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Assistant Professor of Crop Sensing, Modeling and Automation

Recruitment Period

Open date: May 31st, 2018
Last review date: Wednesday, Aug 15, 2018 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.
Final date: Sunday, Jun 30, 2019 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


The Departments of Viticulture and Enology and Biological and Agricultural Engineering in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of California, Davis are jointly recruiting an Assistant Professor specializing in the area of sensing, modeling and automation in agricultural systems with an emphasis on grapevines and vineyard management. A PhD in engineering or a related field is desired. In addition to teaching, this academic year (9‐month), tenure track, Assistant Professor position includes an appointment in the Agricultural Experiment Station (AES). The appointee is expected to conduct mission‐oriented research and outreach relevant to the California Agricultural Experiment Station.

The appointee will be expected to develop a research program encompassing the areas of sensors and sensing systems for key variables such as yield, plant water status and disease state, data management (data mining, visualization, and modeling) and effective automation and mechanization of crop production. The goal of this position will be to help create novel machines, sensors and systems, including robotic or cooperative robotic systems designed to sense, control, instruct and provide spatially accurate and precise solutions for real- and near real-time variable rate management challenges. The results of this research will be applied to all types of grapes (wine, table, and raisin), as well as other related or similar crops. This position will have the support of faculty in grapevine physiology, plant biochemistry, plant-soil water relations, systems biology, and engineering that only exists on this campus.

The appointee will be responsible for teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in Viticulture and Enology, Biological Systems Engineering, and potentially Applied Biological Systems Technology (ABT). Specific teaching assignments will depend on the academic background of the appointee, although we would expect the candidate to teach courses with a significant engineering component in Viticulture and Enology or Biological and Agricultural Engineering. In Viticulture and Enology, these courses could include VEN 135 (Winery Technology and Winery Systems) which focuses on engineering principles in wine processing and VEN 115 (Grape Production), which could focus on vineyard mechanization and precision viticulture ideas. Contributing to one or more of our field courses (VEN 101A-C) would also be possible. New content on precision viticulture could be introduced at the graduate level through a section of VEN 224 (Advances in the Science of Winemaking) or VEN 216 (Sustainable Vineyard Development) and VEN 217 (Field and GIS Evaluation of Soils). In Biological and Agricultural Engineering, several courses could be taught by the person in this position including EBS 165 (Bioinstrumentation and Control), as well as courses like EBS 1 (Foundations of Biological Systems Engineering), 130 (Modeling of Dynamic Processes), 170 (Engineering Design) and 189A on automation and robotics. On the graduate level, likely courses would include EBS 260 (Analog Instrumentation), EBS 262 (Computer Interfacing and Control), and 289K (Sensors and Actuators). Courses on precision agriculture could also be taught through the Applied Biological Systems Technology program. Participation in and development of public outreach and/or community engagement programs, and performance of departmental and university service is expected. This position is expected to work with Cooperative Extension specialists and advisors, partners in allied industries or other appropriate public stakeholders.

This recruitment is conducted at the assistant professor rank. The resulting hire will be at the assistant professor rank, regardless of the proposed appointee's qualifications.

Qualifications: Ph.D. or equivalent degree in biological and agricultural engineering, biological systems engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, or related field. No previous experience in viticulture is specifically necessary, as long as the candidate’s experience is relevant to solving current problems related to production of grapes and related crops. Post‐doctoral experience is preferred. Evidence of research excellence is expected. The candidate should have the ability to develop and instruct undergraduate and graduate courses and the ability to develop and conduct extramurally funded research in problems related to the production of grapes and similar or related crops.

Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Required application materials include: 1) curriculum vitae including publication list, 2) up to three publications, 3) transcripts if the applicant is within five years of Ph.D. degree, 4) abstract of dissertation, 5) statement of teaching accomplishments, teaching interests in the relevant curriculum, and teaching philosophy, 6) statement of future research plans relevant to vineyard sensing and mechanization in California, 7) the names, addresses, including e‐mail, of four professional references and 8) Statement of Contributions to Diversity.

We seek applicants and faculty who show evidence of a strong commitment towards expanding opportunities for women and under-represented groups to increase the diversity of the campus community.

UC Davis is an affirmative action/equal employment opportunity employer and is dedicated to recruiting a diverse faculty community. We welcome all qualified applicants to apply, including women, minorities, veterans, and individuals with disabilities.

UC Davis supports Family‐friendly recruitments. UC Davis covers travel expenses for a second person to accompany an invited faculty recruitment candidate who is a mother (or single parent of either gender) of a breast or bottle‐feeding child less than two years of age.‐life/index.html

UC Davis recognizes the necessity of supporting faculty with efforts to integrate work, family and other work‐ life considerations. To recruit and retain the best faculty, the campus sponsors a Work Life Program that provides programs and services that support faculty as they strive to honor their commitments to work, home and community.

UC Davis was ranked #1 in 2016 on Forbes Magazine list of the 13 most important STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) universities for women, and is expecting to earn the U.S. Department of Education’s “Hispanic Serving Institution” designation by 2018-2019. Davis celebrates the multi-cultural diversity of its student body by creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for students through such organizations and programs as the Center for African Diaspora Student Success; the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual Resource Center; Casa Cuauhtémoc Chicano-Latino Theme House; Asian Pacific American Theme House; ME/SA (Middle astern/South Asian) living-learning community; Multi- Ethnic Program (MEP); Chicano/Latino Retention Initiative; and Native American Theme Program.

The UC Davis Partner Opportunities Program (POP) is a service designed to support departments and deans’ offices in the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty. Eligibility for POP services is limited to full‐time Academic Senate Ladder Rank faculty (including Lecturers with Security of Employment (LSOE), Lecturers with Potential Security of Employment (LPSOE) Senior Lecturer with Security of Employment (SLPSOE)), and Cooperative Extension Specialists.

UC Davis is a smoke‐ and tobacco‐free campus effective January 1, 2014. Smoking, the use of smokeless tobacco products, and the use of unregulated nicotine products (e‐cigarettes) will be strictly prohibited on any property owned or leased by UC Davis‐‐ indoors and outdoors, including parking lots and residential space.

Job location

Davis, CA

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More information about this recruitment:


Document requirements
  • Cover Letter (Optional)

  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V. including publication list

  • Publication #1

  • Publication #2 (Optional)

  • Publication #3 (Optional)

  • Transcripts - Transcripts are required if the applicant is within five years of Ph.D. degree

  • Abstract of Dissertation

  • Statement of Teaching Accomplishments - Teaching interests in the relevant curriculum, and teaching philosophy

  • Statement of Research - Statement of future research plans relevant to vineyard sensing and mechanization in California

  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity - Diversity contributions documented in the application file will be used to evaluate applicants. Visit for guidelines about writing a diversity statement and why one is requested.

Reference requirements
  • 4-6 required (contact information only)