Research Associate II

South Dakota State University

The SDSU Agricultural Experiment Station (AES) is seeking a Research Scientist for AES locations in the western region of South Dakota.  This 12-month, fully benefitted position will lead and support research programming primarily at the Cottonwood Field Station near Philip, along with providing research support to the West River Research Farm near Sturgis.  SDSU is seeking a highly motivated individual to develop, coordinate, and implement research using precision livestock technology on extensive rangeland systems within West River sites.

The Research Scientist will be expected to develop, coordinate, and implement research plans that incorporate novel strategies and technologies to support SDSU’s leadership in precision agriculture. Specific technologies being investigated include virtual fencing, GPS tracking, precision weighing and feeding cattle, remote sensing, and enteric emissions measurements.   This position will develop research and outreach ideas and proposals and lead and contribute to grant writing, reporting, and publishing through peer-reviewed manuscripts and outreach materials.  The successful candidate will be responsible for ensuring all research plans and protocols are approved, database management, building precision data pipelines, developing machine learning and mathematical models using precision data, experimental design, and generating data analytics for livestock producers.  The successful candidate will contribute to station field days and other extension and outreach activities and events, and will also be instrumental in graduate and undergraduate student training and advising.  This position will housed at the SDSU West River Research and Extension location in Rapid City. Full job posting can be found at https://yourfuture.sdbor.edu/postings/32042.


  • Ph.D. degree in Agriculture, Biological Science, Statistics, Data Science, or closely related field completed by start date;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills;
  • Demonstrated experience working with complex datasets;
  • Ability to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences;
  • Experience with writing and presenting for scientific audiences;
  • Demonstrated organizational and time management skills;
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a team member;
  • A valid driver’s license or the ability to obtain within 30 days of hire; and
  • Must be authorized to work in the U.S.  Sponsorship is not available for this position.


  • Experience working with technology for livestock and/or range research and operations;
  • At least one year of research experience in animal science, range science or closely related field;
  • Demonstrated experience in grant writing;
  • Demonstrated experience with beef cattle and/or range management.