Clean Air Impact Fellow - School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

University of Birmingham
Birmingham, United Kingdom
£30,942.00 - £42,792.00
May 02, 2021
May 28, 2021
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
Job details
  • School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • Full time starting salary is normally in the range £30,942 to £40,322, with potential progression once in post to £42,792
  • Grade 7
  • Full Time/FTC for up to 2 years

The NERC research project WM-Air (Clean Air Science for the West Midlands) is a £5m, five-year programme of activities to apply environmental science expertise to improve air quality and health across the West Midlands. Activities within WM-Air include new measurements of air pollutant levels and sources, real-world vehicle emissions, development of new model capability to predict future air quality, health and economic impacts, predicting air quality responses to policy changes, and the use of green infrastructure.

A core part of WM-Air is case studies to apply our science to specific issues, working in collaboration with external stakeholders ranging from local authorities to SMEs, through a cohort of 'Impact' Research Fellows. Here, we are seeking to recruit an Impact Fellow, to work on a range of WM-Air related impact projects with project partners.

We are looking for an enthusiastic, innovative and self-motivated individual, with excellent communication and organisational skills. You will have a background in air pollution / atmospheric science, from research, consultancy or practice, and the ability to exploit the WM-Air and wider University of Birmingham science expertise, and apply and communicate this with external organisations in the context of their interests. You will not be an expert in all areas of air quality / health - but will be able to effectively draw upon and leverage the expertise in the wider WM-Air team and translate this to partner interests. The role will span technical, scientific aspects to providing strategic/policy advice across the region, including knowledge transfer activities.

The Impact Fellow will be employed by, and based at, the University of Birmingham, with their time devoted to a range of regional air quality impact activities. They will spend much of their time working directly with external partner organisations. Case studies are likely to include working with future air quality model predictions for different scenarios, produced by others in the WM-Air team, and linking these with their associated health benefits, through application of existing tools and dose-response relationships

Role Summary

Working within the scope of the objectives and decisions determined by WM-Air Project Board, the Impact Fellow will be responsible for delivering regional impact through a portfolio of projects and applications - both existing and to be established - with external stakeholders to deliver measurable air quality/health-related impact, in environmental, societal, economic or policy terms.

Main Duties

The successful candidate will work with the WM-Air team and external stakeholders to translate science into measurable impact (i.e. to inform relevant strategies, decisions, plans and activities). The role will comprise a portfolio of case-studies applying clean air and health science with external partners. The Impact Fellow will work under the overall direction of William Bloss (WM-Air PI) and the WM-Air project manager, with project-specific direction coming from individual PIs for specific case studies, alongside external partners.

Specific duties/responsibilities include the following:
  • Work on a range of WM-Air case study projects, drawing upon technical support and expertise from the wider WM-Air team. Existing expertise spans air quality monitoring, emissions measurement, air quality modelling and economic impacts; the fellow will complement these strengths with a particular focus upon health impacts.
  • Develop and maintain existing and new stakeholder relationships.
  • Work closely with external partners to understand their needs and work to identify, prioritise and lead mutually-beneficial collaborative activities that fall within the remit of WM-Air, in order to deliver impact and maximise project output.
  • In consultation with the principal investigator and/or strand leads as appropriate, decide on the most appropriate way of undertaking specified activities.
  • Develop, deliver and evaluate air quality-related impact activities, projects and case studies.
  • Inform reviews / commentary on external (e.g. consultant) strategies in the Air Quality and Public Health service area.
  • Disseminate and translate knowledge in a way that external stakeholders, policy makers and general public can understand.
  • Prepare reports, publications, and other dissemination materials as required.
  • Present impact outcomes to national and international audiences.

The responsibilities may also include some but not all of the responsibilities outlined below:
  • Contribute to writing bids for research funding
  • Undertake management/administration arising from the project
  • Contribute to Departmental/School research-related activities and research-related administration
  • Contribute to enterprise, business development and/or public engagement activities of manifest benefit to the College and the University, often under supervision of a project leader
  • Supervise students on related work and provide guidance to PhD students where appropriate to the discipline
  • Provide guidance, as required, to support staff and any students who may be assisting with the project
  • Deal with problems that may affect the achievement of objectives and deadlines

Person Specification

Required Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications, Experience:
  • Enthusiastic and innovative approach to air quality-related work
  • Relevant air quality / applied health science expertise - typically a higher academic qualification (e.g. PhD) and/or equivalent professional experience
  • An appreciation of the current air quality / public health landscape in the West Midlands
  • Ability to translate science into policy and application with measurable impact as required by external stakeholders and partners, and take initiative to identify new opportunities
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including very strong communication, explanation skills
  • Able to develop good rapport with internal team members and external partners
  • Able to manage own time and prioritise to meet deadlines, and to co-ordinate own work with others to avoid conflict or duplication of effort.
  • Ability to assess resource requirements and use resources effectively (including people, time, money and equipment).
  • An ability to generate and communicate technical and non-technical impact.
  • An ability to disseminate the project deliverables at meetings, conferences and/or through reports and publications.
  • An understanding of, and an ability to contribute to broader management/administration processes.

For further information please contact Professor William Bloss, or Dr Suzanne Bartington,

Valuing excellence, sustaining investment

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working