2002 Announcement of Research Positions|
for The Frontier Research System for Global Change (FRSGC)
Please mind that following information is run as a reference. Applications for those positions have been closed.
1. Objectives of FRSGC
Global changes, such as global warming and climatic anomalies, are serious problems which affect the ecosystem of nature and the future of human beings. The prediction and better understanding of these problems are pressing issues. FRSGC attempts to understand the complicated interactions among the atmosphere, ocean and land surface. Regarding the earth as one system, we develop an integrated model capable of more accurate simulation of global scale phenomena.
To accomplish these objectives, we propose the following research assignments, and invite excellent foreign as well as Japanese researchers for an intensive period of research. The research period is 20 years starting from 1997, (divided into two 10-year periods), and the results of the research will be evaluated by outside experts every 5 years.
2. Role of FRSGC
FRSGC is a joint project conducted by the Japan Marine Science and Technology Center (JAMSTEC) and the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA).
This joint project is designed to elucidate the various processes contributing to global change through data analysis and model experiments. It is part of an integrated three-in-one project which includes observations of earth by satellite and ship(FORSGC), and the development of the "Earth Simulator" , which was completed in March 2002. It is one of the main projects that Japan proposes for the IPRC (International Pacific Research Center) and the IARC (International Arctic Research Center) which frame the cooperation between Japan and the US under the Common Agenda. The researchers of FRSGC work during the contract period under supervision of our distinguished leaders.
3. Research Programs seeking applicants
In this fiscal year, we will invite applications of researchers for six research programs (Climate Variations, Hydrological Cycle, Global Warming, Atmospheric Composition, Ecosystem Change and Integrated Modeling), and for the research at the IPRC (International Pacific Research Center) and IARC (International Arctic Research Center).
In addition, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) launched a new research initiative named "Research Revolution 2002 (RR 2002)" for nation-wide enhancement of researches in four major areas responding to urgent societal needs. As one of the four areas, the "Project for Sustainable Coexistence of Human, Nature and the Earth" was set up, and the AO was issued in February 2002. For this project FRSGC has three subjects;
- Observational Research on Atmospheric Composition Change
- Development of Integrated Earth System Models
- Research Development of a New Four-Dimensional Variational (4D-VAR) Data Assimilation System Using an Adaptive Filter Approach and Assessment of the Products
The period of the project is FY 2002-FY 2006 (from April 2002 to March 2007).
In this fiscal year, we also invite applicants for these subjects of the "Project for Sustainable Coexistence of Human, Nature and the Earth".
(1)Climate Variations Research Program
Climate Variations Research Program aims at understanding physical processes of various oceanic and atmospheric phenomena related to ocean climate variations in order to contribute to enhancing predictability skills mostly in the Asia-Pacific sector. Efforts will be particularly devoted to enhancing our level of understanding of ocean climate variations from seasons to decades. Among those phenomena are the Kuroshio variations, the climate regime shift in the northern North Pacific, the El Nino/Southern Oscillation and the Indian Ocean Dipole. Both oceanic and atmospheric data will be intensively analyzed, together with simulations using models of varying degrees of freedom. This program is interested in interdisciplinary climate application studies based on the knowledge accumulated so far in the program in order to contribute to societal needs. It also promotes basic research on geophysical fluid dynamics related to ocean climate dynamics.
Candidates should hold a Ph.D. (or equivalent) physical oceanography, meteorology, geophysical fluid dynamics and climate dynamics or in related fields in physics. It is highly desirable that s/he has experience in numerical modeling and/or statistical data analysis. Reasonable command of spoken and written English is required in this program to communicate on a daily basis with colleagues from various nations.
1) For Ocean and/or Atmosphere Climate Modeling and Predictability Study
Successful candidates will be involved as core members in using as well as improving ultra high-resolution ocean and/or atmospheric models for the Earth Simulator in order to study climate variations and/or climate predictability in the Indo-Pacific sector. He/she is also expected to participate actively in bilateral collaboration with foreign countries for better climate prediction using those models. Application from an experienced senior level is also welcome.
