Positions currently available

We currently have the following positions avaiable. Please do not contact the LSRC directly about these positions; application instructions are provided in the position descriptions.

Post-doctoral positions

There are no positions available at this time.

Masters and PhD positions

There are no positions available at this time.

Research assistantships

Summer Field Assistant (Paid): Effects of insect outbreaks on forests around Montreal

Joint position between the Ziter and Despland labs in the Biology Department

Project Background: Lymantria dispar dispar (Ldd, often referred to as the gypsy moth) is an invasive defoliator of many species of trees that has begun to outbreak in eastern Canada. The 1.7 million hectares of defoliation observed in Ontario in 2021 is an order of magnitude higher than any seen since 1980. These outbreaks, often associated with heavy human-use areas, have led to defoliation (removal of leaf tissue) of a wide range of hardwood and softwood trees, with potential implications for tree health and mortality in the future. This in turn has potential to affect the many benefits we receive from these trees. Though Ldd seem to prefer certain tree species, such as oaks, high levels of defoliation are also observed on non-preferred tree species, probably due to their proximity to the preferred species. This makes the Ldd caterpillar a generalist forest pest whose impacts are increasing in both forest and urban ecosystems under a changing climate. Community science campaigns have proposed scraping egg-masses from trees as a viable local control option, but there has been limited assessment of the effectiveness of these measures. In this project, we will determine the extent to which Ldd egg mass removal can be used to mitigate defoliation damage in high-use recreation sites. Summer fieldwork will take place in National Parks near Montreal, and will include estimating forest defoliation (through canopy measurements and counting damaged leaves on the ground), and counting caterpillars on infested trees in areas that have had eggs removed compared to those that haven’t.

Outline of student's role: The student will aid in collection of tree and caterpillar data in Montreal-area parks, requiring efficiency and attention to detail. Data collection will include measurement of tree and forest characteristics, and insect collection. Student may also aid in entering and organizing field data. Additionally, field assistants can expect be in regular communication with site managers and members of the public, and thus strong communication and outreach skills in a bilingual setting are an asset.

Required Skills and Experience:

-          Strong teamwork and communication skills

-          Enthusiasm to work outdoors

-          Interest in ecology/environmental challenges

-          Interest in trees and insects

Valuable Skills and Experience (but not required):

-          Bilingual (French/English)

-          Valid drivers license

-          Outdoor experience

-          Natural history skills (identification of trees and/or insects)

If interested, please contact Dr Ziter (carly.ziter@concordia.ca) or Noa Davidai (noa.davidai@concordia.ca) by 3:00pm Wednesday, February 16th, and include:

-          your resume/CV

-          (unofficial) transcript

-          a paragraph explaining your interest in the position (in the body of the email is fine)

Please note that students who meet the eligibility for a Concordia Undergraduate Student Research Award (or NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award) will be given priority for this position. If you are not sure whether you are eligible for a CUSRA, please check here.


Summer Field Assistant(s) (Paid): Effects of historical land use on urban forests and soils in Montreal

Project Background: Unprecedented urban growth has altered ecosystem structure, function, and biodiversity, and consequently the ecosystem services (or benefits from nature) we depend on. To create sustainable cities, we must identify opportunities to enhance biodiversity conservation and ecosystem service provision. In Canada, where more than 80% of the population lives in urban areas, perhaps no component of urban green space contributes more to biodiversity and human wellbeing than the urban forest (trees and associated vegetation throughout the city). The urban forest provides multiple ecological, social, economic, and health benefits. Yet, even as consensus grows that healthy urban forests are a critical resource for nature and people, our understanding of how urban forests change over time is unclear. In particular, we lack an understanding of how past land use in the city (such as whether our green spaces used to be forest, agricultural, or industrial areas) continues to impact the biodiversity and function of today’s urban forests. Understanding how our city’s history continues to influence today’s urban nature is an important step in improving management of our green spaces into the future. In this project, we will assess both above and belowground aspects of urban forest structure, function, and biodiversity in Montreal parks that vary in their land use history. This will include measurements of trees and soils in Montreal’s large parks. The selected student(s) (up to 2) will work closely with two graduate students, one focusing on urban forest structure and ecosystem services, and the other on urban soil biodiversity and function.

Outline of the student's role: Student(s) will aid in collection of biodiversity and ecosystem service data in Montreal parks, requiring efficiency and attention to detail. Data collection may include tree/shrub identification, measurement of tree characteristics, collection of soil samples, and insect collection and identification. Students may also aid in entering and organizing field data. Additionally, field assistants will be in regular communication with site managers and members of the public, and thus strong communication and outreach skills in a bilingual setting are an asset.

Required Skills and Experience:

-          Strong teamwork and communication skills

-          Enthusiasm to work outdoors

-          Interest in ecology/environmental challenges

-          Interest in trees and/or soils (including soil insects)

Valuable Skills and Experience (but not required):

-          Bilingual (French/English)

-          Valid drivers license

-          Outdoor experience

-          Natural history skills (identification of plants and/or insects)

If interested, please contact Dr. Carly Ziter (carly.ziter@concordia.ca) by 3:00pm Wednesday, February 16th, and cc: ziterlab@gmail.com in your email. Include:

-          your resume/CV

-          an (unofficial) transcript

-          a paragraph explaining your interest in the position (in the body of the email is fine)

Please note that students who meet the eligibility for a Concordia Undergraduate Student Research Award (or NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award) will be given priority for this position. If you are not sure whether you are eligible for a CUSRA, please check here.


Back to top

© Concordia University