Protecting Farmland Pollinators: EIP Project Manager
The National Biodiversity Data Centre is a national centre that collates, manages, analyses and disseminates data on Ireland’s biodiversity. It manages a large work programme of biodiversity data management and associated thematic projects that bring added value to the data management role. One of these thematic projects is the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan. The All-Ireland Pollinator Plan was published in September 2015, making Ireland one of the first countries in Europe with an approach to address the problem of pollinator declines. It is supported by more than 90 governmental and non-governmental organisations and it has identified 81 actions to make Ireland, North and South, more pollinator-friendly. A 16-member steering group provide oversight of the Plan with implementation coordinated by the National Biodiversity Data Centre.
On behalf of the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan, the National Biodiversity Data Centre submitted a project to test farmland pollinator measures in the most recent European Innovation Partnership call run by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (2018). This was successful, and the Centre has been awarded €1,194,679 to run the five-year project. It must be completed by 31st December 2023. The project will develop and test a whole-farm pollinator scoring system that can be easily calculated, easily understood and easily improved (and in line with the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan farmland pollinator guidelines published in 2017). The five-year project will be run with a group of 40 farmers across farm types and intensities in Co. Kildare. It will be a result-based system – the higher the pollinator score of the farm, the more the farmer will get paid annually. The project will include significant insect/plant surveys to test whether farms that do have higher scores have more pollinators (bees, hoverflies) and more biodiversity generally. It will also test the effectiveness of each of the individual pollinator measures in Ireland. The operational group for the project includes the Data Centre, TCD, Bord Bia, Glanbia, Teagasc, Macra and four representative farmers across farm types. This independent project will run in parallel to the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan, beginning 2019.
The EIP Project Manager post is an exciting opportunity for an experienced professional to join the small team of staff at the National Biodiversity Data Centre in Waterford. The Project Manager will have responsibility for day-to-day delivery of the project, under the direction of the Project Coordinator, Dr Úna FitzPatrick.
Duties will be:
- Have responsibility for the management and delivery of all operational aspects of the project.
- Establish operational systems based on the project objectives and task list, linked to project deliverables in terms of timely delivery and quality control.
- Ensure project progress according to milestones and expected outcomes.
- Liaise with the Financial Manager and Financial Oversight Group to establish proper financial administrative, management and reporting processes.
- Prepare and monitor contractual arrangements with the project participants which will ensure delivery of the contract as well as timely provision of deliverables.
- Prepare and instigate a communications strategy for the project – will involve communication with stakeholders and media.
- Ensure dissemination of the work, both to stakeholders and the scientific community.
- Facilitate the effective operation of the Operational Group.
- Liaise directly with farmers throughout the project to advise on pollinator/biodiversity actions.
- Consult with the farmers annually to work out their farm-scale pollinator score.
- Oversee the farm-scale scores and payment scales. Liaise with farmers annually to sign off on these.
- Oversee roll out of the sampling protocol as developed by the Technical Working Group (subset of Operational Group) in year 2.
- Assist the Ecological Survey team in year 2 (surveying will be full-time from March-August).
- Assist with identification of all pollinator specimens collected during surveying.
- Carry out analyses of monitoring data, with the support of the Technical Working Group.
- Design and maintain a database system for data recording and archiving in collaboration with the National Biodiversity Data Centre
The post will run from the start date in 2019 until the end of December 2023.
This is a full-time post based in the National Biodiversity Data Centre, Waterford. The 40 farmers involved in the project will be based mainly in Co. Kildare, so the project will involve regular travel to this area.
The salary for the post is €45,000 per annum.
- MSc or equivalent experience in a natural sciences or related field,
- Full clean driving licence,
- Excellent interpersonal and oral communication skills,
- Proven track record in managing large projects,
- Keen knowledge and interest in Ireland’s biodiversity.
- Experience of biodiversity survey design and data analyses,
- Track record of working in the agri-environment area,
- Expertise in pollinators.
To apply, please send a cover letter together with a one-page Curriculum Vitae to the National Biodiversity Data Centre at [email protected]. The cover letter should set out your motivation and what you will bring to the post. Please mark your applications: EIP Project Manager. The closing date for applications is 17:00hrs, Wednesday 30th January 2019. A shortlist of suitable candidates will be made, and it is anticipated that shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview in Waterford on the 13th February 2019. The Data Centre will not cover costs of attending for interview.
The most suitable candidate will be appointed subject to final approval of the budget for the post.
More details of the work of the National Biodiversity Data Centre can be found on the Centre’s website at www.biodiversityireland.ie/about-us/ More details on the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan can be found at www.pollinators.ie