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Research Associate, Developing Indicators for Public Engagement on Climate Change - Canada

Sustainability and Education Policy Network

Climate Outreach (through the Climate Engagement Initiative) and the Sustainability and Education Policy Network (through the Monitoring and Evaluation of Climate Change Education project) are seeking a Research Associate to develop objective ways to measure and report on current country performance (i.e., that of national governments and other actors) in public engagement on climate change. This work forms the central part of a MECCE/CEI research partnership.

MECCE/CEI Research Partnership

With this work, applicants will have the opportunity to develop valuable career experience, while being part of two projects (MECCE and CEI) that aim to have significant influence in the international climate policy field. The research partnership described here covers the identification of indicators to monitor public engagement, development of an indicator database and contributing to an analysis of the current status of climate engagement in countries around the world.

The Research Associate will achieve this by:

  • Identifying reliable and internationally comparable datasets, of governments as well as other actors, suitable for tracking country performance in public engagement, in consultation with other team members
  • Developing appropriate indicators from these datasets for tracking both quality and quantity of public engagement, in consultation with other team members
  • Collecting data globally with the aim of informing an international baseline analysis of country-wide performance of national governments and other actors.
  • Potentially contributing to a report describing the current status of climate engagement in countries around the world, drawing from the baseline analysis described above.
  • Planning structures to enable continuous collection of data as part of a longer-term strategy for monitoring and reporting on country performance.

Role Description & Contract Terms

We are currently seeking a Research Associate to contribute full-time to this research partnership: Developing Indicators for Public Engagement on Climate Change. The position will be co-supervised by the CEI and MECCE research programmes, and supported by CEI and MECCE management. The successful candidate’s contract will be with the Sustainability and Education Policy Network through the Monitoring and Evaluation of Climate Change Education project. The research will be organised to fit within the framework of the MECCE project’s Axis 2 on Indicator Development; as a result, the Research Associate will work closely with other MECCE Axis 2 team members.

The work commitment for this project is expected to be full-time over the course of at least 16 months, beginning as soon as possible. This will be a remote working contract that is expected to coordinate with both UK GMT and Canada MST. The selected candidate will be compensated based on standard Canadian academic rates. The continuation of the appointment is dependent upon satisfactory performance and availability of funding.

About Climate Outreach and the Climate Engagement Initiative (CEI)

Climate Outreach is an ambitious and rapidly growing non-profit organisation that has built an international reputation for its pioneering and creative approach to one of the greatest challenges of our time: how to truly engage different communities across society with climate change. As a leading European specialist in climate engagement, Climate Outreach bases its work on social research and partners with a wide variety of organisations, ranging from the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) to the World Bank to Climate Action Network (CAN) International.

The Climate Engagement Initiative (CEI) is a high level, multi-partner, international initiative that is ambitious in its aim to strengthen national governments’ commitment to public engagement on climate change, so that it becomes ‘front of mind’ in the design and application of all climate policy. The primary target will be national government and relevant international policy bodies, as the actors with the resources and responsibility for broad public engagement.

About the MECCE Project

The Monitoring and Evaluation of Climate Change Education (MECCE) project involves over 80 leading experts and international agencies, including the IPCC, UNFCCC, UNESCO, and Environment and Climate Change Canada, who will collaborate to address the climate crisis globally. It has been awarded a six-year Partnership Grant from the Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, is directed by Prof. Marcia McKenzie, and housed out of the Sustainability and Education Policy Network (SEPN).

The MECCE project aims to increase the quality and quantity of climate change education, training, and public awareness (‘CCEC’) to advance global climate literacy and action. It also seeks to advance the provision of CCEC globally by making robust cross-national data available for intergovernmental and governmental target-setting and progress.

Qualifications

A minimum of a Master’s degree is required, with preference for PhD or post-PhD candidates. Applicants should have knowledge and experience in conducting research; familiarity with research methods; experience interacting with collaborators and working with multidisciplinary teams.

Candidates should also possess excellent interpersonal and communication skills (written and verbal); the ability to work productively, both individually and in groups; and the ability to work independently, following timelines to complete work in an efficient manner.

Preference will be given to candidates with training or previous research experience in any of the following:

  • The theory and practice of public communications, especially climate change
  • Social research on climate change
  • Intergovernmental processes, especially within the United Nations
  • Government policy, especially in climate change
  • Indicator development
  • The use of artificial intelligence, especially web crawling, for gathering web-based data

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