Dr. Peter Reich Named Director of U-M Institute for Global Change Biology; Funding & Job Openings Available
Dr. Peter Reich, a renowned expert in forest ecology, has been named Director of the Institute for Global Change Biology (IGCB) at SEAS. Reich, who has conducted global change research on plants, soils, and ecosystems across a range of scales, comes from the University of Minnesota (UNM), where he is a Regents Professor, Distinguished McKnight University Professor, and the F.B. Hubacheck Sr. Chair in Forest Ecology and Tree Physiology.
In addition to his work at UNM, Reich was the Chief Scientist at the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment at Western Sydney University in Australia from 2011 to 2021. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a fellow of the Ecological Society of America, and a BBVA Prize Laureate (BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Ecology and Conservation Biology). He also helped launch the science education channel, MinuteEarth, which has more than 400 million views on YouTube and other platforms.
U-M's Biosciences Initiative established the Institute for Global Change Biology in 2018 as a Scientific Research Initiative. SRIs are the Biosciences Initiative's major investments designed to advance major new directions in transdisciplinary discovery in the biosciences. President Mark Schlissel launched the Biosciences Initiative to create globally leading biosciences research programs focused on solving critical problems.
The scope of the IGCB is wide, according to Reich. “We take an extremely broad view of global change biology, including all aspects of natural systems, human systems, and their interactions as they play out on land, in the ocean, in our cities, and in our atmosphere,” Reich said. “We look to ‘partner’ across the university with ecology, engineering, economics, health sciences, earth sciences, atmospheric sciences, computer sciences, social sciences, sustainability sciences, and the arts. Moreover, to develop a community without walls, we seek partners from elsewhere in the United States and globally.”
A longer-range goal, Reich noted, is to inspire U-M to make global change one of its core priorities as an institution; to develop a set of linked institutes on all aspects of global change; and to more generally make Michigan the world’s first “global change” university.
Job Openings & Funding Opportunities Available
As part of its accelerated start-up, the IGCB is announcing a special initiative to recruit excellent scientists who work in a broad diversity of facets of global change biology. The primary research goal of the IGCB is to develop a comprehensive holistic understanding of the interactive effects of global change on organisms, ecological systems, and coupled biosphere-atmosphere and natural-human systems across temporal and spatial scales. Both foundational science and work relevant to policy, management, and economics will be encouraged, including in food systems; terrestrial ecosystems; aquatic, coastal and oceanic ecosystems; urban ecosystems; biosphere-atmosphere interactions; public health; and others. The IGCB also will develop educational and outreach initiatives.
Available positions include:
Six to nine tenured or tenure-track, open rank U-M faculty (assistant, associate, or full professor)
10 to 12 postdoctoral positions (see below for details)
One institute coordinator
Faculty. Each U-M position will be jointly affiliated with the IGCB and one of six or more different units on campus (e.g., SEAS, EEB, EES, SPH, CLASP, or other). The joint appointments with external partners will be a vehicle for accelerating the building of the IGCB community. Two of these positions are currently open.
Click here to learn more and apply to be a IGCB Faculty member.
Postdoctoral Fellows. To spark interdisciplinarity, the postdoctoral positions all will include linkages among different units (at U-M, or some combination of Michigan and external partner institutions). There will be two kinds of positions: (i) postdoctoral positions will be awarded directly to candidates, based on their background, accomplishments, and proposed work—their department links and advisors will be determined by their interests and developed in part by the selected Fellows; and (ii) candidates will be recruited to join teams of IGCB faculty who have developed IGCB Working Groups with specific research foci. Note: The coordinator position will be filled by a postdoctoral candidate who desires a 50-50 split between research and coordination.
Click here to learn more and apply to be a IGCB postdoctoral fellow.
Working Groups. For U-M faculty, we Invite you to submit a proposal to create a Global Change Biology Working Group. Driven by the recognition that synthesis is critical to solving complex problems, we invite U-M researchers and their national and international colleagues to submit proposals for interdisciplinary working groups that will collaborate to promote understanding largely through analysis of existing data and information. The IGCB seeks projects that will assess important ecological, earth system science, public health, and sustainability science ideas and theories.
For more information on how to submit a proposal, visit our website.
To learn more about the Institute and these opportunities, contact Peter Reich at email@example.com.