2) For developing J-COPE (Japan Coastal Ocean Predictability Experiment)
A successful candidate will participate in predictability and application studies using an ultra high-resolution regional model nested in the Pacific basin-wide model in order to achieve successful experimental prediction of the Kuroshio variations influenced by basin-wide climate variations. S/he is expected to have interests in assimilating satellite-derived ocean color data as well as in modeling oceanic primary production.
3) For regional atmospheric modeling
A successful candidate will be involved in developing a regional atmospheric model to enhance predictability of synoptic-scale phenomena that interplay with large-scale climate variations. The successful candidate is expected to be interested in applying products as well as in interacting closely with the J-COPE group.
(2) Hydrological Cycle Research Program
Hydrological Cycle Research Program, which expertise in regional climate modeling, focuses its research activities on the Asian Monsoon in order to elucidate its mechanism on the water cycle and resources. We conduct researches to predict process and effects of phenomenal changes such as global warming on the mechanisms relevant to water resources, which are caused by the anthropogenic activities.
In addition to existing meteorological, hydrological and land-use data, we will fully utilize intensively observed data obtained through international projects such as GEWEX Asian Monsoon Experiment program (GAME), as well as the data (to be) observed by the Frontier Observation Research System for Global Change (FORSGC), remote sensing data (TRMM, SSM/I, GMS etc.) and others.
As for the modeling, we basically utilize existing regional models, such as RAMS, MM5 and ARPS. In addition, with the intention of developing models covering the points below, we are trying to elucidate mechanisms of changes in precipitation and the hydrological cycle (diurnal, seasonal, annual and interannual) in Asia. We are also trying to develop prediction methods for those mechanisms.
- Meteorological / hydrological modeling with various horizontal scales from the continental to the cumulus-convection.
- Modeling of various land surface processes, such as soil moisture, permafrost, snow, vegetation, change of land-use.
- Modeling of evaporation and precipitation processes at the state of mixture of various land surfaces and complicated configuration of the ground.
- Modeling of transport of stable water isotope and other material.
- Diagnostic studies of global/continental-scale energy and hydrological cycle by using the global reanalysis data and satellite data (TRMM, SSM/I etc.).
- Cooperation with the global climate model in the Integrated Modeling Research Program, FRSGC.
- Developing next generation regional climate model.
Researchers who have expertise and sufficient background on the following fields are highly appreciated:
- GCM modeling on global/continental-scale hydrological processes
- Diagnostic studies on global/continental-scale energy and hydrological processes using objective re-analysis data etc.
- Modeling of land-atmosphere interactions in Asia/Eurasian continent by using regional climate models
- Development of next-generation regional climate models
- Organization and parameterization of mesor^-r`scale cloud systems by using high-resolution cloud resolving models
- Development of the parameterization of microphysics (especially cold rain)
(3) Global Warming Research Program
This research program explores the physical, chemical and biological mechanism responsible for global warming and attempt to make quantitative projection of future climate change. It covers three research subjects, i. e., global warming, carbon cycle, and paleoclimate.
1) Global Warming Research
Using a hierarchy of climate models with various complexities and computational resolutions, the future changes of climate and the physical mechanisms, which are responsible for these changes are studied. For example, using general circulation model of the atmosphere with very high computational resolution, we will explore how those phenomena which are important for climate such as tropical and extra-tropical cyclones and El Nino-Southern Oscillation, are affected by global warming.
2) Carbon Cycle Research
Using a hierarchy of marine biogeochemical models with various complexities, the future changes of marine biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem will be investigated. Special emphasis of this project will be placed upon the elucidation of chemical, biological as well as physical processes that control the oceanic uptake of carbon dioxide.
3) Paleoclimate Research
Using a hierarchy of climate models with various complexities, the mechanisms which are responsible for past climate changes, in particular, the glacial-interglacial transition of climate are studied. For example, we will explore how the massive continental ice sheets were maintained during the last glacial maximum and why they have been reduced to the modern ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctic Continents. Based on this study we will also attempt to determine the future of these ice sheets.
The major objective of this program is the predictive understanding of global climate. It seeks those candidates who are interested in modeling study of the research topics identified above. It is desirable that they have basic knowledge of mathematics, chemistry, physics, and biology and the ability to apply these to the study of climate. In particular, the program looks for those who are interested in developing climate models and using them for the study of climate.
