Food Systems and Health Analyst
Union of Concerned Scientists - Washington, DC

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Food Systems and Health Analyst (Temporary – 2 Years)
Food and Environment Program
Washington, DC Office

Under direction of the Deputy Director/Senior Analyst, work as a member of an interdisciplinary team to advance policy advocacy efforts leading to a healthy, sustainable food and farming system. As the team’s health sciences expert, develop and maintain comprehensive knowledge of the food system’s impacts on nutrition, public health, and health disparities; conduct science-based research and analysis to advance understanding of these impacts and the policy choices that drive them; produce publicly-resonant scientific and policy analyses; craft written communications for a variety of audiences; cultivate relationships with experts and allies; represent UCS to policy makers, the media, and other stakeholders; and help develop program direction and plans.

This is a full-time, two-year position with a possibility of renewal.

• Working as part of an interdisciplinary team, provide lead health sciences to the planning, design, and implementation of research activities and projects that advance healthy, sustainable food and agriculture systems.
• Develop and maintain comprehensive knowledge of public health analytical tools and food system issues, and utilize expertise in implementing research and advocacy activities; help develop and implement research methodologies; conduct literature reviews and searches to monitor and assess current and ongoing research and trends; gather and analyze data using databases, models and other appropriate analytical tools; write reports and other materials based on these analyses.
• Collaborate with analytic, policy, outreach, and media staff to apply research results and conclusions to the formulation and development of public policies, political strategies, media outreach, and other communication efforts; track and evaluate proposed legislation and regulations and develop alternatives.
• Represent UCS , its mission, goals, and positions at workshops, hearings, conferences, and other forums; present and promote UCS ideas, objectives, and activities; educate participants about political, environmental, social and economic dimensions of food and farming issues, with emphasis on the health benefits of sustainable agriculture and local and regional food systems.
• Provide technical and strategic assistance to policymakers, opinion leaders and coalition partners, and respond to inquiries and comments; establish and maintain alliances with advocates, healthy food businesses, modelers, and researchers at other organizations.
• Work with program and UCS communications staff to identify key media opportunities; serve as direct contact to the media; draft and edit press materials and content for UCS web site; write for the UCS blog.
• Help develop program objectives, strategies, and work plans, and contribute to foundation proposals, reports, workgroups and planning processes. Perform other related functions as directed.
Qualifications and experience
Masters’ degree in public health, nutrition/dietetics, epidemiology, or related field and three to five years of relevant experience in food systems; familiarity with public policy process regarding agriculture and food systems; demonstrated ability to produce analyses on science policy issues and write about complex policy and scientific matters for a lay audience; understanding of the role of science and advocacy in shaping public opinion and policy debates; excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively as a member of a team. Project management skills and experience are also preferred. NGO experience is preferred but not essential.
At UCS , comparable training and/or experience can be substituted for degrees when appropriate.
Compensation, Hours and Location: full-time, two-year position (with a possibility of renewal) based in UCS’s Washington, DC, office. For candidates who meet all position requirements, the salary is in the low $60,000s. UCS offers excellent benefits and a rewarding work environment, and is an equal opportunity employer continually seeking to diversify its staff and to broaden opportunities for individuals from demographic groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences and in environmental advocacy. Information about the organization is available at
To Apply: Please submit a cover letter, salary requirements, how you learned about the position and resume via email and include “Food Systems and Health Analyst” in the subject line. Email materials in Word or PDF format only. No phone calls please. Deadline: March 23, 2014 or until filled.
The Union of Concerned Scientists puts rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet's most pressing problems. Joining with citizens across the country, we combine technical analysis and effective advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.
What began as a collaboration between students and faculty members at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1969 is now an alliance of more than 400,000 citizens and scientists. UCS members are people from all walks of life: parents and businesspeople, biologists and physicists, teachers and students. Our members understand that scientific analysis—not political calculations or corporate hype—should guide our efforts to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices. Our experts work on some of the most complex and daunting problems in our history: stemming the tide of global warming, finding sustainable ways to feed, power and transport ourselves, and reducing the threat of catastrophic war. Our achievements over the decades show that thoughtful action based on the best available science can help safeguard our future and the future of our planet. …