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Director & Associate Prof/Professor: Institute for Environment, Conservation & Sustainability

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Director & Associate Prof/Professor: Institute for Environment, Conservation & Sustainability

Date Posted: 12/20/2021
Closing Date: 02/25/2022, 11:59PM ET
Req ID: 21953
Job Category: Faculty - Tenure Stream (continuing)
Faculty/Division: University of Toronto Scarborough
Department: UTSC: Office of the Vice-Principal Academic & Dean
Campus:University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC)


We live on a stressed planet. The impact of human activities on the structure and functioning of Earth’s systems has been so significant that we now live in a geological epoch of our own making – the Anthropocene. Even if we managed an unheard-of reversal of our errors, we will live the rest of our lives in the reality of human-caused global events that threaten the future sustainability of the planet. The University of Toronto Scarborough community is rising to meet these local and global challenges.

The University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) invites applications for the position of Director of the new Institute for Environment, Conservation, and Sustainability (IECS). The successful candidate will be eligible for a full-time tenure-stream academic appointment at the rank of Associate Professor or Professor. The successful candidate’s academic appointment will be to a relevant department at U of T Scarborough depending on their area of expertise. The Director appointment will be for a 5-year term, effective September 1, 2022, or shortly thereafter, with the possibility of renewal for a second term.

U of T Scarborough’s strategic plan, Inspiring Inclusive Excellence, commits to establishing research institutes for Globalization, Transnationalism and the Advancement of Resilient, Inclusive Societies and Ecosystems (GTA-RISE). GTA-RISE will conduct convergent research to solve the complex problems we face today. Through GTA-RISE, U of T Scarborough will offer trusted knowledge to create new narratives of our future and to implement socially-just and -equitable transitions towards that future. The directors of the research institutes will each lead a vibrant intellectual community and develop a visionary research agenda for their institute. GTA-RISE’s founding institutes will include: the Institute for Environment, Conservation, and Sustainability (safeguarding planetary health), the Institute for Inclusive Health and Well-Being (ensuring health and well-being for all), and the Institute for Inclusive Economies and Sustainable Livelihoods (imagining sustainable and just economic futures in an age of necessary degrowth). These three foundational research institutes will help realize U of T Scarborough’s strategic vision of global prominence in these areas of scholarship.

The inaugural Director will bring to the role superior leadership and management skills demonstrated by extensive accomplishments as a successful academic administrator and a scholar-leader in a research-intensive institution. The Director will possess a PhD in a relevant discipline by the time of appointment; a distinguished record of excellence in research and teaching; scholarship which complements existing research strengths at U of T Scarborough in areas related to environment, conservation, and sustainability; an established international reputation as someone who can sustain and lead innovative and independent research at the highest international levels; an extensive track record of procuring competitive research funding from funding councils, government, industry and/or other partners; and experience collaborating and building partnerships within and outside the university.

The Director of IECS will be responsible for administering scholarly programs focused on environment, conservation, and sustainability, and will work towards evidence-based solutions to address the challenges of a rapidly changing environment. The inaugural Director will create conditions for interdisciplinary and historically-grounded conversations about the relationships between people and the natural world. Potential research themes for IECS include: the interactions among plants, soil, water, and air; the effects of climate change from the cellular to the ecosystem levels; ecological restoration; environmental sustainability; nature-based climate solutions; carbon markets; Indigenous perspectives on the natural world; and understanding the Earth through the exploration of other planets.

Candidates must provide evidence of research excellence which can be demonstrated by a record of sustained high-impact contributions and publications in top-ranked and field-relevant journals, the submitted research statement, presentations at significant conferences, distinguished awards and accolades, and other noteworthy activities that contribute to the visibility and prominence of the discipline, as well as strong endorsements from referees of high standing.

Evidence of excellence in teaching will be provided through teaching accomplishments, the teaching dossier submitted as part of the application including a strong teaching statement, sample course materials, and teaching evaluations, as well as strong letters of reference.

Candidates must also provide evidence of a commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion and the promotion of a respectful and collegial learning and working environment, as demonstrated through the application materials.

