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Two Ph.D. Student Positions – Data science, agricultural lands, wetland restoration, and environmental benefits

Human-Environment Systems, Boise State University, Idaho, USA

Two Ph.D. Student Positions – Data science, agricultural lands, wetland restoration, and environmental benefits


Two Ph.D. student positions are available to join a transdisciplinary team focused on climate adaptation strategies on agricultural lands in the western U.S. The project uses cutting-edge data science techniques to monitor the mesic resource restoration process associated with farmer-driven interventions on agricultural lands in Idaho and Oregon. Mesic resources, i.e. wetlands, riparian zones and wet meadows, are critical keystone resources for agricultural production, biodiversity, and ecosystem services in the West. The students will develop new metrics from remotely sensed datasets to measure the outcomes of restoration projects and use models to quantify the ecosystem services that these restored ecosystems provide. The students will become experts in the use of data science, including time-series satellite data, Artificial Intelligence techniques such as machine learning and deep learning, and social-ecological modeling. 

Human-Environment Systems, Boise State University, Idaho, USA

Dr. Jodi Brandt (Website) and Dr. Trevor Caughlin ( will be the students’ major advisors, and the student will collaborate with an interdisciplinary team including The Nature Conservancy and Conservation International. The student will be co-advised by other faculty and collaborate with other students in the Human-Environment Systems community (, a group of faculty and students committed to team-based, actionable research that draws from multiple disciplines and addresses real-world environmental challenges. The student will pursue a PhD in Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, Geosciences, or Computing.


We are seeking a student with expertise in data science, remote sensing, spatial analysis, hydrology, and/or modeling. Students must have strong computational training and the desire to further develop their expertise in data science, remote sensing, and programming. Stakeholder engagement is also an important part of the project, so experience with, and/or a desire to gain, transdisciplinary, actionable science skills is also required. Competitive students will have a Master’s degree and research or job experience related to the topics above. 

Stipend and tuition and fees

This position includes support in the form of grant funding for two years, and then an additional two years of teaching assistantship (renewable, 12-month at $32,000), tuition and fee waiver, and health insurance. The position starts Fall (August) 2023 or Spring (January) 2024.

To Apply

Please send via email in a single file attachment (include your last name in the file name): a cover letter that states qualifications and career goals, a CV with the names and contacts for 3 references, and copies of transcripts (unofficial are O.K.) to Jodi Brandt (email: [email protected]). Please put “PhD application-Climate Smart Agriculture” in the subject line. Applications will be reviewed as they are received Top candidates will be asked to formally apply to a Boise State graduate program.  The Graduate Dean must approve all admission decisions.

Boise State University embraces and welcomes diversity, including (but not limited to) people of any gender identity, race, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, and neurotype. Accordingly, applicants who would add to the diversity and excellence of our academic community are encouraged to apply.

About Boise

Boise State is in the beautiful city of Boise, which strikes a perfect balance with close-by outdoor recreational activities as well as a vibrant downtown life. Nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and the capital of the State of Idaho, Boise is frequently featured as a top-ranked metropolis. The city has many opportunities for excellent outdoor activities year round and a thriving arts and entertainment culture. In 2017, US News and World report ranked Boise the 12th best city to live in the United States. To learn more, please view “Visit Boise” link at: