Project Associate, Institute for Engagement & Negotiation at the University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA

Position Title: Project Associate or Senior Project Associate

Organization: Institute for Engagement & Negotiation (IEN) at the University of Virginia

Location: Charlottesville, VA

Organization Overview: The IEN is a nationally recognized leader in fostering collaborative change across a broad range of issues through multi-agency and multi-stakeholder processes as well as through community outreach and engagement. Through its more than 40-year history, IEN has deep experience in developing, fostering, and facilitating environmental and other collaboratives, as well as conducting research into the nature of collaboration and developing recommendations for collaborative approaches. IEN offers exceptional knowledge, skills, and experience with the foundational elements of what makes collaboration successful in the environmental community. IEN’s mission – “Catalyze and facilitate the shared creation of equitable solutions for organizations, communities, and leaders through research, collaboration, and training” – reflects the continuous commitment to helping others address policy, planning, and place-based issues and challenges. They are dedicated to supporting collaborative, transparent, informed, and equitable decision-making processes.

Position Overview: Given the distinct and unique nature of IEN’s work, it is important for potential candidates to understand the breadth, intensity, and demands of our work in complex, public policy multi-stakeholder collaborative problem solving. The successful candidate must enjoy working across a broad range of interests, reflecting the need to be able to work across issues of health, climate resilience, community resilience, environmental and racial and social equity, land use, sustainability, food systems, natural resources, and more. The Associate also must enjoy working closely in a fast-paced environment, often with client-driven deadlines, with people from all sectors and walks of life – corporate, small business, government, nonprofit, academic, and grassroots organizations. The Associate must excel at both oral and written skills, highly proactive collaborative planning and coordination, and the ability to manage multiple complex projects at one time. Whether the project involves conflict assessment, collaborative problem-solving, consensus building, stakeholder engagement, facilitation, mediation, evaluation, training, or human subject research, the Associate must have a high comfort level with uncertainty and adaptive project management, as well as comfort and skills in managing and navigating situations that involve different levels and intensities of conflict. Finally, to be successful, the Associate must be able to grasp and assess new concepts and issues quickly, while also bringing authentic cultural humility and curiosity to the situation.

Duties: The Associate may serve as the organizational point of contact for the client and stakeholders on each project being supported with the possible following duties:

  • Coordinate and manage meeting logistics, including stakeholder communications;
  • Manage the project budget in consultation with the senior project lead;
  • Serve as meeting recorder and/or tech support;
  • Develop meeting summaries;
  • Develop agendas for meetings;
  • Maintain and organize project files;
  • Document project outcomes;
  • Maintain project websites;
  • Conduct research and assessment;
  • Work with student interns to guide, mentor, and supervise their work;
  • Facilitate small group work or co-facilitate large group work;
  • Prepare conference presentations and posters on the project outcomes.
  • In addition to these core responsibilities, other duties may be assigned.

The Senior Associate will work closely with all parties to ensure that the project is implemented within the designated budget and timeline. The successful candidate will have experience and success in developing high quality, nuanced proposals with complex process design that effectively addresses client concerns and objectives, as well as experience in effectively managing and supervising all members of the project team. The Senior Associate will also be responsible for overseeing quality assurance in each of their projects for the following:

  • all client and stakeholder communications;
  • meeting logistics;
  • project budget;
  • meeting summaries and meeting agendas;
  • file management;
  • appropriate representation of project outcomes in all written reports, presentations, websites, and public materials;
  • research protocols, including submission of research proposals to UVA’s Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) and adherence to IRB protocols;
  • oversight and mentoring of other IEN staff and student interns.
  • In addition to these core responsibilities, other duties may be assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s Degree and two years of related work experience. Equivalent education and experience will be considered in lieu of a degree.
  • Superlative people and professional-level communication skills, both written and verbal, and demonstrated experience of working with individuals from a variety of background.
  • Demonstrated excellence with problem solving
  • Ability to manage project finances, including budget management, and proposal writing
  • Strength and experience in working on collaborative decision teams
  • Knowledge of and/or passion for the work of the IEN, and a desire to be a fully contributing member of the IEN high-performance team
  • Willingness to pursue continuous learning in areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Commitment and ability to support the mission of the Institute for Engagement & Negotiation
  • High proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and One365/ Sharepoint/ Teams

Desired Qualifications:

  • Master’s Degree
  • Experience in two or more the following: stakeholder engagement, conflict management, mediation, negotiation, facilitation
  • Substantive experience in two or more of the following: health, climate resilience, community resilience, environmental and social justice, environmental and racial and social equity, land use, sustainability, food systems, natural resources
  • Ability to work with and oversee undergraduate and graduate student research associates
  • Knowledge of public outreach and stakeholder best practices and ethics
  • Knowledge of current issues relating to Virginia’s built and natural environment
  • Familiarity with local, state, and federal environmental policy, regulations, programs, and institutions
  • Multilingual skills (esp. Spanish)

Salary/pay: $54,000-$70,000 commensurate with experience.  

Application Deadline: Open until filled

How to Apply: To see the full job description and to apply, please click here