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Jul 14 / BARD CEP

Environmental Change Initiative Managing Director, University of Notre Dame – Indiana

Organization: University of Notre Dame

Position Title: Managing Director, Environmental Change Initiative

Location: South Bend, Indiana


Application Deadline: Position open until filled

Description: The University of Notre Dame is searching for a Managing Director for its Environmental Change Initiative (ND-ECI) directed by David Lodge and interim director Jennifer Tank (until August 2015). The Managing Director (MD) functions as the Chief Operating Officer of the Initiative, and assists the Director in developing and implementing the Initiative’s intellectual and programmatic vision. ND-ECI has been an influential science presence on campus for over four years, drawing together researchers from several ND colleges to stimulate translational research on urgent challenges at the intersection of environmental sustainability and human welfare. ND-ECI also facilitates partnerships with the private sector, civil society, and government agencies—partnerships that are key mechanisms to provide sustainability solutions. Current research themes of ND-ECI focus on the interactions of invasive species, land use, climate change, and water resources. The MD will have exciting opportunities to help shape and drive programs of significant innovation at the cutting edge of interdisciplinary research to better understand human-nature interactions and help design solutions to issues of global importance.

Responsibilities: In consultation with the Director, the MD will have the following specific duties and responsibilities.

Administration, operations, and finances: The MD must possess excellent organizational skills, requisite to working closely with the ND-ECI Business and Program Manager to administer internal research seed grant programs, and on the daily management of the operational activities involving 40+ faculty, in addition to junior researchers and support staff spread over multiple Notre Dame departments and colleges. The MD will work closely with the leadership of: the ND Linked Experimental Ecosystem Facility (ND-LEEF) in managing this new globally unique research facility, and planning for its growth; and with the leadership of ND Global Adaptation Index (ND-GAIN) on strategic direction and growth, including fundraising support, outreach, partner engagement, media and planning of major events.

Fostering a multidisciplinary intellectual community: The MD will work with faculty, other research personnel, and ND-ECI staff to continue and expand events at ND that foster existing and new multidisciplinary research, relationships with partner organizations, and the influence of ND-ECI research on the broader academic community and the public.  These include ND-ECI’s regular topical presentations, a vibrant seminar series, informal research-focused discussions, workshops that convene ND researchers as well as outside researchers and partners, and other activities that serve the faculty.

Development and fundraising: The MD will continue and expand the strong strategic relationships with colleagues in ND’s Office of Development to create and implement fundraising strategies that support ND-ECI activities including specific research projects, infrastructure development at ND-LEEF, and endowments in support of ND-ECI faculty and staff.

Strategic planning, implementation, and reporting: The MD will establish strategies to maximize the effectiveness of ND-ECI’s programs, and play a central role in the planning and evaluation of priorities. The MD will monitor internal benchmarks, and lead regular communication with ND Research, including quarterly budgetary analysis and the preparation of an annual report.

External and internal communication and social media: The MD will lead all aspects of communication, working closely with ND’s office of Public Affairs and Communication to stimulate and promote external communication. Additionally, the MD will work with ECI staff to maintain a vibrant web, video and social media presence that increases the translational potential of ND-ECI research.

External relations: The MD must be able to communicate the excitement of the research being pursued to internal and external audiences. The MD will manage all the external relationships of the ND-ECI, and, with the Director, be the public face of ND-ECI. The MD will meet regularly with partner organizations including policy makers, natural resource managers, representatives of industry, and NGOs to enhance translational opportunities including commercialization and improved management and policy. The MD will forge a constructive working relationship with the ND Federal Relations team and the ND Washington, DC office as well as key ND-ECI partners, including The Nature Conservancy and Shedd Aquarium.

Qualfications: The MD will have a master’s degree (doctorate preferred), other terminal degree, or equivalent experience; demonstrated organizational, management, and interpersonal skills; demonstrated written and verbal communication skills appropriate to both non-specialist and expert audiences; and a vision for how academic research can be conducted and communicated to increase its influence outside the academy. The MD will also have experience and skills that add to and complement expertise currently present within ND-ECI. Experience in natural resource management or policy, ideally at the national level, would be especially valuable, as would experience in government or funding organizations. Candidates with 5+ years of experience managing people, strategic development, and administration of an interdisciplinary academic program or a natural resource management or policy group is highly desirable.

How to Apply: For inquiries, please contact David Lodge at [email protected]. For additional information about working at the University of Notre Dame and various benefits available to employees, please visit

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