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Global Ecology Senior Staff Scientist and Staff Associates

Carnegie Institution of Washington
Stanford, California
Closing date
Nov 10, 2020
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The Carnegie Institution for Science’s Department of Global Ecology seeks applications for two (2) Staff Associates and one (1) Senior Staff Scientist. Scholars in the Department of Global Ecology seek to understand how interactions between the Earth’s biogeochemical cycles and anthropogenic activity affect the sustainability of the Earth system, now and into the future. The Department of Global Ecology is located on the campus of Stanford University in California. The Carnegie Institution for Science has a deep commitment to scientific excellence and to increased diversity in STEM fields; we strongly encourage applications from candidates who will enrich and foster a culturally diverse and inclusive environment. 

The Carnegie Institution for Science is a unique organization dedicated to scientific discovery that provides individuals with the freedom and resources to explore areas at the cutting edge of their fields.  Scientists at the Institution have access to generous resources in support of their research and career success, including research equipment, technical staff, computing services/support, professional development opportunities, and discretionary funding for research support. 

About the Position: 

Carnegie staff scientists hold endowment-supported 12 month per annum salaried appointments. They pursue independent research that is supported by a combination of endowment funds and external support. Although staff scientists do not have formal teaching duties, we place considerable emphasis on mentoring graduate and postdoctoral scholars. Staff Associate positions are similar in seniority to early-career Assistant Professors and are appointed on a five-year fixed-term. Senior Staff Scientist positions are similar in seniority to Associate/Full Professor rank and are appointed on an open-ended term. 

Successful candidates will join a vibrant and growing scientific community that values both independent and collaborative research. Faculty in the department conduct use-inspired basic research, focusing on systems that involve life in its interactions with physical systems on planet Earth. The department has historical strengths in terrestrial ecology, plant physiology, climate science, energy systems, water resources, nutrient cycling, and aquatic ecology. Research approaches have ranged from field- and laboratory-based investigation to satellite remote sensing. More information about our current staff and their areas of expertise can be found on our website at

We seek candidates who will bolster existing areas of research as well those who would add complementary expertise as we further broaden the definition of Global Ecology. Examples of potential areas of interest include integrating mechanistic understanding of the biosphere from the leaf to the global scale, understanding interactions between climate and human health, quantifying feedbacks between physical climate and societal decision-making, anticipating global challenges of emerging technologies, understanding trade-offs and linkages in highly coupled natural, and natural-human systems, understanding the impact of global change on marine ecosystems and vice versa, improving understanding of the linkages among global biogeochemical cycles, and assessing co-benefits or unintended consequences of addressing environmental challenges. Candidates in complementary areas of research are also encouraged to apply. 

Job Duties & Responsibilities: 

  • Conduct and publish innovative, cutting-edge research with potential to advance scientific knowledge in areas relevant to the Department of Global Ecology
  • Seek external funding to complement endowment support for research projects and graduate/postdoctoral trainees
  • Mentor/supervise post-doctoral and graduate scientists
  • Contribute to service in support of the department and the organization

Required Qualifications: 

  • PhD in relevant areas of physical, mathematical or life sciences. 
  • Evidence of innovative independent and collaborative research contributions. 
  • Demonstrated promise of external funding success
  • Commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM

Anticipated Hire Date: Appointments for all positions could begin as early as January 2021 or as late as September 2021. In light of ongoing challenges associated with the pandemic, we will work with successful candidates to provide flexibility in relocation and start dates to accommodate individual needs and safety. Candidates may be appointed to work remotely for a limited time to accommodate relocation challenges associated with the pandemic.

Application Documents & Submission:  Applicants should submit (1) a cover letter with names of at least three references, (2) a curriculum vitae, (3) copies of three to five representative publications, and (4) a 3-4 page statement that addresses current and future research directions, mentoring philosophy, and experience with and/or commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM fields. First consideration of applications will begin November 1 and will continue until the positions are filled. Questions about these positions can be addressed to dgepositions@carnegiescience.eduAll materials must be submitted through Carnegie’s online application portal:

Employer Information: Employment offers are contingent upon successful completion of background checks. The Carnegie Institution for Science is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer. We are committed to creating a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace where all employees can thrive. Carnegie Science does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factors.

The Carnegie Science Mission Statement: Andrew Carnegie established a unique organization dedicated to scientific discovery “to encourage, in the broadest and most liberal manner, investigation, research, and discovery and the application of knowledge to the improvement of mankind …” The philosophy was and is to devote the institution’s resources to “exceptional” individuals so that they can explore the most intriguing scientific questions in an atmosphere of complete freedom. Carnegie and his trustees realized that flexibility and independence were essential to the institution’s success and that tradition is the foundation of the institution today as it supports basic scientific research. Learn more at

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