Jarislowsky Chair in Sustainable Water Futures

Wilfrid Laurier University

Waterloo, ON, CA

The Department of Biology at Wilfrid Laurier University invites applications for a tenured faculty position at the Associate or Full Professor level for the Jarislowsky Chair in Sustainable Water Futures (Jarislowsky Chair)Anticipated commencement date of the initial five-year appointment is January 1, 2022 (negotiable).

The Jarislowsky Chair, established as a result of a gift from the Jarislowsky Foundation, will lead a world-class interdisciplinary research program focused on the impact of climate change and associated disturbances on aquatic ecosystem health that will support the sustainability of Canada’s water and other natural resources and lead to policy developments in these areas. The chairholder will be a member of the Department of Biology within the Faculty of Science and will also be appointed in the Balsillie School of International Affairs. This provides unique opportunities for the Jarislowsky Chair to shape policy developments that offer innovative solutions for critical sustainability challenges.

The Jarislowsky Chair will provide leadership that enhances Laurier’s excellence in research, teaching and mentorship, and lead a research program that integrates community input, Indigenous knowledge, climate change management and adaptation, food security, water use, and industrial pollution, particularly in Canada’s North. The successful applicant will add capacity and new areas of expertise to Laurier’s strategic northern research focus, and to the Environment and Sustainability research theme and associated areas of research strength identified in Laurier’s Strategic Research Plan. Much of the northern research conducted at Laurier contributes to the longstanding partnership with the Government of the Northwest Territories (2009-2029), and is affiliated with the Cold Regions Research Centre and the Laurier Institute for Water Science. The chairholder will build upon existing and establish new research ties with other researchers and agencies, including but not limited to Laurier’s Canada Research Chairs whose work focuses on northern ecosystems, the UNESCO Chair in Food, Biodiversity and Sustainability Studies and other researchers based in the Biology Department, the Faculty of Science and the Balsillie School of International Affairs, as well as existing Jarislowsky chairholders at other institutions.

The successful candidate will already have an established, world-class externally funded research program, and will continue to seek external funding, including but not limited to Tri-Agency grants. Such external funding will enhance the endowed funds currently available to the chairholder that may be used to support research activities, including students and other research personnel, and provide seed funding that will help to leverage additional research support.

The Jarislowsky Chair will have demonstrated teaching proficiency and will teach in undergraduate and graduate programs in Biology and related programs that align with their expertise. They will also contribute to the training and mentorship of graduate and undergraduate students through their research program and will participate in the administrative activities of the Department.

The Department of Biology is a dynamic part of the Faculty of Science, with leading researchers in diverse fields and a commitment to building collaborative interdisciplinary research partnerships to address complex and far-ranging issues. The Department offers undergraduate degrees in Biology, Water Science and Environmental Health, and Environmental Science, along with a MSc program in Integrative Biology and a PhD program in Biological and Chemical Sciences (in conjunction with the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry). Departmental faculty members lead research programs that span the sub-disciplines of biology, with the majority of research falling into one of two inter-related areas of research strength: Ecosystems in a changing climate and Food safety, security and sustainability. The alignment of these areas with the Chair will provide opportunities for collaborations within the Department. The Jarislowsky Chair will have access to Laurier’s well established and world-class infrastructure network of long-term, multidisciplinary living laboratories throughout the continental Northwest Territories that help to foster dynamic and productive collaborative research programs. Additionally, the Chair will be supported by substantial lab infrastructure in the Centre for Cold Regions and Water Science (CCRWS), and the Laurier Science Research Centre.


To be considered, applicants must have a Ph.D. in biological sciences, or a related discipline, and may currently hold a tenured or tenure-track faculty position. 

How to Apply

Applicants should submit:

  • Cover letter
  • Detailed curriculum vitae
  • Research statement (maximum 5 pages) that should introduce and contextualize the research program, describe long and short-term objectives, methodologies (including instrumentation and infrastructure), impact and significance, and highlights of contributions to date. It should also describe the training philosophy, and approaches that are embedded, and/or will be used in the future, to promote Indigeneity, equity, diversity and inclusion
  • Teaching statement (approx. 2 pages) outlining teaching philosophy, experience and interests
  • PDF copies of up to three scholarly publications that demonstrate contributions to the field
  • Contact information (name, address, phone, email) of three referees willing to provide a letter of reference.

DO NOT CLICK THE “APPLY NOW” BUTTON TO APPLY TO THIS POSITION. Please submit the application via the email below.

Application packages should be combined into a single PDF document addressed to Dr. Matt Smith, Chair, Department of Biology, Wilfrid Laurier University, and submitted by email to [email protected]. Applications will be accepted until May 10, 2021 at 9:00 a.m. EDT.

Applicants are encouraged to address any career interruptions or special circumstances that may have affected their record of research and teaching, in accordance with SSHRC and NSERC definitions and guidelines.

Diversity and creating a culture of inclusion is a key component of The Laurier Strategy and Laurier’s Strategic Academic Plan and is one of Laurier’s core values. Laurier is committed to employment equity and increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from qualified individuals of the equity-seeking groups.. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at [email protected]. Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programming at Laurier are welcomed to contact Equity and Accessibility at [email protected].

Members of equity-seeking groups must self-identify to be considered for employment equity. Candidates may self-identify, in confidence, to Dr. Anthony Clarke, Dean of Science ([email protected]). Further information on the equity policy can be found here.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, per Canadian immigration laws, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. To comply with the Government of Canada’s reporting requirements, the University is obligated to gather information about applicants’ status as either Permanent Residents of Canada or Canadian citizens. Applicants need not identify their country of origin or current citizenship(s); however, all applicants must include one of the following statements in their cover letter:

       I am a current citizen or permanent resident of Canada;

       I am not a current citizen or permanent resident of Canada

Laurier strives to make our application process accessible and provides accommodations for both applicants and employees as outlined in Policy 8.7 https://www.wlu.ca/about/governance/assets/resources/8.7-employment-accommodation-policy.html. If you require assistance applying for this position, would like this job posting in an alternative format, or would like to discuss accessibility and accommodations during the recruitment process please contact [email protected].

The Faculty of Science wishes to thank all applicants for their interest. All applications shall be reviewed and considered under the criteria established by the Search Committee and a short list of candidates shall be interviewed. Only those applicants selected for the short list will be contacted.





IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development