Strategic Lead

Company Human Sciences Research Council
Reference # SL HSC/07/21
Published 14/07/2021
Contract Type Contract
5 Years
Salary Market Related
Location Nationwide, Nationwide, South Africa
Duration 5 Years
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.

REF: SL HSC/07/21

The 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 candidate’s responsibility will be to ensure that, the quality of research outputs, and enabling dissemination strategies, research partnerships and collaboration which drives the HSRC’s quest for impact in policy-engaged research.

Job Functions Research
Industries Research
•Lead, manage and coordinate various research themes, senior researchers and teams in the areas of Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics and other division’s 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 division’s 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 HSRC’s vision; and
•Provide 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); and
•Manage 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; and
•Together with the Divisional Executive, spearhead formal government engagements through joint projects, partnerships, secondments, workshops and research dissemination; and
•Drive 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 Africa’s) challenges.
•Actively forge research collaborations with Universities and Science Councils
•Ensure 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 HSRC’s attraction, talent management, succession planning and retention policy focus, and achieve equity targets; and
•Ensure that fair conflict and consequence management takes place.
•Oversight for achieving delegated designated targets for the theme / sub division and;
•Contribution to the division’s 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.
•A doctorate in either Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Additional Management Qualifications (e.g. MBA) will be an added advantage
•Ten (10) years’ experience in managing and leading in senior research teams.
•At least 5 years’ experience at a strategic and senior management level in an academic environment or research institution e.g. Associate Professor or Professor level.
•An academic leader with an impressive and strong publishing record of at least 30 peer reviewed publications (books, books chapters, journal articles) of which several must be international and first must be first or sole authored.

The HSRC offers a fixed salary packages on internships and fellowships positions. Applicants must be South African citizens. The HSRC is committed to accelerating the improvement in the proportion of its staff who are black, female or disabled.

In your application, please include:
•A comprehensive CV, a letter of motivation, publications and the details of three recent referees (with telephone, fax and e-mail contact details).
•An example of three recent peer reviewed academic work (not exceeding 8000 words each).
•Please indicate the reference number in the subject line, applications that do not adhere to this, will not be considered.

Please submit your application on-line at http://hsrc.jb.skillsmapafrica.com

Please note the following:
•Ensure you use Google Chrome or Firefox from a computer or laptop, and not a cell phone
•Only your CV can be uploaded on the first page after you have registered/logged in.
•ALL OTHER DOCUMENTS can be uploaded on the “Document” tab on your profile
•Attachments must be less than 2 MB.
•Should you have any HR enquiries please send your query citing reference number to [email protected]
•Should you experience problems applying online, please send your applications to [email protected] Clearly indicate the reference number in the subject line.

•Only applications that comply with the listed above requirements will be considered.

The HSRC is committed to accelerating the improvement in the proportion of its senior managers and research leaders who are black, female or disabled.

Closing date: 6 August 2021. We encourage applicants to submit prior to that date. Applicants who have not been contacted within eight weeks should assume that their application has been unsuccessful. Only candidates who are interviewed will be advised of the outcome of the interview.

The HSRC reserves the right to not make an appointment

Job Closing Date 06/08/2021
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Last Updated: 30-6-2021 []
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