Our organization

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is an independent nonprofit that puts rigorous, independent science into action, developing solutions and advocating for a healthy, safe, and just future. We envision a peaceful, healthy, and just world where science serves people and the planet by guiding policy decisions, reducing risks, and improving lives.

For over five decades, we have been working as scientists, engineers, economists, advocates, and everyday people to create 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.  Values informing our work include:

  • Science in the service of people and the planet.
  • Justice and Equity for people of all races and incomes—now, and for future generations.
  • Courage to take principled, science-based stands in the public arena.
  • Integrity to always examine evidence critically, openly, and honestly.
  • Democracy promotes a voice for all in government decisions.
  • Action inspiring and mobilizing people to build a healthier, safer, and more just world.

UCS’s Western States Program

The Analyst position provides thought leadership, technical, and analytical support to advance the Western States mission. This position engages in research and analysis in relation to current or potential policy decisions and other mission-critical areas. Analysts work collaboratively with internal colleagues and externally with coalition and grassroots partners.

Skilled in project management, the analyst supports research activities and advocacy that advance Western States campaign priorities, including increasing resilience to worsening Western wildfires, floods, and droughts. This position is focused on bridging the policy and science roles within UCS and therefore, analyst’s time should be roughly split between supporting scientists on original research and partnering with policy staff on legislative and regulatory engagement. The analyst must have extremely strong written and verbal communication skills to compile, write, and edit reports, factsheets, policy briefs, blog posts, and to serve as a spokesperson on relevant technical and policy issues, including rapid response media communication and providing testimony to decision-making bodies, as needed. Engages as an active member in campaign planning and management and represents UCS and its philosophy and positions.

UCS employees center all their work on UCS’s core values of racial equity and environmental justice. They work collaboratively to ensure the effective operations of the program/department, center anti-racism and equity in internal and external work, and foster a welcoming, inclusive, and transparent environment where all staff can thrive and grow.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include but are not limited to:

Research and Analysis

  • Design and implement research and analysis in accordance with legal requirements for human subjects and environmental protection and upholding principles of scientific excellence (e.g., regarding plagiarism, conflicts of interest, intellectual property and copyright, data governance and archiving, use of artificial intelligence).
  • Identify strategic opportunities for new areas of research for the Program and identify solutions to enable novel analytical or policy work.
  • Identify strategic opportunities for collaborative work across Program to develop and test evidence-based solutions for policy, regulatory, and other decision-making challenges.
  • Lead or support development of science-based products:
    • Ensure accuracy, credibility, readability, and timeliness of all written material.
    • Project manage reports; write and edit reports, fact sheets, issue/policy briefs, and other materials highlighting the results of various analyses following UCS protocols for review, production, and presentation of results.
    • Help coordinate peer review by external technical experts and internal UCS scientific and analytic products and make necessary revisions before submitting for publication. Tailor style and content of materials for technical and/or general audiences as appropriate.
  • Manage research and analysis projects, including scoping, planning, execution, and evaluation.
  • Manage day-to-day and long-term activities, budgets and contracts, coordinating project staff, and maintaining project transparency and communication with project participants, programs, and the organization.

Legislative and Regulatory Engagement

  • Maintain in-depth knowledge of Western States water and wildfire issues and apply learning to analysis and advocacy activities.
    • Apply research results and conclusions to the formulation and development of public policies, regulatory and political strategies to promote the Program’s goals.
    • Support policy staff in legislative engagement, including traveling to Western State capitols to meet with legislators and their staff.
    • Routinely track priority regulatory processes and meet with decisionmakers and staff at relevant agencies.

Assessment and Learning

  • Understand and value accurate data for the assessment, learning, tracking, and reporting of UCS’s impact.
  • Routinely track the impact of work to share with internal and external stakeholders; maintain and safeguard confidential UCS supporter and ally data.
  • Maintain in-depth knowledge of, monitor, and assess current and emerging research, trends in the field, and related policy/regulatory issues, and apply learning to analysis and advocacy activities.

Campaign Support

  • Using expertise, support campaigns’ scoping, planning, design, and implementation, including identifying key stakeholders, research questions, and policy opportunities.
  • Collaborate with the Program’s Campaign staff to keep the campaign on track, assess new opportunities, respond to changing conditions, and communicate key decisions.
  • Influence the development and implementation of policies and strategies within government and nongovernment institutions to advance the campaign’s goals; collaborate with UCS campaign and legislative staff to develop and effectively promote UCS-supported positions with senior government officials, legislators, regulators, opinion leaders, stakeholders, non-traditional allies, coalition partners, public and media representatives at local, state, regional, and national levels.

