A pioneer in ocean science, IFREMER’s cutting-edge research is grounded in sustainable development and open science. Our vision is to advance science, expertise and innovation to:

  • Protect and restore the ocean
  • Sustainably use marine resources to benefit society
  • Create and share ocean data, information & knowledge.

With more than 1,500 personnel spread along the French coastline in more than 20 sites, the Institute explores the 3 great oceans: the Indian, Atlantic and Pacific oceans. A leader in ocean science, IFREMER is managing the French Oceanographic Fleet and its dedicated scientists create ground-breaking technology to push the boundaries of ocean exploration and knowledge, from the abyss to the atmosphere-ocean interface.

Well-established in the international scientific community, our scientists, engineers and technicians are committed to advance knowledge about our planet’s last unexplored frontiers. They provide the science we need for informed decision-making and public policy and they transfer this knowledge and technology to businesses to fulfill public and private needs. Core to our mission is also to strengthen public awareness about the importance of understanding the ocean and its resources, and empowering future generations of leaders through education and outreach national campaigns.

Founded in 1984, IFREMER is a French public organization and its budget approximates 240 million euros. It is operating under the joint authority of the French Ministry for Higher Education, Research and Innovation, the french Ministry of the Sea, the French Ministry for the Ecological and Solidary Transition, and the French Ministry of Agriculture and Food.

General areas of responsibility

The joint research unit (UMR) “Dynamics and Sustainability of Ecosystems: from the Source to the Ocean” (DECOD) brings together researchers, engineers and technicians from Ifremer, INRAe and Institut Agro Rennes-Angers with laboratories in Brest, Lorient, Nantes and Rennes. DECOD’s activities focus on the analysis of ecological and evolutionary processes at work in aquatic environments and their interfaces, from the source to the ocean, on the assessment of the state of ecosystems, and on the construction of scenarios for these ecosystems. To address these issues, the Ecology and Models for Fisheries (EMH) laboratory acquires knowledge on marine ecosystems and implements models and quantitative approaches based on empirical data, in the context of an ecosystem approach to fisheries.

Marine ecosystems are subject to multiple pressures of anthropogenic origin which affect habitats, populations, biodiversity and, consequently, the structure and functioning of ecosystems in varying ways. Significant pressure is exerted by fishing, both professional and recreational, to which can be added maritime traffic, offshore wind turbines, tourism, etc. All interactions between ecosystems and human activities are taking place in a context of climate change.

In this context, the researcher will contribute his/her skills in quantitative marine ecology and population and fisheries dynamics to the EMH laboratory. He/she will conduct and participate in research on the observation, quantification and modelling of mutual impacts between fisheries and higher trophic level species including megafauna in the Bay of Biscay and in other study areas. He/she will initially contribute to an ongoing project trying to improve our understanding of the interactions between fisheries, cetaceans, and external factors that may explain cetacean bycatch in the Bay of Biscay. He/she will study scenarios for the conservation of biodiversity and populations of higher trophic levels while taking into account the management of commercial and recreational fisheries and other activities at sea. He/she will contribute to the collection of observations for research and expertise provided by Ifremer to French ministries.

General areas of responsibility

The researcher will study the biodiversity, ecology and population dynamics of higher trophic level species (bony and cartilaginous fishes, cephalopods, marine mammals, birds,…) in order to characterize the mutual interactions with fishing activities (gear, target species,…) and environmental factors in a context of global change. The understanding of the mechanisms and biological responses to these interactions will support the development of models and scenarios to study appropriate management measures (marine protected/regulated areas, fisheries management measures, …) to reduce and mitigate undesired effects resulting from the interactions of fisheries with higher trophic level species.

Main objectives :

  • Joint analysis/modelling of the spatio-temporal distributions and characteristics (morphology, behaviour, life cycle, …) of higher trophic level species and of fishing activities to identify the factors influencing direct (targeted and incidental catches) and indirect (e.g. via the food web) interactions;
  • Charactering and modelling the effects of fishing on diversity components (taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic) including higher trophic level species;
  • Assessing the risks of by-catch on the maintenance and population structure of higher trophic level species and developing risk maps;
  • Contributing to the development of approaches/models to assess risk-informed management action scenarios, interacting with human and social sciences in a climate change context;
  • Contributing to data collection at sea (eDNA, etc.) via one-off and/or recurrent scientific surveys to characterise fisheries-biodiversity interactions;
  • Participating in national and international expertise on fisheries-biodiversity interactions and in international working groups on the subject (OSPAR-FC1, ICES-WGBIODIV, ICES-WGBYC, …) ;
  • Developing research projects with national and international scientific partners;
  • Publication of scientific articles;
  • Supervision of master students, doctoral students and post-doctoral students

Relational fields

  • Internal Ifremer: Fisheries units (MARBEC, HMNN), Fisheries information system(HISSEO), unitscontributing to the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (VIGIES), human and social sciences EM/Amure)
  • External:
    • National : Office français de la biodiversité, university of La Rochelle, MNHN , …
    • International : ICES working groups, research instituts

Required Knowledge, skills, and characteristics

  • Thesis in quantitative ecology
  • Postdoctoral experience

Required knowledge, skills and characteristics

 Technical skills and knowledge:

  • Fisheries/marine ecology
  • Quantitative ecology
  • Biodiversity
  • Community and population dynamics
  • French and English
  • Writing skills (articles, reports)
  • Ability to set up and coordinate projects
  • Motivation for supervising young researchers (master and doctoral students, post doctoral researchers)
  • Programming (R, …)

Personal qualities:

  • Autonomy, rigour, curiosity
  • Capacity for scientific leadership and multidisciplinary networking
  • Ability to work in a team
  • Interest in and aptitude for working at sea

Specific working conditions

  • Full time
  • Work at sea

How to apply for this position

Deadline for applications: 26/09/2022

All applications are processed exclusively via our website. Interested candidates can apply by clicking the “Apply” button. 

Further information can be found in this link.