DNR Jobs and Requirements

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has more than 350 job classes. To learn about the requirements for these various jobs, view the long listings and browse through the position descriptions.

[Note: This is just a list of positions at the DNR. Go to the current job postings page to check which jobs are now open.]

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Realty Specialist Senior

Description

Description

The Senior Realty Specialist position provides real estate valuation, negotiation and coordination services for acquisitions, leasing, sales, exchanges, easements, licenses, tax forfeited sale review to the Department in occurrence with state statutes and procedures outlined in this description and other guidelines and established management policies.

Core Activities: Complete license, leases, land sales, land exchanges, easements, and other real estate transactions as assigned within the regions, in a timely manner. Collect real estate information, prepare and execute forms for real estate transactions in the region, work with clients and other Realty Specialists and field staff. Analyze the appraisal and / or appraisal review problem, complete appraisals and appraisal reviews of real property interests for DNR real estate transactions, perform the appraisal report or appraisal review process to DNR and the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practices (USPAP). Prepare written and oral reports so that the statuses of transactions are documented. Maintain complete files for each real estate transaction. Contact landowners and potential willing sellers to explain the acquisition process. Conduct acquisition activities and communicate with various divisions of the DNR so that the acquisition process functions smoothly and efficiently.

Technical Requirements: Review proposals, development legal descriptions, examine courthouse records and legal documents, interpret maps, aerial photos, and GIS information. Prepare reports and other technical information using word processing, data base, and spread sheet software.

Required Qualifications

Three years of professional experience in one or more of the following areas: appraising real estate, negotiating/coordinating real estate transactions, right-of-way acquisition, performing natural resource real estate management work; OR
Bachelor's degree in Business Administration, Economics, Real Estate, Public Policy, Natural Resources Management or a closely related field; AND 18 months experience as noted above; OR
Master's degree in Business Administration, Economics, Real Estate, Public Policy, Natural Resources Management or a closely related field AND one year of experience as noted above.
Ability to travel statewide.

Desired Qualifications

One year experience in one or more of the following areas:
1) Land and legal description writing/review
2) Relocation/property management
3) Geographic Information Systems
4) Possession of an appraiser license
Experience working as a Realty Specialist in a government agency

Physical Requirements

Medium Work - occasionally lifting articles such as 50 pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

CLASS D DRIVER'S LICENSE - A single unit vehicle with a GVW of less than 26,000 pounds. This is your basic driver's license. Operators may also tow vehicles/trailers as long as the GCW does not exceed 26,000 pounds.


Research Analyst

Description

A Research Analyst gathers, compiles, and analyzes data to assist in program research for the completion of the compilation of parts of major reports and/or to compile reports for programs with limited scope and complexity; performs related work as required.

Writes narrative reports and/or narratives which accompany surveys to provide required information to others in an understandable manner by interpreting and explaining the data, the limitations of the data, and differences in data reporting over a period of time.

Writes letters in response to inquiries concerning statistical reports by interpreting the results of surveys and reports in an understandable manner.

Required Qualifications

Bachelor's degree in field related to work being performed.

Knowledge of statistical methods, their applications and limitations.

Abilty to interpret results.

Knowledge of data processing software sufficient to enter and store statistical information.

Ability to edit and disseminate information.
Knowledge of the field in which research is conducted sufficient to develop questionnaires and survey forms to collect data.

Ability to construct tables, charts and graphs depicting data.

Ability to interpret and explain statistical data in an understandable manner.

Writing skills sufficient to compose narrative summaries and develop questionnaires and surveys.

Desired Qualifications

Oral communications skill.

Research, statistics and analysis experience.
Leadwork skills.

Physical Requirements

License Requirements


Research Scientist 2

Description

The Research Scientist 2 position performs advanced independent scientific research work with responsibility for initiating and completing research projects. Includes reviewing research activities in progress, correlating complex technical findings, interpreting theories in reports, publishing in peer reviewed journals, and instructing lower level employees in research procedures.

Core Activities:

Design studies to increase scientific knowledge applicable to a natural resources field by determining needs, planning investigations, formulating tests or hypotheses.

Implement and perform research investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time and resources to the study, making field decisions and analyzing and interpreting data.

Write technical reports suitable for journal publication that contribute to scientific knowledge by stating purpose of study, presenting data and discussing statistical significance, and discussing the value of findings.

