Post-Doctoral Associate in Medical Geography in Global Health

Apply now Job no: 529160
Work type: Post Doc Associate
Location: Main Campus (Gainesville, FL)
Categories: Allied Health
Department:16220000 - LS-GEOGRAPHY

Classification Title:

Post-Doctoral Associate

Job Description:

The Spatial Epidemiology and Ecology Laboratory (SEER Lab) is recruiting a Post-Doctoral Associate in Medical Geography in Global Health with a focus on modeling infectious disease distributions, transmission, and persistence led by Dr. Jason Blackburn in Geography. SEER Lab is jointly housed in the Department of Geography and the Emerging Pathogens Institute, both on the UF Campus in Gainesville.

We have a position available in SEER Lab beginning December 1, 2023 to work on spatio-temporal patterns of pathogen distributions with a focus on Bacillus anthracis, Brucella spp., Burkholderia pseudomallei, and E. coli collected as part of epidemiology and ecological studies in Vietnam, Kazakhstan, and the US. The position will work in a dynamic, diverse, and collaborative group to integrate geographic, epidemiological, and bioinformatics data associated with pathogen collections to bridge the gap between phylogenetic and geographic models of pathogen distributions and persistence. The candidate will apply combinations of ecological niche modeling, bioinformatics, and movement/network models to examine how specific genotypes or lineages of pathogens may be transmitted to human, livestock, or wildlife groups with an emphasis on bacterial pathogens and spillover potential.

This position will be initially awarded for one year, and, contingent upon strong performance and conduct and availability of funds, may be renewed for up to three years.

Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to, performing research related to the ongoing US DTRA and UF CHeRI funded projects on anthrax, brucellosis, and melioidosis in Vietnam and comparison to other landscapes/datasets where we work. There is also a project related to spati-temporal patterns of E. coli and epizootic hemorrhagic diseases in deer in Florida sharing techniques and research questions with our work in Vietnam. You will work collaboratively with members of the Spatial Epidemiology & Ecology Research Laboratory in our lab spaces in Turlington Hall and the Emerging Pathogens Institute on the spatiotemporal patterns, phylogenetic, and ecology of these diseases in humans, livestock, and wildlife. You can expect to work with geospatial and laboratory results, remotely sensed climate data, and molecular data. You will work with the SEER Lab team to perform spatial analysis, ecological niche modeling, smoothing algorithms, mathematical models aimed at rare events, and spatially explicit phylogenetic modeling. Modeling will incorporate GIS using QGIS and/or ArcGIS Pro, the R programming language, and several tools including (not limited to): GeoDa, iTOL, PhyloViz, and GrapeTree. You will be expected to develop workflows and data pipelines to support research across these tools. You can plan to work via Zoom or other online platforms, Microsoft Teams, and email to contribute to the project with our international partners in Hanoi, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, and SEER Lab partners remote to UF. You can expect to travel to Vietnam and other destinations to continue these engagements. Your work activities are to be coordinated with your supervisor, Dr. Jason Blackburn. This position is housed in SEER Lab spaces in Turlington Hall and the Emerging Pathogens Institute; you will have dedicated workspaces in both facilities.

UF is the state’s oldest, largest, and most comprehensive land grant university with an enrollment of over 50,000 students and was ranked 6th in the country among public universities (US News and World Report 2023 rankings), and 1st among public institutions in the Wall Street Journal 2023 survey.

The City of Gainesville

Gainesville is a vibrant city with a low cost of living, diverse population, excellent public schools, Division I NCAA sports, and no state income tax. The area is known for its nature parks, bike trails, sporting events, museums, mild winters, and warm summers. Being centrally located makes Gainesville easily situated for day trip to beautiful beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico, and to theme parks including Disney World, and other cities include Orlando, Jacksonville, and Tampa. Learn more about what Gainesville has to offer at Visit Gainesville.

The SEER Lab and the Department of Geography is committed to promoting an environment that welcomes all abilities, classes, ethnicities/races, gender identities and expressions. We particularly welcome applicants who can contribute to such an environment through their scholarship, teaching, mentoring, and professional service.

Advertised Salary:

The salary is competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience, and the compensation includes a full benefits package.

Minimum Requirements:

PhD in Biology, Geography, Ecology, or related field with proven experience working in a collaborative team with local and remote employees. 

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Work or research experience in infectious diseases, including those with environmental reservoirs, and those that infect livestock and wildlife.
  • Experience studying spillover pathogens between humans and animals is preferred.
  • Experience with mathematical models, including extreme value theory, animal movement quantification, and wildlife disease spillover.
  • Programming experience with R is preferred and experience developing R packages is ideal.
  • Experience managing or co-managing data sharing or code sharing via GitHub or similar.

Special Instructions to Applicants:

For full consideration, applications must be submitted online. Click on Apply Now at the top of this posting.

A complete application includes (1) a letter of application summarizing the applicant's qualifications, interests, and suitability for the position, (2) a complete curriculum vitae, and (3) a list of at least three references. After initial review, letters of recommendation will be requested from the references for selected applicants.

Applications will be reviewed beginning November 3, 2023, and the position will remain open until filled. Only complete applications will be reviewed at this time. Applications received after this date may be considered at the discretion of the committee and/or hiring authority.

All candidates for employment are subject to a pre-employment screening which includes a review of criminal records, reference checks, and verification of education.

The selected candidate will be required to provide an official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible. Degrees earned from an educational institution outside of the United States require evaluation by a professional credentialing service provider approved by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES), which can be found at

The University of Florida is an equal opportunity institution dedicated to building a broadly diverse and inclusive faculty and staff. Searches are conducted in accordance with Florida's Sunshine Law. If an accommodation due to disability is needed in order to apply for this position, please call (352) 392-2477 or the Florida Relay System at (800) 955-8771 (TDD).

Health Assessment Required:


Advertised: Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close:

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