I. Mission of the Department: The Luc Hoffmann Institute seeks to be the premier global institute focusing science capacity on the world’s most important conservation problems, and magnifying science impact through strategic alignment and communication. Our products will be known for their conservation relevance, rapid delivery, independent scientific rigor, and broad communication. We connect the research needs of the largest conservation organization in the world (WWF), and the research talent of academics and thought leaders from around the world. We use collaborative structures to bring interdisciplinary teams together, and we resource those teams so that they can deliver solutions, tools, and knowledge to the conservation community at a pace relevant for decisions. For more information on the Luc Hoffmann Institute, please visit http://luchoffmanninstitute.org/
II. Fellows Programme: The Fellows Programme is an integral component of global capacity building efforts by the Luc Hoffmann Institute and includes 3 major activities. First, development of a research project that has explicit usability for practitioners and policy-makers, and the formation of an interdisciplinary, collaborative research team to assist with project implementation. Second, participation of formal training opportunities on relevant topics to build both technical and non-technical skills; the latter includes communication, leadership, negotiation and conflict resolution. Third, collaboration on the production of a Luc Hoffmann Institute Knowledge Product, which could include tools, manuals, and synthesis papers. The Luc Hoffmann Institute employ a co-mentoring structure, whereby Fellows have both an academic and WWF lead heavily involved throughout their project. Ultimately, the Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellows Programme provides an environment to build conservation leadership through the advancement and dissemination of the practical, interdisciplinary research that contributes broadly to conservation goals across scales.
III. Project Description: More than half of humanity now lives in cities, a proportion that is projected to rise to 70 per cent by 2050 – representing a doubling of the global urban population by mid-century. Much of this growth will happen in small, fast growing cities principally in Asia and Africa that are still in the process of developing their infrastructure and globally 350 trillion USD will be invested in urban infrastructure and its use between 2005 and 2035. While the potential of city engagement to combat climate change is, to some extent tested by WWF (both through Earth Hour City Challenge in 14 countries and
a Low Carbon City initiative in China), the overall potential role of cities in meeting human needs with low footprint solutions remains unpacked. Greater understanding of this would have particular relevance for WWFs ambition to deal more effectively with the demand side of the global ecological footprint while also increasing focus on meeting socio-economic goals.
IV. Major Functions:
The successful candidate will have the opportunity to spend the first 3 to 4 months of their fellowship within WWF office (s) and work collaboratively with WWF staff to identify the research needs that will enhance knowledge around urban development potential to help reduce humanity’s global footprint while protecting citizen’s opportunities for development and wellbeing. The first phase of this fellowship opportunity will focus on producing a roadmap for the next development phase of the Earth Hour City Challenge, looking at challenges and trends currently faced by fast growing cities and identifying opportunities to be taken on board by the WWF platform. As a second phase, the successful candidate will identify an academic lead to develop a research project focusing on the identification/development of strategic indicators to monitor cities’ progress in their sustainability commitments and actions. For this phase, the fellow will typically move to the academic institution where the academic leader works. They will then develop their research project work together with a Collaborative Research team composed of their WWF lead, their academic lead, and key experts from inside and outside WWF.
The Fellow will play a leading role in the project by leading research and the Collaborative Research team. The Fellow will have an important role in synthesising findings and promoting the conservation actions desired with key decision makers. The Fellow will also participate in the Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellows Program by producing a relevant, topical Luc Hoffmann Institute Knowledge Product, engage in collaborative research activities with other fellows and Luc Hoffmann Institute staff as well participate in annual professional development training aimed at enhancing technical, leadership and communication skills.
This is a 2-2.5 year position that can begin as early as September 2014. The Fellow is expected to spend 75% of their time on project development, implementation, and dissemination at the selected host research institution(s) in close collaboration with their WWF mentor and the Luc Hoffmann Institute. The remaining time will be spent participating in the Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellows Program.
V. Major Duties and Responsibilities:
Identify key opportunities around the Earth Hour City Challenges and develop a roadmap to act on these collaboratively with the Luc Hoffmann Institute and WWF
Develop/Identify a set of strategic indicators to monitor cities progress on sustainability commitments and actions
Map out key academic partners and stakeholders to engage in this research
Lead and coordinate collaborative research team activities, under the supervision of the WWF lead and the Academic Lead
Convene the Conservation Research Team meetings;
Prepare “Science to Action” briefs, methodology guide, conference presentations and other communications of project findings;
Engage in the activities of Luc Hoffmann Institute Fellows Programme including trainings and contributing to our online presence.
A post graduate or a doctorate in Environmental Science, Social Science, or Sustainability Science (eg. Environmental or Ecological Economics, Urbanization Development studies, Design, Land Use planning, Architecture, Environmental Politics).
Minimum of three (3) years’ experience of economic, environmental, social and/or natural resources management research, including relevant peer-reviewed publications.
Deep understanding of current political affairs, trends and development
Deep understanding of the relationship between conservation and the external political agenda
Successful experience of working with community, non-government and government organisations
Strong skills in quantitative modelling, statistics, system thinking, geographic information systems, interdisciplinary research
Demonstrable skill in written and verbal communication.
Demonstrable capacity to translate research findings into public policy, including engagement with government decision makers.
Strong interest in applied, real-world conservation problem-solving and ability interact with experts from different disciplinary backgrounds in this capacity.
Required Skills and Competencies
Discretion, reliability, flexibility, accuracy
Ability to work in multicultural and multidisciplinary environment
Exceptional people skills
Ability to work both independently and cooperatively in a team
Excellent organisational skills
A good sense of humour
Adheres to WWF’s values, which are: Knowledgeable, Optimistic, Determined and Engaging
VII. Working Relationships
Internal – Works closely with Luc Hoffmann Institute staff including the Sustainable Consumption and Production workstream Lead. Works closely with WWF Lead on project development and implementation and engages more broadly with other relevant WWF staff.
External – Works closely with the academic lead at host institution, individuals in the collaborative research team, and other relevant organizations
This job description covers the main tasks and conveys the spirit of the sort of tasks that are anticipated proactively from staff. Other tasks may be assigned as necessary according to organizational needs.
We are looking for highly skilled, interdisciplinary, action oriented candidates who are willing to work in diverse teams to support effective transfer of rigorous science to policy application. This Fellow opportunity is open to candidates from countries eligible to GEF funding.