Research Scholar (Analyst)

Vienna, , AT

Vacancy 15/2016 – IIASA’s Transitions to New Technologies (TNT) Program is recruiting a Research Scholar (Analyst) to conduct a technology assessment of Nexus technologies. 


The Transitions to New Technologies (TNT) Program aims to improve our understanding of the drivers, constraints, dynamics, and the impacts of technological change, particularly in areas that are key for global sustainability. TNT’s research focuses on the systemic aspects of technological change embracing a systemic view of technology (technological interdependence and interrelatedness), development and adoption environments (supply and demand of innovations), and innovation systems (a holistic approach to describe innovations, their associated knowledge bases, actors and institutions, and resource requirements). Research draws on empirical case studies, associated meta-analyses, novel modeling approaches, as well as scenario studies and robustness analysis to inform technology policy choices and entrepreneurial innovation strategies from a systemic perspective.

As part of a new Institute-wide research initiative that aims at an improved scenario modeling and options identification in the Nexus of resource interdependencies between water, energy, and land, the TNT Program is planning to conduct a comprehensive technology assessment of nexus technologies, i.e. technologies that are key determinants of water, energy, and land resource interactions. Examples of Nexus technologies include inter alia, irrigation and hydroelectricity systems, power plant cooling, seawater desalination, or large-scale biofuel production.


The TNT Program is inviting applications for a Research Scholar (Analyst) position to conduct a technology assessment of Nexus technologies as contribution to a larger interdisciplinary research project on identifying Integrated Solutions for the joint sustainable management of Water, Energy, and Land (IS-WEL). 

Tasks and Responsibilities:

  • Perform a quantitative technology assessment of the historical development of selected key Nexus technologies as input to scenario and modeling and sustainable options analysis. This assessment should in particular examine long-term trends in the evolution of technology scale (at the unit/plant and industry levels), diffusion, costs, efficiency, as well as Nexus interdependencies;
  • Contribute, based on the Nexus technology assessment, to an improved model representation of Nexus technologies and their future trends in the Integrated Assessment Models of IIASA;
  • Contribute to further development of TNT research methods and tools in particular the Technology Innovation Systems framework and the Scaling Dynamics research project;
  • Participate in the institute-wide IS-WEL Project both in terms of scientific substance as well as in research coordination;
  • Document research results in form of scientific papers and articles as well as on-line data bases.

Required Skills and Qualifications:

  • PhD degree in a quantitative research field such as (hydraulic or energy) engineering, economics (econometrics), or technology studies;
  • Background knowledge in Nexus technologies;
  • Familiarity with the innovation as well as technology assessment and technological forecasting literature;
  • Passion and demonstrated ability for quantitative analysis and synthesis;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills;
  • Interest in and readiness to collaborate on Integrated Assessment modeling;
  • Ability to work in an interdisciplinary and international setting and under deadlines;
  • Demonstrated track record in excellence in scientific analysis and publications.

Appointment Terms:


Work will be carried out at the IIASA premises in Laxenburg castle in Austria, offering an exceptionally intellectually stimulating workplace in a spectacular natural and architectural setting. The successful candidate is expected to assume his/her duties as soon as possible and will be offered initially a one-year term appointment, that may be extended thereafter. (The integrative Nexus research at IIASA is planned to extend over some five years.)

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 are based on prior experience and qualifications and 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.



Application packages should be send via email (see below) and must include the following:

1. An application letter detailing the candidates’ background, qualifications, motivation to apply, and how the candidate sees his/her potential contribution to the IS-WEL research and the overall TNT research program, see e.g.:

2. A detailed Curriculum Vitae;

3. Three publications (peer-reviewed journal articles), preferably where the candidate is single or first author;

4. Names and contact details of three work-related reference givers.

Materials should be sent 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]

Deadline for receipt of applications: 31 July 2016.