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Work Study Position in GIS and Remote Sensing for Land Stewardship

Project Description: The Santa Cruz Mountains Stewardship Network Digital Atlas Project, under the Jasper Ridge Science for Land Stewardship Initiative, is currently seeking student support on a project to investigate spatial and temporal trends in grazing and agriculture within the Santa Cruz Mountains.  Grazing and agriculture are key components of the mosaic of land use within this region, but regional datasets which reflect the locations and types of these activities are known to be inaccurate.  Accurate quantification and spatial representation of these activities is essential for understanding the extent to which they interact with the network of open space lands, impact ecological health (as measured by metrics of biodiversity or productivity), and represent the priorities of land owners in a region facing substantial developmental pressure. This project will involve evaluating and refining existing spatial datasets of agricultural activities, and creating a layer of grazing activity with the help of SCMSN members. 

Project duties will consist of 1) evaluating the quality and accuracy of existing farmland and grazing spatial data products, including assessing and refining GIS layers based on aerial/satellite imagery and ground-truthing within the Santa Cruz Mountains region, and 2) working with Network members to develop a region-wide map of grazing.

The expected workload is 10 hrs per week, with the option to work remotely for approximately half of those hours if desired. The work will be based predominately at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve, with some local travel required. 

Qualifications: Prior experience with GIS and/or remote sensing is beneficial, but not a requirement to apply for this position. A valid driver's license is required.

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For more information, email Kelly Chauvin (
Kelly McManus Chauvin, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow, SCMSN Digital Atlas Project
Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve
Biology Department
Stanford University