Senior Program Officer

Vienna, , AT

Vacancy 12/2016 –  In close collaboration with scientists from IIASA and its international partners, the Senior Program Officer will manage the Technical Secretariat of a new research initiative “The World in 2050 (TWI2050)”.


The World in 2050 (TWI2050) is a new research initiative launched by the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the Stockholm Resilience Center, and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) to develop long-term pathways for sustainable development including for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The initiative mobilizes leading research institutions from around the world to integrate our understanding of how economic, social, and environmental development – underpinned by good governance – can be promoted in every part of the world. The initiative coordinates closely with the United Nations, other leading international organizations, and governments around the world to support the operationalization of the SDGs. 

The Technical Secretariat at IIASA will support TWI2050 and its constituent bodies, the Executive Director, Executive Scientific Committee, the High Level Leadership Group, the Scientific Assembly, and the Governing Board, on all aspects of the work.  It will be led by a Senior Program Officer.

The responsibilities of the Technical Secretariat will include: 

  • Overall planning, management and scientific organizational issues (including scientific direction and coordination), in support of the Executive Director and Scientific Executive Committee
  • Convene meetings of the Scientific Assembly, High-Level Leadership Group, and Governing Board.  It will also support the meetings of the Scientific Executive Committee as required
  • Keep track of the work and deliberations of the various bodies of the Governance of TWI2050 as well as the progress of work of the Scientific Executive Committee
  • Support the outreach and fund raising efforts of TWI2050, including keeping contacts with the stakeholder and other similar groups
  • Support the Executive Director in the financial and budgetary tasks and responsibilities
  • Manage the production process of the output and delivery of books, reports, policy briefs, etc.
  • Manage the TWI2050 Website and support outreach activities
  • Support the Scientific Executive Committee as required in order to ensure integration and coherence of work
  • Act as the main point of contact for TWI2050. 

Responsibilities of the Senior Program Officer:

  • Manage the Technical Secretariat and its staff
  • Contribute to the analytical TWI2050 work and writing, particularly to ensure appropriate integration across research fields, and ensure that they conform to the strategy of TWI2050
  • Oversee day-to-day communication of TWI2050, including the development of appropriate communication materials and the maintenance of the website
  • Represent TWI2050 at scientific and policy gatherings
  • Support the Executive Director and the governance structures of TWI2050 regarding all project activities, including managing work flows, tracking the progress, and outreach
  • Lead the process of review, quality control, as well as of tracking of the overall TWI250 work and establish processes to keep the various teams informed and engaged
  • Lead fund raising activities through the preparation of grant proposals
  • Support the development of collaboration networks with key institutions and individuals involved in the TWI2050.

The Senior Program Offices reports to the Executive Director of TWI2050. The candidate will work closely with the Co-Chairs of each of the bodies of its governing structure. 


  • Successful record of team and project management, including the ability to motivate others and the flexibility to respond to changing priorities in fast-paced environment
  • Passion for the mission of TWI2050
  • Minimum [five] years combined experience in related positions, including experience as a modeler or working with modelers
  • Demonstrated ability to manage partnerships and client relationships at senior level and outstanding ability to network
  • Strong analytical and quantitative skills
  • Good knowledge of research institutions involved in sustainable development
  • A professional and resourceful style with the ability to work independently and as a team player, to take initiative and manage multiple tasks and projects at a time
  • Advanced degree in economics, natural sciences, engineering or related discipline. Proven technical excellence in one or more fields of sustainable development
  • Outstanding English oral and written communication skills. Full proficiency desirable in one or more other languages.

Appointment Terms:

The Senior Program Officer will be an employee of IIASA and duties will be carried out on IIASA’s premises in Laxenburg, Austria. The successful candidate is expected to begin assignment as soon as possible and will initially be offered a one-year employment contract. Following an evaluation of the first year’s work, the appointment period may be extended.

IIASA offers a competitive compensation and benefits package (moving and settlement allowances, educational grants for children of school age, and five weeks’ annual vacation). IIASA salaries are exempt from taxation in the host country of Austria but subject to the principle of income aggregation.

IIASA is committed to a working environment that promotes equality, diversity, tolerance and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all religious, ethnic and social backgrounds to apply. In the case that candidates are equally qualified, preference will be given to applicants who are nationals of IIASA member countries.


To apply, please email a letter of application describing your motivation for this position, a detailed curriculum vitae, and the names and contact details of two work-related reference persons to: 

Ms. Alia Harrison, Recruitment Coordinator, Human Resources Department,
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA),
Schlossplatz 1, A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
E-mail: [email protected]

Review of applications shall begin immediately and continue until the position has been filled. 

For information about this position, please contact: Pat Wagner 

About Laxenburg (near Vienna)

IIASA is located in a former 18th century imperial palace of the Habsburg Monarchy in Laxenburg, Austria about 15 km from Vienna. The facility has been gratefully provided by the host country Austria to the International Scientific Community. According to Mercer’s 18th annual Quality of Living survey, Vienna continues its reign in the top spot for overall quality of living in 2016. The survey covers 230 cities worldwide and is based on 39 criteria such as political, social, economic, educational, and environmental factors. Vienna has all the facilities of a modern, progressive city, in the heart of Europe. 

While famous for its concert venues, opera houses, theaters, and museums, Vienna also provides opportunities for great outdoor activities on nearby Lake Neusiedl, the Vienna Woods, and the Alps.

Vienna has a wealth of different research and international governmental institutions, permitting extensive dialogue at local and international level between scientists and policymakers.

For general information about our Institute and its research activities, please visit our IIASA Web site.

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