Associate Vice President for Sustainability


When applying for this position:

  • Applications will consist of an Academic CV and cover letter demonstrating the applicant’s academic and research achievements and ambitions which should include a description of how the applicant’s academic and research profile aligns with the UCC Futures Sustainability initiative.
  • Details of the following should also be included:
    • a. Publications,
    • b. Research Interests,
    • c. Teaching Interests and Abilities,
    • d. Teaching Objectives and Methods.

Duties and Responsibilities

These will include but not be limited to:

  • Provide scientific, research and academic leadership and vision to UCC Futures – Sustainability and to the ERI
  • Fulfil all the duties of a UCC Professor encompassing academic leadership, research and teaching and learning
  • Work with the University Leadership in developing and supporting the implementation of the University Sustainability Strategy
  • Support the embedding of SDGs in the curriculum and research with VP Research and Innovation and VP Learning and Teaching respectively
  • Collaborate with the Office of Sustainability and Climate Action, President’s Office in supporting the University wide sustainability agenda
  • Drive the continued creation of economic value and impact from excellent research outputs
  • Work with all UCC and ERI Stakeholders (management, staff, Board, the Irish Government and relevant agencies, other third level institutions and industry) to determine the mission and vision for Sustainability and the Institute
  • Work with the ERI Board, management, staff and key stakeholders to review, develop, and periodically-revise, five-year strategic and implementation plans, by which the ERI mission and vision can be delivered
  • Liaise effectively with the relevant colleges, schools, departments and research centres and institutes within UCC and other third level institutions as required
  • Ensure scientific excellence while at the fore front of innovative, quality research and engineering with high potential for commercialisation
  • Work with Governmental departments and agencies on the development of policies in research, development and innovation, and ensure that UCC Futures –  Sustainability strategy is aligned with these policies
  • Take responsibility for all aspects of UCC Futures – Sustainability and ERI operations and management, including: the delivery of agreed technical strategy, objectives, metrics and accomplishments; ensuring that it operates on a sound financial basis; that facilities are fit to deliver the strategic objectives; that staff and students are professionally recruited, managed and developed; that future business prospects are developed to help deliver the agreed strategic objectives and that its accomplishments are well and efficiently communicated
  • Ensure that UCC Futures – Sustainability and ERI are well-funded to deliver its strategic objectives
  • Ensure that UCC Futures – Sustainability and ERI delivers on the requirements of the Irish economy for high quality trained staff at post-graduate and post-doctoral levels 
  • Increase and improve the international profile of UCC and the Institute through the formation of new partnerships and collaborations
  • Produce and deliver such reports as may be required by UCC and the ERI Board, including annual reports to the University Leadership team and the Governing Body of
  • Represent UCC and ERI at the highest possible levels with the Irish Government, agencies and industry, within the EU and more generally internationally
  • Fulfil all the duties of a Professor and senior academic across academic leadership, research, teaching and learning.

The duties and selection criteria relating to Professorial posts are available as a separate document on Further Vacancy Details on the job portal.

As the University continues to expand and evolve, it is likely that flexibility in regard to the allocation of specific duties will be necessary. Accordingly, the list of duties  specified above is not intended to be exclusive or restrictive; duties may be added or withdrawn but any such alteration will take place after consultation with the appointee.

Selection Criteria

The successful candidate will be expected to have:

Essential Criteria

  1. Vision and leadership skills to guide further development of UCC Futures - Sustainability and the ERI within the strategic frameworks of the University and the College of Science, Engineering and Food Science.
  2. Evidence of significant leadership ability in leading a large multidisciplinary research centre or institute.
  3. A doctorate or appropriate professional qualification or a significant record of research and publication in the relevant discipline.
  4. Evidence of an ability to command respect and build rapport and trust with a rich network of individuals, diverse groups and strategic partners locally, nationally and internationally.
  5. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills commensurate with leading and supporting a team of committed academic and administrative colleagues together with the demonstrated ability and willingness to work in a collaborative environment.
  6. International standing as a leading researcher and scholar in the relevant discipline or profession as evidenced through an outstanding contribution to its advancement through research outputs including peer reviewed publications, creative works or other appropriate forms of scholarship and a significant research funding record, as appropriate to the discipline.
  7. A record of successful leadership and international recognition through research and scholarly activity within the discipline, including research supervision, examining, editing and refereeing, as appropriate for the discipline.
  8. Evidence of significant achievement in and commitment to excellence in research-led teaching and learning, at undergraduate and postgraduate level and a willingness to both contribute to and lead in the development of the teaching programmes offered by the academic unit.
  9. Evidence of a contribution to innovation in teaching and in curriculum or programme development, review and evaluation including doctoral education.
  10. The ability to teach, inspire and supervise students, communicate ideas and concepts in a teaching and learning environment and where the opportunity has existed, to develop and lead postgraduate supervision to doctorate level.
  11. Evidence of a strong commitment to driving innovation and enterprise interactions from research programmes.
  12. Evidence of a commitment to drive policy change in the sustainability area.
  13. Evidence of participation in relevant academic and professional associations/ bodies as appropriate and the ability to participate in and contribute to the overall intellectual life of the University, the academic discipline and society at large.
  14. Demonstrable experience of leadership in advancing gender equality and a strong commitment to the successful delivery of initiatives which drive improvements in equality, diversity and inclusion in their widest sense.

Desirable Criteria

  1. Knowledge of the European research funding landscape and related mechanisms.
  2. Experience in media relations and a proven commitment to excellence in research communication.
  3. Experience in new business creation and/or development (spin-out, spin-in, start-up etc.).

For more information on the post and how to apply

A full job description for this role, contacts for informal enquires and to submit an application visit the University College Cork vacancy portal for this post

Queries relating to the online application process should be referred to, quoting the job-title.

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Head of College of SEFS, email: 

UCC Futures - Sustainability

UCC Inbhuanaitheacht

Office of Vice President for Research and Innovation | 4th Floor | Block E, Food Science Building | UCC,