(4) Atmospheric Composition Research Program
This program aims at elucidation of mechanisms of material circulation process (emission, transport, chemical transformation, and deposition), and temporal and spatial change process of atmospheric trace species (greenhouse gases, ozone/reactive gases, and aerosols) related to climate and air quality change.
As a new direction of research, it aims at model study of interaction between global warming/climate change and air pollution/air quality change. Another new research direction is the utilization of satellite observational data of tropospheric chemical species for modeling research.
-Scientists who have fundamental knowledge on atmospheric chemistry and have experience in global or regional three-dimensional modeling.
-Scientists who are interested in utilization of satellite data of tropospheric chemical species for global/regional atmospheric composition change study.
1)Global Chemical-Transport Modeling Research
Candidates are expected to develop a full coupling of chemical transport model and climate change model, and to study feedback processes between air quality and climate change.
2)Regional Chemical-Transport Modeling Research
Candidates are expected to study the variability of ozone and related reactive species, particularly a relation between meteorology and air quality in Asia and Eurasia using a CMAQ/RAMS or other models. Another candidates are expected to develop a chemical transport model incorporating an internal mixing process of aerosols and to study radiation effects of aerosols.
3)Atmospheric composition data analysis research
Candidates are expected to study on air quality model validation in Asia using satellite data of GOME, SCIAMACHY etc., and to study the relation of sources and distribution of air pollutants.
(5) Ecosystem Change Research Program
The objective of this Research Program is to investigate the structures and the functions of terrestrial and marine ecosystems with respect to climatic and environmental changes on a global scale. In particular, it focuses on the observation of the spatial distributions of the biome-characteristic species, biomass, NPP, etc., and on the modeling of material flows and interactions within ecosystems and between the ecosystems, and the atmosphere in wide climatic zones in the Asian-Pacific region.
We are facing the scientifically new problem of how the ecosystem responds to the rapid environmental changes such as CO2 increase or global warming, and at the moment we do not know how it can be predicted or assessed. The Framework Convention on the Climate Change aims to predict, assess and prevent the negative effect of climate change to the terrestrial ecosystem. However, the modeling of ecosystem structures and functions has been behind the atmosphere and ocean circulation modeling.
The final goal of this research program is to develop models of terrestrial and marine ecosystems and to simulate them. However, like other research programs, it starts from the collection and the integration of the basic data and knowledge in the relevant fields.
Candidates having an interest in modeling of ecosystem structures and functions. In particular, candidates having an interest in modeling of interactions between terrestrial ecosystem and atmosphere, in modeling of ecosystem changes responding climate change, and in modeling and observation of spatial and temporal dynamics of ecosystem parameters.
1)Ecosystem - Atmosphere interaction modeling group
Candidates having an interest in modeling of matter flow in terrestrial ecosystem and in modeling ecosystem-atmosphere interaction, and having basic knowledge for their modeling and simulation.
2) Ecosystem architecture modeling group
Candidate having an interest in modeling of vegetation dynamics from single tree level to landscape ecology level, and having basic knowledge for mathematical ecology.
3) Ecosystem geographical distribution modeling group
Candidates having an interest in observation and modeling of ecosystem structures and functions, and having basic knowledge for remote sensing and GIS.
4) Marine biological process modeling group
Candidate having an interest in observation and modeling of marine ecosystems, and having knowledge for marine biological processes.
(6) Integrated Modeling Research Program
The mission of the Program is to develop "next-generation" climate models to be run on the world's fastest "Earth Simulator" which was completed in March 2002. At FRSGC, the following models are now considered as targets of model development:
1.Spectral atmosphere model with a horizontal resolution T213 and 50 layers in the vertical, world ocean model with 0.1 horizontal resolution and 50 layers in the vertical, and a coupled A-O GCM consisting of the two. An objective is to carry out long-term global warming experiments with eddy containing oceans.
2.Atmosphere model with a horizontal mesh size of 5 km or less by which tropical cloud clusters and other meso-scale atmospheric systems can be represented explicitly. As the coordinate system to cover the globe cubic-grid and incosahedral-grid (quasi-uniform grids) are adopted similarly, eddy resolving world ocean model on a quasi-uniform grid.
