The Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Department of Periglacial Research in Potsdam, is seeking to appoint an Executive Director for the International Permafrost Association (IPA) Secretariat by September 1st 2013.

Candidatures are accepted until August 15th.

For additional information, please see below, contact:

Dr. Hugues Lantuit (Phone: +49 170 454-0677)

Prof. Hans-Wolfgang Hubberten

or consult our homepage:

The International Permafrost Association, founded in 1983, has as its objectives to foster the dissemination of knowledge concerning permafrost and to promote cooperation among persons and national or international organizations engaged in scientific investigation and engineering work on permafrost. The IPA is governed by its Executive Committee and a Council consisting of representatives from 26 Adhering countries having interests in permafrost research. It counts more than 1000 individual members in the world.
The IPA Secretariat is led by the Executive Director, who is responsible for the management of the organisation together with the Executive Committee of the IPA. The Secretariat also coordinates the organisation of the International Conference on Permafrost to be held in Potsdam, Germany in 2016. More information on the IPA is available at its website: The IPA Secretariat is based in Potsdam, Germany

- Job description -

The Executive Director of the IPA will work closely with the Executive Committee to manage the operations of the organisation, including strategic contributions to the IPA’s goals and scientific framework and planning of scientific events, in particular the International Conference on Permafrost in 2016 in Potsdam.
His or her scientific and administrative tasks will be to:

  • Coordinate, update, as and when necessary, the IPA project documents and plans; prepare meetings and IPA-related events and reports, report on meetings in minutes and relevant reports.
  • Ensure the liaison, coordination and the timely flow of pertinent information to IPA-affiliated scientists, projects and relevant international scientific bodies (including through the Frozen Ground bulletin, the Permalist mailing list, website, publications and other communications means)
  • Coordinate the planning of the International Conference on Permafrost to be held in Potsdam in June 2016, in partnership with the Local Organizing Committee (LOC), chaired by Prof. Hans-Wolfgang Hubberten. Ensure the liaison, coordination and timely flow of pertinent information between the LOC, the IPA and the Conference organizing company (UP Transfer). This duty is expected to take on a significant part of the Executive Director’s time as the conference date draws near.
  • Participate in sessions of the IPA Executive Committee and relevant meetings of other national and international bodies, representing the IPA at meetings, promoting IPA objectives in the permafrost, climate, polar, mountain and broader scientific communities
  • Coordinate the administrative and financial framework of the IPA, including gathering reports from country representatives and monitoring expenditure against budgets.
  • Seeking sources of maintaining adequate funding for the IPA Secretariat and fulfilling other duties as required or requested by IPA Executive Committee and AWI.

- Requirements -

Ideally, the successful candidate will have a PhD or Masters degree in permafrost research or a related subject (this is however not formally required) and experience in the management of international projects and/or organizations. The candidate will have excellent negotiation and communication skills and a flexible management style, with the capacity to work effectively in collaboration with the staff of the AWI administration and with members of the consortium. The candidate will also have an excellent command of English. Knowledge of German would be a plus. Experience with content management systems and graphic design and editing would be assets.

- Length of contract -

The position is funded on the basis of a fixed term contract for 36 months.

- Salary -

Payment will be in accordance with the German Tarifvertrag für den öffentlichen Dienst (TVöD).

- Job location -

The job will be based at the AWI in Potsdam. The institute is located on a historical campus surrounded by trees nearby the city centre. The city of Potsdam is more than 1,000 years old and is located along the banks of the Havel River and the surrounding lakes. Potsdam is known for its greenness, its splendid baroque architecture, its preserved palaces, gardens, and numerous monuments as well as a scientific environment which is unparalleled in all of Germany. The city is only a couple of minutes away from Berlin and its cultural scene. The cost of living is low for Germany, which makes the capital region very affordable, a unique situation in Europe.

For further information, please contact

Dr. Hugues Lantuit (Phone: +49 170 454-0677)

Prof. Hans-Wolfgang Hubberten

To apply for the position, please send a cover letter along with your CV, credentials and two academic references electronically to

Dr. Hugues Lantuit

and Prof. Hans-Wolfgang Hubberten

until August 15th. Please cite the code 65/G/Geo-P in cover letter.

You can also send your application per post until August 15th to:

Alfred-Wegener-Institute for Polar and Marine Research
PO Box 60 01 49
14401 Potsdam

Electronic applications are preferred.

The job interviews are scheduled to take place end of August. The starting date is flexible, though the candidate would be expected to start as soon as possible.

For additional information, please consult our homepage:

The AWI is aiming to increase the number of female employees within the scientific staff and is especially inviting qualified female scientists to apply for the position.
Disabled applicants with identical technical and personal suitability will be preferentially selected, please see our notification on our homepage under job offers / jobs.

The AWI supports balanced work-life career development via a variety of alternatives.

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