Student Job: Humanitarian Engineering Research Assistant

Student Job: Humanitarian Engineering Research Assistant

July 29, 2019

Dahdaleh Building

Eligibility Requirements:

Rate: $16/hour

Hours: Up to 5 hours/week

Start and End date: Sept 4, 2019 – April 24, 2020

Application close date: Sunday August 18th@11:59pm

Applications are only accepted through the Career Centre. Go to and search for the posting with the JobID.


Project Title: Supporting the Development of a New Program on Humanitarian Engineering & Global Health

Project Summary

The Lassonde School of Engineering (LSE) and the Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research (DIGHR) are exploring the development of a new collaborative program of research and teaching in Humanitarian Engineering & Global Health. The proposed program has high-level objectives to:

  1. To mobilize engineering researchers and practitioners to improve the technical effectiveness and public health impact of humanitarian response.
  2. To cultivate, through training and mentorship, a cadre of Canadian engineers for technical and organizational leadership in the humanitarian response and global health world.

To support the development of this new program, the PIs are seeking a RAY student who will help conduct scoping activities.

Specific Activities

  • Carry out a scoping review (web search/survey) of existing educational, research, and training programs in the area of Humanitarian Engineeringincluding definitions, program goals, curricula, research, accreditation, fees, and other relevant features.
  • Develop a database of key organizations and potential informants working 
in the area of interest.
  • Literature search and review on the concept of Humanitarian Engineeringand produce an annotated bibliography.
  • Develop a full and organized bibliographical compilation within a suitable reference document database, e.g., Mendeley.
  • Prepare subjects for interviews and telephone surveys, and transcription of key informant interviews, to map out training needs and areas of interest with NGO/humanitarian agency personnel.
  • Support PIs with clerical and administrative duties relating to the development of a short course.
  • Production of knowledge products including briefings, slide decks, and reports.
  • Any other assigned activities.

Type of research experience the student will receive

  • Performing literature searches and bibliographical compilations.
  • Learning interview techniques.
  • Learning the dynamics associated with being part of a research team.
  • Enhancing oral and written communication skills, including conference presentations and manuscripts.
  • Gap analysis
, articulating research questions, and priority-setting.
  • Developing a compelling research proposal.

Type of training and support

  • Methodological training on systematic literature review
  • Subject matter training
 in Humanitarian Engineering
  • Day-to-day supervision by LSE/DIGHR PIs

Supervisors: Dr. Syed Imran Ali (Global Health & Humanitarianism Fellow, DIGHR), Prof. Satinder Brar (Dept. of Civil Engineerinng, LSE), and Prof. James Orbinski (Director, DIGHR)

Qualifications and Skills

  • Current undergraduate York student 
in engineering.
  • Demonstrable interest in global health, environmental health, and humanitarianism.
  • Experience working with people from a variety of backgrounds/cultures.
  • Ability to think conceptually and communicate ideas, thoughts and presentations.
  • Experience, and familiarity with conducting literature reviews.
  • Excellent computer skills (word processing, email, database management, spreadsheets); graphic design and layout skills desirable
  • Demonstrable eagerness to learn, take on initiative and with good organizational and time 
management skills.
  • Ability and willingness to work both independently and as part of a team with 
researchers, students, and staff.

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