Research Assistant position: Coastal Pathogens and Climate Change – One Health Living Lab

The Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3) offers a full-time Research Assistant Position within the Horizon Europe project BlueAdapt (GA 101057764 funded by HORIZON-HLTH-2021-ENVHLTH-02-03 call), a 4 year research project coordinated by BC3. The position will be located at the BC3 research group Health and Climate, within the Adaptation Lab research line.

Bacterial and viral pathogens in coastal waters pose threats to health for a number of different agents – including occupational and recreational risks for activities in and around coasts. Under conditions of climate change, these risks are likely to increase for a number of reasons. For example, warming of the ocean is likely to influence the survival of bacteria and viruses. Exposure of humans to coastal waters may also change – as changing climates impact on human behaviour. Upstream, changes in pressures from wastewater, industry and agricultural processes may also influence the abundance of viruses and bacteria in our coasts.

In this context, BlueAdapt attempts to provide an evidence base for innovation and action around coastal pathogens, by bringing together an interdisciplinary team of biologists, climate scientists, economists, epidemiologists and public health experts to investigate the future health risks associated with selected coastal pathogens, and identify adaptation measures through concrete case studies. BlueAdapt will also provide tools to assess the impacts of policy responses and communicate the results to a wide audience, including both policymakers and the public.

BC3 will illustrate how an integrated approach to health can be used to co-produce knowledge in a local case study, the Bay of Biscay. In this context, BC3 will co-design a Pilot One Health Living Lab for the case study area, to analyse the complex interlinkages between coastal pathogens, environmental pollution, climate change, human exposure and One Health, including demographic and socio-economic factors. The Living Lab will act as a living knowledge platform for multi-perspective analysis, discussion and collaboration, in order to test the extended One Health conceptual framework, encourage collaboration and promotion of co-production of knowledge, develop approaches for the evaluation of One Health solutions and sustain postgraduate education in the field of One Health and coastal pathogens.

For these activities, BC3 is looking for a research assistant who can support the BC3 research team in the scientific and communication tasks.

Job description:

The research assistant will work jointly with the BlueAdapt research team and participate in various activities in the project.

The selected person will be located at the Basque Centre for Climate Change, Bilbao, Spain, and will work under the direct supervision of Aline Chiabai and Marc Neumann, according to the needs of the project. The applicant is expected to comply with the standards of conduct and ethics imposed by the host institution (BC3).

Key responsibilities:

Literature review in the topics related to the project.
Prepare materials and support for the organization of surveys, focus groups and interviews.
Support in the creation of databases for one health indicators.
Participate to the co-design of the One Health Living Lab and related activities.
Visit regularly the PiE-UPV/EHU to conduct fieldwork in the Bay of Plentzia.
Contribute to the development of the deliverables and documents of the project.
Main requirements/skills:

Master’s degree in environmental sciences, biology or ecology.
Good oral and written communication skills, interpersonal and analytical skills, with demonstrated ability to work in a multicultural team.
Fluency in English is required and a working level of Spanish.
A strong motivation, interest in environmental issues, interdisciplinary collaboration
Ability to work independently is also required.
Benefits and work environment

Interdisciplinary and inspiring work environment
Quiet and spacious workspaces
Possibility of participating in internal training and academic activities of the centre
35-hour week work calendar
30 days of vacation per year