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Associate Director for Research

School of Labor and Employment Relations
Champaign, Illinois
Start date
Aug 30, 2023

Associate Director for Research - Climate Jobs Institute

School of Labor and Employment Relations


Job Summary


The Illinois Climate Jobs Institute, housed in the School of Labor and Employment Relations at the University of Illinois, is seeking an Associate Director for Research to lead and coordinate the organization's research efforts. The Associate Director for Research will work collaboratively with the institute's Executive Director, outside stakeholders, and other research partners and staff to conduct original research on the economic and labor market impacts of climate resilience efforts and clean energy transition. The Associate Director for Research is a full-time staff position based in Champaign, IL and housed in the School of Labor and Employment Relations (LER) at the University of Illinois. LER is an interdisciplinary social sciences school dedicated to the study of work, organizations, and labor. It is one of the nation's top academic programs focused on work, labor, and human resources. The Illinois Climate Jobs Institute is a pioneering organization dedicated to advancing solutions to climate change through job creation and economic development. Newly established and funded by the Illinois Legislature in 2022, the Climate Jobs Institute will produce high-quality, reliable, and accurate research on labor, employment, and the broader social and economic impacts of decarbonization. As an early mover, CJI stands to have considerable impact on federal, state, and local policies, making this a particularly timely and exciting opportunity.

Duties & Responsibilities


  • Oversee the Institute's research agenda, ensuring that research is rigorous, innovative, and relevant to the Institute's mission. Conduct original applied and academic research focused on the economic and labor market impacts of climate and clean energy transition. Work collaboratively with stakeholders and partners to design and conduct research studies that advance the Institute's policy and programmatic goals. Lead a team of researchers and research associates to ensure timely and effective delivery of research products. Develop and maintain relationships with academic, government, and industry partners to advance research partnerships and collaborations. Participate in collaborations with related Institutes and Centers at the University of Illinois on joint/interdisciplinary research, policy recommendations, academic publications, and external funding proposals related to clean energy initiatives. Engage in external communications with policymakers, researchers, and the public to communicate research findings and advance the Institute's mission. Report to the institute’s executive director to coordinate planning, strategy, and collaboration the institutes’ research portfolio. Supervise institute administrative staff and collaborate with institute post-doctoral scholars and researchers. Other: Perform other duties in order to further the mission and goals of CJI, and the University of Illinois. Keep abreast of developments in this discipline.


Additional Physical Demands


The work of this position takes place in an office setting. The work is sedentary and involves remaining in a stationary position for extended periods of time working at a computer, using a keyboard and mouse, and using repetitive hand motions. Periodic travel to field offices is required. Occasional overnight travel may occur.

Minimum Qualifications


• Demonstrated expertise in one or more of the following areas: climate change policy, energy policy, labor and employment issues, economic development, environmental science. • Demonstrated skills in quantitative data analysis and econometrics. • Strong communication and interpersonal skills, including the ability to collaborate effectively with stakeholders from diverse backgrounds • Ability to work independently and as part of a team. • Ability to build and maintain interpersonal relationships. • Proven organizations skills and attention to detail. • Excellent writing and editing skills. • Working knowledge of, or interest in, climate issues with the ability to understand technical topics to the extent needed for proposal development and writing research deliverables. • Knowledge of rules regulations, and procedures for research administration in an academic environment (e.g. personnel, grants and contracts, intellectual property rights, and other appropriate areas). • Ability to work collaboratively yet be self-motivated, responsible, and deadline oriented.


Preferred Qualifications


• A Ph.D. in a related field (e.g., economics, sociology, public policy, environmental science, labor studies).

• A demonstrated record of research excellence, including publications and grants.

• At least three years of experience leading research teams and managing complex research projects.

• Experience within a research university setting.

• In-depth understanding of proposal preparation and submission processes.

• Demonstrated experience interacting with federal, state, or local agencies, corporations, and/or foundations.


Appointment Information


This is a 100% full-time Academic Professional position, appointed on a 12-month basis. The expected start date is as soon as possible after 11/16/2023. Salary range is $80,000-$140,000 annually.


Application Procedures & Deadline Information


Apply for this position using the Apply Now button at the top or bottom of this posting. Applications not submitted through will not be considered. Please submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae or resume, research statement, and a list of three references. Review of applications will begin on September 15th 2023 and will continue until the position is filled.For further information about this specific position, please contact Professor Richard Benton,  For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-2137.


The University of Illinois System is an equal opportunity employer, including but not limited to disability and/or veteran status, and complies with all applicable state and federal employment mandates. Please visit Required Employment Notices and Posters to view our non-discrimination statement and find additional information about required background checks, sexual harassment/misconduct disclosures, COVID-19 vaccination requirement, and employment eligibility review through E-Verify.

Applicants with disabilities are encouraged to apply and may request a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) to complete the application and/or interview process. Requests may be submitted through the reasonable accommodations portal, or by contacting the Accessibility & Accommodations Division of the Office for Access and Equity at 217-333-0885, or by emailing

Requisition ID: 1018887
Job Category: Research
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