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Postdoctoral Fellow in Transportation Engineering - Multimodal Northern Transportation Systems

Please refer to reference number PDFO-55230 when applying for this position.



We are partnering with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) on the project Building a Multimodal Transportation Network Database and Exploring Data Collection Methods to Support Transportation Operations in the Canadian North,” and are seeking a full-time postdoctoral fellow (PDF) for a 2-year position.

The transportation system in Canada’s territorial north is sparse, covers immense distances, and is highly seasonal and multimodal. Climate change has created many significant challenges for transportation infrastructure and operations. Overall, there is little (centralized) information and data about the system, making infrastructure investment decisions and planning highly challenging.

The selected candidate will work closely with an interdisciplinary team consisting of researchers at NRC, University of Toronto, and UBC. The selected candidate will have excellent leadership ability/potential, strong communication skills, and expertise in transportation systems. Their primary responsibilities will be to

  1. lead project administration and management, including communications with all research partners and project stakeholders, and deliverables,
  2. contact, gather, organize, synthesize, and transfer data on transportation operations in Canada’s territorial north, focusing most on the Northwest Territories, and
  3. work closely with graduate students at UBC supporting the project.


  • PhD and related experience in engineering, natural sciences, and/or social sciences.
  • Values, understands how, and desires to contribute to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workplace.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills, a solid publication and presentation record (emphasizing publication quality over quantity).
  • Data analysis and management skills (including dataset screening and cleaning, descriptive statistics, and data management). This includes comfort handling many large and diverse datasets.
  • Expertise with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software (ArcGIS or QGIS).
  • Experience using R and Python.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • Ability and/or experience coordinating and managing research projects involving researchers across disciplinary boundaries and institutions, including leading team meetings, overseeing project tasks, and meeting deadlines.
  • Ability to independently make day-to-day decisions in alignment with the purpose and objectives of the research project, and to know when to escalate issues to the supervisor.

Experience working in or with remote communities, Indigenous communities, and/or the territorial north is highly desirable.

Expected Responsibilities

  • Extensive data management and analysis, in a geographic, network-based format.
  • Communicate directly and frequently with government partners and private operators in gathering data and other information from a variety of sources, and assisting with crowdsource/citizen science data collection efforts.
  • Coordinate between multi-institutional researchers, government partners, private operators, and others – including attending and/or leading meetings.
  • Write and publish peer-reviewed scientific manuscripts.
  • Prepare written project communications including reports, memos, and presentations, and maintain clear records of all project activities.
  • Define and deliver on deadlines.
  • Ensure ethical research practices and standards are followed at all times.
  • Mentorship of junior project participants, including graduate and undergraduate students.

Work Location

The primary work location is UBC Vancouver Campus. Once allowed, the position will also require travel to the territorial north (primarily Northwest Territories) about two times per year, once in winter and once in summer, with trip durations anywhere from several days to 2-3 weeks.

How To Apply

Please send the following to and put “PDF position, <last name>” in the subject line:

  • Cover letter, briefly describing your motivation in seeking this position, how you meet the requirements of the position, and your research interests
  • CV
  • 3 references (names and contact information)
  • 2 journal publications, preferably those with first authorship

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Thank you.

How to apply?

Please send applications to and refer to reference number PDFO-55230.

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