Specialist, Indigenous Research Support Team (IRST)
University of Calgary, Office of Research Services

Position Overview

The Indigenous Research Support Team (IRST) in the Office of Research Services invites applications for a Specialist, IRST. This Full-time Fixed Term position is for approximately 3 years (based on length of grant funding), with the possibility of extension.

The primary purposes of the Specialist, IRST position will be to provide administrative leadership for the IRST team, including personnel supervision (comprising recruitment, staff development, performance management, retention, discipline and termination of support staff).  This position shall also build relationships with indigenous communities in support of research endeavours, manage programs supporting indigenous faculty members and researchers working on indigenous-related projects, and collaborate with Senior Leadership on successful launching, maintaining, and reporting on the IRST initiative.

The Specialist, IRST will be the administrative lead of the IRST, reporting directly to the Associate Vice-President (Research) / Executive Director - Research Services, and collaborating closely with the Vice-Provost (Indigenous Engagement) and the division Directors in Research Services. As a key component of the position is relationship building with indigenous communities, it is anticipated that the responsibilities associated with this position will include some travel and some work outside standard business hours.

Please note that this Specialist role manages a semi-autonomous outward-facing unit, including a small team, within Research Services and will operate with the working title of "Manager, IRST". The title associated with this posting relates to the University of Calgary's classification title.

Position Description

Summary of Key Responsibilities (job functions include but are not limited to):

Human Resource Management 

  • Manage and supervise the staff members in the IRST, including:
  • Chairing hiring processes, as needed
  • Delegation of work
  • Mentorship and training
  • Performance Management and Disciplinary Action
  • Maintaining and updated IRST member job profiles
  • Identifies and resolves technical, operational and University issues related to the services provided by the IRST
  • Prioritizes and manages staffing resources to maintain a high level of service
  • Exhibits tact, good judgment and negotiation skills to seek satisfactory resolution and negotiate boundaries for staff on workplace issues

Outreach Activities 

  • Proactively build relationships with southern Alberta indigenous communities in order to facilitate successful research initiatives with these groups
  • Build working relationships with similar organizations at other Canadian post-secondary institutions
  • Build working relationship with relevant research leaders and leading researchers at the university
  • Develop and maintain communication strategies and information programs to promote the services of the IRST

Program Development 

  • Develop and operate IRST programing in consultation with the Associate VPR and Vice-Provost (Indigenous Engagement), including programs and processes related to:
  • Indigenous ethics, in cooperation with the Chairs of the university’s Research Ethics Boards
  • Research in indigenous communities
  • Research on indigenous lands and waters
  • Support for indigenous faculty members
  • Collect data and prepare reports on the IRST performance
  • Maintain currency in relevant regulations, programs, and opportunities related to indigenous research, including prizes and award opportunities
  • Ensure institutional accountability and compliance with respect to regulatory requirements
  • Assist in the preparation of indigenous award nominations
  • Manage and report on the IRST budget
  • Identify opportunities for new and ongoing fiscal support for IRST activities

Qualifications / Requirements:

  • Demonstrated track record of, and/or clear potential, to achieve successful engagement with indigenous communities;
  • Demonstrated track record of and/or clear potential to work effectively with indigenous leaders, and elders;
  • Experience managing programs related to research, academic, or community initiatives,
  • Experience managing teams;
  • Experience supporting researchers or project leaders in an academic, industrial, or community setting;
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills;
  • Experience with budget management/reporting;
  • Able to work independently in a team setting;
  • Experience working with relevant computer programs, such as Word, Excel, Peoplesoft, will be advantageous;
  • Possession of a Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent experience, will be advantageous
  • Competency in one or more of the indigenous languages of the Treaty 7 territory will be advantageous;
  • Expectation to be willing to learn about and implement university and relevant external processes.
  • Valid Driver’s License

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