Postdoctoral Fellowship in Sea Ice Modelling

Role Overview:

Postdoctoral Fellowships at CSIRO provide opportunities to scientists and engineers who have completed their doctorate and have less than three years relevant postdoctoral work experience. These fellowships will help launch their careers, provide experience that will enhance their career prospects, and facilitate the recruitment and development of potential leaders for CSIRO.

Postdoctoral Fellows are appointed for up to three years or part time equivalent and will work closely with a leading Research Scientist or Engineer in their respective field. They carry out innovative, impactful research of strategic importance to CSIRO with the possibility of novel and important scientific outcomes. They present the findings in appropriate publications and at conferences.

CSIRO has recently committed to fund a 10 year, 15 person project to develop the national capability in multi-year to decadal climate forecasting. The project will support the fundamental advancement of ocean and atmosphere dynamics, novel ways to assimilation ocean and atmosphere data, development of an ensemble climate prediction system and the applications of the climate forecasts for key stakeholders. As part of this new initiative, CSIRO is seeking to fill 3 post doctorial positions.

This postdoc position will contribute to CSIRO Decadal climate forecast project by advancing sea ice modelling. Specifically, the position would pursue research to improve the sea ice realism through modifying sea ice parameters and code. The candidate would also be involved in research exploring ways to assimilate sea ice information into the Climate Analysis Forecast Ensemble system and in the assessment of the ability of data assimilation to improve sea ice behaviour. The position could also contribute to research exploring the potential predictability of sea ice and assessing the ability to forecast sea ice on seasonal to multi-year times scales.

You will join a dynamic group of researchers interested in the climate system and the applications of models to make useful climate forecasts.

Duties and Key Result Areas:

  • Under the supervision of senior research scientists, carry out innovative, impactful research of strategic importance to CSIRO Decadal Climate Forecasting project that will, where possible, lead to novel and important scientific outcomes.
  • Use coupled atmosphere, ocean and sea ice models to explore and understand key dynamics of the system and in particular the role of sea ice.
  • Increase knowledge of key process and dynamical understanding to explain the variability of the sea ice and the connection it has on climate variability. Produce high quality scientific and/or engineering papers suitable for publication in quality journals, for client reports and granting of patents.
  • Prepare appropriate conference papers and present those at conferences as agreed with your supervisor.
  • Contribute to the development of innovative concepts and ideas for further research.
  • Make a contribution to the effective functioning of the research team and help deliver CSIRO's organisational objectives and plans.
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues within your team, the business unit and across CSIRO.
  • Communicate effectively and respectfully with all staff, clients and suppliers in the interests of good business practice, collaboration and enhancement of CSIRO's reputation.
  • Adhere to the spirit and practice of CSIRO's Values, Health, Safety and Environment plans and policies, Diversity initiatives and Zero Harm goals.
  • Undertake an appropriate training and development program developed by CSIRO.
  • Other duties as directed.
  • CSIRO's postdoctoral training programis developed between the Postdoctoral Fellow and a CSIRO scientist or engineer. The program will focus on enhancing the Fellows' capabilities to the level expected of an independent researcher and will include on-the-job and course-based development encompassing:
  • Discipline-specific techniques and protocols
  • Professional growth
  • Project management
  • Communication and influencing skills
  • Working and collaborating with others

Reference Number: 56719
Classification: CSOF4
Salary Range: AU $80,833 to AU $91,451 plus up to 15.4% superannuation
Location: Hobart, TAS
Tenure: Specified Term of 3 years (or part time equivalent)
Relocation assistance: Will be provided to the successful candidate if required.
Applications are open to: All Candidates
Functional Area: Research Scientist / Engineer - Postdoc
% Client Focus - Internal: 90%
% Client Focus - External: 10%
Reports to the: Chief Research Scientist
Number of Direct Reports: 2

Selection Criteria:

Under CSIRO policy only those who meet all essential criteria can be appointed


  1. Education/Qualifications: A doctorate (or will shortly satisfy the requirements of a PhD) in a relevant discipline area, such as sea ice dynamics or ocean modelling.
    Please note: To be eligible for this role you must have no more than 3 years (or part time equivalent) of relevant postdoctoral experience.
  2. Communication: High level written and oral communication skills with the ability to represent the research team effectively internally and externally, including at national and international conferences.
  3. Publications: A record of publications in quality, peer reviewed journals.
  4. Behaviours: A history of professional and respectful behaviours and attitudes in a collaborative environment.

Essential Criteria:

  1. Demonstrated understanding of the sea ice dynamics and the climate processes driving sea ice variability.
  2. Demonstrated experience with numerical sea ice modelling, in particular the ability to modify sea ice parameters and asses the performance of sea ice simulations to draw novel interpretation and conclusions.
  3. Capacity to carry out original, independent, and innovative research with a minimum of direct supervision.
  4. Sophisticated programming skills to analyse large model data sets and compare them rigorously to observations.
  5. High level written and oral communication skills with the ability to represent the research team effectively internally and externally, including at national and international conferences and as evidenced by a record of publications in quality, peer reviewed journals.

Desirable Criteria:

  1. Familiarity with using and interpreting data assimilation simulations.
  2. Knowledge and past experience in developing new sea ice modelling code to represent key sea ice processes.
  3. The ability to work effectively as part of a multi-disciplinary, regionally dispersed research team, plus the motivation and discipline to carry out autonomous research.
  4. A record of science innovation and creativity, plus the ability & willingness to incorporate novel ideas and approaches into scientific investigations.

As Australia's Innovation Catalyst, CSIRO has strategic actions underpinned by behaviours aligned to:

  • Excellent science
  • Inclusion, trust & respect
  • Health, safety & environment
  • Delivery on commitments.

In your application and at interview you will need to demonstrate alignment with these behaviours.

To be appointed as a Postdoctoral Fellow within CSIRO, candidates are required to have submitted their PhD at the time of commencement, as a minimum requirement, if PhD conferment has not been obtained. If a candidate has submitted, but their PhD has not yet been formally attained, the starting salary will be CSOF4-1 AU $80,833. Upon CSIRO receiving written confirmation that the PhD has been awarded (within a six month period from commencement date), the salary will be increased to the negotiated level and the difference will be back-paid to the Officer's start date.

Special requirements:

Appointment to this role may be subject to conditions including security/medical/character clearance requirements. Applicants who are not Australian Citizens or Permanent Residents may be required to undergo additional security clearance processes; which may include medical examinations and an international standardised test of English language proficiency (i.e. IELTS test).-

Other Information:

How to Apply

Please apply for this position online at and enter requisition number 56719. Internal applicants please apply via 'Jobs Central' in SAP (click 'Recruitment')

Please load your CV (Maximum 2MB). You may also be required to respond to some screening questions.

If you experience difficulties applying online call 1300 984 220 for assistance. Outside Australian business hours please email:

Referees: Please provide contact details of two previous supervisor or academic/professional referees in your resume/CV. We will ask your permission before making contact.

Contact: If after reading the position details above you require more information please contact: Dr Richard Matearvia email: or phone: +61 3 6232 5243

Please do not email your application directly to Dr Matear. Applications received via this method may not be considered by the selection panel.


Australia is founding its future on science and innovation. Its national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) is a powerhouse of ideas, technologies and skills for building prosperity, growth, health and sustainability. It serves governments, industries, business and communities across the nation.

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We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. Talk to us about how this role could be flexible for you.

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CSIRO Oceans & Atmosphere provides the knowledge to manage Australia's marine estate and atmospheric environment, plan for and respond to weather and climate related natural hazards and ensure sustainable coastal development and growth of marine industries.

posted: 04 May 2018     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.