The Ohio State University — Assistant Professor and Urban Food Systems Horticulturalist

This position aims to advance the science and practice of urban food systems horticulture as involving farmers, non-profit organizations, schools and centers, and similar entities. The successful candidate is expected to establish a program that: (a) is integrated, externally funded, and nationally recognized and (b) yields a greater understanding of and the capacity to positively influence horticultural food production systems in urban and urbanizing environments and communities in the Midwest-Great Lakes region.

These systems are tasked with enhancing food security, entrepreneurship, and responses to and mitigation of climate change, socioeconomic, and other forces. Leveraging their expertise, collegiality, and stakeholder-focused approach, the successful candidate will demonstrate leadership in and support collaborative efforts strengthening horticultural food production systems scaled for and enhancing quality of life in urban environments and communities. Their integrated efforts will meet the needs of stakeholders in the targeted communities. Programmatic goals within this process could include:

  1. production system diversification (including through incorporating perennial crops),
  2. evaluation of new cropping system designs expressing sustainable intensification principles;
  3. production approaches and best management practices suitable for urban farms and improving crop production system efficiency, economic opportunity, and climate change resilience;
  4. plant physiological responses to urban environmental stresses; and
  5. other relevant programs targeted to urban horticultural farms and their communities – the possibilities are broad.

The successful candidate will also contribute to the Department’s teaching program by leading one undergraduate or graduate course per year that contributes to the core curriculum or is in the candidate’s area of expertise. This process should serve as an opportunity to bring research and extension to the educational experience of Ohio State students. Advising and mentoring graduate and undergraduate students is also expected. Overall, activities and outputs of the Urban Food Systems Horticulturalist will be commensurate with their 30% research appointment, support their 50% Extension appointment, and enrich and be enriched by their 20% teaching appointment.

Qualifications
The minimum qualification for this position is an earned Ph.D. in horticulture or plant science, agronomy or soil science, sustainable agriculture, agroecology, or discipline applicable to the duties and responsibilities outlined above. Demonstrated potential to exhibit leadership and partnership in applied research integrated with extension and directed to strengthening horticultural production systems at the core of urban food systems is essential. Preference will be given to candidates familiar with drivers of the economic, environmental, and social sustainability of urban, space-intensive production systems and potential contributions of those systems to individual and community well-being and resilience, including within the context of adaptation to climate change and economic-market forces and provision of agroecosystem services. Candidates capable of bridging horticultural food production and other science also strengthening urban food systems and communities are also desirable. Candidates familiar with tactics helping stakeholders mitigate and adapt to climate change while meeting additional metrics are encouraged to apply. Teaching or extension-outreach experience, grant-writing skills, and managerial expertise are also desirable

Application Instructions
Review of applications will begin immediately after the application closing date (April 1, 2022) and will continue until the position is filled. Complete applications should include the following:

  1. a cover letter describing areas of expertise, alignment with qualifications, and vision for the position;
  2. a statement of research interests (2 pages maximum);
  3. a statement of philosophy and approach to extension and teaching and their integration with research (2 pages maximum);
  4. a complete curriculum vitae;
  5. names, addresses, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses, of three references; and
  6. a statement of philosophy and approach to building a diverse, inclusive and welcoming environment for faculty, staff, students, and stakeholders (2 pages maximum).

The diversity statement may describe the candidate’s past or current contributions and activities to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion and/or a vision for promoting these ideals as a researcher-educator in the conduct of an academic career. Official application will be made by uploading all materials listed above via Workday at using search code . Also, a single hard- or PDF-copy containing all application materials identical to those uploaded via Workday should be sent to Meredith Luikart (contact information below).

In addition to uploading via Workday, please send application materials electronically (1 file in PDF format) or by mail to:

Ms. Meredith Luikart
Administrative Associate

Department of Horticulture and Crop Science
The Ohio State University
2021 Coffey Road
202 Kottman Hall
Columbus, Ohio 43210

Telephone: 614-688-5319
Fax: 614-292-7162
Email: luikart.6@osu.edu

Please direct questions to:

Dr. Matthew D. Kleinhenz Chair of the Search Committee
Professor, Extension Specialist (Vegetable Production Systems)
Dept. Horticulture and Crop Science

The Ohio State University
1680 Madison Avenue, Wooster, OH 44691
Telephone: 330-263-3810
Fax 330-263-3887
Email: kleinhenz.1@osu.edu

For application and more information, please visit: https://osujoblinks.com/1wgo

The Ohio State University is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, disability, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, military status, national origin, race, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, protected veteran status, or any other bases under the law. Applicants are encouraged to complete and submit the Equal Employment Identification form

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