Postdoc: Conservación de leopardos y elefantes en China ~

11 de enero de 2019

Postdoc: Conservación de leopardos y elefantes en China

In line with the national strategy of “One belt One road & Made in China 2025”, which aims to provide opportunities for people of talent and to support Chinese national strategy, Beijing Forestry University (BFU) announces a post-doc position recruitment notice, with funding support from “Young Foreign Talents Introduction Program”, to attract young people with talent from abroad to conduct high quality academic research in China.

The successful applicant will be based in the Wildlife Institute at Beijing Forestry University (WI-BFU), under the supervision of Professor Shi Kun, director of WI-BFU.

WI-BFU was established in April 2009, with support from the Chinese National Forestry and Grassland Administration (NFGA) and a global network of international experts. The institute was founded with the goal of providing support for wildlife conservation and management within China and internationally. WI-BFU collaborates closely with government offices such as the NFGA, Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Environment, in addition to an integrated network within China, it has strong international collaborations, such as its long-term partnership with the University of Oxford’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, Rocky Mountain Research Center, US Forest Service, WWF, IUCN and Panthera. Strong collaborations with colleges within BFU (such as the College of Nature Conservation) as well as universities across China, allow it to maintain a strong academic foundation and carry out interdisciplinary scientific research in fields such as wildlife ecology, evolution, conservation, and sustainable wildlife management. Through undertaking collaborative research, academic exchanges, and mutual cultivation of postgraduate students, it has strengthened its international status and furthered its development as a leading wildlife research group in China. In the last five years WI-BFU has conducted more than 30 projects and published over 30 papers relating to conservation of endangered feline species, particularly snow leopard, in international journals, such as Biological Conservation, Ecography, PLoS ONE, Science of the Total Environment, and Oryx.

Dr. Kun Shi is a professor at the Beijing Forestry University and director of WI-BFU. He is the Secretary General of two key organizations in China, the China Snow Leopard Expert Committee under NFGA, and the China Cats Specialist Group under the China Zoological Society. He is also a member of the IUCN Cat Specialist Group and World Committee of Protected Areas. He established a forefront Snow Leopard Group in China (SLG) in 2007. This group, composed of enthusiastic and dedicated young conservationists, has focused on researching snow leopard ecology and conservation. It has adopted methods such as sign surveys, camera trapping, DNA analysis, and GIS technology to explore snow leopard research in China, a previously little-researched field. The group mainly works in prioritized snow leopard range in China, covering the eastern Pamirs, west margin of Tianshan, Everest, middle Minshan, and middle and western parts of the Qilian Mountains. They have made remarkable progress in identification of snow leopards distribution, evaluating abundance, conducting dietary analysis, exploring habitat preference, and understanding human-snow leopard conflict in China. The group has published these findings in a range of Chinese and international journals, and have also produced a variety of scientific reports and guidelines for the central government.

Since 2010, Kun's research team has been collaborating with Oxford’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit to implement the Darwin Initiative project "Capacity Building on Feline Conservation in China". They have also worked together since 2012 on a Robertson Foundation supported project on snow leopard conservation and research in China. Currently, they have trained more than 500 local research and monitoring staff in snow leopard and tiger distribution areas, and have established "China Feline Conservation and Monitoring Network" as well as conducted frontier research on snow leopard in Gansu, Northwest China. With the support and guidance of NFGA, they drafted the National China Snow Leopard Conservation Action Plan, which aims to provide guidance for the following 10 years’ snow leopard conservation in China; this draft has been reviewed and approved by NFGA. Through the contributions made to original research over the last decade, his team and institution has gained recognition and trust from NFGA, donors, collaborators and peer institutions. In conclusion, Dr. Shi Kun is leading his team towards making a difference through original research to help solve problems in academic and applied aspects in order to benefit wildlife, nature, and human beings, as well as promote the development of wildlife conservation in China.

The WI-BFU offers a vibrant research environment that covers interinstitutional collaborations, interdisciplinary supervision, additional training courses (e.g. workshops and seminars organized by peers) as well as soft skills training.

Successful applicants will be provided opportunities to participate in and/or lead frontline projects on endangered and representative species (such as snow leopard, leopard, Asian elephant) conservation in China, get involved in high level policy-making with science-based evidence, leading a team with enthusiastic like-minded talents and making contributions to wildlife conservation.

Research fields

Research fields will mainly cover but are not limited to the following four aspects:

Ecology and landscape genetics of snow leopard in high plateau desert ecosystems; Landscape genetics of Asian elephants in tropical forest ecosystem and management of human-wildlife conflicts; Landscape genetics identifying subspecies divergence of leopards in China; Ecosystem service and management of National Park system in China.


The applicant, at the time of appointment, should have obtained a PhD degree, show strong interdisciplinary skills and independent research experience in at least one of the following fields: Ecology, Biology, Zoology, Geography, Environmental Science, Earth Sciences, Social Sciences, or related fields, and from universities out of China within the past year. The applicant should be under 35 years of age and in a good state of health. The applicant should be from countries which have established diplomatic relations with China. · The applicant must be available for full time up to two years (or minimum 20 months) to conduct the post-doc research in China.

· If the applicant is from a non-English speaking county, he/she should have good Chinese or English language skills including listening, speaking, reading and writing.

· The applicant must have excellent or fluent English proficiency in communication and academic writing.

· Minimum of two publications in above related fields in international per-reviewed journals as first author are required; publications in high impact journals will be given priority to.

· Applicant should have a cooperative spirit and be committed to teamwork.

Duration and Financial Support

· The funding for this two years’ program is 200,000 RMB per year, (400,000 in total), will cover the applicant’s salary, basis insurance, accommodation and travel expenses of a return trip in the most direct and economic way between the two places concerned, visa application fee and incidental expenses if any.

· The applicant is expected to arrive in BFU, starting his/ her postdoc position in early summer of 2019.

Mode of Application

Please prepare the following documents and zip all of the application documents into one file, either in Microsoft word or pdf format, and title it “Name of applicant_BFU_postdoc application”, and sent to, CC, Priority will be given to candidates with research or working experience relating to endangered mammal species such as snow leopard, leopard, and Asian elephant.

· A detailed curriculum vitae with education background, research and/or working experience, and list of publications;

· A statement of research interests or cover letter;

· A proposal giving details of the study or research to be undertaken; his/her general interests;

· Contact details of three referees (Name, Affiliated Institution, email, phones etc.), who could judge the applicant’s academic performance.

· Key published papers, books, awards obtained etc.


30th March, 2019


Please contact Pan Guoliang ( or Chen Ying ( or Professor Shi Kun at, office phone at (86) 6233 6860 or mobile phone at (86)139 1009 3750 for any enquiries.

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