Research Manager, Wytham Woods

Research Manager, Wytham Woods

Earthwatch is an international environmental nonprofit organization that engages people in scientific field research and education. To achieve our mission, we offer research expeditions at exciting locations around the globe. Participants on these expeditions assist top scientists as they investigate important questions about how we can better protect our planet.

Location: Oxford, UK

Position Type: Maternity cover; full time, 10 months; commencing mid- January 2014

Salary: £28,115 - £35,263 (dependent on experience)

Deadline for Application: 6 December 2013


Earthwatch seeks a scientist with a background in forestry ecology and science communication to manage a research programme investigating carbon cycling at Wytham Woods, and to oversee teams of volunteers assisting with field work on this project, and another, smaller woodland research project in Oxfordshire. The role will act as lead scientist for both projects, with responsibility for data collection, quality and potentially also publication of the research carried out, as well as managing teams of volunteers. The research in Wytham Woods is conducted in collaboration with University of Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute (ECI), Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and Exeter University. Visiting Research Associate status is available for the duration of the post at ECI within Prof Yadvinder Malhi’s research group.



  • Plan and execute ongoing research investigating carbon cycling in fragmented woodland.
  • Field work: specific tasks include measuring dendrometer bands, soil respiration, tree censuses, leaf litter collection / processing and dead wood surveys.
  • Maintain accurate records of field work conducted.
  • Manage and conduct preliminary analysis on collected data.
  • Liaise with research partners on direction of research.

Research Facilities Management

  • Work with Programme Manager to ensure budgets, field briefings, risk assessments, emergency response plans, etc. are up to date and correct.
  • Manage EW minibus (bookings, tax, MOT, maintenance, etc) and other facilities at University of Oxford’s field station (John Krebs) .
  • Liaise with the managers at John Krebs Field Station and Wytham Woods, to maintain the relationship, make room bookings and renew the contractual agreements.

Field Delivery

  • Plan research tasks for groups of volunteers that fit with research calendar.
  • Produce materials for teams including data collection sheets, introductory and closing presentations.
  • Deliver presentations on the research background and findings to groups of volunteers.
  • Train and oversee volunteers in field data collection.
  • Take responsibility for volunteers while in the field.


  • Manage the Wytham intern.
  • Contribute to design of new and existing research and volunteer programmes.
  • Liaise with learning team to ensure that the field work component of any team aligns with the overall aims of the programme.
  • Represent the organisation at meetings, conferences and other events.


  • At least an MSc, but preferably a PhD in forest ecology, carbon cycling, or a related subject.
  • Proven field data collection experience, preferably with some of the relevant techniques.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with scientists and members of the public.
  • Experience of data management and analysis, e.g. with R statistical software.
  • Good publication record.
  • Proven success of managing your own research.
  • People management (for intern) .
  • Experience leading groups of volunteers in a field setting including an understanding of risk and safety implications and mitigation measures and ability to inspire and enthuse.
  • Excellent time management skills.
  • You should be able to plan and conduct your work independently, but also work with other team members as appropriate.
  • Valid driving license and access to a vehicle for field work; a minibus driving license (or willingness to gain one) would be an advantage.
  • First aid qualifications would be an advantage.


Send your covering letter, CV and details of two referees to

No phone calls please.

All applicants must be eligible to work in the UK. Earthwatch cannot support visa applications.


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