Senior Research Specialist (DC or SF)

Washington, DC or San Francisco, CA

Job - August 29, 2014
Greenpeace is the leading independent environmental organization that utilizes bold action, cutting-edge research and creative communications to protect the Earth. We expose global environmental problems and promote the solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future. We investigate, document and expose environmental destruction in a peaceful manner and promote open, informed debate about society's environmental choices. To ensure our independence we do not accept donations from corporations or governments.


The Senior Research Specialist will report to the Research Director. The Senior Specialist will work with the Director along with Greenpeace campaigns and communications staff to identify opportunities, use program resources and prioritize work for the Research Department  The Senior Research Specialist will identify opportunities to deploy both field and desktop investigations using chain of custody and markets research, Freedom of Information Act requests, GIS mapping and analysis, emerging data analysis techniques, scientific tools, sampling and analysis along with data and policy analysis.  Investigations will be designed to bolster the organization’s agreed priority campaigns and crisis response work as well as media queries and exploratory work. The Senior Research Specialist will be expected to move between issues and campaign disciplines as needed, managing multiple projects simultaneously and relationships internally with various departments, along with managing external relationships with research contractors, laboratories, collaborators with other organizations and members of the media.


In conjunction with the Research Director, identify and execute research needs and opportunities for Greenpeace campaigns and media response.

  • Proactively work with campaigns, media and communications team to identify research needs and opportunities that bolster Greenpeace campaigns.
  • Help prioritize and execute the objectives and work plan of the Research Unit.
  • Develop short and long term investigations, markets research, chain of custody research, scientific research, sampling and analysis, data analysis, policy analysis and  markets research as needed and appropriate for Greenpeace priority campaigns
  • Compose, send and follow up Freedom of Information Act requests - analyze and publish returned documents.
  • Develop quick response information, statistics and analysis as needed for reaction to daily campaign needs, media response and other priorities as the arise.
  • Brand stewardship and responsibility - make decisions on the fly that have organizational impact.
  • Manage research project budgets and contracts with external parties.
  • R&D of field sampling and remote sensing research technology.
  • Conduct research trainings and presentations to internal and external audiences on the work of Greenpeace Research Unit.



  • Graduate degree, specialized education and/or experience in science, environmental policy or other applicable field desirable.
  • Working knowledge of environmental issues required to a level needed to communicate credibly with external parties including media.


  • Research and analytical skills.
  •  Ability to work well independently and as part of teams within Greenpeace.
  •  Ability to proactively identify and triage research opportunities and requests from and with campaigns staff, media team and other parties within Greenpeace.
  • Ability to manage multiple relationships on a regular basis with entities outside Greenpeace effectively and professionally.
  • Ability to handle relationships with reporters and news outlets using our research.
  • Ability to manage research fellows and interns on a project-by-project basis
  •  Understanding of Greenpeace campaigns and non-violent direct action.


  •  A minimum of seven years experience at an environmental organization, environmental consultant or corporation within environmental field.  Consideration given to years of experience with non-profit advocacy organization in another field using research as a tool in campaigns.
  •  Proven experience directing research projects from conception to completion and effective communication of research results
  •  Demonstrated ability to effectively conduct research required for use within campaign planning processes, ongoing campaigns and for use with media.
  • Commitment to non-violence as a means of effecting change.

Greenpeace USA values a healthy work-life balance and has flexible, family-friendly employment policies. Our competitive benefits package for full-time employees includes medical, dental, and vision coverage with low contributions from staff. We have options for pre-tax flexible spending accounts for medical and dependent care costs. Greenpeace employees enjoy generous 401K matching and time off for vacation, sick, personal, and parental leave. After five years, staff are eligible for a paid sabbatical. To encourage public transportation use and biking, we offer subsidies for staff who choose to bike or ride mass transit to work. Greenpeace is committed to the growth and development of staff and fostering a creative workplace culture. For more information, check out our benefits plan.

Commitment to Diversity:

Greenpeace welcomes and values diversity of people, cultural experiences and perspectives. Through our campaigning, we create solutions that promote environmental sustainability rooted in social justice. Our mission is to create a diverse and inclusive work environment that is a reflection of the global campaigns and missions that we champion.

To Apply:
Please send cover letter and resume to . Please include the following in your cover letter: a specific explanation of your interest in the available position and how you found out about this career opportunity. Please use the email subject line: SENIOR RESEARCH SPECIALIST - YOUR NAME. Applications will be accepted until October 1, 2014. No phone calls please.