Opportunity: IODP Science Expeditions Accepting Applications

The International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) is now accepting applications for three expeditions:

Expedition 363 Western Pacific Warm Pool aboard the JOIDES Resolution U.S. application deadline: 15 August 2015

Expedition 366 Mariana Convergent Margin aboard the JOIDES Resolution U.S. application deadline: 15 August 2015

Expedition 365 NanTroSEIZE Shallow Megasplay Long-Term Borehole Monitoring System (LTBMS) aboard the Chikyu, operated by CDEX/JAMSTEC U.S. application deadline: 31 August 2015

U.S.-affiliated scientists interested in participating in these expeditions can get more information and apply to sail through the U.S. Science Support Program – Apply Now webpage. Non-U.S.-affiliated scientists should apply through their IODP Program Member Offices.


USSSP sponsors participation on IODP expeditions by scientists and engineers (e.g., professors, research scientists, technologists, graduate students) affiliated with U.S. institutions (e.g., universities, government agencies, corporations). Scientists and engineers affiliated with institutions in other IODP member countries should apply for IODP participation through their country’s national program office. Expedition lengths may vary, but two months is a typical duration. Applicants must be available for the entire length of the expedition. Invitees will be assigned a specific role in the scientific party and must sign an agreement with the expedition operator elaborating their responsibilities during the expedition and their acceptance of all the rights, privileges, and obligations of a member of the science party as defined by IODP policy. Information on the job descriptions and responsibilities of JOIDES Resolution shipboard scientists can be found on the science operator’s website.


If selected to participate in an IODP expedition, science party members may receive financial support including:

• Salary: USSSP provides salary support to approved U.S. expedition participants for a period of approximately 1.5 times the duration of an expedition in weeks, where the additional time covers preparations, travel, and participation in post-expedition activities. U.S. co-chief scientists normally receive a longer period of salary support (up to eight months total) due to their additional expedition-related responsibilities. USSSP determines the exact salary period of each participant in light of available funding and other factors. No sea pay, bonuses, or other additional salary compensation will be awarded.

• Travel: USSSP coordinates and funds the travel of expedition participants to and from the drilling platform and also supports their travel as necessary to pre- and post-expedition meetings for planning, sampling, and coordination of research results. Science party members will receive detailed travel instructions after accepting an invitation to sail.

• Miscellaneous: In some instances, expedition participants may receive limited reimbursement for miscellaneous costs such as required medical exams, travel visas, and safety training.

Staffing Process

The IODP staffing is designed to create an integrated science party that will meet the scientific objectives of an expedition while balancing scientist expertise and range of professional experience, diversity of participating institutions, and the national affiliations as outlined in the program’s international agreements. The process begins approximately six to nine months before an expedition, when the expedition operator issues a call for applications to sail on an expedition. Scientists then respond by applying to sail through their IODP Program Member Office. If your affiliation lies with a U.S.-based institution, you apply to sail through the U.S. Science Support Program.

After the application deadline, staffing decisions are made through a joint process involving the U.S. Advisory Committee for Scientific Ocean Drilling (USAC), the co-chief scientists of the expedition, and the expedition operator. The USAC Staffing subcommittee reviews applications and nominates qualified applicants to the expedition operator in prioritized groups. The operator then finalizes the international science party.

To review the latest expedition and learn what it’s like to participate in an IODP cruise, click here.

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