Research Fellow, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy

Phoenix, AZ or remotely

Position Title: Babbitt Research Fellow

Organization: The Babbitt Center for Land and Water Policy of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy

Anticipated Start Date: Temporary position (August 11, 2021 – April 30, 2022)


The Babbitt Center for Land and Water Policy seeks a Research Fellow for its Colorado River Basin Land and Water Indicators Project. Indicators allow us to take a snapshot of the current state of land and water resources and track changes over time. While there are numerous indicators and indices to evaluate different dimensions of sustainability, they do not always measure relevant phenomena at scales that are useful to practitioners. This project involves the creation of indicators to communicate insights about land and water resource conditions and the nexus of land use and water management to policymakers, resource managers, and other stakeholders in the Colorado River Basin region. Indicators help tell stories about places, the people who inhabit them, and their efforts to build sustainable and resilient communities and environments. By quantifying and communicating important trends to key stakeholders at scales that are most relevant to them, we seek to catalyze the better integration of land use and water policy and management and, ultimately, more sustainable communities in the Colorado River Basin.

What You Will Do:

  • Research and develop methodologies for land and water sustainability indicators as a thought partner, in close collaboration with a small team of researchers
  • Build working relationship with Lincoln Institute’s Center for Geospatial Solutions for research and development of web-based indicators and geospatial platforms
  • Identify, collect and analyze different datasets at multiple geographic and/or administrative scales (local, regional, state, and basin) across the Colorado River Basin (may entail contacting federal, state, and local agencies and organizations for datasets that are difficult to locate online)
  • Organize and manage tabular and geospatial data in spreadsheets, databases, geodatabases, etc.
  • Work with Lincoln Institute Publications and Communications to write and publish reports, articles, blogs, and social media posts etc. about the indicators project, including lessons learned, best practices, results for a public audience
  • Other duties as assigned, either as a part of this project and/or participating in other Babbitt Center projects as needed
  • No travel required

Required Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in geography; hydrology; environmental and natural resources management and planning; environmental engineering; urban planning; public policy; environmental studies; or related field
  • Interest and/or previous work experience (0-2 years) in the development and application of indicators for measuring and tracking changes in natural and social phenomena over time, especially related to sustainability assessments
  • Experience conducting independent research involving environmental data collection, quantitative analysis, and writing reports or journal articles for publication
  • Strong data analysis skills and proficiency with analytical tools, including ArcGIS desktop and online, and statistical methods and software
  • Comfortable working with both qualitative and quantitative data
  • Familiarity with – and strong interest in – land and water sustainability issues in the Colorado River Basin, including implications of climate change for land and water resource management
  • Experience managing, interpreting, analyzing, and graphically presenting tabular and geospatial data for different audiences
  • Strong writing skills
  • Strong organizational and time management skills with the ability to manage multiple tasks simultaneously
  • Detail oriented, self-motivated, team player, and professional demeanor with strong communication skills and a positive attitude
  • Legally authorized to work in the United States

Preferred Qualifications:

  • PhD candidate or completed PhD in geography; hydrology; environmental and natural resources management and planning; environmental engineering; urban planning; public policy; environmental studies; or related field
  • Familiarity with the major agencies responsible for data collection and water management in the Colorado River Basin region
  • Proficiency in web-based application, and platform development

To Apply:

Application deadline is July 30, 2021 

Please return a resume (no more than 3 pages), cover letter, and contact information for 2-3 references to Zach Sugg For questions, contact Zach Sugg via email or at 972-841-3109.