Reporting to the Vice-Principal Research and Innovation (VPRI) of the U of T Scarborough campus, and working collaboratively within a tri-campus system, the Director will be a member of the Office of the VPRI Leadership Team and will strategically oversee the research programs and infrastructure for the IECS. They will perform a pivotal leadership role, which carries significant responsibility and accountability for the mandate of the Institute. They will provide a coherent, financially self-sustaining vision and direction for the Institute, consistent with the highest standards of scholarly excellence and interdisciplinary collaboration and advancing the objectives of U of T Scarborough’s strategic plan Inspiring Inclusive Excellence and of the University of Toronto’s Institutional Strategic Research Plan. For more information about U of T Scarborough, please visit:

Salary and rank will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Applicants are asked to submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and the following information in their application package: a research statement outlining current and future research interests together with three recent publications; and a teaching dossier that includes a teaching statement, sample course materials, and teaching evaluations. Candidates are also asked to submit a 1‐ to 2-page statement of contributions to equity and diversity, which might cover topics such as (but not limited to): research or teaching that incorporates a focus on underrepresented communities, the development of inclusive pedagogies, or the mentoring of students from underrepresented groups. Applicants must also arrange to have three letters of reference sent directly by the referee (on letterhead, dated, and signed) to Debra Clinton at [email protected] by the closing date.

You may submit your cover letter and resume online at: The other documents in your application package must be submitted by email to [email protected].

If you have questions about the position, please contact Debra Clinton at [email protected] or Amorell Saunders N’Daw at [email protected].

All application materials, including reference letters, must be received by February 25, 2022.

Caution: This ad is “posted only” to the U of T faculty job board. Please see the information above for the application instructions. Applications submitted via the U of T platform will NOT be considered for this position.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Diversity Statement
The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2S+ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.

Accessibility Statement
The University strives to be an equitable and inclusive community, and proactively seeks to increase diversity among its community members. Our values regarding equity and diversity are linked with our unwavering commitment to excellence in the pursuit of our academic mission.

The University is committed to the principles of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). As such, we strive to make our recruitment, assessment and selection processes as accessible as possible and provide accommodations as required for applicants with disabilities.

If you require any accommodations at any point during the application and hiring process, please contact [email protected].

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Established in 1827, the University of Toronto is Canada's largest university, recognized as a global leader in research and teaching. U of T's distinguished faculty, institutional record of groundbreaking scholarship and wealth of innovative academic opportunities continually attract outstanding students and academics from around the world.

U of T is committed to providing a learning experience that benefits from both a scale almost unparalleled in North America and from the close-knit learning communities made possible through its college system and academic divisions. Located in and around Toronto, one of the world's most diverse regions, U of T's vibrant academic life is defined by a unique degree of cultural diversity in its learning community.The University is sustained environmentally by three green campuses, where renowned heritage buildings stand beside award-winning innovations in architectural design.


U of T is one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers.
U of T is one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers.


Are you looking for a challenging, meaningful career in a supportive and diverse environment?

Work where the world comes to think.

Work where the world comes to discover.

Work where the world comes to learn.


Opportunities exist for people from a wide range of backgrounds, ranging from recent graduates to experienced senior professionals.

We offer challenging work within an open environment that celebrates diversity in all its forms. Our focus is on creating a positive work environment that attracts and retains excellent employees through a combination of competitive compensation, favourable working conditions, opportunities for career growth and development and a unique organizational culture.

Employees have access to:

  • Excellent health and dental benefits;
  • On-site support for training and career development;
  • Flexible work arrangements;
  • Childcare subsidy;
  • Tuition waivers;
  • Scholarships and/or tuition waivers for dependants;
  • Generous paid time off;
  • Support on equity and diversity issues;
  • On-site child care;
  • University Pension Plan;
  • Subsidized athletic facility membership;
  • World-renowned libraries;
  • Confidential counselling services;
  • Parking and TTC Metropasses;
  • Employee and Family Assistance Plan;
  • Continued health benefits for pensioners.


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