Union of Concerned Scientists

Union of Concerned Scientists

Investigative Researcher
Center for Science and Democracy

Based in Washington, DC

The Position
The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is an independent national nonprofit working to solve some of our planet’s most pressing environmental and safety problems. Our scientists and engineers develop and implement innovative, practical solutions to some of our planet’s most pressing problems—from combating global warming and developing sustainable ways to feed, power, and transport ourselves, to fighting misinformation, advancing racial equity, and reducing the threat of nuclear war.

The Center for Science and Democracy (CSD) at the Union of Concerned Scientists is dedicated to advancing the essential roles of science, evidence-based knowledge, and constructive debate in the US policymaking process. We work to restore public support for the use of independent science in public policy making, help people distinguish evidence-based information from propaganda, and help scientists engage in effective communication with the public, media, and decision makers.

We seek an Investigative Researcher to carry out independent investigative research projects to increase the understanding and visibility of issues in science and democracy, using tools such as open records laws and internet research. Research topics will likely include scientific integrity and political interference at federal agencies, and corporate misinformation related to science-based policies. The researcher will work closely with the CSD team to compile, write, and edit technical analyses, reports, blog posts, advocacy materials, and other materials. They’ll also aid in background research, planning, and preparations for other CSD projects, such as public events and forums.

The investigative researcher will:

  • Conduct research on the use and misuse of science in policymaking
  • Develop technical expertise in one or more areas concerning the use of science in public policy debates
  • Maintain and update working knowledge of CSD-related policy issues
  • Lead investigative efforts including utilizing open records laws, like the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), to gain insight into scientific integrity abuses and special interest influence in science policy
  • Support the CSD team by drafting, editing, and fact-checking advocacy materials as needed, including letters, fact sheets, briefing papers, op-eds, presentations, and briefing papers
  • Conduct relevant congressional research and prepare background materials on members and bills as needed

Qualifications and Experience

The position requires completion of a bachelor’s degree in science or humanities, or equivalent experience, and2 to 4 years of experience demonstrating strong investigative research and analytical skills. Proficiency in computer applications including spreadsheets and word processing, and the ability to handle multiple tasks are required. Robust written and oral communication skills, high self-motivation, and solid organizational skills are necessary for this position. The ability to analyze and write quickly and clearly to meet the needs of the current media and congressional landscape is essential. An understanding of environmental policy and experience utilizing transparency laws such as the Freedom of Information Act is desirable, though not required. Most of all, candidate should possess a passion for improving the way in which science informs policy making, and an interest in working in the public interest/non-profit sector.

May spend extended periods at computer terminal. This position does not require travel.

At UCS, comparable training and/or experience can be substituted for degrees when appropriate.

UCS is an equal opportunity employer continually seeking to diversify its staff. In particular, we’re dedicated to broadening opportunities for individuals from demographic groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences and in environmental advocacy. We’re also committed to building an inclusive workplace culture where talented people of widely diverse backgrounds can thrive. We’ve adopted this commitment because we believe the inclusion of culturally diverse perspectives will improve our work and produce better societal and environmental outcomes for all, including historically disenfranchised communities. We are actively seeking people who bring diverse backgrounds and perspectives to join us in this work.

Compensation, Hours and Location:
This is a full-time position based in UCS’s Washington, DC, office. For candidates who meet all position requirements, the salary is around $47,900. UCS offers excellent benefits and a rewarding work environment. Information about the organization is available at http://www.ucsusa.org. A listing of all open jobs is available at https://www.ucsusa.org/about/jobs-ucs.

To Apply: Please upload a cover letter and résumé. Please include salary requirements in the cover letter. Upload materials in Word or PDF format only. No phone calls, please.

Apply HERE!

Deadline: July 1 or until filled

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.