Expert Representation and Advocacy

UCS employees in external-facing roles are required to maintain awareness of the role as a representative of UCS, ensure activities and statements enhance the organization’s reputation and credentials among press, public, and private sectors, promote UCS, advance organizational objectives, and improve funding opportunities.

  • Represent UCS, its values, and positions in coalitions, conferences, workshops, stakeholder negotiations, testimony, and congressional hearings, national and state regulatory commissions, legislative committees, other government agencies and commissions, market operators and other key forums.
  • Establish and maintain alliances with advocates, other organizations, community leaders, businesses, academics, and researchers, including regulatory and legislative staff and governmental agencies, to exchange information, provide technical information/education and guidance, share resources, advance shared objectives, engage in collaborative projects, and participate in coalitions.
  • Represent UCS in the media, traditional and social; work with UCS Communications staff to identify key media opportunities, help draft materials, and serve as direct contact to the media, including providing rapid response to media requests. Respond to inquiries and comments from stakeholders, media, members, and the public about issues related to the Program’s mission.
  • Report research results and recommend research directions in oral and written form to experts, public, media, and congressional representatives.
  • Communicate and uplift UCS’s priorities online and through social media by writing blog posts, web copy and other digital content.
  • Serve as an internal resource to expand UCS staff expertise and visibility. Share research and insights with UCS staff and collaborate on understanding and applying that research to advancing UCS strategic priorities.
  • Support and provide strategic thinking with respect to UCS’s fundraising and development efforts through donor meetings, participation in meetings of the National Advisory Board, and other efforts to cultivate relationships.

Other Duties as Assigned

Up to 20% of any individual job may contain work that is not specifically listed in this document. This may reflect temporary assignments, individual professional development opportunities (e.g., learning a new set of skills, participating in a professional growth experience), and/or a requirement to serve in an organizational citizenship capacity (e.g., participating in JEDI activities, pitching in/volunteering for extra work, covering for a colleague on leave).  

  • Support and participate in UCS’s internal efforts to create an anti-racist and inclusive work environment. Contribute to creating a culture in which all staff on the team are safe, respected, and heeded, and BIPOC people thrive.
  • While this position typically does not have direct reports, it may coordinate, manage, and provide technical direction to staff, interns, fellows, consultants, and volunteers allocated to specific projects, as assigned.



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

  • Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree is preferred (depending on program team focus/mission), in one of the following fields: policy, physical sciences, social sciences, economics.
  • 7+ years of comparable and relevant professional experience, which could include academic-related work experience.
  • Project management skills.
  • Ability to work independently and in teams in a fast-paced environment while managing multiple projects and deadlines.
  • Qualitative and qualitative analytical skills, experience in designing and carrying out scientific research and analysis that relies on relevant data science techniques.
  • Strong collaboration and relationship-building skills, both internally and with external stakeholders from a variety of backgrounds.
  • Experience in campaign planning, coalitions and relationship building, legislative process, advocacy skills, and policy/planning analysis.
  • Understanding of how science, economic and technical analyses, and advocacy inform public opinion, public policy, and litigation.
  • Excellent writing and presentation skills; ability to communicate effectively with technical experts and other professionals; ability to communicate complex scientific matters to non-expert audiences.
  • Experience incorporating equity, inclusion, and justice into work/projects; experience centering equity in technical analysis.
  • Knowledge and familiarity with racial equity and inclusion principles and ways that race and other identities intersect in the work, particularly in scientific, policymaking, and environmental communities.  Must be comfortable talking about identities such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class, ability, and its present-day implications.

UCS is an equal opportunity employer actively seeking to diversify its staff. 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 full-time position based near UCS’ Oakland, CA office, with preference for Sacramento and the Bay Area. For those who meet all position requirements, the salary range is $80,531 to $90,600. UCS offers excellent benefits and a rewarding work environment. *CA Resident Only, we offer a 12% salary differential*

Information about the organization is available at http://www.ucsusa.org.

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.

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 upload a cover letter and resume. 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.

This position is in the bargaining unit.

Covid Mandate for New Hires:

For in office roles, UCS employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Employees are considered fully vaccinated as defined by the CDC. All new hires who will be reporting to an office location must provide notice of their vaccination status and vaccination documentation, on or before their first day of work. For all others, UCS strongly encourages full vaccinations among its employees, up to and including booster shots, even if working remotely.

All new employees must comply with the mandatory vaccination requirements outlined in UCS policies as soon as practicable. Union of Concerned Scientists will notify candidates for employment of the requirements of this policy before the start of employment.

Deadline: Until filled.