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Assistant/ Associate Project Scientist – UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA Pavement Research Center

Position overview

Salary range: “Off-scale salaries” and other components of pay, i.e., a salary that is higher than the published system-wide salary at the designated rank and step, are offered when necessary to meet competitive conditions, qualifications, and experience. A reasonable estimated salary range for this position is $90,500 - $129,800.

Application Window

Open date: May 28, 2024

Most recent review date: Friday, Jun 28, 2024 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: Tuesday, May 27, 2025 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.

Position description

The Assistant or Associate Project Scientist makes significant and creative contributions to a research or creative project in his/her academic discipline. The appointee possesses the subject matter expertise and the creative energy necessary to function at a high level of competence. The appointee will participate in activities to increase, improve, or upgrade competency. The appointee may engage in University and public service, but does not have teaching responsibilities. Although the Project Scientist is expected to work independently under the general guidance of an academic member with an independent research program (i.e., Professor, Professional Researcher, etc.), he/she is not required to develop an independent research program or reputation. He/she will carry out research or creative programs with supervision by an individual in an academic title that carries with it automatic Principal Investigator status. The Project Scientist does not usually serve as a Principal Investigator but may do so by exception.


Research activity (70%)

• Make significant, original, and creative contributions to research projects as part of the research program in the UC Pavement Research Center (primarily supported by State funds from the California Department of Transportation [Caltrans] and U.S. Department of Transportation funds) within the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
• Plan, direct, guide, coordinate, supervise, and carry out research in all aspects including creating project work plans, experiment design, laboratory and field pavement testing, data analysis, model development, simulation, and reporting.
• Write and edit project technical memoranda, research reports, and guidelines.
• Participate in technical conferences, symposiums, seminars, expert task groups, and meetings to present research findings.
• Participate in technology and research scanning activities to identify results, methods, procedures, equipment, materials, and other pavement technology related to the Pavement Research Center program and projects.
• Develop relationships to perform creative research with other research centers on campus, such as the National Center for Sustainable Transportation (NCST).
• Serve as Project Manager for field and laboratory testing programs, assisting the Principal Investigator with experimental design, preparation of test plans, participating in and supervising laboratory testing operations, supervising overall quality of data, data processing and analysis, development and characterization of pavement materials, and forensic investigations of field test sections.

Publication (10%)
The appointee will publish research in peer-reviewed journals and peer reviewed national and international conferences either independently or in collaboration with the PI or other members of the research team.

Grant Acquisition (5%)
Assist in writing proposals and resource development for funding with Caltrans, the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery, the California Air Resource Board, the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Science Foundation, and other relevant sources. As part of the Pavement Research Center mission to pursue broader funding sources and sustainable infrastructure research, the Associate Project Scientist will help in writing proposals to acquire additional local, national and international research projects including but not limited to research on pavement recycling and the use of recycled materials in pavements.

The appointee will participate in professional societies, including membership on committees, educational organizations, and conferences appropriate to his/her specific field of pavement engineering, construction materials characterization, geotechnical engineering, and sustainable transportation. The appointee will serve as a reviewer of research proposals, research reports, journal manuscripts, technical presentations, professional publications, and other scientific publications related to his/her areas of expertise. The appointee will attend seminars to present research results and may give oral presentations to public and professional interest groups. When appropriate, the appointee may coordinate and/or give presentations at seminars, meetings or educational functions.

The appointee will engage in public outreach activities that include presenting scientific research results to the general public and providing relevant advice to individuals and public agencies. Teaching classroom courses is not an expectation of this position. The appointee will engage in other University service activities including but not limited to:
• Guest lecturing
• Committee service
• Supporting the development of research skills of Pavement Research Center staff engineers, graduate student researchers, and undergraduate student assistants by helping them plan and undertake research.
• Liaison and communication with local, state, and federal transportation (and related) agencies, industry organizations, and other external groups on issues related to his/her areas of expertise.
• Participation in activities within the department, college, campus, and other university entities as appropriate to his/her research activities.


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)

• PhD in Civil Engineering (geotechnical) or equivalent
• At least 3 years Post-Doctoral research in pavement engineering with demonstrated capability and experience (in terms of published reports and papers) in designing and carrying out experiments on pavement recycling and recycling/stabilization agents and the use of recycled materials in pavement layers, including the testing, analysis, and modelling procedures to evaluate them.
• Experience with the operation and project management of accelerated pavement testing facilities, including test track design, equipment operations, test track instrumentation, forensic investigations, and data analysis in terms of relating results to long-term pavement performance.

Preferred qualifications (other preferred, but not required, qualifications for the position)

• Experience in conducting environmental life cycle assessments of pavement activities.
• Ability to oversee several funded research projects simultaneously including meeting benchmarks and deadlines.
• Proficiency in the operation and programming of dynamic testing machines (e.g., repeated load triaxial) and interpreting the results produced by them.
• Proficiency in Matlab, Excel, and other analysis software.
• Ability to lead, support, and coordinate teams of researchers and laboratory staff (e.g., setting tasks, developing guidelines, and coordinating among multiple people).
• Ability to prepare comprehensive reports detailing the research process and results and a processes for implementing the research findings in agency procedures and specifications.

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Statement of Research - One page statement of your research interests

  • Journal Publication #1 - Detailing the applicant's research studies and written by the applicant as lead author

  • Journal Publication #2 - Detailing the applicant's research studies and written by the applicant as lead author

  • Journal Publication #3 - Detailing the applicants research studies and written by the applicant as lead author

  • Technical Report #1

  • Technical Report #2

  • Cover Letter (Optional)

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

Reference requirements
  • 3-5 required (contact information only)
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Job location

Davis, CA