Postdoctoral Position in Astronomy and Astro-tourism

Company University of Namibia
Reference # FOS124
Published 07/11/2019
Contract Type Contract
18 Months
Location Windhoek, Khomas, Namibia
The University of Namibia (UNAM) seeks a resourceful, innovative Ph.D. astronomer with experience and motivation in public outreach, education and development activities. This postdoctoral position, with a specific focus on astro-tourism for development, is supported by an award from the UK Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) to the University of Oxford. The aim of this GCRF project is to develop human capacity in Namibia across the areas of science, education, and astronomy-related tourism.

UNAM is the largest and leading institution of higher education in the country. It is a diverse institution with a student population from 43 countries and from all populated continents. Although a relatively young university, it has grown to support a student population of over 27,000 students on 12 campuses.

The Department of Physics at UNAM is situated at its main campus in Windhoek and hosts the largest and most active astronomy group in southern Africa outside South Africa. Currently, the department hosts four senior and three junior academic staff together with several postgraduate students. The fields of activity are focused around gamma-ray astronomy of active galaxies, observational cosmology with SN Ia, computational cosmic ray propagation, occultation observations of TNOs, and site testing for astronomical facilities. Besides being member institute to the H.E.S.S. collaboration and the CTA consortium, the Department of Physics is leading the national efforts towards the SKA and the African VLBI Network (AVN). Further, UNAM is founding partner of the Africa Millimetre Telescope (AMT) project to establish the first mm-wave radio telescope on the African continent to complement the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT). Additionally, members of the Department have access to the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) and to an in-house HPC cluster. The department expects further expansion with the establishment of a research chair in multi-wavelength astronomy.

Informal enquiries may be sent to Prof Garret Cotter (garret.cotter@physics.ox.ac.uk), Dr Michael Backes (mbackes@unam.na) and Dr Eli Kasai (ekasai@unam.na).
Job Functions Academic
Industries Academic,Education
This position will entail diversifying astro-tourism in a sustainable manner to ensure economic benefit spreads to previously disadvantaged sectors of Namibian society. This will entail working across government, non-governmental organisations and development agencies with support from UNAM, Oxford and the Office of Astronomy for Development.
Candidates should have completed a Ph.D. in any area of astrophysics before commencing the post. Applicants should send a CV (two pages) and description of relevant experience in astronomy public outreach, education and/or development along with a statement of research interests (three pages in total) to Ashling Gordon (ashling.gordon@physics.ox.ac.uk) and arrange for two confidential reference letters to be sent to the same address. Consideration of applications will begin on 30/11/2019 and will continue until the post is filled.
Job Closing Date 30/11/2019
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