Canada Excellence Research Chair Opportunity in the Sociology of Climate Change

The University of British Columbia (UBC) Vancouver campus is recruiting an outstanding researcher to be nominated for the Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) in the Sociology of Climate Change. The CERC program, Canada’s highest research chair appointment, is designed to attract and support world-renowned researchers and their teams to Canada.

The University of British Columbia (UBC) is consistently ranked among the top 20 public universities in the world and is a renowned global centre for teaching, learning and research.  Since 1915, UBC has been opening doors of opportunity for people with the curiosity, drive and vision to shape a better world. Today, our students, faculty and staff come from around the world and our international research partnerships and publications help us collaborate on a global scale. UBC is proud to nurture and transform the lives of more than 65,000 students from Canada and 140+ countries around the world.

The Canada Excellence Research Chair in the Sociology of Climate Change provides a unique opportunity for an environmental sociologist focused on the empirical drivers and impacts of climate change within and/or across human societies. This scholar will engage with an extraordinary group of interdisciplinary colleagues in shaping the future of the discipline.

The candidate would be joining both a department and university with strong commitments to research on climate change. The Department of Sociology has a strong contingent of faculty members engaging with environmental topics such as climate change, consumption, sociology of natural resources, responses to natural disasters, the urban environment, and environmental movements and politics. The candidate will complement existing strengths in the Department of Sociology and UBC more broadly, while advancing knowledge on the social determinants of climate change, the inequitable distribution of risks associated with climate change, and/or the ways in which climate change and inequality are related. UBC’s institutional commitment is evident in its Climate Action Plan and ongoing initiatives to support research that include the University Sustainability Initiative, the Climate Hub and the newly announced Climate Justice Centre.

As a faculty member and CERC chair holder, the successful candidate will be expected to lead a strong, externally-funded research program, to teach undergraduate and graduate students, to supervise postdoctoral fellows and graduate students, collaborate with other faculty members, and actively participate in service to the Department, University, and academic/scientific community. In addition to the above, candidates must:

  • have a PhD in sociology;
  • be an internationally recognized leader of a highly impactful research program with at least 10 years of internationally competitive research experience, post Ph.D, at the intersection of climate change and social inequality;
  • demonstrate excellent leadership capacity through concrete examples of actions such as formation of international, collaborative research teams and a record of institutional leadership; and
  • have a proven track-record of advancing knowledge related to climate change and inequality within and beyond sociology, including clear research-driven contributions to public policy.

CERC holders will have strong commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion and a commitment to creating a welcoming community where those who are historically, persistently, or systemically marginalized are treated equitably, feel respected, and belong.  UBC recognizes that inclusion is built by individual and institutional responsibility through continuous engagement with diversity to inspire people, ideas, and actions for a better world. As Canada’s highest research chair appointees, UBC CERCs will have a unique and profound impact on our commitments to these values.

It is expected that the successful candidate will qualify for a full-time appointment at the rank of professor or – in exceptional circumstances – senior associate professor and be promoted to full professor within one or two years of the nomination.  Nominees from outside the academic sector must possess the qualifications necessary to be appointed at these levels. The anticipated start date will be July 1st, 2023. Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience and is subject to final budgetary approval.  Competitive start-up packages, relocation, housing assistance and infrastructure development funds will be provided.

The successful applicant will be nominated for a Canada Excellence Research Chair. The CERC nomination is subject to review and final approval by the CERC Secretariat.

Program nominees are not restricted by their nationality or their country of residence.  Non-Canadian Chairholders may work in Canada under the procedures by Employment and Social Development Canada and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. In some cases, a work permit may be expedited.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

UBC is committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive, non-discriminatory and accessible work environment for all members of its workforce. UBC is also committed to ensuring that the application and interview process is accessible to all applicants.  If you require accommodations or have questions about UBC benefits, services or accommodations policies, please contact Sue Lebrun at [email protected] in Workplace Health Services.

UBC recognizes the legitimate impact that leaves (e.g., parental leaves, illness or disability, COVID-19 impacts) can have on research achievement and commits to ensuring that leaves are taken into careful consideration. Candidates are encouraged to highlight in their application how interruptions have had an impact on their career.

To apply: Interested candidates must apply through the online application via the following link: Complete applications will include  the following: (1) a detailed curriculum vitae; (2) a research statement; (3) a separate one-page statement identifying the applicant’s contributions, or potential contributions, to equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) along with their ability to work with a culturally diverse and international student body; (4) two sample publications; (5) a teaching portfolio which must include a statement of teaching philosophy and should include evidence of teaching effectiveness where relevant (e.g. student evaluations, peer assessments, graduate and/or undergraduate course syllabus); and (6) request to have three referees send confidential supporting letters via email to soci.head(at) while indicating both the search title, “Sociology of Climate Change,” and the applicant’s name in the subject line.

Review of applications will begin on May 6th.

We rank in the top two Sociology departments in Canada. The university is situated in Vancouver, which is routinely included in lists of the top five most livable cities in the world. It is renowned for its mild year-round climate, innovative urban design, emphasis on the environment and sustainability, extensive cultural and cosmopolitan offerings, ethnic diversity, and spectacular natural beauty set among the coastal mountains and the Pacific Ocean. The UBC Vancouver campus is on the traditional, unceded territory of the Musqueam people.