Post-Doctoral Research Assistant (PDRA)

ZSL London Zoo
ZSL Institute of Zoology – NW1
£35,329 per annum (Inclusive of London Weighting) plus benefits
12 Jul 2019
26 Jul 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

We are looking for a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant (PDRA) to join a research team working on recovering species on the brink of extinction.

Title: Post-Doctoral Research Assistant – Opportunities, Constraints and Predictors of Success in Species Recovery
Position type: Full-Time / 24 Months Fixed-Term Contract
Salary: £35,329 per annum (Inclusive of London Weighting) plus benefits
Location: ZSL Institute of Zoology – NW1

About Us 
We’re ZSL, an international conservation charity. Our vision is a world where wildlife thrives and we’re working every day to achieve this. From investigating the health threats facing animals, to helping people and wildlife live alongside each other, we are committed to bringing wildlife back from the brink of extinction. Through the work of our pioneering scientists, our dedicated conservationists and our unrivalled animal experts in our two zoos, our purpose is to inspire, inform and employ people to stop wild animals going extinct.

Overview of Role: 
With critically endangered species the choices we make are extremely important as the stakes are so high. A poor choice can quickly result in species loss. We are interested in learning from past efforts, what works and what doesn’t, and to understand better how teams confront and work through (or not) high risk scenarios. As such we seek a highly skilled data analyst who can conduct a multiple taxa/case study analysis of threatened species recovery programmes.

At least three broad research strands will be developed;

  1. Catalogue species / discrete populations which have been reduced to critically small populations sizes and have been the focus on recovery efforts. Summarize knowledge of causes of decline, attempted remedy actions and their outcomes.
  2. Related to (1), also gather data on specific management issues associated with these recovery programmes, e.g. management strategy, known government/stakeholder conflicts, risk attitudes, funding continuity/discontinuity, etc. 
  3. Species which are extinct in the wild offer a unique set of case studies truly at the brink and only few of these have been successfully re-established in the wild. As zoos increasingly are called on to rescue species from the wild there is urgent need to understand the opportunities and constraints on the success of these operations. As such a particular focus will be on this group of species.

The specialist role will be supported by experienced species recovery practitioners including Dr. John Ewen (Institute of Zoology, ZSL), Prof. Sam Turvey (Institute of Zoology, ZSL), Prof. Ken Norris (Institute of Zoology, ZSL) and Dr. Axel Moehrenschlager (Chair IUCN SSC Conservation Translocation Specialist Group and Director of Conservation & Science at the Calgary Zoo). The PDRA will have the opportunity to work on a high-profile project with concrete benefits for conservation, while at the same time developing a broad set of analytic, management and interpersonal skills.

Main responsibilities will include:

  • Catalogue species recovery programmes and their published outcomes;
  • Undertake email, phone, and in person interviews with species recovery practitioners;
  • Multi-project database analyses;
  • Lead on report and manuscript writing.

Person Specification: 
Ideally the successful candidate will:

  • Hold a PhD in conservation biology, decision sciences, or a related subject area.
  • Have proven experience implementing species conservation.
  • Broad and current knowledge of small population recovery techniques.
  • Experience working with databases and conducting comparative analyses.
  • Strong inter-personal skills with proven history of working with species recovery teams.
  • Have outstanding administrative and organisation skills.

Benefit Package: 
This role offers a competitive salary plus a comprehensive benefits package including 25 days holiday, stakeholder pension where the employer minimum contribution is 7%, complimentary zoo tickets and more.

Closing date for applications: Midnight (23:59) Sunday 21st July 2019


If you would like to find out more about this position and to apply, please click the button to be directed to our website where you can complete the application process.

We are committed to the principle of equal opportunities in employment.

The Zoological Society of London is a charity registered in England and Wales: no. 208728.

No agencies please.

Similar jobs

Similar jobs