Plan investigations with Senior Researchers to support natural resources management projects by consulting with management to determine needs, conducting literature search, designing investigations, identifying equipment, personnel, time and budget needs, sampling techniques and analytical methodology.

Directs and coordinates the activities of research teams, special field investigations or study projects.

Give lectures, seminars and speeches on scientific subjects as invited.

Required Qualifications

Master's Degree specific to the natural resources management area or a closely related area required.

Minimum 2 years advanced professional experience in natural resrouces management or research.

Ability to maintain and operate equipment, such as boats, outboard motors, trailers, etc.

Oral communication and writing skills sufficient to document completed research.

Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets and statistical programs sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.

Experience in presenting oral presentations and defending conclusions.

Public relations skills sufficient to relate to meeting with various groups.

Established ability to prepare and review reports and papers on the results of research projects.

Ability to organize, execute and evaluate research activities independently and to correlate findings from a variety of scientific disciplines.

Considerable knowledge of scientific, experimental and research techniques.

Considerable knowledge of procedures involved in planning, executing, evaluating and reporting controlled experimental research.

Considerable knowledge of current literature on research activities.

Proven analytical skills.

Desired Qualifications

Safety training.

Lead worker skills.

Budgeting skills.

Certification by America Fisheries Society as a Fisheries Scientist.

Ph.D. specific to the natural resources management area or closely related area.

Simulation modeling expertise.

Physical Requirements

License Requirements

Minnesota Class D Drivers license.


Research Scientist 2/ Botanist

Description

Research Scientist 2 – Botanist positions independently or collaboratively plan, direct, and/or conduct botanical research; analyze and interpret data. Provide technical expertise and policy recommendations on complex ecological issues related to native plants. Plan botanical species recovery and habitat restoration. Deliver data and general information about rare plant species to a variety of audiences for the purpose of maintaining and recovering the species within a framework of regional and national goals for each species.

Core Activities
Research Design: Direct and design research studies, surveys, and special investigations to obtain information about native plant populations, with particular emphasis on rare Minnesota flora, and evaluate/critique designs proposed by others. Formulate tests or hypotheses to address issues important to the Department of Natural Resources and design studies/surveys to collect data that allows test/hypothesis to be evaluated.

Implement Research: Implement and perform or direct studies, surveys, and special investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time, staff, and resources to the study, making field decisions.

Data Management and Analysis: In collaboration with data management staff, keep current a high quality, comprehensive statewide data system containing all existing information on the location and biological requirements of each rare plant species as they occur in Minnesota. Analyze and interpret biological, locational, and ecological data on rare plant species statewide. Identify those elements of Minnesota’s flora that are rare, endangered, threatened or in need of special planning consideration on a statewide basis.

Disseminate Results: Serve as the DNR’s technical expert, provide technical guidance on regional project proposals, review proposals, and recommend alterations based on scientific/technical expertise, available resources and priorities, within and outside of the DNR; author and disseminate reports, scientific journal articles, and presentations to other divisions, agencies, the scientific community, and the general public.

Species Recovery and Native Plant Community Restoration: Collaborate with state, federal and private partners by coordinating, conducting and monitoring the success of recovery activities related to Minnesota's rare plants, and other rare native plants of region-wide concern.

Policy Development: Consult on the development of statewide policy at the Department, Division, or program level where knowledge of native plant populations, their role in plant community processes, and their response to various management alternatives are important considerations in the development of sound natural resources policy. Serve as the statewide expert on rare native plants. Recommend program policy; draft legislative policy and rules; and coordinate with other DNR staff to deliver effective policy development related to native plants. Coordinate inter-agency and public/private actions to support DNR activities. Coordinate activities necessary for the administration and implementation of Minnesota’s endangered species legislation as it pertains to plant species.

Administration: Oversee administrative tasks: assist in recruiting, interviewing, training, directing, and evaluating technicians/interns; track and compile research activities and expenses; establish contracts with outside researchers or vendors; and assist in budget management. Administer Minnesota’s Ginseng Harvest Program.

