CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: Director at the Centre for Ecological Research and Forestry Applications (CREAF)

Periode de validesa: 
25 jun 2018 a 30 set. 2018

CREAF ( is a public research centre dedicated to terrestrial ecology and territorial analysis, producing knowledge and methodologies for conservation, management, and adaptation of the environment to global change. It belongs to the CERCA network ( of excellence research centres of Catalonia. Located at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (, the centre was founded in 1987 as a consortium between various public administration, research, and academic training entities. CREAF accounts for about 200 people (including scientists, technicians, fellows and administrative personnel), who work in collaboration with different national and international research teams, administrations, and institutions.

Its mission is to contribute to the understanding, conservation and management of the environment and the territory, and to adaptation to environmental change at local, regional, and global scales, playing a bridge role between academia, administrations, and society, and promoting awareness within its scope of activities.

Its main objectives are:

  1. Carry out excellent, innovative, and leading basic research to be considered as a reference at the national and international levels.
  2. Promote applied research and knowledge transfer, contributing to the sustainable management and conservation of resources and ecosystems.
  3. Develop conceptual and methodological tools to facilitate decision-making and improve management of the environment.
  4. Disseminate scientific and technological knowledge by way of training, consulting, or educative activities, (ex. by participating in two MSc programmes and coordinating a PhD programme at the UAB)

Research carried out by the center can be divided into four general areas (Biodiversity, Ecosystem Functioning, Global change, and Earth Observation) and a set of transversal topics (i.e. Forests, Mediterranean Basin, Ecosystem Services, Sustainability, Citizen Science, and Large Databases and Data Quality).


A. Main responsibilities

The Director responds to the CREAF’s Board of Trustees and to the Consortium itself. Around 80% of its annual budget is project‐based and as such both national and international activities and research fundraising is a significant part of the Director's agenda. The Trustees and other local administrations directly provide around 20% of annual budget in terms of soft money and specific contracts. Thus, constant relationship with these local administrations is also a Director’s relevant activity. Still, the Director must be involved in training and outreach tasks participated by the Centre.

Thus, the Director is responsible for providing research & development leadership:

  1. promoting and facilitating leading‐edge research, including collaborative and interdisciplinary research, in areas related to the mission of the Centre,
  2. developing networks & linkages between CREAF, other research centres, public administrations and other institutions at local, national and International levels,
  3. promoting transfer of knowledge and tools to society through outreach activities (e.g. congresses, seminars, lectures, websites, publications, …) and technology transfer actions (e.g. collaborative research, contracts),
  4. promoting the role of CREAF as advisor in decision making processes related to the mission of the Centre,
  5. exploring funding options for creating and maintaining excellence in research and knowledge transfer,
  6. coordinating training and outreach activities leaded and participated by the Centre.

He/she is also responsible for providing management & administrative leadership:

  1. implementing the Consortium’s directives and regularly report to the Board of Trustees and the Board of Directors (named by the first to hand day-to-day issues of the Centre), leading the Strategic Plan of the Centre to ensure that the objectives are aligned with the mission and evolving environment,
  2. providing vision, strategic goals and leadership for the PI and researchers in general,
  3. encouraging and supporting the raising of funds for research, transfer and dissemination activities,
  4. implementing the recommendations of both CREAF’s International Scientific and CERCA Committees,
  5. supervising the administrative duties of CREAF including supervising personnel, financial management, and operations,
  6. representing the interests and enhancing visibility and reputation of CREAF at local, national, and international levels,

B. Candidate requirements

  1. PhD in terrestrial ecology or environmental sciences.
  2. Demonstrable experience in four main areas:
  • o Research (i.e., a relevant scientific curriculum according to international standards including SCI publications and competitive projects).
  • o Knowledge transfer (contracts with administration, companies and/or institutions of the knowledge area).
  • o High level training and dissemination (e.g. supervision of MSc and PhD theses and participation in MSc programmes, specialized courses and university degrees, outreach activities, etc.).
  • o Experience in research management, leadership and representation (e.g. demonstrable contacts with both local, national and international bodies and administrations, managing of institutions, international collaborative research projects or programmes).
  1. Fluency in English, with good communication and drafting skills.
  2. Knowledge of Spanish and/or Catalan (or willingness to learn in one year).
  3. Location in the Barcelona Area (or willingness to settle in three months).
  4. Ability to work in a team, to establish and maintain external partnerships as well as effective and constructive working relationships with people of different national and cultural backgrounds while maintaining impartiality and objectivity.
  5. Knowledge of the Catalan environmental sector.
  6. Proven managerial, negotiation and interpersonal skills; ability to supervise staff and handle administrative matters.

Desirable points

  1. Knowledge of other foreign languages.
  2. Demonstrated gender awareness and sensitivity.
  3. Incorporation to CREAF in a 3‐6 months’ period after the selection process.
  4. Experience in planning human resource management strategy.

Applicants should send a CV, cover letter (two pages maximum) with his/her personal vision for the development of CREAF, in English to the Director of CERCA at Contact persons (2-3) for references can also be provided.

CERCA is delegated to manage all steps in this selection process in behalf of CREAF. Suitable candidates will be identified in a ranked list by the SAB, drawing upon the input of any other expert that the SAB might require.

The Board of Trustees may create an ad hoc Commission involving some of its members to provide a short list of the pre-selected candidates. Candidates included in the short list may be invited to visit CREAF and meet the ad hoc  Commission for a final interview. The results of these interviews would be presented to the Board of trustees for the final designation of the new Director.

Approximate calendar

25th June:           Call for applications published
30th September: Application deadline
15th November:  List of prioritized candidates by SAB
27th December:  Short list of pre-selected candidates chosen by the Selection Commission
31st January:      Appointment announced

CREAF has developed an Equality Plan for Equal Opportunities. One of its objectives is to ensure equal conditions for workplace admission and permanence for everyone who works (or is willing to work) in the institution, irrespective of sex.

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