Senior PDRA Physical Oceanography (D33/23.NF)

Location:  SAMS, Oban

Contract Type: Fixed term, 3 years

Working Pattern:  Full Time (37 hours per week)

Salary Range:  £35,686.33 to £40,142.45 per annum

Closing date: Friday 1st March 2024.


The Role

Ocean boundary processes dictate how changes in climate-scale ocean circulation impact conditions at the coast. Recent advances in ocean observation, instrumentation and theory have greatly enhanced the potential for understanding these processes.

The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) is seeking a researcher to harness new observations and theory for investigating the dynamics at the sloping boundary and its causal interactions with both the deep ocean and the continental shelf. In particular, the postholder will investigate the impacts of large-scale ocean circulation on coastal sea level. The postholder will join our strong multi-disciplinary team working in the subpolar North Atlantic and northwest European continental shelf.

The postholder will deliver an exciting programme of research under projects already funded by UKRI-NERC. They will have the opportunity to conduct ship-based fieldwork in the eastern subpolar North Atlantic, utilise autonomous surface and subsurface observing platforms, and spearhead the implementation of novel drift-free bottom pressure recorders for ocean/climate research.

Informal enquires to Dr Neil Fraser,


Our Ideal Candidate

You will hold a PhD in physical oceanography and be experienced in using traditional and/or autonomous observing methods, the data they generate and computing languages to analyse these data. You will have experience participating in oceanographic research cruises, have a good understanding of ocean boundary dynamics and a publication record which demonstrates this.

You will have a track record of some income generation.  This will be helpful for generating future bids with research colleagues.

You will already operate independently, possibly have some experience of managing an area of a research project but also able to work as part of a research team, supporting each other, maintaining track of tasks as well as solve complex research questions, hold a number of high impact publications and be able to continue this output as part of the project outcomes.  Your research will contribute to the Research Excellence Framework at the 4*/5* level.

You must also be able to work effectively at sea and willing to engage with postgraduate student supervision, where time allows.

Candidates requiring Skilled Worker sponsorship, should check their eligibility to work in the UK here: Check if you need a UK visa - GOV.UK ( . Sponsorship may be available to experienced candidates.


What do we offer in return?

Looking for a change in lifestyle or location? We are based on the beautiful west coast of Scotland – within Argyll & Bute. In addition to your salary, we offer flexible working, a generous remuneration package including pension, holiday allowance, structured career development path, free on-site parking as well as occupational health & wellbeing support. In addition, our employee benefits package includes purchase of additional holidays, technology & smartphones, payroll giving, discounted shopping vouchers and a cycle to work scheme.

Additionally, SAMS encourages and recognises excellence among staff through various recognition and reward arrangements. We constantly develop and expand the benefits and offers for our colleagues.

SAMS offers a generous salary and pension as well as employee benefits package.  We also have supportive policies to assist absence, family and other leave types.



 We would love to hear from you.  If you have queries on the job and would like to talk these through before applying, please email these through, in the first instance, to Dr Neil Fraser,

Applications must include CV and Cover Letter and should be sent electronically to  quoting Job Ref. ‘D33/23.NF’ in the subject heading.

Closing date for application is 1st March 2024. Interviews to be held in March 2024.


Full details can be found here: Senior PDRA in Physical Oceanography - Job Description