Science Advisor, Carnegie Climate Geoengineering Governance Initiative

December 14, 2018


The Carnegie Climate Geoengineering Governance Initiative (C2G2) is an initiative hosted by the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs (CCEIA) to catalyze the creation of effective governance for climate geoengineering technologies (largescale carbon removal and solar geoengineering technologies) by shifting the conversation from the scientific and research community to the global policy-making arena, and by encouraging a broader, society-wide discussion about the risks, potential benefits, ethical and governance challenges raised at every stage of their development, including research, testing, and any consideration of deployment. Founded in 1914 by Andrew Carnegie, CCEIA is an institution with global reach which for over 100 years, has promoted voices for ethics in international relations, education, and policy.


Geoengineering is defined as intentional planetary-scale intervention in the Earth system to reduce the risks of climate change and includes both largescale carbon removal and solar radiation modification. There is increasing interest in these as the challenge of staying well below 2°C above preindustrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels - as called for in the 2015 Paris Agreement, - becomes more apparent. These technologies would have significant, long-term, planetary-wide consequences for this and future generations. No comprehensive governance framework(s) exist for their effective management, which, given their impacts, fundamentally requires multilateral governance. Yet policymakers around the world have yet little if any understanding of these technologies and their governance needs.

There is an urgent need for a broad, inclusive global discussion on how to govern the research, possible testing and deployment of these emerging technologies. The C2G2 Initiative is expanding this discussion from academia to the national and intergovernmental policy community, through systematic engagement with government representatives, intergovernmental organisations, civil society organisations, the private sector, and other non-state actors.

C2G2 is impartial. It is not for or against the research, testing or potential use of geoengineering. We believe that is a decision society must take, and that the risks of having this conversation now are far less than not doing so.

C2G2 is currently supported by private foundations that invested early in the need to support a ground-breaking initiative of this nature. Based on the success of C2G2’s progress to date in catalysing action on governance, it is clear that governments need to be the primary actors in addressing these issues, and therefore also need to be the source of funding for future work. Current philanthropic donors support this stance, with the expectation that C2G2’s continued success in catalysing the international governance of geoengineering depends on it receiving public resources.


Under the overall guidance of the Executive Director of C2G2, in collaboration with C2G2 colleagues, and reporting to the Director of Knowledge Management, the Science Advisor will: 

  • Identify, analyze and concisely summarize on a routinely monthly basis scientific findings from research journals, scientific associations, conference papers, and/or the Page 2 media that have relevance for the governance of Geoengineering (both Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) and Solar Radiation Modification (SRM));
  • Review, comment on, and edit C2G2 materials for scientific accuracy;
  • Serve as the coordinator and focal point for soliciting mission-relevant advice from other scientists in a range of fields, including physical and social sciences;
  • Regularly be in contact with key actors in the international scientific/research community relevant to C2G2’s mission;
  • Advise on scientific aspects of the C2G2 strategy design and implementation;
  • Advise on science-related needs of other actors working on geoengineering and its governance, and recommend ways to meet them;
  • Other responsibilities as agreed by the Director of Knowledge Management, or the Executive Director.


C2G2 operates as a virtual team working in various locations worldwide. As an independent contractor the candidate can be based in any location where s/he has a work authorization. Highspeed internet connection (partial support to increase connectivity can be provided) and proximity to an international airport is essential. No work-visa can be sponsored by Carnegie Council in any location.


Qualifications (essential) 

  • Minimum of 5-10 years of experience in scientific and/or interdisciplinary research.
  • PhD or at minimum MSc. in relevant field;
  • Extensive professional network of scientific contacts globally and access to leading interdisciplinary researchers in the social sciences and research governance experts.
  • Strong analytical skills;
  • Strong attention to detail and commitment to quality;
  • Political sensitivity and discretion;
  • Ability to write and speak clearly and concisely about complex issues;
  • Experience working in an international, multi-cultural, multidisciplinary context;

Qualifications (desirable) 

  • Strong preference for Science Advisor to be part of a well-established scientific or research institution, think tank, philanthropic circle or policy analysis organization – preferably in the developing world - so as to have immediate access to a wide network of scientists and researchers on a range of issues that arise from the sustainable development agenda; 
  • Expertise in governance (in particular of new and emerging technologies) ideally with experience of geoengineering (both SRM and CDR);
  • Published in the field;
  • Knowledge of the physical and social science implications of geoengineering so as to inform governance conversations;
  • Active in international geoengineering scientific networks and/or research societies internationally;
  • Experience working in a virtual team in the governance of emerging technologies;
  • Ability to work in English;
  • Additional language skills desirable.

Remuneration and Benefits

This is a independent contractor position and is open and available as soon as possible. The contract will be until December 2019 but will be extendable subject to satisfactory performance. The yearly gross remuneration rate will be commensurate with the level of relevant experience, up to a maximum of USD 78000 per year and prorated to the length of service. Work will be performed from the advisors' home office and may require occasional travel.

The incumbent will become part of the C2G2 virtual global team during this period. From an administrative perspective, the work will be undertaken as an independent contractor of CCEIA.


Applications from suitable candidates should be sent (indicating “Science” in the subject line) to vacancy@c2g2.net by not later than 20 January 2019.

Female candidates from the Global South are strongly encouraged to apply.