Research Scientist 3- Water/Water Assessment & Mgmt.

  • New York State Dept of Environmental Conservation
  • Syracuse
  • Mar 08, 2017
Full time Water Quality Watershed/Stormwater

Job Description


1. Direct and manage a team of research scientists and watershed experts (in a unit called the Finger Lakes Water Hub) to leverage research efforts; and to plan, coordinate, implement and assess the effectiveness of water quality projects to improve water quality within the Finger Lakes. The immediate focus will be on pollution reduction and prevention of Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) but will expand to other emerging water quality issues and contaminants. (30%)

2. Develop and oversee a sound and comprehensive research plan for biological and chemical monitoring of the water quality in the Finger Lakes. Activities will include study design, field research, data analysis and interpretation of analytical results (20%)

3. Collaborate with other Research Scientists within the Division to compare and evaluate the relative effectiveness of practices based on available data. Determine achievable water pollutant load reductions by applying stream stabilization measures, riparian stream buffers, and in-waterbody best management practices (BMPs), including the evaluation and assessments of the cost effectiveness of such practices. Where adequate data exists, make recommendations on the most effective practices. Where there is not enough data to make scientifically based recommendations, develop proposals to obtain such data. (10%)

4. Independently and in collaboration with other Research Scientists in the Division of Water and Finger Lakes unit, conduct research and assess research conducted by partners such as the Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and the Upstate Freshwater Institute. Coordinate, conduct, direct, and develop research projects to fill data gaps and verify existing scientific research and data to help evaluate and solve the complex issues within New York's Finger Lakes. (10%)

5. Initiate, conduct, and complete applied research on effective riparian buffer implementation to meeting water quality goals, including documenting relationships between habitat, pollutant loading and stressor response. Partner with various stakeholders to assist in funding and implementing identified watershed improvement activities including the Finger Lakes-Lake Ontario Watershed Protection Alliance (FLLOWPA), lake management associations, Soil & Water Conversation Districts and other stakeholders involved with research and protection of the Finger Lakes watershed. (10%)

6. Through data assessment, recommend and direct BMPs and land use practices that will effect pollutant load reductions from agricultural and non-agricultural lands. Specific areas of research may include riparian setbacks and buffers, reforestation, stream bank stabilization, and working with MS4 communities to improve local storm drainage and road maintenance. (10%)

7. Present the results of research in peer-reviewed journals and at scientific meetings.(5%)

8. Participate in the Division of Water's research-related workgroups (5%)

Qualifications include a Bachelor's degree and four years of professional experience as it relates to research in the fields of non-point source water pollution control, algal toxins or watershed management; or a Master's degree and three years of such experience or a doctorate in the appropriate field and one year of such experience.

Strong public speaking skills and ability to describe complex issues to stakeholders and the public in simple terms.

Strong writing skills and experience with competitive grants and contracting.

Good understanding of NYS water quality standards, regulations and Division of Water technical, operational and guidance documents.

Knowledge of the nonpoint source impacts from Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) and Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) and other non-agricultural related sources.

Closes 03/17/2017

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Job Level



Government- State/Provincial


$76,748 - $96,732