National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation's

Local, Regional and National Events

bringing the growing dialogue & deliberation community together

Skip to main content.

Attn Canadians: ABCD seeks Project Lead    

NCDD member David Kahane from the University of Alberta asked me to share this job opening with the network…

Alberta Climate Dialogue (ABCD) seeks a Project Lead to guide an ambitious citizen engagement initiative that will operate first in municipalities across Alberta, Canada and then scale up to the provincial level.

ABCD is a five-year project premised on the conviction that well-designed citizen deliberations can play a crucial role in creating effective Albertan responses to climate change, by shaping the policies of participating municipal and provincial governments and motivating individual and community action. The project currently has $1 million in funding from the Community-University Research Alliance program of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, as well as $2 million in matching cash and in-kind support from community organizations and partners; the Project Lead will work with partners to develop further funding from public, private, and not-for profit sources.

Currently ending its first year of funding, ABCD has built a cross-sector alliance with membership from municipal and provincial governments, industry, academia and civil society. A central responsibility of the Project Lead is to continue building collaborative relationships across these sectors to the point of partnership to co-convene and fund significant and policy-shaping citizen deliberations. Depending on his or her degree of expertise and experience with citizen deliberation projects, the Project Lead will also be a key ABCD presence in co-designing complex, multi-stage, large scale citizen engagement activities with municipal and Provincial partners.

The other key task of the Project Lead is to structure, mentor, and support the work of a growing ABCD team, currently at 46 community and university based researchers and 23 partner organizations. She or he will be a pivotal figure in a structure that includes an Executive Committee, a Steering Committee, a Design Advisory Committee, eight ‘Action Teams’ of researchers and practitioners, Deliberation Project Teams (currently one, increasing to 4-7), and a Project Advisory Committee. The Project Lead supervises staff throughout the province (currently a full time Project Manager and four researchers and research assistants, growing over the course of the project), oversees project budgets and accounts, and is responsible for maintaining positive relationships with current and potential funders. The Project Lead needs to effectively direct multiple, complex projects as well as weaving these into a coherent whole at the level of public profile and practical functioning. The Project Lead reports to the Project Director, who leads the research side of the project and has overall fiscal and operational responsibility.

Competitive candidates for the Project Lead position will have:

  1. Passion about the role of citizen engagement in climate change responses and the ability to be a vocal and visible champion for this.
  2. Superb, demonstrated project development and leadership experience, with minimum 3-5 years’ experience in strategic development of new projects and leadership of complex, cross-sectoral projects.
  3. Strong project management skills, including experience hiring and supervising staff, and a proven ability to meet multiple deadlines and balance numerous projects while maintaining a perspective on long-term goals.
  4. Proven fundraising ability, budget management skills, and preferably some business development experience.
  5. Superior writing, speaking, and communication skills, including an ability to conceptually understand the research work of the project and report on it to a variety of internal and external audiences, including ABCD partners, funders and the public.
  6. Established relationships with and/or network knowledge of government, NGO, and business leadership in Alberta are a strong asset.
  7. Experience in developing, designing, and/or facilitating large citizen engagement activities—that is, public consultations, collaborative planning exercises, deliberative democracy exercises, etc.— is a strong asset.
  8. An understanding of Alberta’s political climate and the realities of Canadian federalism is a strong asset.
  9. A postsecondary degree in a related field (e.g. political science, environmental studies, communication, political science) is required; an MA or PhD are a strong asset. Professional accreditation in public participation, deliberation, and dialogue skills would be an asset (e.g. IAP2 certification).

The Project Lead will be based in Edmonton on campus at the University of Alberta. In the case of exceptional candidates, we may be willing to consider 2-3 days/week in Edmonton and the balance in another part of the province. The project currently has four remaining years of funding in place, and the Project Lead’s initial term will be for two years. The salary range is $61,000-$85,000 depending on qualifications and length of work week, and in addition there is a comprehensive pension and benefits package valued at approximately 23% of salary. Our hope is that the new Project Lead will be able to begin on May 1, 2011, though this may be negotiable.

Canadian regulations make it unlikely that we can hire someone who is not a Canadian citizen or landed immigrant.

Please send application materials to [email protected]. We will begin considering applications on March 25, 2011 and continue until a suitable candidate is hired. Application materials should include:

  1. A cover letter describing why you are interested in this work and summarizing why you should be considered for this job;
  2. A resume;
  3. Two writing samples; and,
  4. Telephone and e-mail contact information for three employment references.

All attachments should be in .pdf or Microsoft Word format and titled as follows “Lastname_Firstname_documenttitle”.

If you have questions not answered on the relevant web pages, please contact the ABCD’s Project Director, David Kahane at [email protected].


This position description is also online at

Be The First To Leave A Comment...

RSS feed for comments on this post.TrackBack URI

No comments yet.

Leave a comment...

© 2003-2010 National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation.
Learn more about us or explore this site.