Researcher in Ecosystem Services and Natural Capital Accounting

Trinity College Dublin is seeking a highly motivated, collaborative researcher, with interests in Ecosystem Services and Natural Capital Accounting, to join the interdisciplinary Farm Zero C project

Farm Zero C is an SFI-funded collaboration between industry and academia, which aims to deliver a range of strategies to help to create a more sustainable and resilient dairy sector. The ultimate aim of the project is to develop a replicable net zero emissions model for dairy farmers. The Farm Zero C team is led by SFI BiObic Centre and Carbery Group, with partners including University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, Munster Technological University Kerry, Teagasc and GRASSA B.V. The project builds on previous work at Shinagh Dairy Farm (in West Cork), as a ‘demonstrator’, and will develop tools to be deployed through a technological platform (Climate Neutral App) that will allow farmers to design climate and biodiversity strategies that best suits their needs.

Trinity College Dublin is leading work on habitat mapping and natural capital accounting, and is seeking a researcher to:

  1. Build natural capital accounts (extent, condition and services) at farm level using the UN System of Environmental Economic Accounting – Ecosystem Accounting (SEEA-EA) approach. Accounts will focus on extent, condition, and services (carbon sequestration and storage, runoff pollution remediation and aesthetic services), and will be built for Shinagh and 10 farms in the Greener Dairy Programme.
  2. Develop and test indicators for farmland habitat condition and assess the link farmland between habitat condition and service provision for integration into natural capital accounts.  
  3. Work with other members of the Farm Zero C team to integrate accounting into an interactive app-based interface (Climate Neutral App), so that accounts are informative, useful and intuitive to use by farmers.
  4. Write and publish peer reviewed scientific papers and present results at national and international conferences.

The researcher will join the group of Professor Jane Stout in the School of Natural Sciences at Trinity College Dublin, who leads the INCASE project developing Natural Capital Accounting (NCA) approaches for Ireland, and who is a lead PI on the Nature+Energy project, developing NCA for the wind-energy industry. As part of the Farm Zero C project, the researcher will also benefit from training and collaboration with Professor Lars Hein at Wageningen University who was one of the main authors of the UN SEEA-EA framework.   

Qualifications and experience required

Candidates must demonstrate the following

  • Minimum 2 years experience (which may include experience gained during a Masters/PhD) in a relevant field, such as environmental sciences, agricultural ecology, ecological economics, environmental resource economics, or related discipline, with an interest in Natural Capital Accounting, and ecosystem services.
  • Research expertise and excellent written communication skills as evidenced by, for example, publications in international peer-reviewed journals
  • Excellent oral communication and team work skills for transdisciplinary collaboration with other researchers and partners in industry
  • Strong organisation skills and self-motivation
  • Driving licence

The following is desirable

  • Understanding of Irish dairy or related agricultural systems
  • Direct project or work experience developing tools for habitat assessment and/or using SEEA-EA approach
  • Understanding of habitat assessment and related policy within the agricultural sector
  • Experience participating in collaborative research projects

Details of the position


This post is full time 18-24 months’ duration, with an annual salary of €38,632 (gross).

Start date

It is anticipated that the successful applicant will be in place as soon as possible.

Application procedure

Please submit a cover letter outlining suitability for the post and a CV (including details of experience and publications, and the names of two referees) via email to

Applications accepted until the position is filled.


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