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Hakai Coastal Initiative Postdoctoral Fellowship

Study the ecology and populations dynamics of a human-harvested wild seaweed.
July 11, 2017

Applications are invited for a two-year postdoctoral fellowship (PDF) focused on the physiological ecology of the harvested seaweed Pyropia abbottiae.

The PDF researcher should have demonstrated knowledge of seaweed physiology, particularly nutrient uptake and partitioning, an ability to interpret and utilize oceanographic data, and the aptitude to integrate the two. Experience culturing macro- or microalgae would be helpful. Research efforts will include (1) monitoring growth rates, population density, and tissue quality in the field, based at the Calvert Ecological Observatory on the Central Coast of British Columbia, (2) identifying environmental correlates and tipping points (e.g., temperature, nitrate), (3) performing manipulative experiments to quantify the effects of abiotic stresses on gametophytes and microscopic sporophytes (conchocelis), and (4) helping develop mitigation measures to mediate future declines.


Dr. Patrick T. Martone (University of British Columbia)

Dr. Sandra Lindstrom (University of British Columbia)

Dr. Margot Hessing-Lewis (Hakai Institute)


For generations, coastal people have relied on springtime seaweed collections for food and for trade. But in spring 2016, First Nation communities throughout British Columbia documented historically low abundance and quality of Pyropia in culturally important, intertidal foraging areas. Heiltsuk, Kitasoo, Haida, and Metlakatla communities all reported worrisome declines—the worst seaweed harvest in at least 100 years. The PDF researcher will help spearhead efforts to determine the cause of the seaweed decline; whether future events can be predicted; and, if they are predictable, whether future declines can be prevented or mitigated.

Position Details


Limited term for two years (with an opportunity for renewal based on performance and funding availability)


$55,000 CAD per year


- Completed a PhD within the last five years

- Shows evidence of strong quantitative skills, experimental design, and expertise in some aspect of macroalgal physiology. 

- The PDF researcher will work closely with other UBC- and Hakai-associated researchers; thus, abilities to work collaboratively and independently, meet regular milestones, and communicate in English are essential.


Based in the Botany Department and the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries (IOF) at the University of British Columbia

To Apply

Please send a cover letter, CV, and examples of two research papers to Dr. Patrick Martone by email ( Your cover letter should address your interest in the project and the skills and experience you can bring to the work. Preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Review of applications will start on July 24, 2017. We hope to fill the position for a start date of October 1, 2017.