Open rank tenure-track position and Director of Ostrom Commons Governance


Indiana University


Friday, October 15, 2021

Start Date

Monday, August 1, 2022

The College of Arts and Sciences, O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, the Hamilton-Lugar School of Global and International Studies, and the Ostrom Workshop at Indiana University (IU) Bloomington invite applications for a tenure-track position in commons governance at the advanced assistant, associate, or full professor level, to begin Fall 2022. The successful candidate will have an academic home in one, or potentially more than one, of the above-listed academic units and Departments, along with serving as the Director of the Ostrom Workshop’s Commons Program.

Since the participating units and the Ostrom Workshop serve as a hub for multi-disciplinary studies, scholar-teachers trained in any of the disciplines in the arts, humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, or technology may apply. Indeed, because of the broad nature of this search, the successful applicant may study any of a wide range of disciplines and topics related to commons governance at the local, national, regional, or global levels, including but not limited to climate change, environmental policy and politics, cybersecurity, global public health, sustainable development, migration, urban commons, knowledge, media and information commons, and global commons (climate, oceans, space, finance, and cyberspace). A key requirement, though, will be the ability to bridge these interests and help build out a robust and cutting-edge research program on commons governance with wide ranging partners across IU, and around the world, to pursue collaborative projects and relevant grant opportunities.

The Ostrom Workshop has been an epicenter of groundbreaking interdisciplinary governance research since it was founded by Elinor (Lin) and Vincent Ostrom in 1973. Workshoppers have developed a wide range of methodologies and tools to study diverse topics such as the governance of common pool resources and democratic resilience. Now boasting five research programs, more than twenty active working groups, and nearly 300 affiliates from around the world, a key theme of the Workshop remains how we can come together to break down disciplinary barriers and effectively build bridges to tackle vexing real-world collective action problems. One of the key themes has been, and remains, studying and strengthening institutions to ensure that diverse voices are empowered and have a stake in the governance of their communities.

The Workshop’s research program on Commons Governance supports and pursues multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research on the commons, an area of study for which the Ostrom Workshop is internationally known. The Workshop maintains close ties to the International Association of the Commons (IASC), the leading professional association dedicated to the commons which Lin Ostrom helped to found.

Research on the commons is vibrant, generating a tremendous amount of creative activity on an increasingly diverse range of topics, from urban green space to outer space. Contemporary commons research encompasses information access and management, public health and medical care, housing, knowledge commons, the climate, and more. We seek a new Director to lead the Workshop’s Commons Governance research program and to engage scholars and centers across Indiana University and around the world in the ongoing quest to understand and explain how people develop and sustain all manner of resources in common. The successful candidate will help to establish an internationally recognized academic research program, have a strong interest in graduate and undergraduate instruction including mentoring of graduate student research, and a commitment to program, department, college, and university service appropriate with rank. IU-Bloomington is committed to building and supporting a diverse, inclusive, and equitable community of students and scholars. We expect the candidate to have experience in leading an interdisciplinary research group, a demonstrated track-record of collaborative research and publishing, and experience in pursuing external funding.

Applicants must have a Ph.D. prior to employment. Candidates must submit a cover letter detailing their research and teaching interests along with their vision for the Commons Program, current CV, teaching evaluations, a writing sample, and three letters of recommendation. Applicants must also submit a brief statement of their understanding of the importance of diversity in a university setting, along with their own contributions to diversity through research, teaching, and/or service.

To ensure full consideration, applications should be submitted by October 15, 2021, but they will be considered until the position is filled. Interested candidates should submit application materials online until the search is complete. Interested candidates should review the job description and submit application materials online at

Questions about the position should be directed to either of the search committee co-chairs, Professors Eduardo S. Brondizio ( or Scott Shackelford (

Indiana University is an equal employment and affirmative action employer and a provider of ADA services. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ethnicity, color, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, national origin, disability status or protected veteran status.