First listed on: 03 March 2021

Deputy Director, ARC Hub for Sustainable Crop Protection 

Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI) 

The Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI) is a research institute of the University of Queensland (UQ) which was established in 2010 and comprises of four research centres – the Centre for Crop Science, the Centre for Horticultural Science, the Centre for Animal Science and the Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences.

QAAFI’s team of 450 researchers, postgraduate students and support staff undertake high impact science for agriculture and food industries. The institute’s strong partnership with the Queensland Government provides our researchers with a direct link to the agriculture industry in Queensland, and world class field research facilities throughout Queensland. Agriculture is one of UQ’s highest ranked research fields nationally and internationally and QAAFI is a global leader in agricultural research in subtropical and tropical production systems. QAAFI scientists are driven to make a difference to the agriculture and food industries and have over 150  collaborators worldwide.

Details of the research interests of the Institute may be accessed on the Institute’s website:

The ARC Research Hub for Sustainable Crop Protection

The Australia Research Council (ARC) Industrial Transformation Research Program (ITRP) Research Hub for Sustainable Crop Protection will take on the global challenge of transforming crop protection technology by delivering RNA based biopesticides for fungal diseases of crops.

The Hub aims to further develop and commercialise the innovative BioClayTM technology, a biological alternative to chemical fungicides targeting economically significant diseases of broadacre and horticultural crops. It addresses industry challenges of fungicide resistance, chemical residues in food, off-target effects and environmental harm. An expert multidisciplinary team uniting science, commercial and social licence pathways ensures industry and consumer uptake advancing $60B Australian Agriculture. The Hub translates to increased productivity, market access and enhanced environmental credentials of Australian food.

About This Opportunity

As Deputy Director, the primary purpose of this position is to work closely with the Director in the development of the shape and scope of the ARC Hub research program and its delivery.

As a member of the Hub Executive, the successful applicant will provide advice to the Director on the strategic direction of the Hub, with respect to research priorities.

Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Effectively lead a research team and foster the research activities of external partners;
  • In conjunction with the Hub Executive and Advisory Committee, develop strategies to enhance and improve the Hub’s research performance;
  • Contribute as a Chief Investigator to collaborations which yield new insights and opportunities, and strengthen an international reputation for quality and impact of work through publication;
  • Obtain and successfully manage external competitive research grants, and consistently lead successful applications for external competitive research funding for the ARC Hub;
  • Develop an independent research program, including recruitment of external funding, and achieve national and international recognition in the research area of interest of the Hub.

This position is located at our picturesque St Lucia campus, renowned as one of Australia’s most attractive university campuses, and located just 7km from Brisbane’s city centre. Bounded by the Brisbane River on three sides, and with outstanding public transport connections, our 114-hectare site provides a perfect work environment – you can enjoy the best of both worlds: a vibrant campus with the tradition of an established university.

Our Ideal Candidate

Alongside the completion of a PhD and an international research profile in a field of research aligned to Fungal Plant Pathogens/Plant Pathology/RNAi technologies for crop protection, the successful candidate will demonstrate:

  • An emerging track record of outcomes and leadership including guiding the development of others at a senior level in a complex environment, leadership of major funding initiatives, major contributions to knowledge;
  • Strong interpersonal ability and communication skills including the ability to work with others to achieve outcomes and continual improvement, including the ability to lead and implement change, and to lead and motivate staff;
  • Experience in liaising and collaborating with a broad range of agencies – community, professional, industry and government - to develop partnerships and/or collaborative initiatives;
  • An ability to supervise, mentor and nurture staff with diverse skills and abilities.

For a full list of duties and selection criteria, please see the attached Position Description.

We value diversity and inclusion, and actively encourage applications from those who bring diversity to the University. Our Diversity and Inclusion webpage contains further information if you require additional support. Accessibility requirements and/or adjustments can be directed to

What We Can Offer

This is initially a full-time, fixed-term appointment for up to 3 years (with the possibility of extension) at Research Academic Level C.

The full-time equivalent base salary will be in the range $119,548 – $137,846 plus super of up to 17% (total package available will be in the range of $139,871 - $161,280).

You will be able to take advantage of UQ Sport Facilities, recreation leave loading, salary sacrificing options, on-campus childcare, discounted private health insurance, cheap parking, development programs and many other benefits.

For further information, please review The University of Queensland's Enterprise Bargaining Agreement 2018-2021.

Position Description



To discuss this role please contact Professor Neena Mitter at

For application queries, please contact stating UQJob number in the subject line.

Want to Apply?

To submit an application for this role, use the Apply button below. All applicants must supply the following documents:

  • Cover letter (addressing the selection criteria, no more than 2-3 pages)  
  • Resume 

To satisfy pre-requisite questions and ensure your application can be considered in full, all candidates must apply via the UQJobs portal by the job closing deadline. Applications received via other channels including direct email will not be accepted. 

Applications Close: 22 March 2021 at 11:00PM AEST

UQ Careers Number: 511012

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