Job opportunity: Research Assistants (5)

We’re looking for 5 dynamic Research Assistants to join our expanding team!

Position ID: Research Assistant

Hours: Full-time project-based

Location: Los Baños, Laguna

Salary: Commensurate with required qualifications

Job summary: Assist in the reconstruction of global fisheries catches

Organizational Status: The Sea Around Us ( is a research initiative at the University of British Columbia (Vancouver, Canada) that assesses the impact of fisheries on the marine ecosystems of the world and offers mitigating solutions to a range of stakeholders. Quantitative Aquatics ( is a Philippine-based non-profit, non-stock, tax-exempt non-governmental organization that hosts the global information systems on fish (FishBase,, other marine organisms (SeaLifeBase, and AquaMaps ( The Sea Around Us and Quantitative Aquatics together are working on updating the Sea Around Us catch reconstructions to 2022 and are looking to hire research assistants over a 12-month project timeline to help with these reconstructions. These research assistants will be hired by Quantitative Aquatics and will report directly to the onsite project lead. The global project itself will be directed by the Sea Around Us Principal Investigator, Dr Daniel Pauly, and overseen by the Sea Around Us Manager, Dr Maria Lourdes D. Palomares. Quantitative Aquatics Executive Director will administer the project.

 Work performed:

  • Receive training on updating catch reconstructions from Sea Around Us team;
  • Receive list of EEZs and necessary information about country collaborators from those EEZs from Sea Around Us team;
  • Obtain 1950-2019 Sea Around Us reconstructed catch for update and FAO FishStatJ 2022 baseline datasets by EEZs from Sea Around Us team;
  • Update reconstructions using the following steps:
    • Conduct electronic and library-based literature searches of journals (e.g., using ASFA and other science/social science databases), reports governmental and inter-governmental publications (including where appropriate UN, FAO, UNEO, UNESCO, and Regional Fisheries Management Organizations), non-governmental organization websites with emphasis on fisheries historic and fisheries science related information and data per EEZ;
    • Gather any data that pertains to the evolution of the fisheries in these EEZs from 2010 to present from the literature collated;
    • Assemble data and information gathered into coherent time series of national fisheries catches into Excel spreadsheets;
    • Submit data for verification to the Sea Around Us team. Then submit Sea Around Us verified data to national collaborators or experts for final verification;
    • Submit collaborator verified data to the Sea Around Us database manager for integration into the database.
  • Document methods and data sources;
    • Document fisheries catch reconstruction approaches and strategies used and/or implemented, and document data, information sources and associated references used;
    • Enter references used into the Sea Around Us reference library system;
    • Submit documentation to the Sea Around Us team for verification and editing.
  • Meet other Sea Around Us research needs with respect to this project.

Consequence of error/judgment: Overall database reliability, product and output accuracy, and correctness of database products are crucial. Failure to provide reliability, accuracy and timeliness will lead to loss of scientific and community support, and loss in trust in project outputs. Work performed will be checked at certain points in the project timeline by the onsite project lead and/or by the Sea Around Us Manager. Final checks will be done by the Sea Around Us Principal Investigator.

Supervision received: Onsite supervision will be provided by the Quantitative Aquatics Research Analyst. Further guidance and advice on reconstruction methods and sources will be provided remotely by the Sea Around Us Senior Research Assistant. Onsite administration will be provided by the Quantitative Aquatics Executive Director. Overall oversight will be provided by the Sea Around Us Manager (most of the time remotely). General project matters are decided on by the Sea Around Us Principal Investigator.

Supervision given: None

Education/work experience: The preferred candidate is Filipino, with a BSc in zoology or biology or any related aquatic science degree from a Philippine university. An MSc degree will be beneficial. Knowledge of sources of global fisheries datasets or databases and experience with spreadsheets or database and reference library software and handling large datasets are desired. The preferred candidate will have good English communication skills in order to communicate with international collaborators and partners, have good organizational and time management skills, and able to work in a team where willingness to assist other team members is crucial.

New graduates will learn a highly useable data encoding skill and are encouraged to apply.

Please send your application cover letter, comprehensive resumé with name and contact details of 3 referees, and transcript of records not later than 15 July 2024 via email with subject Research Assistant addressed to or via snail mail to Susan M. Luna, G.S. Khush Hall, IRRI, Los Baños, Laguna 4031, +63.49.536.2701 to 05 local 2864. This local hiring is immediate and thus, the position will be filled-up once a suitable candidate is found.

Only candidates who have met the required experience and qualifications for this position will be contacted. However, we will keep your personal information in our database for future reference unless you direct us otherwise.

About Joann Glorioso

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