Required Qualifications

-Master of Science in botany is required AND two years of advanced professional level experience (e.g., NR Specialist, Senior) designing and implementing botanical research.
-Knowledge of the flora of the Upper Midwest of the USA is essential to this position. The botanist/ plant ecologist must efficiently and accurately identify the 2000+ native and exotic vascular plant species of Minnesota. In the field, the person must identify plants in a wide range of habitats and geographic regions, plants that are present in a vegetative condition, and plants in very difficult taxonomic groups. A practical exam demonstrating successful identification of a sample of plants of the Upper Midwest of the USA is required.
-Expert knowledge of plant taxonomy and extensive knowledge of autecology, synecology, population biology, genetics, environmental science, ecology, and resource management.
-Familiarity with the botanical literature pertaining to plant life history, reproductive ecology, genetics, conservation, demography, population viability, and endangered species restoration.
-Understanding of geology, soil science, and photogrammetry.
-Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets, and statistical programs, sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.
-Technical writing skills sufficient to author and disseminate survey results to a variety of audiences, including professional conferences and peer-reviewed journals.
-Experience in meeting facilitation, group processes, conflict resolution, effective listening, and negotiation, working with diverse groups of stakeholders.
-Public relations skills.
-Ability to maintain and operate tools and equipment necessary to conduct botanical research.
-Experience independently developing original research and securing funding for it.
-Ability to efficiently assemble, analyze, organize, and interpret biological data.
-Knowledge and experience in statistical analysis of data.
-Strong supervisory, leadership, and coordination skills.
-Strong administrative skills, including budget management.
-Ability to apply basic botanical research to environmental planning, natural resource policy, and resource management.

Desired Qualifications

Ph.D. in botany, or closely related area. It is also desirable for the applicant to have: supervisory or leadwork experience and training; a working knowledge of human resource and budget policies, procedures, and regulations; GIS / ArcView proficiency; experience developing and implementing budgets and operational plans; safety training; marketing experience; experience with interdisciplinary or interagency teams.

Physical Requirements

Medium Work: Positions involve medium work, occasionally lifting articles such as 50-pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

Must possess a valid MN Class D driver’s license.


Research Scientist 2/Aquatic Biology

Description

Research Scientist 2 – Aquatic Ecologist positions perform advanced assessments, conduct research studies, and provide technical expertise and policy recommendations on complex ecological issues related to aquatic macroinvertebrates and/or zooplankton to support the management of activities of the Divisions of Fisheries, Wildlife, Ecological Services, Parks, and Trails and Waterways.

Core Activities
Research Design: Direct and design research studies, surveys, and special investigations to obtain information about aquatic invertebrate populations and communities, and evaluate/critique designs proposed by others. Formulate tests or hypotheses to address issues important to the Department of Natural Resources and design studies/surveys to collect data that allows test/hypothesis to be evaluated.

Implement Research: Implement and perform studies, surveys, and special investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time, staff, and resources to the study, making field decisions, analyzing and interpreting data.

Data Management and Analysis: In collaboration with data management staff, keep current a high quality, comprehensive statewide data system containing all existing information on the location and biological requirements of each aquatic invertebrate populations and communities as they occur in Minnesota. Analyze and interpret biological, locational, and ecological data on aquatic invertebrate populations and communities statewide.

Disseminate Results: Serve as the DNR’s technical expert, provide technical guidance on regional project proposals, review proposals, and recommend alterations based on scientific/technical expertise, available resources and priorities, within and outside of the DNR; author and disseminate reports, scientific journal articles, and presentations to other divisions, agencies, the scientific community, and the general public.

Policy Development: Consult on the development of statewide policy at the Department, Division, or program level where knowledge of aquatic invertebrates populations, their role in aquatic community processes, and their response to various management alternatives are important considerations in the development of sound natural resources policy. Serve as the statewide expert on aquatic invertebrates. Recommend program policy; draft legislative policy and rules; and coordinate with other DNR staff to deliver effective policy development related to aquatic invertebrates. Coordinate inter-agency and public/private actions to support DNR activities.

Administration: Oversee administrative tasks: assist in recruiting, interviewing, training, directing, and evaluating technicians/interns; track and compile research activities and expenses; establish contracts with outside researchers or vendors; and assist in budget management.

