Graduate Research Assistant

Updated: 9 days ago
Location: Exeter, ENGLAND
Deadline: 04 Aug 2022

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

This new full-time post is available from 1st September 2022 on a fixed term basis until 31st August 2025

Please note that as of 1st September 2022 our colleges and schools will be moving into a new structure which will consist of the following three Faculties – Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy and Faculty of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.

Summary of the role

The College wishes to recruit a Graduate Research Assistant to support the work of Prof Angela Gallego-Sala. This ERC funded posts are available from 1st September 2022 to 31st August 2025, as a full-time position. The successful applicants will be part of a project entitled: “TroPeaCC: Tropical peatlands and the Carbon Cycle”. This is a project investigating carbon cycling in tropical peatlands, you will be contributing data to understand their past histories and also how they may be affected by climate change.

The posts will mainly include laboratory duties, including the subsampling, analysis and dating of peat cores collected in tropical regions. It may also involve some other work, such as data analysis and some basic modelling. You will need to keep records of all of the data produced in the laboratory/field and you may need to contribute to writing reports.

About you

The successful applicant will be able to work in the laboratory, present information on research progress and outcomes, communicate complex information, orally, in writing and electronically and prepare proposals and applications to external bodies.

Applicants will be educated to first degree level or possess an equivalent qualification/experience in Environmental Sciences, Geography or a related discipline and be able to demonstrate sufficient knowledge of research methods and techniques to work within the TroPeaCC project. Applicants will be able to keep accurate records, be able to organise their work, be computer literate, have good analytical skills, good communication abilities l and will be able to liaise and work closely with other colleagues.

What we can offer you

  • Freedom (and the support) to pursue your intellectual interests and to work creatively across disciplines to produce internationally exciting research;
  • Support teams that understand the University wide research and teaching goals and partner with our academics accordingly
  • An Innovation, Impact and Business directorate that works closely with our academics providing specialist support for external engagement and development
  • Our Exeter Academic initiative supporting high performing academics to achieve their potential and develop their career
  • A beautiful campus set in the heart of stunning Devon

Please ensure you read the Job Description and Person Specification for full details of this role.

The University of Exeter

We are a member of the prestigious Russell Group of research-intensive universities and in the top 150 universities in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2022 and QS World University Ranking 2022).  

Our research income in recent years means we’re the fastest growing UK Research University with some of the world’s most influential scientists, and we seek to answer some of the most fundamental issues facing humankind today through this. More than 99% of our research is of international quality and our world-leading research impact is growing faster than any other Russell Group university (2021 Research Excellence Framework). We encourage proactive engagement with industry, business and community partners to enhance the impact of research and education and improve the employability of our students. Read about our world leading research – Green Futures and how we are transforming education for a changing world. We are located in a beautiful part of the country and Exeter (a fast growing tech hub) is one of only a few UK cities to have been designated as a UNESCO Creative City .

Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Commitment

With over 27,000 students and 6,400 staff from 180 different countries we offer a diverse and engaging environment where our diversity is celebrated and valued as a major strength. We are committed to creating an inclusive culture where all members of our community are supported to thrive; where diverse voices are heard through our engagement with evidence-based charter frameworks for gender (Athena SWAN), race equality (Race Equality Charter Mark), LGBTQ+ inclusion (Stonewall Diversity Champion) and as a Disability Confident employer. Whilst all applicants will be judged on merit alone, we particularly welcome applications from groups currently underrepresented within our working community. Reasonable adjustments are available for interviews and workplaces.


We offer some fantastic benefits including:

  • 41 days leave per year
  • options for flexible working
  • numerous discounts at leading retailers
  • onsite gyms on all of our campus’ and a cycle to work scheme
  • sector leading policies around maternity, adoption and shared parental leave (up to 26 weeks full pay), paternity leave (up to six weeks full pay) and a new Fertility Treatment Policy
  • stunning campus environments in Exeter and Cornwall, in the beautiful South West of England

One of the most successful Geography departments in the UK, Geography is ranked 7th in the UK for research, top 20 in the world, and 4th in the UK for research in Earth and Environmental Sciences. It is represented across both the Streatham and Penryn campuses. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), we were ranked 7th in the UK for research and 3rd for research power in Geography and Environmental Studies and 4th in the UK for research in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences.

Geography in Streatham boasts many experimental and analytical laboratories for physical geography (radiometry; palynology; luminescence spectrometry; soil, sediment and water analysis). It also offers the £3.7 million Sediment Research Facility, funded by the Science Research Investment Fund, which provides additional laboratories, experimental facilities (flumes and rainfall simulators), and a wide range of state of the art analytical equipment.

Further information

Please contact Prof Angela Gallego-Sala, e-mail

We welcome applications from candidates interested in working part-time hours or job-sharing arrangements.

This role may be subject to additional background screening.

Please note, interviews for this post are expected to take place during mid August 2022.

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