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Head of Research

REF: IRC213458

DEPARTMENT: Armagh Observatory and Planetarium

SALARY: £56,252 to £63,346

LOCATION: Armagh Observatory and Planetarium, College Hill, Armagh, Northern Ireland, BT61 9DB

This is a unique opportunity to work in one of the longest continuously operating astronomical research institutes in the world (a recognised leader in several specialist fields) and one of the world’s most advanced planetaria. The Armagh Observatory and Planetarium delivers internationally-recognised research in astronomy and related sciences and vibrant educational and outreach programmes for all ages.

The Board of Governors is seeking to appoint an individual who can bring the right balance of scientific understanding, strategic thinking and research leadership to the position of Head of Research. The successful candidate will be expected to support the Director of AOP as he develops and leads a programme of organisational change to deliver greater alignment between the research, educational, outreach and heritage aims of the Observatory and Planetarium and to ensure its long-term sustainability and success. This role will lead on the research function in AOP and develop and deliver a strategy for its conduct, including identifying educational and commercial opportunities. The person should be a respected researcher in any field related to astrophysics, including theories, observations, simulations and instrumentation.

The Armagh Observatory was established in 1790 by Archbishop Richard Robinson. It is the oldest scientific institution in Northern Ireland and the longest continuously operating astronomical research institute in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The Armagh Planetarium was founded in 1968 by Dr Eric Lindsay, the seventh Director of the Observatory. It is the oldest operating Planetarium in the UK and Ireland and has been the public face of astronomy in Northern Ireland for the past 50 years. They are located within 14 acres of attractive, landscaped grounds, known as the Armagh Astropark, and in close proximity to Armagh City.

Further appointments may be made from this competition should AOP positions become vacant which have similar duties and responsibilities.

For more detailed information, inlcuding the duties and responsibilities of the post and the criteria to be used during the recruitment and selection process, please click on the Candidate Information Booklet link below.

Alternatively, an application pack can be requested by contacting:
HRConnect, PO Box 1089, The Metro Building, 6-9 Donegall Square South, Belfast, BT1 9EW.
Telephone: 0800 1 300 330. Email:

All requests must include your name, address and reference number IRC213458.

Completed application forms must be returned to arrive not later than 12:00 noon (UK time) on Friday 27th October 2017.