Required Qualifications

-Masters degree in aquatic biology, fisheries, invertebrate zoology, or closely related area AND two years of advanced professional level experience (e.g., NRS, Senior) in the design, implementation, evaluation, and presentation of biological assessment and control of aquatic invertebrate populations and/or communities.
-Ability to maintain and operate equipment commonly used to assess aquatic invertebrates, such as boats, outboard motors, GPS units, stereo-dissecting and compound microscopes, and Ponar and Ekman grabs.
-Ability to manipulate, dissect, and identify small aquatic organisms.
-Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets, and statistical programs, sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.
-Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain satisfactory working relationships.
-Established ability to prepare and review reports and papers on the results of research projects.
-Oral communication and writing skills sufficient to document completed research/assessments and defend conclusions.
-Public relations skills sufficient to relate to meeting with groups at a lay terminology level.
-Considerable knowledge of scientific, experimental, and research techniques related to the aquatic invertebrate field of study.
-Considerable knowledge of current literature on research activities relating to aquatic invertebrates.
-Ability to organize, execute and evaluate research activities independently and to correlate findings from a variety of scientific disciplines.
-Ability to apply basic ecological research to environmental planning, natural resource policy, and management.

Desired Qualifications

Ph.D. in aquatic biology/ecology, fisheries, zoology, or closely related area with a dissertation related to aquatic invertebrate taxonomy/ecology. It is also desirable for the applicant to have: supervisory or leadwork experience and training; a working knowledge of human resource and budget policies, procedures, and regulations; GIS / ArcView proficiency; experience developing and implementing budgets and operational plans; safety training; marketing experience; experience with interdisciplinary or interagency teams; facilitation and consensus building skills.

Physical Requirements

Medium Work: Positions involve medium work, occasionally lifting articles such as 50-pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

Must possess a valid MN Class D driver’s license.


Research Scientist 2/Forest Ecology

Description

Research Scientist 2 Forest Ecologist positions independently or collaboratively plan, facilitate, conduct and direct research, field surveys, and data management activities related to Minnesota forest community research, surveys, and monitoring. Provide technical expertise and policy recommendations on complex ecological issues related to Minnesota forest communities. Promote the protection of native biodiversity of Minnesota’s forests for the purpose of maintaining and recovering communities within a framework of regional and national goals. Interpret current scientific knowledge of forest organisms, communities, ecosystems, and landscapes to managers and policy makers.

Core Activities
Research Design: Direct, design, and conduct research studies, surveys, and special investigations to obtain information on the ecology, dynamics, and occurrence of threatened forest communities and ecosystems. Evaluate/critique the designs proposed by others. Formulate tests or hypotheses to address issues important to the Department of Natural Resources and design studies/surveys to collect data that allows test/hypothesis to be evaluated.

Implement Research: Implement and perform or direct studies, surveys, and special investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time, staff, and resources to the study, making field decisions.

Data Management and Analysis: In collaboration with data management staff, keep current a high quality, comprehensive statewide data system containing all existing information on the location and biological requirements of each occurrence of native plant communities, with emphasis on forests. Analyze and interpret biological, locational, and ecological data on the occurrence of native plant communities, with emphasis on forests statewide. Lead the collaborative revision of the statewide native plant community classification using new and existing data from vegetation samples from Minnesota forests and to take the lead in the revision of the classification of forested communities.

Disseminate Results: Serve as the DNR’s technical expert on the ecology of Minnesota’s forests and the occurrence of rare features therein; provide technical guidance on regional project proposals: review proposals and recommend alterations based on scientific/technical expertise, available resources and priorities, within and outside of the DNR; author and disseminate reports, scientific journal articles, and presentations to other divisions, agencies, the scientific community, and the general public.

Species Recovery and Native Plant Community Restoration: Provide recommendations for the development, monitoring, and evaluation of the success of forest management actions.

Policy Development: Consult on the development of statewide policy at the Department, Division, or program level where knowledge of the ecology of Minnesota’s forests and the occurrence of rare features, and their response to various management alternatives are important considerations in the development of sound natural resources policy. Serve as the statewide expert on recovery needs of Minnesota’s forests and the occurrence of rare features. Recommend program policy; draft legislative policy and rules; and coordinate with other DNR staff to deliver effective policy development related to Minnesota’s forests and the occurrence of rare features.

Administration: Oversee administrative tasks: assist in recruiting, interviewing, training, directing, and evaluating technicians, interns, volunteers, and university advisors; track and compile research activities and expenses; establish contracts with outside researchers or vendors; and assist in budget management. Administer research grants and outside contracts, manage these budgets, coordinate the work of contractors, and supervise temporary staff.

