What does it take to run a research nonprofit?




We’re exploring a new role at Topos: Director of Research. We’d love to hear from or about anyone who might be interested!

Life is complicated, and so is running an start-up independent nonprofit research institute. It requires a blend of talents, training and experience, and gutsy, determined people committed to the mission. In just a little over 2 years, the Topos Institute has launched as a vibrant, growing model for creative research in and ethical application of category theory and related sciences. This is thanks, in large part, to a dedicated leadership team determined to better the world by understanding complex systems and building new tools to help us cooperate.

A generous and perceptive donor has recognized that, as we grow, it is time to update this blend of talents and their allocation between research and administrative leadership. To assist us, they have offered to explore potential funding for an addition to our team: a director of research. What would this role mean in the context of Topos?

While we’re still refining the position, we believe it is important to have someone with a relevant scientific portfolio and experience in research administration, ideally in the nonprofit sector. This person would add to our scientific leadership team, and run the day-to-day operations of the research staff. A draft of specific duties includes:

Our practice is to only solicit applications for confirmed positions, so we are not yet ready to take that step. But we do want to share this possibility with our community, and connect with those who might be able to fill (or help define) this role on our team. If you, or someone you know, might be interested in a conversation about this, please let us know before next Friday, the 9th of September.

We’re excited to have the opportunity to continue our growth in this way, and share the results with you in the months to come!