U.S. nationals: Environmental Security Policy Advisor 4 (Project Hire)

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

USA 🇺🇸

Job Description


Candidates for this position will support work being performed in PNNL’s Emerging Threats and Technologies Division within the National Security Directorate (NSD). The Emerging Threats and Technologies Division’s mission space is comprised of cybersecurity, infrastructure protection, policy and intelligence, and security systems expertise. The organization consists of over 300 scientists, engineers, and analysts with backgrounds in cyber, nuclear, intelligence, policy, data science, and other fields. Our staff work in interdisciplinary project teams to provide innovative concepts that integrate policy, analytics, science, and technology into unique solutions. Our collaborative environment and commitment to work/life balance makes PNNL an ideal place to advance your career, challenge yourself, and make a difference in the world. 

PNNL is seeking a senior policy leader in environmental and climate security to provide thought leadership and subject matter expertise to research related to climate and energy security and water resilience with respect to climate uncertainty.  The successful candidate will join a multidisciplinary team of scientists, engineers, and national security analysts who integrate modeling and simulation techniques and deep subject matter expertise to understand environmental impacts to human systems, translating science to technical findings to support and inform policy makers. The successful candidate will be responsible for the conceptualization and development of new multidisciplinary approaches to understand the socioeconomic and national security implications of changes to physical environments. Responsibilities will also include technical leadership of projects and research endeavors, and developing and maintaining relationships with government national security organizations. The candidate should be knowledgeable in the fundamentals of climate analyses and understand the climate-energy intersection. The successful candidate will be required to develop detailed technical reports and presentations, and to present their work both internally and to sponsors. The successful candidate will be comfortable working with a diverse set of research staff and project tasks, and possess the appropriate analytic, task management, and communication skills (both oral and written) to clearly articulate the objectives and outcomes of their research. 

This position will use extensive experience combining environmental and climate science and national security policy, possessing a comprehensive understanding of existing theories, principles, and concepts in those fields to provide solutions to unusually complex problems for which no precedents or past practice exists. This position requires a candidate to:

  • Resolve problems that frequently require mastery of specialized techniques using high degrees of ingenuity and creativity.
  • Demonstrate well-recognized national influence and skilled consensus building.
  • Exert positive influence across a broad spectrum of stakeholders and interest groups with internal and external organizations, the public, and the community.
  • Serve as a key advisor project teams and regularly collaborate and negotiate with senior national/international government officials as a PNNL and DOE representative.

Make recommendations that set precedent for future decisions and strongly influence national/international policies and decisions at highest levels.
The incumbent will work as an advisor and technical leader and will be responsible for performing the following technical tasks with the level of quality, timeliness, and cost to meet required project and client expectations:

  • Serve as Project Manager or Principal Investigator on high visibility, multidisciplinary projects, reporting results on time and on budget.
  • Shape research and analysis tasks and approaches.
  • Effectively team to share resources and optimize research at the group and division level. Mentor junior staff and students.
  • Team across Directorates to incorporate PNNL environmental and climate modeling into NSD missions.
  • Lead and support development of technical proposals, project reports, and scientific and technical products.
  • Present at national or international forums.
  • Contribute to the development of new capabilities within the group.

The successful candidate will be accountable to:

  • Project and/or Task Managers for performing assigned roles, following applicable project, field, and laboratory procedures, and performance of assigned tasks on time and within budget.
  • The Global Security, Technology & Policy Group Manager and Climate Security Analysis Team Lead for general staff performance and development, operational discipline (e.g., maintaining training qualifications, procedural compliance, safe operations), and project execution.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • BS/BA and 7 years of relevant experience -OR-
  • MS/MA or higher and 5 years of relevant experience

Preferred Qualifications:

  • PhD or commensurate experience.
  • Demonstrated leadership in the field of climate/environmental security.
  • Understanding of climate impacts on human systems. 
  • Experience advising US national security organizations on environmental issues.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with personnel in diverse job functions and levels of responsibility.  
  • Experience working with both domestic and international issues related to climate and infrastructure.
  • Ability to translate technical material to policy audiences.

Hazardous Working Conditions/Environment

Not Applicable
Additional Information

Project Hire: This assignment is anticipated to end on or about 1 year from the hire date.

This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a federal security clearance.


  • U.S. Citizenship
  • Background Investigation: Applicants selected will be subject to a Federal background investigation and must meet eligibility requirements for access to classified matter in accordance with 10 CFR 710, Appendix B.
  • Drug Testing: All Security Clearance positions are Testing Designated Positions, which means that the candidate selected is subject to pre-employment and random drug testing. In addition, applicants must be able to demonstrate non-use of illegal drugs, including marijuana, for the 12 consecutive months preceding completion of the requisite Questionnaire for National Security Positions (QNSP). 

Note: Applicants will be considered ineligible for security clearance processing by the U.S. Department of Energy until non-use of illegal drugs, including marijuana, for 12 months can be demonstrated.
Testing Designated Position

This position is a Testing Designated Position (TDP). The candidate selected for this position will be subject to pre-employment and random drug testing for illegal drugs, including marijuana, consistent with the Controlled Substances Act and the PNNL Workplace Substance Abuse Program.
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 careers@pnnl.gov.
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.
Rockstar Rewards

Employees and their families are offered medical insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance, health savings account, flexible spending accounts, basic life insurance, disability insurance*, employee assistance program, business travel insurance, tuition assistance, supplemental parental bonding leave**, surrogacy and adoption assistance, and fertility support. Employees are automatically enrolled in our company funded pension plan* and may enroll in our 401k savings plan. Employees may accrue up to 120 vacation hours per year and may receive ten paid holidays per year.

* Research Associates excluded.

**Once eligibility requirements are met.





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