Postdoc opportunity in Last Millennium Climate

*Note: This position is open as of 3/2019. Applications will be reviewed beginning immediately, with anticipated start date of early Fall 2019.*

The Climate and Paleoclimate Lab is currently recruiting applications for a Postdoctoral Research Scholar to focus on data-model comparison with water isotope archives. The successful applicant will contribute to a new NSF-funded project investigating tropical climate and atmospheric-oceanic circulation during the past millennium using the new PAGES Iso2k database ( and upcoming simulations with the water isotope-enabled Community Earth System Model (iCESM). The Postdoctoral Research Associate will be based at Washington University, but will collaborate closely with grant partners at the University of California at Santa Barbara and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, as well as with the 50+ members of the PAGES Iso2k Project and the group members, students, and collaborators of the Climate and Paleoclimate Lab.

The main goal of the NSF-funded research is to investigate changes in the Pacific Walker Circulation during the past millennium. There will also be opportunities to contribute to other ongoing model-, field-, and laboratory-based research on water isotope hydroclimatology in both modern and ancient contexts, depending on interests and funding.

Applications will be reviewed beginning immediately. Anticipated start date is ~summer 2019. For more information, feel free to contact Professor Bronwen Konecky: bkonecky at wustl dot edu. To apply, visit the posting on the Wash U careers website:

Ph.D. student opportunities

The Climate and Paleoclimate Lab is currently seeking motivated Ph.D. students to join us in Fall 2019. If you’re interested in tropical climate or paleoclimate, especially via biomarkers, light stable isotopes, and/or models, please get in touch with Professor Bronwen Konecky at: bkonecky at wustl dot edu. In your email, please describe your interests and background, and attach a resume or CV if you have one.

Potential project topics include the following, but feel free to pitch your own idea!

The modern tropical water cycle

  • Continental moisture recycling and African climate. How does moisture from the Congo rainforest contribute to rainfall variability and agricultural decision-making in western Uganda? How do the dynamics of seasonal wetlands influence land-atmosphere feedbacks in semi-arid Botswana? Current opportunities include water isotope, meteorological, and remote sensing observations in western Uganda as part of a newly funded initiative to understand rainfall variability and agricultural decision-making. This project is in partnership with physical and human geographers at the University of Colorado, University of New Hampshire, and Georgia State. More info here.

Ancient climates and environments

  • Modern calibration and proxy system modeling of leaf wax hydrogen isotopes. Can we quantify uncertainties (structural as well as parametric) on leaf wax hydrogen isotopes using a forward model embedded in a GCM? How much uncertainty is reduced when we add rich new measurements of modern tropical plants, soils, and waters? Current opportunities include greenhouse studies and model investigations.

Earth system modeling and data synthesis

  • Synthesis of hydroclimate proxy records and comparison with isotope-enabled climate model simulations. What physical mechanisms of climate variability and change, explored using models, can explain observations in the geologic record? Current opportunities include analysis of existing/upcoming simulations of the Last Glacial Maximum and the past millennium, and data synthesis-model comparison of the past 2,000 years using the brand new Iso2k database.

To learn more about the areas of research in the Climate and Paleoclimate Lab, please click here.