Mountain Research Initiative Coordination Office, Centre for Development and Environment, University of Bern, Switzerland.

To fulfil its mission, the Mountain Research Initiative seeks an enthusiastic and motivated Scientific Project Officer to assist in the planning, coordination, and execution of tasks for diverse projects and activities that are managed for the MRI network at the MRI Coordination Office. 

Application deadline 12 November 2021, or until position filled. 


The Mountain Research Initiative (MRI) is a global research coordination network that connects researchers and promotes global change research in mountain regions worldwide. The MRI Coordination Office, hosted at the Centre for Development and Environment at the University of Bern, Switzerland, supports the coordination of this network through research-enabling activities such as synthesis workshops, working groups, events, and online platforms that bring researchers and stakeholders from diverse disciplines and backgrounds together.

The University of Bern offers very attractive work conditions, with the MRI offering great prospects to develop and enhance a professional profile, including networks, and apply scientific and other transferable skills to support a vibrant global research community.

Key Tasks and Responsibilities

  • Support the MRI Executive Director in the coordination and implementation of tasks related to MRI Flagship and Community-led activities, including regular reporting on their progress and outcomes, as applicable.
  • Liaise and coordinate with the MRI Governing Body (MRI Board and Science Leadership Council), MRI Working Group leads, regional partners, and other external stakeholders to promote the visibility of mountains and mountain research within scientific organizations and networks.
  • Assist in the planning, coordination, and facilitation of events, including workshops, webinars, seminars, research meetings, and conferences.
  • Support the MRI Communications Manager with the research and development of relevant content for publications, newsletters, social media, and other communication channels, as required.
  • Oversee the regular maintenance of the MRI Experts Database, as well as regular updates to the MRI website and quarterly data compilation relating to MRI activities for internal reporting purposes.
  • Participate and contribute to other MRI Coordination Office activities, including administration support and co-supervision of student assistants and/or interns, when required.

Desirable Skills & Qualifications

  • At least a bachelor (BSc/BA) degree in geography, environmental sciences, social sciences, or other related fields, with a demonstrable commitment to and experience with mountain research or mountain regions being a clear advantage.
  • Experience with planning, coordinating and/or facilitating scientific events and meetings.
  • Strong analytical and reporting skills, including computer skills.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and deadlines simultaneously, adopting an organized, efficient, and independent and yet collaborative work style.
  • Excellent intercultural communication, interpersonal and presentation skills.
  • Spoken and written proficiency in English is required, with German and/or French desirable.

This is initially a 2-year fixed-term contract at 60-80% FTE, starting no later than 15 January 2022 and preferably earlier, with possibility for renewal depending on funding being available. The position is based at the MRI Coordination Office and the salary is set in accordance with the University of Bern and the employment conditions of the Canton of Bern. Please note that a paid in-person training day is envisaged with the successful candidate in early-to-mid December 2021 at the MRI Coordination Office.


To apply, please complete the online application form, and upload the following supporting documents as a single PDF: a) Cover letter; b) Curriculum Vitae (4-page max., including the names contacts for two referees; and 3) Letter of recommendation, via this link: Please do not send your application via email.

Applications are accepted until Friday 12 November 2021, or until a suitable candidate is found. Notification of short-listed applicants will be made via email to arrange an online interview (virtual), to be scheduled during November 2021.

For any questions, please contact Dr Carolina Adler (MRI Executive Director) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Download this job description as a PDF.

Apply Now.

Cover image by Frank Winkler.


Newsletter subscription