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Chair, Department of Physiology & Biophysics

University of California Irvine
Irvine, California
Closing date
Feb 3, 2023

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Life Sciences, Biophysics, Physiology
Job Type
Academic Dean/Dept. Head
Organization Type

The University of California, Irvine (UCI) announces a national search for the Chair of the Department of Physiology & Biophysics. The Department Chair will continue to build upon the Department’s well-established research strengths while envisioning future advancement and growth into new and complementary areas of study. The Chair will also foster and support faculty members in the engagement and education of UCI’s graduate, medical and undergraduate students, and postdoctoral scholars, to ensure an exceptional learner experience. The successful candidate will have an academic appointment at the Associate/Full Professor rank.


Specific Responsibilities:
1) Overall responsibility, authority and reporting relationship. The responsibilities and authority of the department chair are established by the Dean of the School of Medicine. All department chairs serve at the discretion of the Dean and report primarily and directly to the Dean.
Department chairs are responsible for strategic planning for the department, taking into consideration the goals.

2) Faculty. The chair is responsible for recruitment, management, compensation and retention of faculty in consideration of the School of Medicine strategic plans, and of the balancing of the multiple missions of the institution. Initial approval by the Dean or Dean’s delegate is required prior to the initiation of any search process for new faculty. In accordance with SOM and University policies and procedures, the chair nominates all faculty for initial appointment, additional term appointments, and promotion and tenure within the department. The chair will meet at a minimum annually with each faculty member to provide evaluation, guidance, and mentoring for the faculty member. The chair is responsible for managing faculty time away to ensure there is no conflict of commitment, and for ensuring that faculty disclose consulting agreements, outside income and potential conflicts of interest so that these can be evaluated and managed appropriately. The chair will oversee all faculty activities and manage all academic initiatives. The chair will provide strategic program recommendations on future directions for faculty complement to the Dean. The chair has the authority to assign administrative, teaching, research, and (where appropriate) clinical roles to the faculty of the department. The chair is responsible and accountable for the academic performance and productivity of the faculty.

3) Educational and training programs. The chair is responsible, together with their faculty, for the development of the medical student and graduate student teaching programs of the department. The chair is responsible for maintaining liaison with other clinical and/or basic science departments to foster an integrated teaching program for the School of Medicine, and to work with the Vice Dean for Education. In particular, the chair is responsible for promoting and implementing the strategic directions established by the Curriculum Educational Policy (CEP) Committee.

4) Research programs. The department chair has the responsibility to build and maintain their own vibrant research program and help to build a world-class departmental research program. The chair will encourage and support research creativity and productivity at all levels of the department, including faculty, fellows, and students. The chair will provide input on research strengths and recommendations on strategic research program directions for the Dean, as well as the Vice Dean for Basic Science Research. The chair is responsible for fostering interdepartmental collaboration and integration of basic, translational, and clinical research.

5) Facilities. The department chair is responsible for the planning and development of departmental space and for ensuring that all space is used efficiently and productively. The chair should direct all requests for new academic space (research, faculty office, teaching) to the Space Resource Allocation Advisory Committee (SRAAC) who make space recommendations to the Dean.

6) Finances and budget. The department chair is responsible for the financial affairs and long-term fiscal stability of the department including budget preparation and reporting. Expenditures from an approved fiscal year budget are authorized only by the chair with the approval of the Dean or Dean’s delegate. The chair is responsible for and authorizes expenditures from departmental funds with the approval of the Dean, consistent with all institutional guidelines and practices.

7) Remuneration of departmental personnel. Chairs are responsible for making recommendations to the Dean for faculty compensation (base salary and incentive) in compliance with the established University and School of Medicine guidelines.

8) Promotion of teamwork. An important responsibility of the department chair is to promote teamwork both within a department and between/among other departments and schools in all aspects of the academic mission.

9) Cultural values of the institution. The department chair serves as a role model and advocate for the cultural values of UCI and promotes the School of Medicine's and UCI's commitment to diversity, equity and collegial environment within the department. The chair is an officer of the institution who acts collaboratively and makes decisions based on sound ethics and with due consideration of what will bring the greatest benefit not just to the department, but to the school, and the overall UCI community.



  • PhD and/or MD, or equivalent degree Academic credentials which merit appointment at the rank of Associate Professor or Professor.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Significant leadership experience and demonstrated success as a manager at the Chair, Associate Director, Director or Program Leader level gained within an academic medical center, research-intensive university and/or research institute, including successful experience in the recruitment, retention, mentoring and management of faculty. Strong organizational, management, financial, and budgetary skills with the ability to bring scientific leadership and organizational innovation to the management of people and processes. A demonstrated ability to think strategically with a vision of how to develop the department’s research and educational programs for the future while keeping an eye on the details of the implementation; has the ability to articulate a vision that will promote and integrate physiology/biophysics research and graduate education across UCI and the community. A proven background in recruitment, mentoring, and development of outstanding academic and administrative leadership. A dedicated leader and mentor to faculty, post-docs, students, and staff. A strong personal track record of significant continuous funding, ideally with an NIH-funded research program, that preferably includes both individual grant funding as well as multi-investigator grant funding. A distinguished record of peer-reviewed publications, preferably in multiple high-impact journals. A distinguished academic record and national presence in one’s discipline as evidenced by such activity as major journal editorial responsibility, a senior officer position in one’s major national organization, regular participation on NIH study sections, chair or organizer of a regional/national/international meeting, or equivalent experience. A proven ability to build strong teams, both within and across disciplines, as well as to work as a team member with one’s colleagues in management and in team leadership positions with one’s direct reports. An ability to grow revenue and attract external funding from institutions and individuals; specific experience with donor fundraising is especially desirable. A commitment to and demonstrated results in the advancement of diversity and inclusion in current organization. Evidence of support for interdisciplinary research and/or basic science/clinical research program development is highly valued.

Personal Characteristics
The ideal candidate will possess the following traits:

  • Strategic in orientation, with a positive and clear vision for the future of Physiology and Biophysics research. Proven leadership and management skills with the ability to inspire and align faculty and staff. A strong communicator and diplomat with a confident style, genuine affect and able to inspire and effectively communicate with wide and diverse audiences at all levels of the organization and externally. Values and supports all aspects of the core mission of the institution, including clinical care, education, research and service. Analytical and data driven; ability to use metrics to support key decisions. A strong track record of integrity, credibility and a demonstrated capacity to build trusting relationships, and a positive and transparent management style that seeks to share information and welcomes input from stakeholders into the decision-making process. A collaborative approach and demonstrated ability to take an institutional view. Demonstrated political acumen and the necessary skills to constructively balance the interests of diverse stakeholders.

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The University of California, Irvine is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer advancing inclusive excellence. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.


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