Required Qualifications

Master’s degree in ecology, with emphasis on forest ecology AND two years of advanced professional level experience (e.g., NR Specialist, Senior) designing and implementing ecological research related to forests.
-Extensive knowledge of plant and animal taxonomy of forest species, population and community ecology, and conservation biology.
-Expert knowledge of knowledge of flora of forests in MN.
-Basic understanding of forest science and management as implemented by county, state, and federal agencies in MN.
-Familiarity with the botanical literature pertaining to plant life history, reproductive ecology, genetics, conservation, demography, population viability, and endangered species restoration.
-Familiarity with the ecological literature pertaining to community ecology, landscape ecology, and management.
-Understanding of geology, soil science, photogrammetry, landscape ecology, and remote sensing.
-Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets, and statistical programs, sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.
-Technical writing skills sufficient to author and disseminate survey results to a variety of audiences, including professional conferences and peer-reviewed journals.
-Experience in meeting facilitation, group processes, conflict resolution, effective listening, and negotiation, working with diverse groups of stakeholders.
-Public relations skills.
-Ability to maintain and operate tools and equipment necessary to conduct botanical research.
-Experience independently developing original research and securing funding for it.
-Ability to efficiently assemble, analyze, organize, and interpret biological data.
-Knowledge and experience in statistical analysis of data.
-Strong supervisory, leadership, and coordination skills.
-Strong administrative skills, including budget management.
-Ability to apply basic ecological research to environmental planning, natural resource policy, and forest ecology management.

Desired Qualifications

Ph.D. in forest ecology, or closely related area. It is also desirable for the applicant to have: supervisory or leadwork experience and training; a working knowledge of human resource and budget policies, procedures, and regulations; GIS / ArcView proficiency; experience developing and implementing budgets and operational plans; safety training; marketing experience; experience with interdisciplinary or interagency teams; facilitation and consensus building skills. Strong working knowledge of federal and state forest statutes, rules, policies, and programs.

Physical Requirements

Medium Work: Positions involve medium work, occasionally lifting articles such as 50-pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

Must possess a valid MN Class D driver’s license.


Research Scientist 2/Plant Ecologist

Description

Research Scientist 2 – Plant Ecologist positions independently or collaboratively plan, direct and/or conduct rare plant and plant community research, surveys, monitoring. Provide technical expertise and policy recommendations on complex ecological issues related to native plants and plant communities. Plan botanical species recovery and habitat restoration. Deliver data and general information about rare plant species and plant communities to a variety of audiences for the purpose of maintaining and recovering the species and communities within a framework of regional and national goals for each species.

Core Activities
Research Design: Direct and design research studies, surveys, and special investigations to obtain information with particular emphasis on federally-listed plants, state listed plants, and plant species of regional concern, and significant native plant communities. Evaluate/critique the designs proposed by others. Formulate tests or hypotheses to address issues important to the Department of Natural Resources and design studies/surveys to collect data that allows test/hypothesis to be evaluated.

Implement Research: Implement and perform or direct studies, surveys, and special investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time, staff, and resources to the study, making field decisions.

Data Management and Analysis: In collaboration with data management staff, keep current a high quality, comprehensive statewide data system containing all existing information on the location and biological requirements of each Minnesota rare plant species and native plant community. Analyze and interpret biological, locational, and ecological data on rare plant species and native plant communities statewide. Collaborate with DNR ecologists in revising the statewide native plant community classification using new and existing data from vegetation samples from Minnesota native plant communities.

Disseminate Results: Serve as the DNR’s technical expert, provide technical guidance on regional project proposals, review proposals, and recommend alterations based on scientific/technical expertise, available resources and priorities, within and outside of the DNR; author and disseminate reports, scientific journal articles, and presentations to other divisions, agencies, the scientific community, and the general public.

Species Recovery and Native Plant Community Restoration: Collaborate with state, federal, and private partners by coordinating and conducting recovery activities related to Minnesota’s rare native plants, with a focus on federally-listed plant species and other rare native plants of Region wide concern. Collborate with state, federal, and private partners by recommending and monitoring the effectiveness of native plant community restoration and management.


Policy Development: Consult on the development of statewide policy at the Department, Division, or program level where knowledge of native plant populations, native plant communities, and their response to various management alternatives are important considerations in the development of sound natural resources policy. Serve as the statewide expert on recovery needs of federally listed plants. Recommend program policy; draft legislative policy and rules; and coordinate with other DNR staff to deliver effective policy development related to native plants and plant communities. Serve as a liaison to the Fish and Wildlife Service with regard to federally listed plants.

