NERC Digital Research Infrastructure Investment Board (DRIIB): membership vacancies

Closing date
27 May 2022 16:00 UK time
Panel and interview date
Week commencing 13 June
Time commitment
Two to four meetings per year, plus reading time
Number of positions
Length of service
Three years
Start date
Late June 2022

What is DRIIB?

DRIIB is a new governance group of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). It provides the NERC Executive with independent advice and recommendations on the strategic direction and investments associated with NERC’s digital research infrastructure portfolio.

Why you should join

Are you interested in an exciting opportunity to advise on digital research infrastructure investments for environmental sciences? NERC is looking to recruit members for DRIIB, our new governance group.

Members of DRIIB will:

  • maintain strategic oversight of the NERC digital research infrastructure portfolio and ambitions, within the context of the UK digital research infrastructure landscape
  • make recommendations and support decision making on digital research infrastructure, aligned with NERC and UKRI strategic drivers and the needs of the environmental science community
  • consider and advise on opportunities, challenges and risks which may arise in the digital research infrastructure portfolio
  • support NERC in successfully implementing its delivery plan and forthcoming digital strategy through recommendations and progress monitoring
  • make appropriate recommendations to ensure that NERC’s data and compute policies remain fit for purpose
  • support effective engagement between NERC, UKRI and the research and stakeholder communities, including users of NERC’s digital infrastructure and users of research.

Responsibility and accountability for the NERC digital research infrastructure portfolio lies with the NERC Executive. The Executive will use the advice and recommendations of the board to make appropriate decisions regarding the management and development of the portfolio.

Members sit on the board as individuals, rather than representing a particular organisation. They will act as representatives for NERC and the digital stakeholder community.

NERC anticipates the need for between two and four meetings of DRIIB per year. Typically, meetings will run for half a day, and some pre-meeting reading will be required. We intend to work through a mix of online and in-person meetings.

For meetings, an attendance fee will be paid, where eligible, together with reimbursement of reasonable travel and subsistence costs in accordance with UKRI’s travel and subsistence policy (PDF, 162KB).

Who can join

We are seeking applicants with scientific, technical and digital infrastructure expertise from a range of disciplines, backgrounds and sectors, including:

  • higher education institutions
  • research centres
  • research institutes
  • industry.

To ensure a balance of expertise, applicants are asked to indicate their primary area of expertise from the list below, selecting up to two:

  • environmental science: data intensive user
  • computationally intensive environmental science, including the use of emerging technologies
  • data infrastructure and service provision
  • high performance computing or the associated research software
  • future computing technologies.

Person specification

The essential requirements for members of DRIIB are:

  • expertise in the development, delivery and use of digital infrastructure and data for research, particularly within the environmental science domain
  • the ability to take a strategic overview of issues relevant to digital research infrastructure and computationally intensive research, the skills required for both, and delivery of NERC’s strategic goals
  • experience in strategic planning and the delivery of large-scale portfolios and programmes, particularly those related to digital research infrastructure and data
  • experience, willingness and the ability to represent the views of the research and stakeholder communities, to constructively challenge decision makers, and to facilitate two-way communication between the research community, NERC and UKRI.

Applicants must be able to devote sufficient time to membership of DRIIB, and must have the support of their host organisation in taking up this role.

Applicant selection will be made against the person specification. Each applicant will be scored against the above criteria based on the evidence they provide. Scoring will work on a scale from zero to five.

Applicants are asked to declare any potential conflicts of interest.

How to join DRIIB

Please submit an application via SurveyMonkey. This will require personal data and two long-form answers (with word counts), so you may prefer to look at the questions and prepare your answers elsewhere. You will also be prompted to attach a two-sided CV.

Please ensure you have read all the relevant information ahead of applying. If you have any questions, please email:

Diversity, equality and inclusion

At NERC, as part of UKRI, we believe that everyone has a right to be treated with dignity and respect, and to be provided with the appropriate opportunities and tools to flourish and succeed within an ethical and trusted working environment that enables them to do so and that is attractive and accessible to everyone.

We also value diversity of thought and experience and are committed to creating systems that value differences so that everyone can feel welcomed, included and nurtured throughout their time with us.

Learn more about how we support equality, diversity and inclusion in the workforce.

At NERC, as part of UKRI, we are proud to be users of the Disability Confident scheme. We guarantee to interview all disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria for any of our vacancies. There is a section on the application form to indicate if you would like to be considered under this scheme.

Members will be selected based on their suitability against the person specification above. Where candidates are of equal merit, NERC will use its discretion to ensure that there is a balanced composition of members within DRIIB. As such, the recruitment process will consider the balance of members with respect to:

  • equality, diversity and inclusion
  • sector experience
  • expertise.

Last updated: 5 May 2022

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