Research Intern - Carbon Cycling in Wytham Woods


Earthwatch is an international environmental charity established in 1971. Our mission is to engage people worldwide in scientific field research and education to promote the understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment. Through our programmes and partnerships, we engage people from diverse countries, cultures and organisations, inspiring them to take responsibility for the environment.

This position is no longer recruiting!

Location: Oxford, United Kingdom

Position Type: Intern (unpaid)

Department: Research

Salary: Expenses paid at £10 a day

Deadline for Application: 21 April 2014

Interviews: 05 May 2014 - 09 May 2014


Earthwatch seeks an intern for 3-4 days a week for 6 months, joining our research programme on forest carbon cycling in fragmented temperate forests.


Field Work (ca. 50% of time)

The number of days spent on field work will vary week to week according to research requirements, and with season; over the winter there may be less fieldwork than in the spring. Tasks include assisting with all aspects of our research, such as leaf litter collection and sorting, various tree measurements, and soil respiration. These tasks are all part of our ongoing carbon cycling research in Wytham Woods. You may sometimes be asked to assist with fieldwork at other locations in Oxfordshire. Depending on candidate experience and interests it may be possible to conduct an independent research project within the existing research programme.

Desk-based Work (ca. 50% of time)

Routine desk based work associated with the project includes tasks such as data entry, processing and management, preparation of sheets for data collection, preparing progress reports, booking facilities for project use, reading and reporting on relevant literature. There are several large data sets that have not yet been analysed, so it may be possible for an intern to develop an individual project around one of these sets, depending in interests, skills and experience.


Essential skills and experience:

  • A university degree in a science or environmental subject (BSc or MSc), or equivalent experience.
  • Ability to work independently is important, as you may be asked to conduct field or lab work alone.
  • Meticulous attention to detail.
  • Experience of data collection.
  • Good IT skills, especially Excel.
  • Commitment and enthusiasm.
  • Ability to get to Wytham Woods independently (ca. 4 miles from Oxford city centre; no public transport.
  • Excellent communication skills, including a high standard of written English.
  • An interest in environmental research and conservation issues.

Desirable skills and experience:

  • Writing scientific reports, papers or articles.
  • Processing and analysis of large data sets.
  • Science communication to a variety of audiences.
  • Conducting field research.
  • Knowledge of forest ecology.


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