Researcher position in Data Assimilation

About us

The Nansen Center (NERSC) is an independent non-profit research foundation conducting multidisciplinary research with a focus on the marine environment, cryosphere, atmosphere and data assimilation, where scientific activities are closely integrated with innovation and service development. The Arctic is one of our main areas of attention. NERSC takes an active part in training and capacity building for students and young scientists, as well as dissemination to stakeholders in public and private sector and society in general. We have an international workplace with some 70 employees from 25 nations. NERSC is a partner of the Bjerknes Center for Climate Researchand is a key contributor of the Bjerknes Climate Prediction Unit.

Data Assimilation at the Nansen Center

NERSC has initially introduced the Ensemble Kalman Filter (EnKF) in the 90s and brought further developments: parameter estimation, assimilation of non-Gaussian distributed variables in ocean biochemistry, strongly coupled assimilation of ocean and sea ice data, and assimilation in the unstable subspace. The EnKF has been successfully used for 1) real-time Arctic ocean forecasting in the Copernicus Marine Environmental Monitoring Serviceand 2) Earth System seasonal-to-decadal predictions with the Norwegian Climate Prediction Model. 

The vacant position

The Nansen Center is looking for an established scientist in the field of data assimilation that can co-lead the data assimilation group at NERSC. The position is a full-time, temporary researcher position of four years with possibility of permanent employment.

The candidate will propose new developments in data assimilation, collaborate with the data assimilation team at NERSC towards their implementation in ongoing activities such as 1) the TOPAZ coupled ice-ocean monitoring and forecasting system, 2) Assimilation within the new sea ice model neXtSIM that uses an adaptive Lagrangian mesh, 3) strongly coupled data assimilation to enhance the skills of the Norwegian Climate Prediction Model.

The candidate is also expected to propose new research lines, will be encouraged to apply for funding to Norwegian and international funding agencies and is expected to develop his/her own research activities within the 4-year employment period.


  • Ph.D. or equivalent in applied mathematics, earth system science.
  • Research experience in data assimilation (with preference for ensemble methods) and a good publication record in refereed journals.
  • Experience in development and use of data assimilation, and its practical evaluation.
  • Experience in proposal writing and project-based work.
  • Knowledge in one or more of the following areas will strengthen the application:
    • Ocean-ice-atmosphere coupling processes in the Arctic Ocean.
    • Oceanography of the North Atlantic and Arctic.
    • Experience with general vertical coordinate ocean models.
    • Experience with couplers such as OASIS or coupling frameworks such as ESMF or MCT.
    • Assimilation with unstructured grid models. 
    • Seasonal to decadal prediction
    • Experience with Fortran, C or C++
    • Experience in scientific software and tools (MATLAB, Python or R).


  • Collaborative skills and good written and oral communication skills.
  • Experience with HPC and good programming skills in Fortran, shell scripting and or Python and experience with version control systems, such as GIT and SVN.
  • Ability to working in a team, as well as individually.

We can offer 

  • Interesting and challenging tasks
  • A professional, international and social work environment
  • Good pension schemes
  • Flexible working hours agreement
  • Salary according to qualifications
  • Access to large supercomputing facilities

For further information about the position, please contact Research Leader Dr. Laurent Bertino.

How to apply

Please send your application letter by email including CV, and contact information of minimum 2 references. Please also include copies of diplomas. 

The e-mail should be sent with subject "Application for data assimilation position to, with copy to

Applicants might be evaluated and contacted before the application deadline.


Submission deadline: 15thSeptember 2019.

Start: 1stJanuary 2020

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