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Post Doc Research Associate - Environmental Justice

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Richland, Washington
Closing date
Aug 27, 2022
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PNNL's Earth System Science Division enables energy independence and national security through leadership in earth systems science, engineering, and decision analytics. Our work focuses on solving complex problems in the dynamic Earth system. Our interdisciplinary scientists steward a breadth of efforts that encompass research on plants to groundwater science and coastal zones, to storm prediction.
Our research focuses on understanding and mitigating operational risks at the interface of human and natural environments. This includes predicting the impacts of natural hazards and extreme climate events on Earth and human systems, along with the impacts of wildfire, flooding, sea level rise and storm surges. We focus on understanding and mitigating environmental contamination and increasing the resiliency, security and sustainability of water resources. We provide geointelligence through advanced sensing and data analytics to forecast complex system behaviors and operational performance to understand human-natural systems. This includes informed decision making and enhanced community resilience, advanced monitoring, and remote sensing of environmental systems for energy and national security. It also includes developing energy systems, including geothermal energy, sustainable oil and gas production, storage and utilization, along with carbon sequestration.
Driven by a "science-to-solutions" philosophy, we provide scientific leadership and technology to enhance national security, mitigate natural hazards and optimize disaster response. In the critical areas of energy, environment, intelligence, and defense, we deliver insights and decision support through the development of tools and solutions.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's Risk and Environmental Assessment group (Environmental Justice and Stakeholder Engagement Team) seeks a postdoctoral scientist with a background in Environmental Justice or Energy Justice, with experience in qualitative fieldwork, such as interviews, ethnography, and document analysis, and community engagement. The successful candidate will support projects such as consent-based siting of spent nuclear fuel facilities and environmental justice analyses for federal energy infrastructure.
The successful candidate will participate in interdisciplinary teams of engineers and scientists engaging in conducting environmental justice analyses and/or studying public values, beliefs, and perceptions related to spent nuclear fuel storage, as well as stakeholder engagement practices in facility siting. Experience with qualitative research is highly recommended.
The postdoctoral research associate will be responsible for performing all or some of the following tasks with the level of quality, timeliness, and cost that meets required project and client expectations:
- Support interdisciplinary teams on projects related to spent nuclear fuel and environmental justice.
- Help develop study designs to understand public values related to spent nuclear fuel as well as the success of collaboration and engagement efforts in facility siting.
- Conducting interviews and ethnographic studies related to spent nuclear fuel and public engagement.
- Conduct detailed census demographic and geographic analyses to identify disadvantaged populations
- Conduct environmental justice community engagement with under-served rural community stakeholder groups
- Participate in proposal and business development efforts leading to new or expanded projects and business opportunities.
Minimum Qualifications:
- Candidates must have received a PhD within the past five years (60 months) or within the next 8 months from an accredited college or university.
Preferred Qualifications:
- A PhD in the social sciences, from a field such as Sociology or Rural Sociology, Science and Technology Studies, Anthropology, Human Geography, or related field.
- Experience in qualitative data collection and analysis, such as interviews, ethnography, participant observation, document analysis, focus groups, or photovoice.
- A background in the theory and practice of stakeholder engagement and environmental justice or energy justice.
- Experience conducting detailed census demographic and geographic analyses to identify disadvantaged populations.
- Experience conducting environmental justice community engagement with under-served rural community stakeholder groups.
- Experience working on highly interdisciplinary teams and an understanding of the different lenses that shape research in various disciplines.
- An understanding of federal US energy policy, particularly related to nuclear energy and spent nuclear fuel.
- A background in program assessment.
- Proficiency in using qualitative data analysis software.
Hazardous Working Conditions/Environment
Not Applicable.
Additional Information
Not Applicable.
Testing Designated Position
Not Applicable.
About PNNL
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is a world-class research institution powered by a highly educated, diverse workforce committed to the values of Integrity, Creativity, Collaboration, Impact, and Courage. Every year, scores of dynamic, driven people come to PNNL to work with renowned researchers on meaningful science, innovations and outcomes for the U.S. Department of Energy and other sponsors; here is your chance to be one of them!
At PNNL, you will find an exciting research environment and excellent benefits including health insurance, flexible work schedules and telework options. PNNL is located in eastern Washington State-the dry side of Washington known for its stellar outdoor recreation and affordable cost of living. The Lab's campus is only a 45-minute flight (or ~3 hour drive) from Seattle or Portland, and is serviced by the convenient PSC airport, connected to 8 major hubs.
Commitment to Excellence, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Equal Employment Opportunity
Our laboratory is committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment dedicated to solving critical challenges in fundamental sciences, national security, and energy resiliency. We are proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer. In support of this commitment, we encourage people of all racial/ethnic identities, women, veterans, and individuals with disabilities to apply for employment.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory considers all applicants for employment without regard to race, religion, color, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity), national origin, age, disability, genetic information (including family medical history), protected veteran status, and any other status or characteristic protected by federal, state, and/or local laws.
We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application procedures and in employment. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, contact us at .
Drug Free Workplace
PNNL is committed to a drug-free workplace supported by Workplace Substance Abuse Program (WSAP) and complies with federal laws prohibiting the possession and use of illegal drugs.
Mandatory Requirements
Battelle requires employees to have a COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment, subject to accommodation. Applicants are required to disclose their vaccination status following a conditional offer of employment and must attest to being fully vaccinated with a Center for Disease Control (CDC)-approved COVID-19 vaccination, or provide documentation of need for medical or religious exemption from the COVID-19 vaccination requirement.
Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from having any affiliation with the foreign government of a country DOE has identified as a "country of risk" without explicit approval by DOE and Battelle. If you are offered a position at PNNL and currently have any affiliation with the government of one of these countries you will be required to disclose this information and recuse yourself of that affiliation or receive approval from DOE and Battelle prior to your first day of employment.
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