable statistical learning tools using multivariate functional data to

  1. identify causes and consequences of hydrological disturbances (e.g., flood, drought, drought-driven wildfire);
  2. identify individual and interactive controls on landscape vulnerability to multi-dimensional hydrological disturbances; and
  3. reflect the bi-directional feedbacks between hydrological disturbances and the functions of earth systems.

In doing so, the successful candidate will work with a recently-developed database.  Opportunities are available for professional development in grant writing, scientific communication, mentorship and leadership.

The ideal candidates will have:   

  • Sound knowledge of statistical methods for causal inference
  • Experience with learning from high-dimensional data and/or multivariate functional data
  • Experience with model scripting/programming
  • Basic knowledge of GIS tools and techniques
  • Basic knowledge of hydrology and climate sciences (an asset, but not necessary)
  • Excellent communication and writing skills in English
  • High interest in writing manuscripts related to hydro-climatology and climate change impact assessment

Candidates from disciplines including, Civil, Geological or Environmental Engineering, Statistics, Computer Science, Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Physical Geography and Forestry are encouraged to apply.

Research Group:

The host research group HydroGeoscience for Watershed Management (HG-WM), at the Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, is an interdisciplinary research group that uses mechanistic and statistical modelling approaches to generate scientific evidence required to inform watershed management and to regulate the environmental impacts of climate change. The research group is part of UBC’s Geological Engineering program with a rich history of over 100 years. For more information visit:     

Applications should include:

  1. a cover letter with detailed explanations on how the applicant meets the requirements for the position,
  2. a curriculum vita,
  3. academic transcripts, and
  4. the names and contact information of three professional references.

Application materials should be combined into a single PDF document and be sent to, by Monday February 1, 2021.

How to apply?

Applicants should send enquiries by email and refer to reference number PDFO-54573.

Desired start date: 01 Sep 2021
Duration: Fixed term / Temporary
Contract Type: Full Time


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.