Agricultural & Biological Engineering, University of Florida
This is a 12-month, tenure track position (70% extension 30% research) in the Agricultural and Biological Engineering Department (ABE), Institute of Food and Sciences (IFAS) with affiliation in Family Youth and Community Sciences at the University of Florida. This position will work closely with the university’s newly established Southern Coastal Center for Agricultural Safety and Health. This assignment may change in accordance with the needs of the unit.
The faculty member in this position will be responsible for building a program in risk analysis, safety and health challenges that will address the agriculture, forestry, and fisheries (AFF) system in Florida, with an integrated view encompassing jobs in the field (planting, maintenance, harvesting, etc.) through postharvest activities (packing, processing, shipping and handling, etc.). This position will develop partnerships with growers, farm worker groups, processors, equipment manufacturers, and various agencies to assist the AFF industry in maintaining safe and healthy working environments and practices. An interest/background and close collaboration in the social sciences is necessary to address interactions with industry on sensitive safety and health issues, the public health component, understanding adoption, etc. As such it is expected that this faculty member will maintain an active affiliate faculty status with the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, including participating in projects, meetings and graduate supervisory committees.
The Research part of this position will focus on engineering approaches for integrated risk analysis of agricultural and food systems (“farm to fork”) considering multiple system outcomes (human health, production, profit, environmental health, company reputation, sustainability, etc.), and the development and testing of technological solutions to improve the safety and health outcomes of the agricultural and food systems. Examples of these solutions could be the development of decision support systems and/or development of technologies, tools and/or early warning systems (sensors and others) that can increase effectiveness and efficiency of detection and implementation of safety measures and safety related decisions while evaluating the impact on the multiple outcomes of the system.
The Extension part of this position will include building an interdisciplinary program in worker
safety and health in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries systems (e.g., heat illness and agrochemicals exposure), technology and equipment assessment for safety and health hazards mitigation, and safety of existing and newly developed mechanized systems and operations. The candidate is expected to bring a systems approach to agricultural safety and health including leadership in the development of a web portal with extension tools addressing safely, risk and health in agriculture, forestry and fisheries.
At least one degree must be in Engineering and the candidate must have a Ph.D. (foreign equivalent acceptable). The candidate is required to have an understanding of sociocultural and behavioral processes that relate to the adoption of technology. The candidate must have the ability to conduct applied research and extension education programs related to safety and health, and the ability and willingness to disseminate results to clientele. Candidates should have demonstrated skills in verbal and written communication, interpersonal relationships, and procurement of extramural funding. Candidates must be supportive of the mission of the Land-Grant system. Candidates must also have a commitment to IFAS core values of excellence, diversity, global involvement and accountability.
Expertise in safety, risk analysis and management, logistics, agricultural systems, postharvest handling, and other aspects of the food chain and its safety is preferred. Postdoctoral experience and a clearly established publication record in areas related to this position, which could include agricultural safety and engineering-based extension education is desirable.
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