Research Intern - Carbon Cycling in Wytham Woods

Earthwatch is an international environmental nonprofit organization that engages people in scientific field research and education. To achieve our mission, we offer research expeditions at exciting locations around the globe. Participants on these expeditions assist top scientists as they investigate important questions about how we can better protect our planet.

This position is no longer recruiting!

Location: Oxford, United Kingdom

Position Type: Intern (unpaid)

Department: Research

Salary: Expenses paid at £10 a day

Deadline for Application: 21 April 2014

Interviews: 05 May 2014 - 09 May 2014


Earthwatch seeks an intern for 3-4 days a week for 6 months, joining our research programme on forest carbon cycling in fragmented temperate forests.


Field Work (ca. 50% of time)

The number of days spent on field work will vary week to week according to research requirements, and with season; over the winter there may be less fieldwork than in the spring. Tasks include assisting with all aspects of our research, such as leaf litter collection and sorting, various tree measurements, and soil respiration. These tasks are all part of our ongoing carbon cycling research in Wytham Woods. You may sometimes be asked to assist with fieldwork at other locations in Oxfordshire. Depending on candidate experience and interests it may be possible to conduct an independent research project within the existing research programme.

Desk-based Work (ca. 50% of time)

Routine desk based work associated with the project includes tasks such as data entry, processing and management, preparation of sheets for data collection, preparing progress reports, booking facilities for project use, reading and reporting on relevant literature. There are several large data sets that have not yet been analysed, so it may be possible for an intern to develop an individual project around one of these sets, depending in interests, skills and experience.


Essential skills and experience:

  • A university degree in a science or environmental subject (BSc or MSc), or equivalent experience.
  • Ability to work independently is important, as you may be asked to conduct field or lab work alone.
  • Meticulous attention to detail.
  • Experience of data collection.
  • Good IT skills, especially Excel.
  • Commitment and enthusiasm.
  • Ability to get to Wytham Woods independently (ca. 4 miles from Oxford city centre; no public transport.
  • Excellent communication skills, including a high standard of written English.
  • An interest in environmental research and conservation issues.

Desirable skills and experience:

  • Writing scientific reports, papers or articles.
  • Processing and analysis of large data sets.
  • Science communication to a variety of audiences.
  • Conducting field research.
  • Knowledge of forest ecology.


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