Academic Employment Opportunities

Position Information
Position Rank: Full Time Professorial Stream - Associate/Full Professor
Discipline/Field: Astronomy or Astrophysics
Home Faculty: Science
Home Department/Area/Division: Physics and Astronomy
Affiliation/Union: YUFA
Position Start Date: July 1, 2021

Allan I. Carswell Chair for the Public Understanding of Astronomy and
Associate or Full Professor in Astronomy or Astrophysics at York University

The Department of Physics and Astronomy at York University in Toronto, Canada invites highly qualified candidates to apply for a professorial stream tenure-track or tenured appointment in Astronomy or Astrophysics at the Associate or Full Professor level to commence July 1, 2021. The successful candidate will be appointed as the Allan I. Carswell Chair for the Public Understanding of Astronomy for a five-year term renewable twice upon mutual agreement. Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. All York University positions are subject to budgetary approval.

A PhD in Astronomy, Astrophysics, or Physics is required along with relevant experience and a demonstrated record of excellence in research, in public education and outreach, and in teaching.

The Allan I. Carswell Chair for the Public Understanding of Astronomy will conduct scientific research in astronomy or astrophysics and scholarly and creative activities for the public understanding of astronomy.

The successful candidate will have a proven research record in astronomy or astrophysics and will be expected to engage in outstanding, innovative, and externally funded research at the highest level. Through this hire and several others anticipated in the early 2020s, the Department of Physics and Astronomy seeks to establish a leadership role in the study of structure in the cosmos, on scales from star formation in individual galaxies to the cosmic microwave background, enabled by existing and planned world-class facilities and the "big data" they will generate. Particularly, we seek observers or theoreticians who have a clearly articulated program of research which will make use of the next generation of observing facilities or their data products and who have experience working at the cutting edge of investigations involving large bodies of astronomical data.

The Chair will facilitate interdisciplinary projects that will maintain York University as a distinctive brand synonymous with excellence and innovation in public outreach and education. The Chair will support the development and deployment of innovative astronomy and science outreach programs both on and off campus to bring astronomy learning experiences to the surrounding community, city, province, nation, and beyond, and especially to those most in need of STEM and post-secondary learning experiences. These programs will keep pace with emerging technologies, evolving pedagogical approaches, developments in the educational landscape, and changes in the needs of the communities served. The Chair is expected to support the involvement of graduate, undergraduate and high school students in the development and delivery of science outreach programs. Opportunities to engage with the Allan I. Carswell Observatory for the promotion of public education in astronomy are available. As appropriate, the Chair is expected to work with the Observatory Coordinator to further such endeavours and to support the involvement of students in research undertaken with the Observatory. The Observatory, home to a 1 metre class telescope and other smaller aperture telescopes, supports undergraduate and graduate courses and research projects as well as education and public outreach. The Chair will also collaborate with the York Science Communicator in Residence program to enhance student learning opportunities in science communications theory and practice. Accordingly, the Chair’s in-class teaching responsibilities will be commensurate with their other responsibilities.

The position will involve graduate teaching and supervision as well as undergraduate teaching and the successful candidate must be suitable for prompt appointment to the Faculty of Graduate Studies. Candidates must provide evidence of excellence in teaching through a description of their teaching philosophy and teaching accomplishments and pedagogical innovations, including in high priority areas such as experiential education and technology enhanced learning, and through strong letters of reference.

Candidates must provide evidence of research excellence of a recognized international calibre as demonstrated in a research statement, a record of publications and forthcoming publications in top-ranked and field-relevant journals, presentations at significant conferences, awards and accolades, and strong letters of reference from referees of high standing.

Candidates must provide evidence of demonstrated expertise in public education and outreach in astronomy through a summary of key contributions to the field and through strong letters of reference from referees with knowledge of the candidates' relevant experience.

Astronomers and astrophysicists in the Department of Physics and Astronomy focus on observational and theoretical studies of compact objects, active galactic nuclei, galaxy evolution, dark matter, early Universe cosmology, the cosmic microwave background and large-scale structure, as well as space-based tests of general relativity. Further information about the Department can be found at .

York University champions new ways of thinking that drive teaching and research excellence. Through cross-disciplinary programming, innovative course design, diverse experiential learning and a supportive community environment, our students receive the education they need to create big ideas that make an impact on the world. York is the third largest university in Canada, with a strong community of 53,000 students, 7,000 faculty and administrative staff, and more than 300,000 alumni. Its location in the greater Toronto area facilitates opportunities for interaction and collaboration with many nearby universities and colleges, research institutes, museums, and relevant industries.

York University has a policy on Accommodation in Employment for Persons with Disabilities and is committed to working towards a barrier-free workplace and to expanding the accessibility of the workplace to persons with disabilities. Candidates who require accommodation during the selection process are invited to contact Professor Norbert Bartel, Chair of the Search Committee, at

York University is an Affirmative Action (AA) employer and strongly values equity, diversity, and inclusiveness including gender and sexual diversity, within its community. The AA Program, which applies to women, members of visible minorities (racialized groups), Aboriginal (Indigenous) people and persons with disabilities, can be found at or by calling the AA line at 416-736-5713. Applicants wishing to self-identify as part of York University’s Affirmative Action program can do so by downloading, completing and submitting the form found at: All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens, permanent residents and Indigenous peoples in Canada will be given priority. No application will be considered without a completed mandatory Work Status Declaration form which can be found at

All application materials should be submitted electronically through: . Applicants should submit a curriculum vitae, a two-page summary of key contributions to the public understanding of astronomy, a one-page statement of teaching philosophy, and a three-page summary of key research contributions and current and future research plans. Furthermore, applicants should arrange for three or more signed letters of recommendation to be sent on their behalf.

To guarantee full consideration, applications should be received by November 19, 2020. Any queries about the position should be directed to Professor Norbert Bartel, Chair of the Search Committee, at


Posting End Date: November 19, 2020