3.Development of models to include new elements such as aerosols effects on clouds, or global carbon cycle, on the basis of currently existing climate models cooperating with other research programs.
Development toward this "Integrated Earth System Model" starts from FY2002 as apart of the MEXT new project described in (7).
Modeling experts now being sought are expected to be engaged in
-Development of higher resolution atmosphere models on the basis of existing models by improving treatments of various physical processes, especially the atmospheric boundary layer and cumulus connection
-Development of high-resolution world ocean circulation models
-Development of non-hydrostatic atmosphere models
-Research and development of numerical computation methods for much higher resolution climate models.
Computer experts having experiences in climate models' coding for parallel machines are also being sought.
In addition to the above described model development, ocean data assimilation systems are also developed in this program. Four-dimensional variational data assimilation systems, which incorporate satellite and in-situ observational data into numerical models, are the subject of increasing interest. These can provide realistic initial conditions for adequate prediction and also useful re-analysis datasets for accurate estimation of ocean circulation processes. A variational data assimilation system using the adjoint method is the most promising approach in view of the fact that the spatio-temporal coverage of the present measurements for mass and velocity fields is far from complete. We have therefore constructed a global ocean data assimilation system and are now in the process of pursuing the following research subjects:
1)Improvement of the global ocean data assimilation system by using the adjoint method and Kalman filter
2) Research and development of high resolution data assimilation system utilizing satellite data and in situ data (TRITON/TAO, ARGO), together with development, processing and analysis of high-quality data set, which enable us to trace the time evolution of El Nino and other phenomena.
We invite applications from specialists for the above work.
(7) MEXT Project for sustainable coexistence of human, nature and the earth
From this fiscal year, the following subjects are started under "MEXT Project for sustainable coexistence of human, nature and the earth".
<< Observational Research on Atmospheric Composition Change>>
In order to give higher precision parameters to the global warming / atmospheric composition interaction model, this research aims at obtaining data on variability of mixing ratios of ozone and its precursors in eastern Eurasia and also to develop advanced reaction mechanism of tropspheric photochemistry. For this purpose, observational stations for ozone, carbon monoxide, and aerosols will be established in China, east Siberia and central Asia. Further tropspheric photochemistry model will be verified and newly developed through field observation of HOx radicals which directly controls ozone budget.
We call for a master degree holder who has interest in observational experiments in atmospheric chemistry. The candidate is expected to commit to field observation of ozone, CO and aerosols in China, east Siberia and central Asia as well as of HOx radicals by laser induced fluorescence method. S/He needs not necessarily have experience in field observation, but needs to have skills in handling of hardware of general experimental equipment.
<< Development of Integrated Earth System Models >>
The Frontier Research System for Global Change (FRSGC) was established in 1997 "Toward the realization of global change prediction". In the first 10 years (phase 1) however, it was planned that research and model development to be targeted toward prediction of various components of global environment such as climate variations, variation and change of hydrological cycles, those of atmospheric composition and so on, and more or less separately leaving prediction of the global change as a whole to be the target of the phase 2 .
In recent years, however with the increase of societal need for global warming prediction, projection of the future of the CO2 sequestration by land ecosystem under changed climate conditions is much concerned about and coupled carbon cycle-climate models are now being developed at some research centers.
Considering such a situation, at FRSGC we have decided to initiate a new research project to develop "integrated earth system model" in response to the AO of the MEXT project. The basic strategy of development is to combine component models already existing in respective research programs through collaboration of a member of the new project with researchers of existing programs and then to introduce necessary interaction processes to the combined model and study dynamics of the coupled system to complete the model mostly by members of the new project. We plan to carry out global warming experiment by developing coupled carbon cycle-climate models within 3-4 years. We also plan to include more components such as atmospheric chemistry, ecosystem dynamics and so on step by step.
Junior researchers including post docs to be engaged in the described project above are sought. Those who are interested in research subjects as listed below with reasonable background are desirable. Researchers having experiences in these are most welcome.
