Call for Applications — Research Assistant (Model-Making) Announcement

The Vertical Geopolitics Lab is seeking a Research Assistant (Model-Making) for an immediate start. This post is a paid opportunity for a limited-term contract of between 15 to 30 hours per week, dependent on availability.

The Vertical Geopolitics Lab (VGL) is a non-profit think-tank and speculative design practice based at the University of Toronto (UofT), Daniels. Currently, the lab is preparing a critical research-based exhibition on the instrumentalization of architecture in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, to be installed in early March 2024.

Fig. Ideas translated into action

This Research Assistant post will be engaged in a range of collaborative work types. As part of a small and select team, the successful candidate will engage in model-making and a variety of exhibition-making techniques to immersively communicate the lab’s research findings. The ideal candidate is either a current student or a recent graduate in visual studies, scenic design, architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, or a related field. The Vertical Geopolitics Lab is eager to work with a collaborative, self-motivated, detail-oriented, organized, and flexible individual who wishes to develop their skills and related interests.

Essential Qualifications and Experience

  • Currently enrolled in or recently completed a qualification in visual studies, architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, or a related field.
  • Experience in physical scale-size model-making and use of a machine workshop.
  • Experience in digital 3D model-making with the Rhino software app and the use of a digital fabrication lab (eg 3D model-printing, CNC laser cutting and milling (CAM)).

Preferred Qualifications and Experience

  • Experience in one or more of the following is preferred: exhibition installation, lighting, use of textile/wood/metal materials and/or construction knowledge.
  • Knowledge of Russian and/or Ukrainian language is an asset, but not essential.


Please send your applications to Prof Lukas Pauer at info@thevgl.net Applications must include a CV and student/professional portfolio with a focus on model-making work samples. If you are a student, kindly specify your expected availability on weekdays throughout the term. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, but the current deadline for submissions is Sat, 9 Dec, 2023. Please submit electronically as a single multi-page PDF document.