Post-Doctoral Fellow (Fisheries Ecology and Management)

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WorldFish seeks to create an inclusive world of healthy, well-nourished people and a sustainable blue planet, now and in the future. We provide research and innovation in aquatic food systems to support sustainable development and food system transformation toward healthy and resilient diets.

Our 2030 WorldFish Research and Innovation Strategy: Aquatic Foods for Healthy People and Planet outlines our commitment to guiding the transition to more resilient aquatic food systems in three priority impact areas: Social and Economic Inclusion, Nutrition and Public Health, and Climate Resilience and Environmental Sustainability.

About the Position

The Post-doctoral Fellow, Fisheries Ecology and Management, will join our lively and growing Dili-based research team partnered with the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Timor-Leste with a focus of improving nutrition, livelihood and ecosystem outcomes from fisheries resources, through better equitable, locally integrated and science-driven management. This position is right for you if you have an advanced degree in fisheries ecology, management or a related discipline, extensive field experience in a developing country context, an eye for innovation and a genuine desire to make a difference.

This position will be responsible for the day-to-day implementation and coordination of the Ikan Ba Futuru (Fish for the Future) project, recently funded by the Minderoo Foundation. The project will be conducted in partnership with international NGO Blue Ventures, and in close collaboration with the Directorate General of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Resources Management. The position will work with national and international fisheries, governance, gender and nutrition specialists to develop and implement research approaches, programs and policy recommendations with a focus on implementing ecosystem-based fisheries co-management in Timor-Leste.

Central objectives of the project are to:

  • Strengthen the institutional and policy landscape for sustainably managing Timor-Leste’s marine ecosystems;
  • Use new ecological, biological and social evidence and knowledge to inform sustainable management and development of Timor-Leste’s south coast fishery resources, and;
  • Strengthening collaborative, locally-embedded partnerships to build successful co-management of fisheries resources.

The successful candidate will be responsible to:

Research Projects

  • Work with the project team and senior experts to develop a stream of ecological and social research targeted improve the knowledge base, local capacities and implementation of fisheries and habitat co-management.
  • Engage with WorldFish and partner scientists across other geographies to learn from, and contribute to, a growing body of work on coastal fisheries co-management.
  • Work with research, government and NGO partners to build capacity and implement key research activities.
  • Take primary responsibility for research implementation, data collection, data quality assurance and analysis under project activities.
  • Under the guidance of senior team members produce high-quality scientific publications from project findings.
  • Contribute to the development of policy advice and action plans on implementation of equitable ecosystem-based co-management in Timor-Leste.
  • Contribute to the team ethos and shared objectives of the project partnership, WorldFish Timor-Leste team and country program.
  • Ensure timely reporting of project activities and outcomes per donor requirements.

Stakeholder and Donor Communication

  • Ensure strong communication and coordination with local partners (Blue Ventures team members, Fishing communities, relevant district officers, Directorate General of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Resources, and its officers).
  • Represent project partners in national and international fora.


This job might be for you if you have the below skills and qualifications:

  • A PhD in Fisheries Management, Ecology or a closely related discipline (aquaculture degree holders will not be considered unless they can demonstrate extensive field experience and publication track record in the area of capture fisheries ecology and management).
  • A candidate with a master’s degree (by research) and highly relevant research experience will be considered for the position where study and post-graduate experience are highly relevant to the requirements of this position.
  • Proven ability to develop and apply novel approaches to research on marine ecosystems and fishery resource status.
  • A strong track record of applied transdisciplinary research engaging with fishing communities to co-design management approaches and actions.
  • Proven ability to work in remote locations for extended periods of time with minimal supervision.
  • A strong team-player willing to dedicate time to building capacity among junior and national scientists, partners and students.
  • Strong publication track record for stage of career in relevant international peer-reviewed journals.
  • A willingness to prioritize learning Tetun early in the appointment period.

Desired Skills and Qualifications

  • History of applying research outcomes to policy development.
  • Proven aptitude for learning languages, with existing skills in Tetun, Portuguese or Bahasa Indonesia a distinct advantage.
  • Experience developing information and education materials for government and community stakeholders.
  • Priority will be given to applicants with a track record of living for extended periods in less developed countries.


This is an Internationally Recruited Staff (IRS) position. WorldFish’s IRS shall receive comprehensive health insurance, life insurance, accident, and long-term disability insurance. IRS employed outside of their home base/country of nationality will also be eligible to receive relocation assistance, a housing allowance, home-leave plane tickets for self and eligible dependents and education assistance for school-age dependents between age 4 and high school graduation. The duration of the contract will initially be for a two-year period with possibility for extension, depending on funding and performance. All benefits are subject to terms and conditions.

Your application must include:

  • A copy of your curriculum vitae,
  • A cover letter (maximum 2 pages) which addresses key requirements stated above; and
  • Contact information of three professional referees who may be contacted if you are short-listed for the position.

To be considered, applications must be submitted by no later than 24:00 (MYT, GMT+8) 09 June 2023.

Location: The post holder will be based in Dili, Timor Leste. This position will involve international travel.

Screening will start immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Due to the high volume of applicants for World Fish positions, we appreciate all interest, but only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Our Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Commitment

WorldFish has seven offices across Asia, Africa and the Pacific, with more than 400 staff and 27 nationalities who contribute to a dynamic multicultural work environment.

WorldFish is committed to promoting a work environment where diversity and inclusion is valued and we seek to have gender balance in the organization. We aim to also seek balance across other diversity dimensions.

People in WorldFish are treated equally irrespective of gender, ethnicity/race, national or social origin, disability, religion, political affiliation, age, family size, marital status or any other form of personal identity.

We are an equal opportunities employer and strongly encourage qualified women and men from developing nations to apply.

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