- Biogeochemical cycles in the ocean
- Material cycle and dynamics of terrestrial ecosystem
- Interaction between aerosols and clouds
- Parameterization of boundary layer and cloud processes including convection
- Development and improvement of parallel computer codes of climate models
<< Research development of a new four-dimensional variational (4D-VAR) data assimilation system using an adaptive filter approach and assessment of the products >>
In order to better describe the dynamic state of a climate system and contribute to improving predictability skills for seasonal variations, Data Assimilation Research Project aims at developing an adaptive filter and thereby constructing a new advanced 4D-VAR data assimilation system for climate variations. An adaptive filter method exploited here is a combination of the adjoint and the ensemble Kalman filter method with an aim at utilizing the advantages of both assimilation methods. The adaptive filter is planned to be incorporated into a dynamically coupled climate model that will be constructed and tuned up by a research group at the Earth Simulator Center (ESC). Firstly, data assimilation systems for each component model will be constructed using the adaptive filter approach, respectively, which are used to seek the optimal ensemble number and parameter values for seasonal variations. Secondly, these models will be integrated to make the comprehensive reanalysis dataset with dynamical consistency in the coupled system from a variety of observational data. Lastly, after a close examination of the effectiveness of the product in enhancing predictability and state estimation of seasonal variations, the new advanced data assimilation system is assessed and improved towards a better assimilation system.
We are seeking candidates with experience in developing/improving a coupled GCM (including sea-ice and land-process modeling) or an advanced assimilation method. Applicants must hold a Ph.D in oceanography, meteorology, an optimal theory, or a related field by the starting date. Successful candidates are expected to combine an excellent knowledge of oceanic and atmospheric phenomena with exceptionally strong background in computer modeling. A successful candidate will be involved in handling, analyzing, and dynamically diagnosing in/output data of the data assimilation system. Appointment is for one year and annually renewable, depending on performance and availability of funds.
(8)International Pacific Research Center (IPRC)
IPRC is a joint effort between Japan and US governments to research long-term climate variations. Its main research themes are:
(1)Indo-Pacific Ocean Climate, (2)Regional Ocean Influences, (3)Asian-Australian Monsoon System and (4)Impacts of Global Environmental Change. (for more information on the scientific objectives, see http://iprc.soest.hawaii.edu)
We are seeking candidates with experience in using oceanic or atmospheric modeling studies. Applicants must hold a Ph.D in oceanography, meteorology, geophysical fluid dynamics, or a related field by the starting date. Strong written and oral communication skills and demostrated ability to conduct research are required. Successful candidates are expected to combine an excellent knowledge of varied oceanic and atmospheric phenomena with exceptionally strong background in computer modelling. Appointment is for one year and annually renewable, depending on performance and availability of funds. Please note that there is a possibility that the working period at IPRC can not be extended more than three years due to US visa related reasons. Fluency in both Japanese and English languages is required.
(9) Research at the International Arctic Research Center (IARC)
IARC has been established as a joint research center for global change between the US and Japan aiming to explore natural phenomena in the Arctic region, climate change predictability and localized effects of global environmental changes. IARC, as a research center for global change, now seeks researchers.
The FRSGC has already dispatched to IARC several researchers who are the experts in oceanic, sea-ice and atmospheric systems, and they have been conducting the following research as part of the main research activities of IARC: clarification of the climate changes in the Arctic region and elucidation of global-Arctic feedback mechanisms. We are seeking researchers to work at IARC in Alaska as visiting scientists of the FRSGC. (Successful candidates are to be dispatched to IARC in Alaska)
Please note that there is a possibility that the working period at IARC can not be extended more than three years due to US visa related reasons.
1) A numerical modeler who develops a nonhydrostatic ocean model to reveal deep-water formation processes in a mid-ocean and over the continental shelf
2) A couple of scientists who use satellite remote sensing data for one of the following topics:
- sea ice and oceanic structures by synthesizing sea ice distribution data and an ice-ocean model
- oceanic productivity in a seasonal ice zone
- atmospheric dynamics related to climate variability
- effects of climate variability on terrestrial ecosystem and / or roles of terrestrial ecosystem on carbon / nitrate cycles
- the other topics related to global change carried out at the IARC
4. Research resources
A computer system with a multi-purpose server as well as a high performance server capable of vector calculations has been set up at the Institute for Global Change Research (IGCR). In addition, a network system with access to super computers at Japan Marine Science and Technology Center has been constructed. All FRSGC researchers are eligible for applying for using Earth Simulator.
