Sustainability Research and Development Intern

Washington, DC, United States 🇺🇸


World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the world’s leading conservation organization, seeks a Sustainability Research and Development Intern.


Internship Description:

This internship provides an opportunity to improve research and project coordination skills in a professional setting, gain knowledge about companies, supply chains, and environmental issues, and contribute to WWF’s mission. The intern will work closely with members of WWF’s Private Sector Engagement team. The work will involve research relating to material production and sustainability, specifically analyzing the environmental performance and risks of pre- and post-consumer recovered materials and biobased materials. The internship also provides the opportunity to interact with representatives from US & European companies as well as WWF’s global network.


Specific duties will include:

  • Researching and analyzing the environmental performance and risks of materials, with a focus on recovered and biobased materials
  • Researching topics related to environmental impacts of supply chain systems
  • Assisting in the development of tools and guidance documents for corporate collaborators
  • Assisting with the assessment of environmental, social, economic and supply risks associated with commodity sourcing;
  • Creating reports and presentations based on these analyses;
  • Communicating results and connecting analysis to broader WWF mission; 
  • Coordinating with external parties including companies and the WWF network; 
  • Interfacing with a database of commodity and geographical information; and
  • Coordinating with other members of the WWF Private Sector Engagement and Markets teams.
  • Other duties as assigned


Minimum Requirements:

  • Current or recent graduate student in a relevant field such as natural resources, packaging, material science, supply chain management, environmental science, or sustainable development are preferred; highly qualified undergraduate students may be considered;
  • Full-time (35 hours per week) for ~3 months;
  • Excellent research, writing, and analytical skills, as well as attention to detail are obligatory;
  • Experience with managing research projects and interfacing with external partners is preferred; 
  • Ability to work productively on both independent research assignments and as part of a team;
  • Proactive problem-solving and good communication skills (written and verbal) are obligatory;
  • Demonstrated familiarity with the environmental impacts of agriculture, agribusiness and the food industry, rural development issues, corporate sustainability strategy, and economics is preferred; 
  • Skills in Excel, Power Point and Microsoft Word are obligatory; other programs (e.g. GIS, reference management software) and/or programming experience is helpful;
  • Fluency in English is required; knowledge of foreign languages (e.g. Spanish, French, Portuguese, German, or Chinese) is a plus.