PhD Position: Marine Habitat Mapping & MPA Assessment

Marine HabitatProject Description: This PhD scholarship is aligned with a project funded by Parks Victoria with a focus on the assessment of MPAs in the state waters off Victoria, Australia. Parks Victoria has established extensive marine research and monitoring programs for the MPAs that address important management challenges, focussing both on improving baseline knowledge of the MPAs as well as applied management
questions not being addressed by others. This project includes five main components:(1) develop a full bathymetry map for Bunurong Marine National Park (MNP) and habitat maps for both Bunurong and Wilsons Promontory MNPs, (2) establish IMOS Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) monitoring sites inside and outside Wilson Promontory MNP as part of the national AUV monitoring program, (3) test, refine and implement proposed new methods for subtidal reef surveys using an AUV and other recent advances in technology, (4) test, refine and implement new methods for intertidal reef surveys using low‐cost Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), and (5) investigate habitat/species (fish populations and rock lobster) relationships in Wilsons Prom MNP, including use of fisheries independent survey methods to assess rock lobster populations inside and outside the park.

The PhD student will contribute to a broader team approach and not be expected to target all aspects of the program and would have freedom to work on other local and global scale projects. For example, the student would have opportunities to work on projects involving tracking data to determine habitat utilisation of marine mammals in Bass Strait with regard to commonwealth MPAs and broader scale studies including global‐scale MPA assessments.

Project Environment: The project will be hosted by Deakin University’s Centre for Integrative Ecology (CIE) in the School of Life and Environmental Science and supported by Parks Victoria. The project will be principally supervised by Daniel Ierodiaconou from Deakin University as part of Deakin’s Marine Mapping group  with support from research partners.

Expressions of Interest: We are seeking EOIs for a fully‐funded PhD Scholarship from candidates with outstanding track records in spatial mapping and analysis. Applicants with experience in marine habitat mapping, acoustic and/or visual mapping methods, underwater video data collection (ROV, AUV, BRUV), spatial statistics, MPA assessment, and GIS are encouraged to apply.

EOIs must consist of a 1‐2 page cover letter describing your suitability for the position and track record relative to opportunity, as well as a 2 page CV and any relevant questions relating to the position.

EOIS can be emailed to mary.young@deakin.edu.au  (Mary’s profile page) and should be submitted by Friday, 1st July 2016.