5.Qualification for application
1) A person who has a Ph.D. in related fields or who is expected to complete the degree by the date of employment. We also welcome applicants who have the equivalent research experiences. (For "Observational Research on Atmospheric Composition Change" project only, a master degree holder will be accepted. Please see "3. Research Programs seeking applicants".)
2) Any nationality, any sex, and any age could be applied. FRSGC has the principle of equality of men and women as it relates to the recruitment of all staff. With a view to achieving a more equitable balance of men and women in all positions, we would like to particularly encourage qualified women to apply.
6. Work place
Frontier Research System for Global Change,
Institute for Global Change Research
3173-25 Showa-machi, Kanazawa-ku
Yokohama 236-0001 Japan
International Pacific Research Center (IPRC)
University of Hawaii
School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology,
100 Pope Road, Honolulu HI 96822 USA
International Arctic Research Center (IARC)
University of Alaska Fairbaks
930 Koyukuk Dr. P.O. Box 75733 Fairbanks,
AK 99775-7335 USA
7. Period of employment
Period of employment is from October 1st 2002 to March 31 2003 or, from April 1st 2003 to March 31 2004.
Employment contract is renewable every fiscal year depending on the progress of research. Maximum of three years for the post doctoral researcher and generally maximum of five years for others are expected.
On the expiration, a postdoctoral scientist or a full-time research scientist, whose maximum duration of employment has expired, may be eligible for an additional five years of employment at FRSGC as a full-time research scientist if, 1) his/her accomplishment is highly evaluated throughout the entire period, or 2) the Director-General and PD agree that the researcher is indispensable to the progress of FRSGC research.
8. Status of employment
A successful candidate will be employed as a contracted researcher of either Japan Marine Science and Technology Center or National Space Development Agency of Japan, according to his / her research theme and the research role in the overall system.
(1) Payment will be 4 million to 9 million yen per year for a full time position depending upon his / her academic career.
(2) Traveling expenses will be provided according to regulations.
(3) The same insurance as those NASDA or JAMSTEC employees receive will be provided.
(4) Subsidized housing is available through the JAMSTEC or NASDA housing scheme. Eligibility for the housing scheme is subject to the JAMSTEC or NASDA regulations.
(5) A commutation allowance will be provided.
(6) Holidays and vacations: Saturday, Sunday, public holidays, the year-end and the beginning of the year are holidays. There are annual vacations with pay, special vacations, leave of absence for care and maternity leave.
(7) Other: There are various kinds of subsidy system for personal interests/welfare, if the researcher is willing to take part in the mutual aid association.
10. Method of application
(1) Required documents
a. One copy of research proposal including the research program which you desire to participate in. (A4 size, 1 page)
*Please write research program(s) which you will apply. If you apply more than one research programs, please submit one research proposal for each program.
b. References (recommendations) written by two senior researchers.
The references should be sent directly from them to Frontier Research Promotion Office, Frontier Research System for Global Change (see 10.(3))
Applicant's name should be written on the envelope.
c. One copy of a resume.
d. One copy of publication list including thesis titles.
Please separate those with referred journals from other publications.
Required documents should be sent by mail before the deadline.
Frontier Research System for Global Change
Frontier Research Promotion Office
3173-25 Showa-machi, Kanazawa-ku
Yokohama 236-0001 Japan
11. Closing date for application
July 31, 2002 (a postmark on the day is acceptable)
12. Selection and employment
Document evaluation and interview will be conducted.
1) Interviews will be conducted in Japanese or English.
2) Incomplete applications may not be accepted.
3) Submitted documents will not be returned to the applicant.
1) A health certificate should be submitted when the employment is informally
2) A letter should be submitted if the applicant withdraws.
3) If you have further inquiries, please contact the Frontier Research Promotion Office (see 10 (3)).
Related information is available on the following home page URL:
4) There may be additional announcement of opportunities in the future.