The Canadian Space Agency is Looking for a Science Advisor to the President

Credit: CSA/SpaceQ.

The Liberal government wanted to have a Chief Science Advisor. They found one in Dr. Mona Nemer. Now the Canadian Space Agency wants a Science Advisor who reports directly to president Sylvain Laporte.

The new Science Advisor will work “in close collaboration with Canada’s Chief Science Advisor and a network of Science Advisors from other science based departments and agencies, you will develop innovative strategies for growth, forge lasting partnerships to sustain them, and promote science by engaging the public and the next generation” according to a notice posted to the government website.

Is this just another layer of bureaucracy? Or will the position and network of advisors provide a useful bridge for the Chief Science Advisor as she advises the government?

Duties and requirements

The position is part-time and will initially last 2 years which may be extended. Applications are being accepted until April 26, 2018. The selected applicant will not be employed by the CSA, but rather their host or sponsoring organization will be reimbursed for their work. The candidate must hold a PhD from a recognized academic institution in a science discipline relevant to space.

The government website spells out the duties of the Science Advisor as follows: “Reporting to the President of the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), and upon his requests, the Science Advisor will make recommendations and provide strategic advice on science and science policy issues, as they relate to space. The Science Advisor will also collaborate extensively with Canada’s Chief Science Advisor and the network of Science Advisors from other Science Based Departments and Agencies (SBDAs).”

Specific duties:

  • Advises the President and collaborates with the members of the CSA Executive Committee to promote science priorities for the Canadian Space Program;
  • Ensures that the government scientific space activities and Open Government are fully available to the public;
  • Ensures the Canadian space science portfolio is represented and promoted with other Government Departments and internationally:
    • Fosters strong coordination and communications of space science objectives across SBDAs through interaction with the Chief Science Advisor and other Science Advisors;
    • Supports CSA activities related to the United Nation Committee on Space Research (COSPAR), the United Nation Committee On the Peaceful Use of Outer Space (UN-COPUOS) and other national and international committees and bodies involved in science;
  • Communicates the societal impact and breadth of CSA science investments, as CSA principal public facing scientific advisor;
  • Serves as a focal point for interactions on space science with universities, industry and the Canadian research community;
  • Identifies opportunities for the recruitment of young professionals in the field of Space Science and Engineering and other domains related to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Candidates must demonstrate a record of achievements in their scientific area of expertise as well as extensive experience in:

  • the promotion of science through outreach and engagement;
  • making meaningful contributions to the development of strategies and/or policies related to science;
  • the implementation of complex science programs or missions;
  • participating in scientific advisory bodies (e.g., expert panels, task forces, committees) would be an asset.

About Marc Boucher

Boucher is an entrepreneur, writer, editor & publisher. He is the founder of SpaceQ Media Inc. and CEO and co-founder of SpaceRef Interactive LLC. Boucher has 20+ years working in various roles in the space industry and a total of 30 years as a technology entrepreneur including creating Maple Square, Canada's first internet directory and search engine.

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