Research Lead/


Research Lead with a focus on innovation in sustainability and building performance


About RKD

RKD is organised as a limited company with offices in Dublin, Cork, Waterford, Belgium and Spain. The practice employs a team of over 160 talented skilled professionals across a wide range of disciplines, united by a passion for design quality and the common aspiration to deliver the most effective solutions to achieve the very best outcomes for our clients, for People and for the Planet. We have a rich legacy dating back to our formation in 1913 and since then, we’ve established ourselves as one of the most diverse and effective architecture firms in Europe.

We work across multiple sectors and with various specialities including masterplanning and urban design, building design, interior design, accredited sustainability expertise and the delivery of a full architecture / engineering service.

At the core of our design philosophy is the belief that each project and every site require an exceptional solution in a unique context, rather than following a house style. Design thinking and performance optimisation is at the heart of how we work. The desire for continuous innovation continues to drive our people and inspire our clients today.  For RKD, ‘design thinking’ goes much deeper than the visual appearance of the project. It means a fresh approach to problem-solving. It means delivering the most practical solutions to achieve best practice performance targets and bring visions to life.

One of our own visions is to deliver ‘Better Buildings for The Future’ and align our practice and projects with best practice targets to ensure that we create places for people to thrive, now and in the future.

RKD is already a leader in the design and delivery of sustainable buildings. In 2022 we wanted to take this to the next step and publicly launched our Sustainability Charter and the Better Buildings for the Future initiative which we have worked on for two years to set a roadmap to 2025. We are now in the implementation stage and are looking for research lead to assist us in the delivery of this vision.

Descriptions of the role to be filled

RKD Architects are seeking to recruit a researcher with a focus on innovation in sustainability and building performance for our Dublin, Cork and Gent, Belgium or Malaga, Spain offices. The role can be remote or based in on of our office locations.


Role & Responsibilities

  • ‘Guardian’ of our Sustainability Charter
    • Work with our employees and dedicated Sustainability/ESG Action Group to deliver the yearly KPI’s of our Sustainability Charter
    • Conduct yearly reviews and update of the charter
    • Develop the next roadmap for 2025-2030


  • Stay up to date, communicate and share knowledge with project teams on sustainability policy and trends especially, but not limited to
    • EU Green Deal / EU Taxonomy / Level(s) development
    • ESG development in private sector
    • National policy/legislation development regarding sustainability and building performance
    • Sustainable Urban Development
    • Industry best practice and innovation development – updates on targets and standards from IGBC, RIAI, RIBA, LETI, CIBSE, RICS, Architects Declare


  • Integrate sustainability workflow across all project teams, including
    • guidance and tools for different sectors and project stages
    • CPD’s and training in sustainability topics
    • building performance tools for future integration
    • sustainability guidance for presentations, client meeting and design workshops


  • Sustainability Consultancy, including
    • Client advice on sustainability/ESG context
    • Early-stage sustainability strategies and target setting
    • Project alignment to green building certification
    • Whole-Life Carbon Analysis
    • Early-stage daylight/energy analysis


  • New services and research
  • Lead development of new Building Performance Evaluation service and Post-Occupancy Evaluation currently funded with Enterprise Ireland
  • Identify potential research funding and research partners


  • Participate in cross-industry working groups and collaborations
  • IGBC Technical Advisor and Community Network
  • TUD Architecture Masters Elective Course Industry Collaboration
  • Irish and UK Architects Declare
  • Construction Sector Group Innovation & Digital Adoption
  • Share Your Green Design
  • Irish Cities 2070


The successful Candidate

  • You have 2-4 years of industry experience in architecture, engineering, real estate, or construction, with a focus on sustainability consulting and integrated design
  • You have earned a bachelor’s degree or diploma in architecture, engineering, building science, architectural/engineering technology, environmental science, or a comparable field.
  • You demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively with design team members; ability to effectively manage a portfolio of projects in a dynamic and fast-paced work environment
  • You are passionate about sustainability and understand the foundational concepts of sustainable buildings including energy performance, material selection, and the integrated design proce


  • Knowledge of design tools such as
  • Adobe Suite
  • Revit/SketchUP/CAD
  • Powerpoint/Excel/InDesign
  • Sefaira/OneClick LCA/Carbon Designer
    • You are familiar with the design and construction process, including knowledge of construction document sets and construction administration

Salary / Benefits

Basic salary commensurate with experience and location

Additional benefits include pension scheme, private health insurance, travel allowance, Bike to Work Scheme and discretionary annual bonus.


Apply to: [email protected]

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