SEI Asia, based in Bangkok, has a diverse team of multinational experts that integrates scientific research with participatory approaches to co-develop and share knowledge, build partnerships, and influence policy for resilient development. It focuses on gender and social equity, climate adaptation, disaster risk reduction, water insecurity and integrated water resources management, transitional agriculture, renewable energy and urbanization.
SEI Asia is an affiliate of Chulalongkorn University (CU), Thailand. SEI and CU have inked a long-term agreement to foster innovative scientific research combined with effective policy engagement on development and environmental challenges in Asia.
Currently, SEI Asia is looking for a senior team player, innovative thinker and solution-oriented doer with strong management and fundraising skills and someone who enjoys working for a prosperous and just future for all. You are an outstanding leader in your field and a dynamic, passionate and curious individual, willing to challenge the status quo, push boundaries and bring about change in your field to enable its growth and within SEI.
Position: Senior Research Fellow on Water, Food and Ecosystems
Grade Level: SRF 1
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Deadline: 1 August 2021
Length of contract: 2 years with possibility of extension depending on funding and performance
The role: The Senior Research Fellow on Water-Food-Ecosystems is an integral position within SEI Asia. The role aims to contribute to the intellectual development of new research themes on water-food-ecosystem nexus and undertake research activities related to ongoing projects under the Water Cluster, as well as support the implementation of SEI Asia’s strategy (2020–2024) to bridge science, policy and practices related to our research in Asia. This position will support SEI Asia’s key programme areas in particular, including and not limited to the Sustainable Mekong Research Network (SUMERNET) and Water Beyond Boundary Initiative (WBBI), and contribute to programmes and projects across SEI Asia and SEI globally.
The appointee will be based at SEI Asia in Bangkok and report directly to the Water Cluster Lead, supported by the SEI Asia Director. For programme and project work, he/she/they will work under the respective programme and project leaders. The appointee will share responsibility for the line management of mid- and junior career staff within the Water Cluster team.
Key duties and responsibilities
- Leads intellectual development of current and new research themes within the water-food-ecosystem nexus.
- Ensures that research results and outputs are solution-oriented and focused on decision-making needs of high relevance to SEI’s mandate, in particular agenda setting and decision-making.
- Co-designs the Water cluster strategy and coordinates across other research clusters to ensure aligned thinking, planning and co-production of research projects with partners and key stakeholders.
- Leads training and capacity building on water-food-ecosystem nexus for researchers and relevant partners in the research projects.
- Ensures a strong portfolio of publications every year, including peer-reviewed academic journals, alongside regular forms of research communications.
- Identifies new funding opportunities and build relationships with key funders.
- Leads and supports preparation of new project proposals for fundraising in collaborating with staff in the Water Cluster and other clusters and the Operation Unit.
- Secures long-term research funding support for multiple colleagues.
Policy and Communications:
- Establishes, builds, and engage in strategic partnerships and networks with multi-stakeholders, including government officials, think tanks, universities, research institutes, private sector, and civil society, to implement policy and promote evidence-based decision-making related to environmentally sustainable development in Asia.
- In collaboration with the SEI Communications Team, facilitates and supports internal communications and outreach activities, including presentations, speeches, dialogues and media articles.
- Contributes to strengthening the relationship between SEI Asia with the host country (Thai government), partnership with the host institute (Chulalongkorn University) and other agencies within the region.
- Supports the Water Cluster Lead to manage the water cluster team, including employee time planning, solving management challenges and bottlenecks, strategic thinking and setting direction, and coordinating with other cluster leads.
- Leads research projects, financial and resource management and ensures project deliverables to meet objectives and SEI quality standards.
- Contributes to implement monitoring, evaluation, and learning framework of SEI Asia and water cluster strategic plan.
- Line manages, provides mentorship, supports professional development and capacity building on communication for Research Fellows and Research Associates in the Water Cluster team and guides successful achievement of annual performance goals among individual team members.
- Participates in programme management team meetings and supports the SEI Asia management.
- Contributes to office management including attending staff meetings, routine administrative tasks, recruitment processes and other duties as assigned by the Water Cluster Lead and Centre Director.
Who you are: We are looking for a senior team player, innovative thinker and solution-oriented doer with strong management and fundraising skills and someone who enjoys working for a prosperous and just future for all. You are an outstanding leader in your field, a dynamic, passionate and curious individual willing to challenge the status quo, push boundaries and bring about change in your field to enable its growth and within SEI.
Formal qualifications and knowledge
- PhD with 15 years work experience (or MSc with at least 18 years of experience) in fields related to water resources, agriculture water or environmental management, and/or resilience ecosystem services
- Minimum of 10 years leading or managing medium and large research projects or programmes and strong track record of fundraising
- Minimum of 8 years in team management and/or line managing personnel
- Strong knowledge and understanding of Asia’s water-food-ecosystems challenges and its interconnections with policy and practice
- Extensive experience in training and capacity building for researchers and practitioners in developing countries
- Proven experience in intellectual leadership and high-quality publications in the field of water-food-ecosystems sustainability
- Proven experience in communicating research findings for non-academic audiences using diverse multimedia such as blogs, op-eds policy briefs
- Personal initiative and commitment to excellence and results, as well as enthusiasm for supporting scientific research and policy engagement
- Experience in translating and communicating scientific information to a range of different audiences
- Extensive experience engaging and networking with governmental and non-governmental actors related to water-food-ecosystems in Asia, including the Mekong Region
- Demonstrated record of interdisciplinary collaboration, partnership and team building and proven record of work in collaborative environment with time, project and personnel management
- Excellent in written and spoken English.
Desirable experience and knowledge
- Experience working in the government, development or private sector
- Experience in a research/non-profit organization
- Experience working in an international environment
- Experience in statistical and qualitative analysis
- Working knowledge of any national languages in the Mekong Region.
Personal skills required in the position
- Strong motivation, personal initiative and commitment to excellence and results, as well as enthusiasm for doing scientific research.
- Demonstrated record of interdisciplinary collaboration, partnership and team building and desire to work in collaborative environment.
With a team comprising over 17 nationalities, SEI Asia welcomes global applicants for all positions, and provides an Internationally competitive level NGO salary and benefits package, with all employee contracts under Thai labour laws. For this post we expect candidates of Senior levels to apply.