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Research Project Description

Systematic Variation in Community Value and Values
Research Participation Program
Office of Research and Development
National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Corvallis, OR


Project Description:

A postdoctoral research project training opportunity is currently available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL). The appointment will be served with the Western Ecology Division (WED) in Corvallis, Oregon.

As part of the Sustainable and Health Communities research program, the selected research participant will be involved in determining the transferability of social science information obtained in one community to other communities, and the cost savings involved in doing so, with the goal of identifying systematic variation in values and the value of ecological resources to inform the manner in which benefits transfers are deployed.

The research participant will develop methods to identify, characterize and quantify value and values of ecological resources in different types of communities. The research project will include both qualitative analyses focusing on values as well as on quantitative information that may provide insight on value. It is anticipated that this research will synthesize and assess existing studies and data. However, as place-based studies are implemented and placed within the community typology, limited primary studies may be conducted at those sites.

S/he will gain experience with applied research that is informing management strategies and regulation development for divergent communities. Additionally, s/he will learn how to develop and implement research within an applied research setting with diverse clients and colleagues. The research participant will develop and represent social science within a multidisciplinary environment. The research participant will also be encouraged to represent plans and results in professional scientific meetings and publications.


Applicants must have received a doctoral degree in economics, sociology, anthropology, or statistics within five years of the desired starting date, or completion of all requirements for the degree should be expected prior to the starting date.

The program is open to all qualified individuals without regard to race, sex, religion, color, age, physical or mental disability, national origin, or status as a Vietnam era or disabled veteran. U.S. citizenship or lawful permanent resident status is preferred (but a candidate also may hold an appropriate visa status; an H1B visa is not appropriate).

The appointment is full time for one year and may be renewed upon recommendation of EPA and contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend. Funding may be made available to reimburse the participant's travel expenses to present the results of his/her research at scientific conferences. No funding will be made available to cover travel costs for pre-appointment visits, relocation costs, tuition and fees, or a participant's health insurance. The participant must show proof of health and medical insurance. The participant does not become an EPA employee.

Technical Questions:

Dr. Paul Ringold will be the mentor for this project. He can be contacted at

How to Apply:

An application can be found at Please reference Project # EPA-ORD/NHEERL-WED-2013-03 when calling or writing for information.