Administration: Oversee administrative tasks: assist in recruiting, interviewing, training, directing, and evaluating technicians, interns, and volunteers; track and compile research activities and expenses; establish contracts with outside researchers or vendors; and assist in budget management.

Required Qualifications

Required Skills: Masters degree in botany or plant ecology AND two years of advanced professional level experience (e.g., NR Specialist, Senior) designing and implementing botanical and plant ecological research.
-Knowledge of the flora of the Upper Midwest of the USA is essential to this position. The botanist/ plant ecologist must efficiently and accurately identify the 2000+ native and exotic vascular plant species of Minnesota. In the field, the person must identify plants in a wide range of habitats and geographic regions, plants that are present in a vegetative condition, and plants in very difficult taxonomic groups. A practical exam demonstrating successful identification of a sample of plants of the Upper Midwest of the USA is required.
-Expert knowledge of plant taxonomy and extensive knowledge of autecology, synecology, population biology, genetics, environmental science, ecology, and resource management.
-Familiarity with the botanical literature pertaining to plant life history, reproductive ecology, genetics, conservation, demography, population viability, and endangered species restoration.
-Familiarity with the ecological literature pertaining to community ecology, landscape ecology, and management.
-Understanding of geology, soil science, photogrammetry, landscape ecology, and remote sensing.
-Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets, and statistical programs, sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.
-Technical writing skills sufficient to author and disseminate survey results to a variety of audiences, including professional conferences and peer-reviewed journals.
-Experience in meeting facilitation, group processes, conflict resolution, effective listening, and negotiation, working with diverse groups of stakeholders.
-Public relations skills.
-Ability to maintain and operate tools and equipment necessary to conduct botanical research, including the use of standard herbarium collection techniques.
-Experience independently developing original research and securing funding for it.
-Ability to efficiently assemble, analyze, organize, and interpret biological data.
-Knowledge and experience in statistical analysis of data.
-Strong supervisory, leadership, and coordination skills.
-Strong administrative skills, including budget management.
-Ability to apply basic ecological research to environmental planning, natural resource policy, and management.

Desired Qualifications

Ph.D. in botany, plant ecology, or closely related area. It is also desirable for the applicant to have: supervisory or leadwork experience and training; a working knowledge of human resource and budget policies, procedures, and regulations; GIS / ArcView proficiency; experience developing and implementing budgets and operational plans; safety training; marketing experience; experience with interdisciplinary or interagency teams; facilitation and consensus building skills. Strong working knowledge of federal and state plant protection laws, including the Minnesota Endangered Species Act and how it relates to other state plant protection laws; and the infrastructure for endangered plant protection and rare plant conservation throughout the Midwest.

Physical Requirements

Medium Work: Positions involve medium work, occasionally lifting articles such as 50-pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

Must possess a valid MN Class D driver’s license.


Research Scientist 2/Prairie Ecology

Description

Research Scientist 2 – Prairie Ecologist positions independently plan, facilitate, conduct, and direct research, field surveys, and data management activities related to prairie and savanna communities in the state. Provide technical expertise and policy recommendations on complex ecological issues related to Minnesota’s native grasslands and brushlands, especially prairies and savannas, and the occurrence of rare features. Promote the protection of native biodiversity of Minnesota’s prairies. Interpret current scientific knowledge of prairie and savanna organisms, communities, ecosystems, and landscapes to managers and policy makers. Interpret current scientific knowledge of insects and other arthropods and planning, facilitating, and conducting research and surveys related to these organisms for the purpose of maintaining and recovering the species within a framework of regional and national goals for each species.

Core Activities
Research Design: Direct, design, and conduct surveys and research on the ecology, dynamics and occurrence of threatened prairie and savanna communities and ecosystems, insects and arthropods, and evaluate/critique designs proposed by others. Formulate tests or hypotheses to address issues important to the Department of Natural Resources and design studies/surveys to collect data that allows test/hypothesis to be evaluated.

Implement Research: Implement and perform or direct studies, surveys, and special investigations so study objectives are met and findings are scientifically and statistically valid by allocating time, staff, and resources to the study, making field decisions.

