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Project Officer, Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo

Department: Faculty of Arts Effective Date: May, 2012


35 hrs/wk

Reports to: Director, Wood buffalo Capacity Building Project, Faculy of Arts

General Accountability

Reporting to the Director, Wood Buffalo Capacity Building Project in the Faculty of Arts, University of Waterloo, the Project Officer will be responsible for research, project evaluation and office administration. The incumbent will work with academic partners, supervise research assistants and co-op students and work collaboratively with the Project Team, key stakeholders and external consultants.

Nature and Scope

Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo is a five-year (2011 – 2015) community-driven partnership between stakeholders in Wood Buffalo, Waterloo Region, the Suncor Energy Foundation and the University of Waterloo.

SPWB aims to improve quality of life for individuals and families in Wood Buffalo by building the capacity of the nonprofit sector to generate stronger leaders and more resilient organizations that are better positioned to anticipate and meet community needs.  The project also aims to foster socially prosperous communities across Canada by sharing the journey and by encouraging nonprofit organizations to use the Framework for Building Prosperous Communities.

SPWB is a short-term intervention, a catalyst for creating social change.  By using knowledge, capacity-building and social innovation, SPWB intends to introduce transformational solutions that will improve quality of life for all.  The organic nature of the project requires a close partnership with the community, one that responds to emerging needs and adjusts plans accordingly.

We define social prosperity as one of the pillars of a thriving and sustainable community.  It relates to an individual’s ability to reach their full potential and to access community resources that contribute to the quality of life. 

The Social Prosperity Framework for Building Prosperous Communities is a tool that was developed by the Project to increase social prosperity.  The Framework is divided into four areas of focus: People working in the nonprofit sector, Nonprofit Organizations, Networks and the Broader Community.  Each Area of Focus includes Approaches and Strategies.  The Approaches offer best practices and ideas that could be used in any community.  The Strategies offer transformational solutions to address specific community needs in Wood Buffalo.  The Framework is intended to guide Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo’s implementation plans. The projects’ ability to provide relevant and leading edge resources to nonprofits will be a critical component.

The Project Officer is responsible for conducting leading edge research and creating resources that will support the Framework.  In addition, the Project Officer is responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of the backbone organization so that the overall objectives of the project are met. As such, the Project Officer has key responsibilities including:


b.   Attends learning events and reads broadly on topics related to the project

c.   Anticipates project needs, gathers and synthesizes information

d.   Makes presentations to stakeholders where appropriate

e.   Monitors media and current scholarship for related articles and reports findings

f.    Supervises co-op students

g.   Coordinates data collection and analysis related to project activity to support project review, development, and strategic planning.

Education, Knowledge Resources & Information Sharing:

Project Strategy and Implementation:

a. Analyses research results and provides context in the development and implementation of strategies

b. Prepares meeting materials and articles, attends meetings and takes notes

c. Provides support to the Director and the Steering Committee

d. Working in concert with the other team members, helps build capacity in individuals, organizations, networks and the broader community (as outlined in the Social Prosperity Framework for Building Prosperous Communities)


a. Writes articles and blogs related to the project

b. Reports research results to key stakeholders

c. Utilizes social media to share information, engage the community in the work of Social Prosperity, and promote project activities

d. Writes supporting documents for annual reports and other communication materials

Special Events:

Project Administration and Monitoring:

a)   Manages project administration including:

Relationship Building and Engagement:

Significant UW internal relationships include:

Significant external relationships include:

Statistical Data

Specific Accountabilities

Supports the project through various activities and initiatives including, but not limited to, the following:

Working Conditions