PhD or MS Assistantship in Coupled Human-Natural Systems


Michigan State University


Monday, November 15, 2021

Start Date

Monday, January 3, 2022

Description and responsibilities: A graduate assistantship is available for a self-motivated student to pursue PhD or MS degree and conduct innovative and high-impact research in the Center for Systems Integration and Sustainability (CSIS) at Michigan State University (MSU). This position is part of the project funded by the National Science Foundation entitled "Complex Effects of Telecoupled Activities in the Changing Environment of the Arctic".

Applications are welcome from students with a variety of backgrounds and in a wide range of disciplines, such as anthropology, behavioral science, computer science and engineering, conservation, data science, demography, ecology, economics, environmental science, geographic information science, geography, geosciences, land science, remote sensing, sociology, sustainability science, and other related fields.

The successful candidate will be responsible for conducting research to understand how multiple distant drivers (i.e., tourism, marine shipping, climate change, and natural resource extraction) affect coupled human-natural systems within the Bering Strait region of Alaska, using the integrated framework of telecoupling. The student will be based at MSU but will have opportunities to visit Alaska and interact with collaborators, local communities, natural resource professionals, and other stakeholders in Alaska.

The successful candidate will be admitted by the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife at MSU and can also be part of the dual degree program with the university-wide Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior program or Environmental Science and Policy Program if the student is interested.

The student will be co-advised by Dr. Jianguo "Jack" Liu at MSU and Dr. Jennifer Schmidt at the University of Alaska Anchorage, and will collaborate with others on the project.

Closing Date: November 15, 2021 or until the position is filled.

Start Date: flexible (some time in 2022)

To Apply: Application materials include: (1) letter of application, (2) CV or resume, (3) academic statement, (4) personal statement, (5) transcripts, (6) GRE scores, (7) TOEFL scores (for non-native English speakers only), (8) list of 3 references (names and contact information), and (9) up to three representative publications if any. Unofficial copies of GRE, TOEFL and transcripts are OK initially.  Applicants are encouraged to submit their application materials as soon as possible.  Application materials and questions should be emailed to: Dr. Jianguo "Jack" Liu (