Data Management and Analysis: In collaboration with data management staff, keep current a high quality, comprehensive statewide data system containing all existing information on the location and biological requirements and coordinate procedures that assure that information on the occurrence of native prairie and savanna plant communities, and insects and arthropods, are accurately tracked and managed. Analyze and interpret biological, locational, and ecological data on native prairie and savanna plant communities, and insects and arthropods, statewide. Lead the collaborative revision of the statewide native plant community classification using new and existing data from vegetation samples from Minnesota native grassland/brushland communities.

Disseminate Results: Serve as the scientific expert on the ecology of Minnesota’s native grasslands and brushlands, especially prairies and savannas, and the occurrence of rare features, provide technical guidance on regional project proposals, review proposals, and recommend alterations based on scientific/technical expertise, available resources and priorities, within and outside of the DNR; author and disseminate reports, scientific journal articles, and presentations to other divisions, agencies, the scientific community, and the general public.

Species Recovery and Native Plant Community Restoration: Collaborate with state, federal and private partners to coordinate and conduct recovery activities related to the ecology of rare insects and arthropods, and provide recommendations for the development, monitoring and evaluation of the success of prairie management activities.

Policy Development: Consult on the development of statewide policy at the Department, Division, or program level where knowledge of native grasslands and brushlands, especially prairies and savanna, and the occurrence of rare features, and their response to various management alternatives are important considerations in the development of sound natural resources policy. Serve as the scientific expert on the ecology and biology of Minnesota insects and other arthropods. Recommend program policy; draft legislative policy and rules; and coordinate with other DNR staff to deliver effective policy development related to prairies. Coordinate inter-agency and public/private actions to support DNR activities.

Administration: Oversee administrative tasks: assist in recruiting, interviewing, training, directing, and evaluating technicians/interns; track and compile research activities and expenses; establish contracts with outside researchers or vendors; and assist in budget management. Coordinate, organize and/or supervise the activities of student workers, interns, volunteers, university advisors and others in conducting plant research and inventory activities.

Required Qualifications

Master's degree in ecology, with emphasis on prairie ecology AND two years of advanced professional level experience designing and implementing ecological research related to prairies and savannas.
-Extensive knowledge of plant and animal taxonomy of prairie and savanna species, population and community ecology, and conservation biology.
-Expert knowledge of flora of prairies and savannas in MN.
-Basic understanding of prairie management practices as implemented by county, state, and federal agencies in MN.
-Familiarity with the botanical literature pertaining to plant life history, reproductive ecology, genetics, conservation, demography, population viability, and endangered species restoration.
-Familiarity with the ecological literature pertaining to community ecology, prairie ecology, landscape ecology, and prairie management.
-Understanding of geology, soil science, photogrammetry, landscape ecology, and remote sensing.
-Computer proficiency, including knowledge of databases, spreadsheets, and statistical programs, sufficient to analyze collected data and perform statistical analysis.
-Technical writing skills sufficient to author and disseminate survey results to a variety of audiences, including professional conferences and peer-reviewed journals.
-Experience in meeting facilitation, group processes, conflict resolution, effective listening, and negotiation, working with diverse groups of stakeholders.
-Public relations skills.
-Ability to maintain and operate tools and equipment necessary to conduct botanical research.
-Experience independently developing original research and securing funding for it.
-Ability to efficiently assemble, analyze, organize, and interpret biological data.
-Knowledge and experience in statistical analysis of data.
-Strong supervisory, leadership, and coordination skills.
-Strong administrative skills, including budget management.
-Ability to apply basic ecological research to environmental planning, natural resource policy, and prairie resource management.

Desired Qualifications

Ph.D. in plant ecology or prairie ecology. It is also desirable for the applicant to have: supervisory or leadwork experience and training; a working knowledge of human resource and budget policies, procedures, and regulations; GIS / ArcView proficiency; experience developing and implementing budgets and operational plans; safety training; marketing experience; experience with interdisciplinary or interagency teams; facilitation and consensus building skills; and knowledge of insects and arthropods. Strong working knowledge of federal and state prairie statutes, rules, policies, and programs.

Physical Requirements

Medium Work: Positions involve medium work, occasionally lifting articles such as 50-pound bags of feed maximum and frequently lifting and/or carrying objects such as heavy tools and file boxes. This job may require walking or standing to a significant degree on rough terrain or may involve sitting most of the time with pushing and pulling of arm and/or leg controls.

License Requirements

Must possess a valid MN Class D driver’s license.