International Postdoctoral Fellowship Program
There are currently no calls planned for 2022.

About the program

The OFI International Postdoctoral Fellowship Program offers an opportunity for early career PhDs to conduct innovative, full time, collaborative research that is aligned with OFI's research priorities.

The term of the award is two years. Successful candidates will be based at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with frequent travel to and from one of our partner institutions in Europe or the United States, providing Fellows with exposure to diverse research approaches. These partners are:

Eligibility

  • Highly qualified, early career researchers who have completed their PhDs within the past four years
  • Candidates who are currently enrolled in a doctoral program may apply; however, they must complete all the requirements of their PhD (including course work, thesis defense, and the final submission of thesis) before beginning the OFI International Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • Researchers currently participating in the OFI International Postdoctoral Fellowship, or individuals who have participated in the program within the past two years, are not eligible to re-apply

Funding & duration

Duration and stipend

The OFI International Postdoctoral Fellowship is awarded for two years and is non-renewable. The award provides total compensation of $55,000 CAD/year plus benefits (see 'Postdoctoral Fellow Employees'), and $15,000 CAD/year for work-related travel costs which include relocation expenses, travel to partner institutions, conferences, workshops, summer schools, and the non-travel exception for the purchase of a laptop/computer to a maximum amount of $1,500 CAD. Expenses such as long-term accommodation and visa application fees are not eligible expenses.

Terms and conditions

The applicant’s proposed work should complement OFI’s research priorities. OFI will expect successful candidates to participate in research life at their selected institution (for example, participating in at least one presentation of their research in a departmental seminar, undergraduate lecture, or a public lecture during their research stay). Fellows must acknowledge OFI in all publications arising from their participation in the program and must notify OFI of any scholarly articles or books published, as well as media interviews. They must also contribute to OFI’s annual submission to its funding agency.

For logistical purposes, successful applicants must be based and start at Dalhousie University for the two years of the fellowship.

Appointment & application process

Successful applicants should expect to begin their Fellowship within 1 year of their offer letter being accepted. In this round, the OFI anticipates awarding up to 8 Fellowships.

Step 1: Prepare

  • Review OFI’s research priorities and begin to identify a research project to complete during your Fellowship: one that supports OFI's work while also aligning with your expertise, interests, and experience.
  • Contact potential OFI research supervisors at Dalhousie University and state your interest in participating in OFI's International Postdoctoral Fellowship (visit OFI research to learn about the projects and the teams who are conducting the work). In addition to OFI researchers, any Dalhousie faculty member can act as a Fellowship supervisor, if their work aligns with OFI’s research priorities.
  • Identify and contact a second potential faculty member at one of OFI's eight international partner institutes. This can be done in consultation with a potential Dalhousie supervisor.
  • Work together with both potential supervisors to prepare your research proposal and application, following the guidelines below.

Step 2: Develop an application

The application must include of a detailed Research Statement. Please follow all guidelines in the template to ensure your application is complete. In addition, please provide the following (as described in the Research Statement template):

  • Curriculum vitae, including educational background, work experiences and publication record.
  • A copy of university transcripts from your PhD program.
  • Letters of support from each of your proposed supervisors detailing their support for your application and your proposed research project. The letters should indicate the collaborative nature of the research project, the planned benefits, and the academic support that will be offered (e.g., technical assistance, office/laboratory space).
  • Letters of reference from two people who can assess your research. Referees should use the provided template here and directly submit letters to the OFI at ofi@dal.ca. They should not be shared with the applicant.
  • A list of referees of the two people defined above.

Step 3: Submit your application

Submit your completed application to the OFI (currently closed).

Selection criteria

The Selection Committee will use the following criteria to assess applications:

Research excellence

Excellence in intellectual contribution of the applicant to their field of research, as assessed by scholarly contributions and/or a demonstrated capacity to shape the direction of research and thought. Excellence of the applicant's proposed research, especially the degree to which it complements OFI research priorities.

Multi-/Interdisciplinary perspective

Demonstrated track record of engagement across multiple disciplines or plans to work across disciplines.

Quality of proposed research and potential for forging strong new linkages

Realizable research objectives and the feasibility of the proposed work to be pursued during the applicant’s assignment. A clear case for how this placement will support OFI’s research priorities must be made. Likelihood of a valuable and enduring relationship through strengthening of academic networks for ongoing research activity and/or enhanced educational programs.

The OFI may interview you during the selection process.

Identify with an equity deserving group

The OFI is committed to fostering a collegial culture grounded in diversity and inclusiveness. The OFI encourages applications from Indigenous persons, persons with a disability, racially visible persons, women, persons of a minority sexual orientation and/or gender identity, and all candidates who would contribute to the diversity of our community.

Contact information

For further information please contact:

Dr. Carl Peters
Research Programs Manager
Email: carl.peters@oceanfi.ca
Telephone: +1 902 999 3165

Fehmi Dilmahamod recently arrived at Dalhousie University as an OFI International Postdoctoral Fellow to study mesoscale eddies, also known as the “weather” of the ocean.

Desai Shan

Desai Shan says the fellowship allows her to work with a group of world-class researchers in the areas of maritime law, as well as occupational health and safety. These collaborations broaden her research horizon and help develop new research perspectives.

Robert Schlegel

To better understand the impacts heat is having on the ocean, Postdoctoral Fellow Robert Schlegel is observing marine heatwaves through an interactive website.

“Anyone can now have, at their fingertips, the past and present state of marine heatwaves around the globe. This provides critically important information not just to climate researchers, but also to those whose livelihoods and communities are impacted by the sea.”

Hanchao Jian

A postdoctoral fellow studying as part of OFI's International Fellowship is helping us better understand the Earth of 150 million years ago, when the supercontinent Pangaea broke up and the Atlantic Ocean was born — and he’s doing it by studying the rock off the coast of Nova Scotia. Hanchao Jian is a marine geophysicist who is probing the crust and upper mantle off the Nova Scotian shore.

Erin Black

Postdoctoral Fellow Erin Black provides insight into how carbon dioxide is affecting our world — not in the sky, but in the sea. Dr. Black monitors organic carbon by tracking radioactive elements that occur widely in nature. Her work is examining if, and how, the marine carbon cycle in the Arctic is being altered with global climate change; and what drives the abundance of metals in the ocean, such as iron, which are vital to marine life.

Lauren Kipp

Lauren Kipp, OFI International Postdoctoral Fellow, provides a first-person account of her 65-day voyage in the Arctic Ocean for Oceanus Magazine, sharing her observations on how climate change is impacting the north. "Large scale changes are occurring in how the ocean interacts with the land along the coasts," she writes. "They signal changes that potentially could affect the Arctic food chain, from microbial life right up to polar bears."