Head of Science Centre x2

Forest Research

Surrey and Midlothian (other locations considered)
£63,147 - £69,920 pa

Paid • Full Time • Permanent

Reference: 65335

Sectors: conservation & wildlife, carbon, climate & energy, sustainability

Closing date: Monday, 28th September 2020   3 days left

Head of Science Centre

Salary: £63,147 - £69,920

Location: Farnham, Roslin, Other locations will be considered.

Forest Research (FR) is the research agency of the Forestry Commission, and a world leader in applied forest science. We are a trusted and recognised provider of expertise, data, products and services for governments and the tree, wood, forest and natural resource sectors. Please explore www.forestresearch.gov.uk to find out more information about our organisation.

Our two science Centres lead FR's diverse and collaborative research programmes, liaising closely with the Centre for Inventory, Forecasting and Operational Support, and our corporate services team. Our approach to research encourages interdisciplinary and team working, and we tackle a wide range of scientific challenges necessary to underpin the sustainable management of trees, woods and forests across Great Britain and further afield. The core programmes respond to priorities outlined in the Science and Innovation Strategy for forestry in Great Britain and are supplemented with an exciting range of collaborative projects and contracts for many funders.

The current emphasis of one Centre is upon biosecurity threats, ecosystem robustness and resilience, land use and ecosystem services, and the ways in which society values trees; the other Centre focuses upon forest management, climate change, growth and yield modelling, tree breeding, species and provenance selection, and urban forests. However, our projects commonly require a mix of disciplines to address the complex problems being researched, and so the Centres work together rather than compete. Each currently has at least 50 staff grouped into five science groups aligned to disciplinary skills.

Purpose of the job

We are looking for two exceptional individuals to provide strong leadership and management of an active group of scientists from several disciplines, oversee topical research and develop staff and resources whilst participating and engaging in the operational management of Forest Research. The successful candidates will also interface between the commercial output of our dynamic research programmes and arising business opportunities.

Job description

As a leader for a science Centre within Forest Research, you will be responsible for leading and managing the Centre to cost-effectively deliver a range of quality applied research as required by our customers and stakeholders.

Reporting to the Chief Scientist, you will be required to support the delivery of programmes and contracts, working with senior leaders across the agency to develop staff skills and careers, and ensure a holistic approach to delivery of our business, ‘FR Strategy for Growth’ and our corporate objectives. There will be little scope for direct involvement in research but there will be stimulating opportunities to engage in scoping and interpretation of research, interacting with scientists over a fascinating range of topics of contemporary resonance. You will also be required on occasion to describe our work and celebrate our progress with external stakeholders and funders. It is anticipated that the core role may take up to 70% of your time and so may be combined with additional research, corporate or business development activities to suit the postholders.

Reference number: 65335

Closing date: Monday 28th September 2020

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