Researcher – trust and science engagement

IIASA Veröffentlicht: 6. Juni 2024
Laxenburg, Austria


The Tools for Raising and UnderStanding Trust in systems science through citizen engagement (TRUST) project, a part of the IIASA Strategic Initiatives (SI) Program and the Systemic Risk and Resilience (SYRR) Research Group within the Advancing Systems Analysis (ASA) Program, is seeking a talented individual to join our team as a researcher (R1) on trust and science engagement. We are looking for someone with a graduate degree in social sciences, psychology, communication studies, statistics or a related field, who possesses expertise in both quantitative and qualitative methods for assessing social phenomena to spearhead the analysis of relationship dynamics within participation-driven climate (risk) science methodologies, such as citizen science, policy simulations, and transdisciplinary co-creation approaches, focusing particularly on trust in science.


The IIASA SI program actively conducts horizon scanning to pinpoint initiatives with substantial strategic impact, advancing the frontiers of systemic analyses. Within this framework, various strategic initiatives (SIs) are pursued, with the TRUST Strategic Initiative prominently featured among the recent projects. These SIs are time-bound and established through competitive internal calls for proposals, focusing on topics of significance to several or all countries where IIASA has a Member Organization.

As the primary host group of the TRUST Strategic Initiative, the SYRR research group contributes to transforming the way societies manage risks in economic, ecological, and social systems while confronting the global trends that are amplifying these risks. The program examines environmental and socio-economic interactions across multiple scales, providing the analytical foundations for the improved management and governance of global change issues.


The successful applicant will join an interdisciplinary team to work on the TRUST Strategic Initiative, funded by IIASA Member Organizations. The mission of the IIASA TRUST Strategic Initiative is to: (i) strengthen the knowledge base for raising awareness on fostering trust through participation-driven science, (ii) lower the barrier for scientists to use participation-driven approaches, and (iii) provide concrete empirical evidence of the role of participation driven science for raising trust in science. The TRUST SI solidifies the IIASA strategic goal to promote the use of participatory processes and soft systems analysis and enables researchers to work towards earning trust among the wider public.


  • Designing and empirically testing communication strategies tailored for climate (risk) science communication and examining how these strategies influence public perception and trust in climate (risk) science.
  • Contributing to the development of conceptual frameworks to evaluate the nexus between participation-driven system science and trust in climate (risk) science and the formulation of a taxonomy for participation-driven approaches.
  • Analysis of surveys on trust in climate (risk) science and researchers’ efficacy in cultivating trust in climate (risk) science (utilizing platforms like MTurk or Prolific with Qualtrics).
  • Collaborating on the production of co-authored papers for publication in relevant journals/books and dissemination through various media channels (e.g., press, internet).
  • Presenting research findings at international conferences and fora.


  • Master’s degree (or equivalent) in social sciences such as psychology, communication studies or a related field.
  • Proficiency in both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, with expertise in survey design and analysis as well as statistical software packages (R, SPSS, or Stata), in content analysis or other communication studies methods, and systematic literature review.
  • Strong academic writing and communication skills in English are necessary, proficiency in other languages is welcome.
  • IIASA offers an interdisciplinary and international workplace, and the possibility to interact with researchers of different nationalities, with strong ties to a world-wide network of research institutions engaged in environmental systems research. The successful candidate must be able to work in, and have respect for, an intercultural environment, and IIASA core values.


The selected candidates should be available to take up the positions as soon as possible in 2024. We offer initial fixed-term, full-time (40 hours per week) employment contracts for one year with possibility for extension thereafter. Eligible applicants wishing to work part-time hours will also be considered.

Duties will be carried out at the IIASA premises in Laxenburg, near Vienna in Austria.

The successful candidates will be appointed in accordance with the IIASA profiles for research careers.


  • The possibility to contribute to environmental sciences for sustainability and global wellbeing.
  • The opportunity to deepen and improve knowledge and scientific profile.
  • Career development perspectives.
  • An attractive salary which is exempt from income tax in Austria and negotiable, based on the qualifications, skills and experience of the selected individual and at least: EUR 39,825.00 (full-time) for R1 researchers.

IIASA salaries are:

  • Subject to deductions for health insurance and/or social security.
  • Not directly comparable with other employers in Austria, due to the unique legal status and privileges granted to IIASA.
  • Subject to the principle of income aggregation (Progressionsvorbehalt in German).


  • Educational subsidies for children of school age enrolled in private schools in Austria.
  • A generous annual leave entitlement.
  • Relocation allowances and paid home leave for employees in scientific and professional categories hired from international locations.
  • The possibility to work up to 100 days per year in home office (within Austria).
  • Assistance for newcomers to Austria with visa, work and residency permit applications.
  • Support finding accommodation in Austria.

Further details here.


IIASA is committed to a working environment that promotes equality, diversity, tolerance and inclusion within its workforce. This is reflected in our  IIASA core values. We encourage qualified candidates from all religious, ethnic, and social backgrounds to apply. In the case that candidates are equally qualified, preference will be given to applicants from countries where IIASA has a  Member Organization.

Further Information

For further information about this opportunity please contact:

Teresa M. Deubelli-Hwang or Jung Hee Hyun

For general information about working at IIASA, please contact:


To apply for this opportunity, you will need to provide the following documents in English:

  • A cover letter outlining your motivation for and fit to the position
  • A detailed Curriculum Vitae
  • The names, addresses (including e-mail), and telephone numbers of two work-related reference givers.


Apply >> here <<.

Deadline for receipt of applications: until filled


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