Strategic Lead

Human Sciences Research Council

South Africa

5 YearsContract

Jul 14

In delivering social science that makes a difference, the Research Programmes of the Human Sciences Research Council initiate and undertake policy-oriented research projects and programmes from its offices in Cape Town, Durban, Pietermaritzburg and Pretoria. Its public-purpose mandate is set out in the Human Sciences Research Council Act of 2008.The Human and Social Capabilities (HSC) research programme within the HSRC employs a multi-disciplinary group of social scientists and public health specialists who conduct numerous empirical and policy-related studies each year, three-quarters of which are donor-funded. HSC division is looking to appoint a suitably qualified professional to take on the responsibilities of a strategic lead in the division. The Strategic Lead position supports and assists the Human and Social Capabilities (HSC) Divisional Executive (DE) in implementing the five-year strategic plan of the HSRC. The Human and Social Capabilities division conducts transdisciplinary, intersectional, policy and programme-relevant research to improve health, well-being and promote a socially just and cohesive society.STRATEGIC LEADFIVE YEAR FIXED TERM CONTRACT (52 months)OFFICE BASE: DURBAN/PRETORIA or CAPE TOWNREF: SL HSC/07/21The Strategic Lead role in HSC demands that the incumbent drives and lead a team of senior researchers in large and strategic research projects, innovating methodologies and coordinating working groups, flagship projects and task teams in order realise the vision of the HSC division and that of the HSRC. The successful candidates responsibility will be to ensure that, the quality of research outputs, and enabling dissemination strategies, research partnerships and collaboration which drives the HSRCs quest for impact in policy-engaged research. Lead, manage and coordinate various research themes, senior researchers and teams in the areas of Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics and other divisions research activities to achieve the vision of the HSRC;Build visible national, continental and international research partnerships in the HSC area of specialisation that result in collaborative and multidisciplinary studies, high quality publications, evidence reviews and policy briefs;Coordinate and review strategic plans and opportunities for fund raising to meet agreed upon targets for the team;Together with the team of directors, senior research staff, and supported by the divisions business development team foster concrete plans and activities for meeting the divisional goals and targets;Ensure that grants obtained are strategic and focused on public-oriented research in keeping with the HSRCs vision; andProvide practical leadership in the areas of quality assurance (QA), science communication, impact assessment and dissemination for research outputs along with designated staff and HSRC resources (e.g. Impact Centre, Africa Institute of South Africa, Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation Indicators); andManage the outputs of researchers in the team to ensure maximum impact of the HSRC.As a strategic lead, the candidate is required to be visible and engage with government entities and activities on a continuous basis; andTogether with the Divisional Executive, spearhead formal government engagements through joint projects, partnerships, secondments, workshops and research dissemination; andDrive and enable a relationship of trust and influence in appropriate ways amongst all levels of research staff.Oversee a programme of engaged science in their designated theme of responsibility with local communities and scientific groups in order to ensure that research outcomes result in innovative solutions for South Africa (and Africas) challenges.Actively forge research collaborations with Universities and Science CouncilsEnsure that each team member aligned to the designated theme of leadership is capacitated, managed, supported, mentored (if they are trainees) and motivated to ensure a high performance team that meets strategic targets;Actively promote and support the HSRCs attraction, talent management, succession planning and retention policy focus, and achieve equity targets; andEnsure that fair conflict and consequence management takes place.Oversight for achieving delegated designated targets for the theme / sub division and;Contribution to the divisions risk profile and mitigation strategies.Ensure that research grants are well managed and that good relationships with collaborators and grant making organisations/institutions are maintained.

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