Research Associate

HARC (HOUSTON ADVANCED RESEARCH CENTER) The Woodlands, TX Salary Based on Experience

Research Associate – Analytical and Program Management Support

Department:              Research Operations

Office/Group:             Environment

Reports to:                  Program Director – Hydrology and Watersheds


The Research Associate in Analytical and Program Management Support is responsible for performing technical assistance, project management, stakeholder engagement and proposal development in support of projects pertaining to water and energy resources. Work involves a high degree of expertise, creative insight, and technical skill. Work may involve the development of new theories and methodologies and management of components of a research project or program.


ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include, but are not limited to the following.  Other duties may be assigned.


Major Duties


  • Provide oversight of projects in terms of project management. Ensure timelines are in place and that progress reports, interim reports, final reports, subcontractor management and project deliverables are all completed on time and within budget and project scope.
  • Provide technical assistance and analytical support for groundwater hydrology Science Advisory Committee.
  • Provide networking and education support for groundwater hydrology Science Advisory Committee.
  • Plan and facilitate stakeholder meetings.
  • Provide data analysis support; experience with modeling and understanding how to interpret model results and communicate them to the public
  • Develop and conduct webinars and presentations to educate community members and stakeholders on the science of water conservation, groundwater management, and energy efficiency.
  • Conduct sustainability research and assist with the publication of peer review papers, white papers and general communication products.
  • Assist with grant and proposal writing for water use, energy efficiency and water conservation studies.


Project Management

  • Manage project teams, budgets, and timely completion of project deliverables. 


Proposal Development

  • Work with other research staff to identify potential funding sources.
  • Write white papers and proposals for submission to funding sources.
  • Develop project budgets to achieve objectives and desired outcomes in creative and cost effective ways.
  • Investigate the feasibility of applying a wide variety of principles and concepts to developing products and solving problems related to HARC’s mission. 



Internal focus

  • Collaborate with other HARC researchers on multidisciplinary projects.
  • Initiate and promote teamwork, shared learning and integrated approaches to sustainability.
  • Use professional knowledge and skills to contribute to the achievement of HARC’s mission.
  • Serve on HARC committees or working groups as assigned.


External focus

  • Initiate and promote external collaboration and integrated approaches to sustainability; organize and engage external stakeholders and partners to complete research objectives.
  • Make contributions to discipline through the creation of peer review publications, technical reports, public outreach documents, web content, and external presentations.


Continuing Education

  • Maintain broad knowledge of state-of-the-art principles, theories and practices in discipline.



To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


M.S. in hydrology, hydrogeology, or earth sciences, engineering, or geosciences with an analytical or statistical focus, or other related discipline is preferred. 5-8 years management/research/stakeholder engagement and related experience desired.

Language Ability:
Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common scientific and technical journals, financial reports, and legal documents. Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from customers, regulatory agencies, or members of the business community. Ability to create oral presentations and written articles for publication that conform to prescribed styles and formats.


Math Ability:
Ability to apply advanced mathematical concepts such as exponents, logarithms, quadratic equations, and permutations. Ability to apply mathematical operations to such tasks as frequency distribution, determination of test reliability and validity, analysis.


Reasoning Ability:
Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions. Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions in mathematical or diagram form and deal with several abstract and concrete variables.



Ability to facilitate stakeholder meetings and communicate technical information to the public.


Computer Skills:
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be computer literate in word processing, spreadsheet, internet and email software as well as project specific software. Experience with modeling software and ability to interpret modeling results.


Supervisory Responsibilities:
May supervise 1-3 employees based on project needs. Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the organization's policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems.


Work Environment:

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally exposed to wet or humid conditions (non-weather); outdoor weather conditions and risk of electrical shock. The noise level in the work environment is usually quiet.


Physical Demands:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 10 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include Close vision. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to sit and talk or hear. The employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; use hands to finger, handle, or feel and reach with hands and arms.



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