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Research Associate-Fixed Term

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Back to search results Apply now Job no: 778369
Work type: Faculty/Academic Staff
Major Administrative Unit / College: College Of Agriculture And Nat Resources
Department: Water Research Institute Anr 10002916
Sub Area: FAS- Fac./Acad Staff
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Agriculture, Research/Scientific, Fixed Term Academic Staff, Full Time (90-100%), Non-Union

Working/Functional Title

Hydrologic Modeler

Position Summary

The Institute of Water Research (IWR) at Michigan State University seeks a postdoctoral (research associate) candidate to assist in water conservation projects and research. The ideal candidate will have a strong background in hydrologic modeling and geospatial analysis. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience with the Soil and Water Assessment Tool surface water model, the MODFLOW groundwater model, Aquaveo’s Groundwater Modeling System, ArcGIS, and Python programming.  IWR specializes in translating hydrologic research into accessible, online decision support systems; so experience with web development, including JavaScript, ASP.NET, styling, and database management would be a bonus. 

This is an end-dated position funded through 8/31/2026 with potential for continuation based on funding renewal.  


Characteristic Duties and Responsibilities 

Modeling and Research (50%)  

  • Work with modeling team to assess impacts of varying grazing densities on water quality and quantity using various models including the Soil and Water Assessment Tool.  

  • Combine input and outputs of various models such as DayCent to look at carbon and soil health benefits.  

  • Run model simulations under various scenarios 

  • Review paper, publications, and models results from related research 


Data Management (40%)  

  • Download and process data from field locations; monitors progress; compiles results and participates in preparing reports, manuscripts, and articles  

  • Participates in project meetings and activities, reports findings and predictions from tools and models, stores and helps manage model results and data in SQL database for use in decision support tools. 


Information Dissemination (10%)  

  • Prepares presentations, papers, and materials for information dissemination and outreach. 

  • Presents at conferences, workshops, and seminars the findings of project and helps prepare materials for project PIs  


Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or protected veteran status.

Required Degree

Doctorate -Ag Engineering, Natural Resources or rel

Minimum Requirements

University Required: 

The job requires: knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing an advanced college degree program in agricultural engineering, natural resources or other related science fields; one to three years of related and progressively more responsible or expansive work experience with modeling procedures and performing analytical and research techniques in an area related to research being performed; may require software specific to the area of research; or an equivalent combination of education and experience. 


Unit Specific Education/Experience: 

Requires hydrologic and/or watershed-based modeling using SWAT and other modeling packages such as MODFLOW, and Aquaveo; knowledge of basic personal computer terminology and operations, and the ability to use e-mail and the Internet. 

Required Application Materials

Please submit a CV and Cover Letter.

Together-we-will Statement

The university is requiring all MSU students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited exceptions. Learn more at:

Special Instructions


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Department Statement

The Institute of Water Research (IWR) is seeking a postdoc to work on transformative water research related to soil health and regenerative agricultural in grazing lands. This multiple state work integrates innovative SWAT modeling approaches with DayCent and other models to quantify on-farm soil health improvements. IWR provides critical water related research for the Great Lakes region and beyond. Be part of a growing multidisciplinary team of experts solving some of the regions' greatest water challenges. 

MSU Statement

Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges.

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