SEI seeks a senior research leader and manager with expertise in climate change adaptation, disaster risk management, livelihoods and policy in the Mekong and/or archipelagic Southeast Asia, to serve as Senior Research Fellow in its Asia Centre.
Established in January 2004, SEI’s Asia Centre coordinates SEI activities in Asia, working closely with national and regional partners. Major ongoing projects include research on land and water resource management along the Mekong, the impacts of regional economic integration, and climate change adaptation.
The Senior Research Fellow will develop and lead research projects across the Asia/Pacific region, with a focus on climate change adaptation, disaster risk management, livelihoods and policy, and consideration of the various drivers of change, including deepening regional integration. The goal is to produce top-quality research while building local knowledge and capacity through extensive outreach, collaborations and partnerships.
The Senior Research Fellow will report to the Research Group Leader and supervise junior researchers. Under the leadership of the Centre Director, (s)he will also help shape the Asia Centre’s long-term strategy and vision, build relationships, and support management.
Specific responsibilities include:
• Plan, develop and implement research projects within the research themes, consistent with SEI’s mission, and with a clear iteration of objectives, target audiences, deliverables, and monitoring and evaluation.
• Secure funding for projects and new funding opportunities, and provide accountability to funders, including oversight of project partners.
• Manage junior research staff, providing regular guidance and feedback, monitoring the quality of the research process, and reviewing publications and other outputs to ensure they meet the project objectives and SEI quality standards.
• Work with Centre and SEI-wide communications staff to ensure effective dissemination of research findings, including internal communications, outreach activities (seminars, workshops, etc.), media outreach, and website materials.
• Under the leadership of the Centre Director, with other senior staff, support day-to-day management of the Centre as well as long-term development and strategy.
• Mentor junior research staff, supporting their professional and career development and helping them build their research, writing and communications capacity.
• Build relationships with key funders and partners and help strengthen existing partnerships, including with the Thai government and the Centre’s host, Chulalongkorn University.
The Senior Research Fellow should be a seasoned professional with outstanding leadership, management, organisational, interpersonal, and networking abilities. He/she should excellent cross-cultural communication skills, as well as a strong commitment to protecting the natural environment and improving human well-being.
In addition, the job requires:
• Strong grounding in social science research, with a solid record of publications in peer-reviewed journals and experience with multiple methodologies. Expertise and published work should include research on interactions between climate change adaptation and disaster risk management.
• A Ph.D. in development studies, environmental science, sociology, political science, geography, anthropology or other related field is highly desirable, but candidates with master’s degrees and strong experience will also be considered.
• Substantial knowledge of environmental and sustainable-development issues globally, and in-depth understanding of the development needs and challenges in the context of Asian countries, especially in the Mekong region.
• At least 5 years’ work experience in Southeast Asia, including empirical work in marginal ecosystems (e.g. karst environments, drylands, grasslands, uplands, peri-urban areas, coastal areas and remote islands).
• At least 10 years’ experience in research project development and management, with at least 5 years in managing junior staff, a strong record of securing external funding for research programmes, and a strong publications record.
• Proven success in work relations with a wide range of partners, including research institutes, governments, and other development actors.
• Fluency in spoken and written English, including for peer-reviewed academic writing. Knowledge of one or more Asian languages is highly desirable.