EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT
BECOMING A RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT MANAGER IN NATURE-BASED SOLUTIONS
Are your students passionate about nature? Do they feel an urge towards protecting the environment and fighting climate change? Are they interested in creating an impact by developing environmental projects? They could fulfil their passions by becoming a Research and Development Project Manager! Research and Development project managers are involved in projects related to environmental topics such as nature-based solutions, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and circular economy. This job profile requires people with analytical, communication, management, and personal and social skills. So, if you think that your students could fit in its features and want to know more, meet Gerardo González, a Research and Development project manager!
Find out about the key skills to become a Research and Development Project Manager.
This job profile requires the right management of the projects and managing and understanding of research. “It is essential to participate in research and development projects as well as to prepare successful proposals. You need to be up to date with the latest developments or regulations in force and read through scientific and research documents.”
As a Research and Development project manager, this skill is fundamental because “it is required to overcome some difficulties and obstacles we might encounter in our daily duties, such as negotiation and reaching agreements with partners, or administrative and financial issues with any project, etc.”
A great part of the tasks that an R+D project manager needs to carry out includes collaboration among colleagues or project partners. “Most of the projects I participate in are collaborative projects in which a consortium of partners is organised and put together to carry out an agreed work plan. Therefore collaboration is essential.”
When becoming an R+D project manager, you need to understand that project management skills include a wide range of tasks: “This is a key skill needed to do my job, which requires to consider all administrative, financial, communication and technical aspects of any project in order to deliver the expected outcomes and results.”
The work of an R+D project manager can be challenging and requires a sense of purpose and motivation when encountering problems. “I believe feeling motivated and passionate about your job always contributes to give the best out of you (your 100%).”
This communication skill is essential to develop the projects of an R+D project manager and get the expected outcomes. “As part of the internal and external communication and dissemination activities we carry out, we usually participate in discussion panels, give presentations to different audiences, organise workshops and training activities, etc.”
Meet Gerardo González, a Research and Development Project Manager
Gerardo González has a Bachelor in Environmental Sciences from the University of Granada (Spain), and a Master in Urban Environmental Management from Wageningen University (The Netherlands). Since 2017, he has been working as a Research and Project Manager at BIOAZUL SL, which is a water engineering and technology consultancy based in Málaga (Spain). “My job as an R+D Project Manager includes activities such as preparation, negotiation and submission of project proposals, identification and setting up of consortia with different partners, and also the management of national or international projects mainly funded by the European Commission.”
In this 10th episode of our STE(A)M IT STEM Careers Podcast, Rocío Benito from European Schoolnet spoke with Gerardo González, a R+D Project Manager at BIOAZUL SL.
Being passionate about nature since he was a child, Gerardo tells us how an R+D project manager typical working day looks like in his job. Besides, he explains which professional and personal skills are needed to do his job, and how he uses them. “I believe feeling motivated and passionate about your job always contributes to give the best out of you (your 100%).” His advice to students is “to be open-minded and to explore and try different jobs and working environments, as this will help them to narrow down options throughout their career and choose the path they will feel happy about.” Listen to the whole podcast to know more!
CC BY 4.0: all the materials and content presented on this STEM Job profile have been co-created by STE(A)M IT, a project funded by the European Union’s ERASMUS+ programme project STE(A)M IT (Grant agreement 612845-EPP-1-2019-1- BE-EPPKA3-PI-FORWARD), in collaboration with the Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) phase 2, a pilot project initiated and funded by the European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation. European Schoolnet (EUN) oversees the interviewing and creating of the NBS Career Sheets, with the support of VO EUROPE.