Strategic Advisory Bodies membership

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Recruitment to our Strategic Advisory bodies: Person Specification & Selection Process

The EPSRC is seeking applications from respected industrialists, academics and individuals working in the third sector and government organisations to join EPSRC's Research Infrastructure (Capital) Strategic Advisory Team (SAT).

In addition, EPSRC, on behalf of partner Research Councils, is seeking applications for the UK Fusion Advisory Board (FAB).

Strategic Advisory Teams provide Theme Leaders at EPSRC with strategic advice to help develop their theme. The Energy Strategic Advisory Committee (SAC) and the Digital Economy Programme Advisory Board (PAB) perform the same function for the respective cross-Research Council Programmes. These bodies consist of up to 16 members, depending on the needs of the Theme / Programme. They are devised as a flexible resource, enabling Theme Leaders to obtain the advice they need in a timely manner, drawing on a range of perspectives from across our key stakeholder groups. Further information and terms of reference for SATs can be found on the EPSRC website. Further information on the Energy SAC and the Digital Economy PAB can be found on the RCUK website.

Each Theme's Strategic Advisory Body meets at least two times per year. Additionally, we hold conferences to bring Strategic Advisory Bodies from all Themes together. SAT / SAC / PAB members may also be asked to take part in other EPSRC business (or that of other Councils as appropriate), including but not limited to workshops, advisory groups for specific activities and peer-review prioritisation panels.

We are looking for suitable individuals to guide and advise as theme experts. We seek the widest participation: you can be full-time or part-time, on sabbatical or a career break, academic or researcher, based in academia, industry, the third sector or government organisation. You will not be required to act as representative of your own organisation but rather as someone with an expert command of a particular theme that is free of bias.

Role and person specification: Standard Vacancies

SAT Members are drawn from EPSRC's stakeholders. SAC and PAB members are also drawn from these groups, as well as the stakeholder groupings of other relevant Research Councils. Members of all strategic advisory bodies are expected to bring a broad strategic view to bear and to act as 'generous generalists', advising across the breadth of EPSRC's portfolio and the portfolios of other Councils where appropriate.

Members are not required to act as representatives of their own organisation, research area or sector, but are expected to adhere to the Seven Principles of Public Life.

The specific requirements sought are:

Essential

  • Credibility in the relevant research communities, including academia or the user base.
  • Ability to take a strategic overview of research and skills needs relevant to the Theme.
  • An understanding of the international context within which the Theme sits.
  • Ability to work flexibly in a team and adapt to new ways of working, using both domain expertise and wider cross-disciplinary perspectives.
  • Appreciation of ethical issues and the need for responsible innovation in the conduct of research.
  • Preparedness to challenge EPSRC policies (and those of other Research Councils where appropriate) in a constructive way.
  • Willingness to help with two-way communication between EPSRC (and other Research Councils where appropriate) and the research community.
  • Willingness to devote sufficient time to the role.

Role and Person Specification: Non-Academic Vacancies

Members are drawn from EPSRC's non-academic stakeholders. They bring a broad strategic view to bear and to act as 'generous generalists', advising across the breadth of EPSRC's portfolio. Members are not required to act as representatives of their own organisation, research area or sector, but are expected to adhere to the Seven Principles of Public Life.

The specific requirements sought are:

Essential

  • Ability to take a strategic overview of research and skills needs relevant to the Theme.
  • Ability to work flexibly in a team and adapt to new ways of working, using domain expertise and wider cross-disciplinary experience to give high-level perspectives.
  • Preparedness to challenge EPSRC policies in a constructive way.
  • Willingness to help with two-way communication between EPSRC and those who use research.
  • Willingness to devote sufficient time to the role.

Applications

Applications for the SAT should be made through the application form. Self-applications are sought from individuals who feel they are able to meet the requirements set out above. Applications are also sought from key stakeholder groups or other organisations on behalf of suitable individuals. In cases where applications are being made on behalf of an individual then we shall require confirmation that the individual is aware of and agrees to the nomination. The nominator must have sufficient information about the nominee to adequately demonstrate how they meet the person specification for SAT / SAC / PAB members. If you require further information on the vacancies or the work of the SATs, please contact the individuals named for each Theme.

The selection process will consist of two steps:

Step 1

A short-list of recommended candidates will be developed by the Theme Leader, working on behalf of the Executive. The short-list will be based on the following considerations:

At the level of the individual:

  • Match to the essential criteria in the person specification, based on the evidence provided.

At the level of the SATs / SAC / PAB:

  • Ensuring diversity of membership.
  • Securing a spread of expertise across the SATs from the range of research fields covered by the Theme.
  • Achieving an appropriate distribution of membership from academia, industry and other stakeholders, including interfaces to other areas where needed, taking into account institutional conflicts.
  • Achieving an appropriate distribution across career stages.
  • Managing membership on a rolling basis in a way that balances continuity of advice with new perspectives, and in keeping with the expectation that yearly turnover will be up to a third.

In addition, where an existing SAT Chair is standing down, a recommendation for this position will be made by the Theme Lead, acting on behalf of the Executive.

Step 2

A sub-committee of Council, the Appointments Assurance Committee, will be asked to ratify that the appropriate processes have been followed by the Executive prior to appointment of SAT / SAC / PAB members.

Diversity

We are committed to a policy of equal opportunities. Appointments to the SAT / SAC / PAB are made on merit. However, we are keen to obtain greater diversity in its membership. Applications from women, those with a disability, members of minority ethnic groups, and other groups who are currently under-represented on the boards, are therefore especially welcome.

We would particularly hope to continue improving the gender balance of the boards in keeping with EPSRC's overall goal of achieving at least 30% participation of women (as the underrepresented group) in EPSRC strategic bodies. Current representation across all SATs, SACs and PABs is 32%.

Tips for your Application:

  • Assessment of your suitability for the post is made on the basis of the information provided in the application form. Please note: no other information will be used so applicants should take care to address all criteria. Think about how you address each of the selection criteria – don't just copy and paste from your website.
  • Don't just provide a list of your previous positions – we want to know what skills you used in that position.
  • Consider using the STAR approach to your answers – describe the Situation, what your Task was, how you Approached it and what the Result was.
  • Treat all of the questions as equally important.
  • Have a look at the current SAT members to see the type of people we have recruited in the past.