The successful candidate will primarily focus on applied agronomic research that evaluates and improves cotton production practices in southeast Missouri (80%), and to disseminate the research-based information to producers and industry via extension presentations and publications (20%).
The position is located at the University of Missouri’s (MU), Fisher Delta Research Center (FDRC) in Portageville, MO. The soils and topography of southeast Missouri (the most northern region of U.S. cotton production) offers researchers a unique opportunity to study cotton production and irrigation. Conducting cotton variety trials will be the central responsibility, along with providing leadership to develop innovative cotton technologies for the future. The work will include planning, designing, and conducting field experiments (including data collection and statistical analyses) with extramural funding and publishing research findings. Collaboration with public and private researchers, farmers, and extension specialists is expected.
The FDRC (https://delta.missouri.edu/), is part of the Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station and contributes to MU’s comprehensive land-grant responsibility. Its goal is to conduct high quality research that will respond to the needs of Missouri citizens, maintain and enhance our natural resource base, support a vital food and fiber system, and help keep Missouri producers competitive and profitable. FDRC staff work with campus faculty involved in teaching, research and extension along with state and federal agencies and Missouri agribusinesses to undergird education and a reliable, safe, sustainable supply of food and other agricultural products. In addition, FDRC faculty commonly collaborate with other state university faculty and staff and with others in industry on joint research projects that impact local, state, regional, national and international clientele. The FDRC facilities include 1,119 acres at five locations representing the major soil types of the region. The FDRC headquarters consists of 23 offices, seven modern laboratories, eight greenhouses, Foundation Seed cleaning and storage facilities, a cotton gin, auditoriums, an exhibit hall, a library and an outstanding professional and support staff. While the position is located at the FDRC, the successful candidate will also be an integral faculty member of the Division of Plant Sciences (DPS) in Columbia, MO (https://plantsciences.missouri.edu/).
Minimum Qualifications: Ph.D. by time of appointment or Masters with five years of relevant experience in the area of agronomy, soil science, agricultural engineering, or related field.
Candidates will be evaluated on: Proficiency in cotton production practices is required, including weed and disease/insect control, fertility, tillage, and irrigation. Excellent oral skills to communicate with farmers and other commodity stakeholders and the ability to work well in a collaborative team are essential. Other skills include experience in precision agriculture (and digital technology as it relates to modernizing farming practices), the ability to secure funding, a knowledge of operating and maintaining plot and farm-scale equipment, and proven experience in data analysis, and writing (e.g., grant proposals, scientific publications, and extension publications).