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Hitz Climate Science Fellow

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Feb 15, 2022

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Hitz Climate Science Fellow

TERM: 2-year post-doctoral fellowship

Climate and Energy Program

Union of Concerned Scientists



Hitz Family Climate Fellowship: Climate Litigation Relevant Science

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is an independent national nonprofit that uses science to protect our health, safety, and environment. We are scientists, engineers, economists, activists and everyday people who develop and advocate for 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.

UCS is seeking a candidate for the Hitz Family Climate Fellowship, a two-year postdoctoral fellowship focused on science relevant to climate litigation. Litigation, informed by robust science, has the potential to be an important tool in our work to address the impacts of, and prevent further damage from, climate change. This work will focus on advancing the science and application of climate attribution research.


This fellowship provides a unique opportunity to work with two teams at UCS: the Climate Impacts research group and the Science Hub for Climate Litigation. In collaboration with these two teams, the Fellow will produce robust and relevant climate science to inform critical societal decisions about climate change responsibility currently being addressed by the courts. The Hitz Family Climate Fellow will work with UCS colleagues to develop a proposal to address current gaps in scientific research that can inform climate litigation.



The Hitz Family Climate Fellow will work with UCS staff to develop and undertake a two-year project that produces original research that helps to inform climate litigation and the organization’s climate campaign. The proposed research should: 1) address strategic gaps in research to help inform both public opinion and climate litigation; 2) produce original analysis that is inclusive of historically excluded communities; and 3) advance the science and application of climate attribution research.

Projects might include:

· development of methods for climate attribution science in regions with minimal baseline climate and socioeconomic data,

· new exploration into scientifically robust, real-time climate attribution research in response to emerging events, or

· regional attribution studies that quantify the link between climate impacts and corporate emitters.


Qualifications and Experience

The fellowship requires a broad and in-depth knowledge of climate change, including familiarity with detection and attribution science. A scientific understanding of the connections between climate impacts and emissions from corporate actors is preferred. The ideal candidate will have an interdisciplinary research background with interest in exploring climate change related research topics. Experience with regional downscaling or regional climate modeling is required. The position requires strong quantitative and analytical skills.

Applicants will have access to discretionary funds to support research efforts while at UCS. The fellow will be supported to conduct research, share results with a broad audience of stakeholders, and fulfill other professional development needs.

The position requires a PhD in a climate science related field.

Proficiency in languages other than English is preferred, but not required. Familiarity with and skills in public speaking—or a willingness to acquire these skills through in-house training–are strongly preferred.

The fellow may need to spend extended periods at computer. Regular office hours may include occasional nights and weekends. Periodic travel to events, conferences, speaking engagements, and other UCS offices may be required.

UCS is an equal opportunity employer actively 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 believe the inclusion of culturally diverse perspectives will improve our work and produce better societal and environmental outcomes for all, including historically disenfranchised communities.



This is a remote, 2-year full-time position. Fellowship will begin fall 2022. Science Fellowship salaries follow a fixed structure based on years of post-Ph.D. experience. UCS offers excellent benefits and a rewarding work environment.

Information about the organization is available at

Comparable training and/or experience can be substituted for degrees when appropriate.


More about the team:

Our team is made up of a dedicated group of researchers, scientists, communicators, campaigners, and advocates from wide-ranging backgrounds and experiences. We are committed to building a diverse and inclusive team and a collaborative and supportive work environment where all staff can thrive. We continually strive to create an environment which is a welcoming place for the LGBTQ+ community, people of color, parents, empty-nesters, and people with a wide variety of interests and backgrounds.


A note on the pandemic:

During the coronavirus pandemic our staff are working from home. We will resume working from our offices, travel, and in-person meetings when it is safe to do so.


To Apply: We know there are great candidates who won’t check all of these boxes, and we also know you might bring important skills that we haven’t considered. If that’s you, don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself. Please submit a cover letter, a statement of interest (up to 2 pages, including relevant background and experience, a brief description of a research idea in the selected area, and interest in working with UCS), curriculum vitae, and two references. In the cover letter, please confirm that the listed salary meets your expectations. Upload materials in Word or PDF format only. No phone calls please.


Deadline: March 6, 2022 or until filled.

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