Post-doctoral offer on Key Biodiversity Areas and mapping ecological integrity from a biocultural perspective

Wildlife Conservation Society Canada (WCSC) and Biodiversité Québec are collaborating to identify and establish a comprehensive network of Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs) in Québec. The KBA initiative is identifying sites that contribute significantly to the global and national persistence of biodiversity, using a Standard and Guidelines that are quantitative and being applied consistently across Canada (and globally). The multiple criteria (A-E) of the KBA Standard focus on different biodiversity values, including rare and threatened species and ecosystems, and places where species aggregate in large numbers at certain times in their life cycle.

The project will focus on the development and application of KBA Criterion C for Québec, which has the goal of identifying the world’s remaining landscapes with very high ecological integrity. To date, discussions at the global scale about ecological integrity are mainly focused on biophysical indicators, understood through a western science perspective. However, in Quebec (and in Canada), the KBA team proposes to apply Criterion C using both the biophysical measures of ecological integrity that are currently considered in global KBA guidelines alongside biocultural indicators of ecological integrity identified as important by Indigenous communities in different regions.

This project specifically aims to (1) identify key indicators and datasets related to ecological integrity in northern Quebec through literature review and discussions with experts and knowledge holders; (2) map the spectrum of ecological integrity and biocultural integrity in northern Quebec; (3) identify potential Criterion C sites that meet the global KBA standard.

We offer a $55,000/yr salary for two years with potential extension. The postdoctoral researcher will join the training program in computational biodiversity science BIOS2, get access to a rich network of collaborators, opportunities for internships and travel, training activities and working groups. The researcher will be co-supervised by Dominique Gravel at Université de Sherbrooke (UdeS) and Ciara Raudsepp-Hearne from WCSC, in collaboration with the coordinator of the KBA initiative for Québec, Kim Gauthier Schampaert (UdeS), and the KBA Canada Ecosystems Criteria Coordinator Lucy Poley from (WCSC). The researcher will also be involved in the activities of the Canadian KBA Coalition and Biodiversité Québec.

We are looking for candidates with a PhD in ecology or geography with a strong background in data science. The candidate should be able to start in the summer or the fall 2024 session.

The application consists of a letter of motivation, a detailed CV and the name of 3 references. The position is open to the end of March 2024 or until a candidate has been selected. The position will be based at Université de Sherbrooke, a francophone university in a bilingual region, and knowledge of French is not mandatory. Selection will be conducted following a strict procedure to respect equity, diversity and inclusion and we encourage minorities to apply.

Send your application to:

Dominique Gravel (
Ciara Raudsepp-Hearn (