EPA Fellowship in Non-compliance on e-Commerce Platforms

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Reference Code
How to Apply
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A complete application consists of:
  • An application
  • Transcript(s) – For this opportunity, an unofficial transcript or copy of the student academic records printed by the applicant or by academic advisors from internal institution systems may be submitted. All transcripts must be in English or include an official English translation. Click here for detailed information about acceptable transcripts.
  • A current resume/CV, including academic history, employment history, relevant experiences, and publication list
  • Two educational or professional recommendations. Click here for detailed information about recommendations.
All documents must be in English or include an official English translation.
Application Deadline
2/28/2023 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications may be reviewed on a rolling-basis and this posting could close before the deadline. Click here for information about the selection process.

EPA Office/Lab and LocationA research opportunity is available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) located in Washington, DC.

OECA pursues pollution problems that impact American communities through vigorous civil and criminal enforcement. These enforcement activities target the most serious water, air, and chemical hazards.  

This appointment will be at the Waste and Chemical Enforcement Division (WCED) is located in the Office of Civil Enforcement (OCE). WCED implements compliance monitoring and enforcement programs for the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA), as well as other statutes. The specific area of research for this opportunity is under the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA).

Research Project: The selected participant will help to identify and capture information pertaining to illegal products offered for sale on eCommerce platforms. This may involve using commercial off-the-shelf and custom developed software to facilitate the identification and characterization of non-compliance on e-Commerce platforms and to facilitate the enforcement of environmental laws in support of the EPA’s mission to protect human health and the environment. The resulting tool shall be designed to capture and share information in accordance with applicable statutes, regulations, and policies.

Data gathered shall be to a level of granularity which may include information such as product names, product descriptions, item numbers, country of origin, Uniform Resource Locators, seller profile information, product categories, product manufacturer(s), seller history, sales history, image text, specific safety claims, efficacy claim. These data elements may exist in a variety of formats including text, images, and video. These tools shall be designed to provide the user with the ability to evaluate the data based on a variety of factors. Scoring elements may include, but not be limited to other systems such as Pesticide Product Labeling System (PPLS), EPA List N pesticides, EPA registration and establishment numbers, EPA FIFRA Section Seven Tracking System, TSCA public and private databases etc.

These searches shall be able to integrate EPA-identified keywords, search terms, and other metrics to guide web scraping activities. 

Learning ObjectivesThe selected participant will have the opportunity to collaborate with a multi-disciplinary team of inspectors, case developers and attorneys as well as contractors and the use of the data in Administrative and/or Judicial enforcement cases. This includes learning opportunities across many e-Commerce Platforms, quality assurance and quality checks of generated lists, and other evidence and meta-data gathering.

Mentor(s): The mentor for questions about this opportunity is Royan Teter (Teter.Royan@epa.gov). If you have questions about the nature of the research, please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: March/April 2023.  All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.

Appointment Length: The appointment may initially be for one year and may be renewed up to three additional years upon EPA recommendation and subject to availability of funding.

Level of Participation: The appointment is full-time.

Participant Stipend: The participant will receive an annual stipend commensurate with educational level and experience: Master’s ~$64,957; PhD ~$78,592. Funding may be made available to reimburse the participant’s travel expenses to present the results of his/her research. No funding will be made available to cover travel costs for pre-appointment visits, relocation costs, tuition and fees, or participant’s health insurance.

EPA Security Clearance: Completion of a successful background investigation by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at EPA.

ORISE Information: This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and EPA. Participants do not become employees of EPA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

ORISE offers all ORISE EPA graduate students and Postdocs a free 5-year membership to the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA).

The successful applicant(s) will be required to comply with Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) requirements of the hosting facility, including but not limited to, COVID-19 requirements (e.g. facial covering, physical distancing, testing, vaccination).

Questions: Please see the FAQ section of our website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process, please email ORISE.EPA.REG@orau.org and include the reference code for this opportunity.


The qualified candidate should have received a Masters degree or doctoral in one of the relevant fields. Degree must have been received by 6/30/2023 and within the past five years. 

Preferred skills:

  • Demonstrated proficiency and understanding of IT systems, and environmental laws and policies.
  • Ability to write for both a technical and non-technical audience
  • Web Scraping, Database Management, Data Mining, Data Analytics
  • Data Visualization, Machine Learning
Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: LPR or U.S. Citizen
  • Degree: Master's Degree or Doctoral Degree received within the last 60 months or anticipated to be received by 6/30/2023 11:59:00 PM.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Chemistry and Materials Sciences (2 )
    • Communications and Graphics Design (6 )
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (17 )
    • Engineering (27 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (3 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (4 )
    • Mathematics and Statistics (11 )
    • Other Non-Science & Engineering (3 )
    • Physics (16 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (5 )