Assistant Director, Research Initiatives

Job description

Hyde Park Campus

42226 Neubauer Family Collegium For

About the Unit
The Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society at the University of Chicago fosters interdisciplinary faculty research on questions of high complexity and broad scope in the humanities and social sciences and beyond. The Neubauer Collegium provides comprehensive support for collaborative faculty research projects and a Global Visiting Fellows program that brings leading scholars from around the world to work with research teams at the University of Chicago. The Neubauer Collegium also sponsors public lectures, exhibitions, and other activities that engage diverse publics and make scholarly research more broadly accessible. In April 2015 the Collegium relocated to its own dedicated facility, and it provides Global Visiting Fellows and research projects with spaces, technologies, and high-level administrative supports designed to accelerate collaborative research, facilitate research experimentation, and support knowledge-sharing across disciplines and institutions on a global scale. The Assistant Director for Research Initiatives plays a critical cross-cutting role in the sustained growth of the Neubauer Collegium's research initiatives, which currently include faculty-led team research and the Global Visiting Fellows program.

Job Information

Job Summary:

  • The Assistant Director for Research Initiatives (AD) coordinates and manages the administrative and research project needs of 25-35 concurrent faculty research projects, including the proposal submission process, and coordinates and manages the Global Visiting Fellows program. Both initiatives include on-boarding visitors and managing the appointment processes for visiting faculty fellows and other academic personnel such as post-doctoral researchers.

  • The AD oversees a complex and rigorous annual Call for Proposals, managing the portal submission process at every stage, and supporting the Faculty Director, Executive Director and Faculty Advisory Board throughout the funding decision-making process.The AD supports faculty project leaders and Neubauer Collegium leadership to help develop customized administrative strategies for each project; develops timelines/spreadsheets and manages information/communications; advises faculty as they revise project budgets and detailed work plans at pre- and post-award stages; advises faculty on the review and approval process for any requested changes; manages and archives all documentation; and other duties associated with project management.

  • The AD works closely with the Director and Executive Director on the Global Visiting Fellows program; continues to develop and adapt optimal processes for managing academic appointments, payroll, visas, and on-boarding for an active program of Visiting Fellows and postdoctoral researchers (15-20 academic appointments in 2014-15), including interpreting and ensuring adherence to applicable University policy and quality standards and direct customer service to visitors.This includes developing, implementing, and improving administrative systems, including project and client management systems to coordinate team efforts and communication with faculty research teams; maintaining an academic appointment tracking system for Visiting Fellows; and, adapting financial reporting practices to assist research teams with project planning.


  • The AD overseas the annual Call for Proposals from portal submission, development of administrative strategies and work plans and pre- and post-award project management. The AD is responsible for issuing award letters to funding recipients (project teams and visiting fellows); interpret and communicate policy to faculty research projects and visitors; develop periodic status reports for Neubauer Collegium leadership. (50%)
  • The AD assists with the Global Visiting Fellows program and continues to improve the processes for managing academic appointments. (25%)
  • The AD collaborates with various Neubauer Collegium team members to support Faculty Advisory Board management, arranges for quarterly board meetings and annual proposal review meetings which includes scheduling, venue and catering preparation, taking minutes, etc. (10%)
  • The AD collaborates with various Neubauer Collegium team members to develop optimal systems and measures for annual research performance assessment by Neubauer Collegium awardees (project teams and visiting fellows), including collecting, analyzing, and synthesizing data to create internal reports and other documents related to research project status, outcomes, and impact. (5%)
  • The AD acts as a liaison with campus partners in research innovation (Arete, Big Ideas Generator, Franke Institute for the Humanities, Richard and Mary L Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry, Chicago Innovation Exchange, etc) to share best practices, to keep information flowing which can enhance seed funding opportunities for faculty, etc.(5%)
  • The AD may support special projects by researching and recommending new resources for e-collaboration and e-publication to strengthen support for faculty research projects.(5%)


  • Ability to examine data to grasp concepts, draw conclusions, and solve problems
  • Ability to maintain existing and create new relationships with organizational research partners
  • Ability to communicate directly with faculty clients and must provide excellent customer service to build strong client relationships
  • Proven ability to exercise independent judgment, interpret and communicate policy, and develop new administrative systems in response to emerging operational needs
  • Ability to adapt to changing business needs, conditions, and work responsibilities

Additional Requirements

Education, Experience, and Certifications:

  • Bachelor's degree and minimum three years related experience required; project management skills required; advanced degree preferred.
  • Experience working with budgets required.
  • Experience performing project-based work required.
  • Project management skills required

Technical Knowledge or Skills:

  • Ability to identify appropriate resources and take appropriate action
  • Ability to develop a budget
  • Ability to use MS Word, Excel, Outlook at an intermediate level required
  • Superb organization skills
  • Superb verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to compose original communications in English that are accurate, concise, and which exemplify the professional discourse of the Collegium and contribute to its reputation
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks and assignments simultaneously
  • Ability to work evenings and weekends
  • Familiarity with the academic appointment process preferred
  • Familiarity with the University of Chicago preferred

Working Conditions:

  • High stress, some evening and weekend work, fast-paced environment

Physical Efforts:

  • Standard office environment, ability to sit for 2-to-4 hours, ability to lift and/or move objects up to 45 lbs., ability to walk around campus, fire safety and evacuation training

Required Documents:
  • Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • List of References

(NOTE: When applying, all required documents MUST be uploaded under the Resume/CV section of the application.)

Benefit Eligibility

Pay Frequency

Pay Range
Depends on Qualification

Scheduled Weekly Hours


Job is Exempt?

Drug Test Required?

Does this position require incumbent to operate a vehicle on the job?

Health Screen Required?

Posting Date

Remove from Posting On or Before

Posting Statement:

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

The University of Chicago's Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (Report) provides information about University offices and programs that provide safety support, crime and fire statistics, emergency response and communications plans, and other policies and information. The Report can be accessed online at: Paper copies of the Report are available, upon request, from the University of Chicago Police Department, 850 E. 61st Street, Chicago, IL 60637.

Full time

About Us
The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

To learn more about the university click here





Diversity Profile: University



View more

Learn more on Inside Higher Ed's College Page for University

Arrow pointing right
Job No:
Posted: 5/5/2018
Application Due: 7/4/2018
Work Type: