skip to Main Content

Postdoctoral Fellow – Observational Physical Oceanography – Dynamics and dispersal pathways in the East Australian Current

Website UNSW Sydney

Applicant Login Job Alert

Postdoctoral Fellow – Physical Oceanography
Apply now Job no: 514986
Work type: full time
Location: Sydney, NSW
Categories: Post Doctoral Research Associate

One of Australia’s leading research & teaching universities
Vibrant campus life with a strong sense of community & inclusion
Enjoy a career that makes a difference by collaborating & learning from the best
At UNSW, we pride ourselves on being a workplace where the best people come to do their best work.

The Coastal and Regional Oceanography group is a dynamic team of researchers, including academics, postdocs, data scientists, technical staff, and PhD students conducting research focussed on the dynamics of the East Australian Current System and the continental shelf circulation along the coast of SE Australia. The team are based in the School of Biological Earth and Environmental Sciences with close collaborations with the School of Maths and Statistics. UNSW has notable strengths in Oceanography, Marine Science, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Data Science, and Statistical Analysis and Methods and is regularly ranked top 25 universities in the world for Oceanography (ARWU).

The primary research goal of the Coastal and Regional Oceanography group is to make a significant contribution to understanding and predicting the East Australian Current, a major western boundary current, and its impact on shelf processes. The group uses modern in-situ observations (e.g high frequency coastal radar, moorings, autonomous ocean gliders), boat-based field work from small and large vessels, satellite remote sensing in combination with advanced numerical modelling to explain fundamental ocean dynamics, warming trends and marine extremes, and to gain an integrated, quantitative understanding of their impacts on bio-geo-chemical processes. The group has expertise in the Regional Ocean Modelling System (ROMS) and 4DVar data assimilation, with strong links to international collaborators. The group play a leading role in Australia’s Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS:, responsible for the ongoing operation of the ocean-observing programme along south-eastern Australia.

The role of the Postdoctoral Scientist: Physical Oceanographer is to conduct research into the dynamics of the East Australian Current System using vast IMOS datasets. Additionally in the first 12 months to support the leadership team in the design and execution of small boat field work deploying drifters under the HF radar footprint to explore surface dispersion in the context of bluebottle transport pathways from the ocean to the coast in collaboration with NSW State government agencies. This work is partially supported by an Australian Research Council funded Industry linkage grant ‘Bluebottle dynamics: towards a prediction tool for Surf Life Saving Australia’.

About the role

$100K – $107K plus 17% superannuation and annual leave loading
Fixed Term – 2 years
Full-time (35 hours per week)
The role reports to Prof. Moninya Roughan and has no direct reports. It is expected that the appointee will engage and collaborate with other members of the research team including Drs Schaeffer (UNSW), Brassington (BoM), and Ingleton (DPE). Further opportunities exist to collaborate with the Australian oceanographic community through involvement in IMOS. While the role does not involve any supervisory responsibilities, the possibility exists to be involved in the co-supervision of students on the project.

Specific responsibilities for this role include:

Support the leadership team in collection of oceanographic data through organisation and participation in Research Cruises aboard large and/or small vessels as required and analysis of complex ocean observational datasets.
Contribute to data analysis and the writing of high-quality research articles for prompt publication in peer-reviewed academic journals and communicate research outcomes at conferences, and in seminars.
Collaborate with the supervisors, other postdoctoral fellows, PhD students and the research team (including international colleagues) in carrying out original and independent research and to produce project outcomes.
Participate in and/or present at national and international conferences and/or workshops relevant to the project to communicate project outcomes as required.
Provide quantitative data analysis, and research as required to support various research, and consultancy projects, and further grant applications.
Perform project administrative tasks as required, e.g. contribute to the development of project planning documents, budgets, and regular reporting.
Align with and actively demonstrate the UNSW Values in Action: Our Behaviours and the UNSW Code of Conduct.
Cooperate with all health and safety policies and procedures of the university and take all reasonable care to ensure that your actions or omissions do not impact on the health and safety of yourself or others.
About the successful applicant
(Selection Criteria)

To be successful in this role you will have:

PhD or equivalent level of knowledge in observational Physical Oceanography or related discipline (e.g., marine science, coastal or ocean engineering) gained through a combination of education, training or experience.
Experience analysing large oceanographic datasets available from coastal ocean observing systems (e.g HF radar, glider, drifters, boat based data (CTD, flow through, ADCP) and oceanographic mooring data, ADCP, CTD, etc) and experience with QA/QC.
Demonstrated experience with and willingness to work on small coastal research vessels
Strong track record in ocean data analysis; and the ability to analyse and critically assess observational data as evidenced by publications in internationally recognised peer reviewed journals.
Competent programming ability, including proficiency in Matlab and/or Python, and NetCDF; and experience working with Linux, high-performance computing environments and github or similar.
Strong scientific writing skills in English, as evidenced by technical reports or publications in internationally recognised, peer-reviewed journals and technical reports. Demonstrated track record of conference presentations relative to opportunity.
Ability to work in a team and independently, collaborate across disciplines and build effective relationships. Strong interpersonal skills with demonstrated ability to communicate and interact with a diverse range of stakeholders, project partners and students.
Excellent organisation skills, action oriented, supportive and positive attitude with a curious mind that encourages exploration. Attention to detail and an ability to prioritise tasks and manage projects in a timely fashion.
An understanding of and commitment to UNSW’s aims, objectives and values in action, together with relevant policies and guidelines.
Knowledge of health and safety responsibilities and commitment to attending relevant health and safety training
Ensure you systematically address the selection criteria listed within the position description in your application.

Please apply online – applications will not be accepted if sent to the contact listed:

Moninya Roughan
Applications close:  March 29th, 2023

To apply for this job email your details to

Back To Top