USGS Indigenous Pacific Islander and Native Hawaiian Climate Engagement

U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI)
Reference Code
How to Apply

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A complete application package 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.  Selected candidate must provide proof of completion of the degree before the appointment can start.  Click Here for detailed information about acceptable transcripts.
  • A current resume/CV
  • Two educational or professional recommendations. At least one recommendation must be submitted in order for the mentor to view your application.

All documents must be in English or include an official English translation.

Application Deadline
4/15/2022 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

USGS Office/Lab and Location: A research opportunity is currently available with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Pacific Islands Climate Adaptation Science Center located in Hilo, Hawaii. The appointment will begin remotely, either on the Island or on the Mainland, with plans to be on-site once facility restrictions are lifted. Due to travel costs and time zone considerations, applicants starting remotely who are located in the Pacific region are preferred.

The USGS mission is to monitor, analyze, and predict current and evolving dynamics of complex human and natural Earth-system interactions and to deliver actionable intelligence at scales and timeframes relevant to decision makers. As the Nation's largest water, earth, and biological science and civilian mapping agency, USGS collects, monitors, analyzes, and provides science about natural resource conditions, issues, and problems.

Research ProjectThe selected participant will identify indigenous, native Hawaiian, and other marginalized or traditionally under-represented community groups and locations across the Pacific Islands region that represent an opportunity for the Pacific Islands Climate Adaptation Science Center (PI CASC) to develop long-term relationships within the context of climate change adaptation in natural and cultural resource management. The participant will develop, conduct, and synthesize research and traditional ecological knowledge with and for these groups and locations relevant to PI CASC mission to provide science and equivalent knowledge basis for wildlife, ecosystems, and people to adapt to a changing climate.

Learning Objectives

  1. Develop understanding of the state of knowledge, strategies, and outstanding needs related to climate change adaptation among indigenous groups, historically marginalized communities, and underserved communities and locations across the Pacific.
  2. Develop understanding of technical, sociological, economic, and other barriers to indigenous and other community ability to exchange and or adopt climate science and traditional knowledge adaptation strategies into their natural and cultural resource management
  3. Develop understanding of knowledge gaps and draft a strategy for community and scientist engagement needed to better address these climate-related resource management challenges.

MentorThe mentor for this opportunity is Mari-Vaughn Johnson ( If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor.

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Summer 2022 or as soon as a qualified candidate is identified (negotiable).  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year, but may be extended for four additional years upon recommendation of USGS and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time (40 hours per week).

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a stipend starting at $56,000 per year and is commensurate with educational level and experience. Medical, dental, prescription, and vision benefits will be provided as well as a travel budget to present at meetings.

Citizenship RequirementsThis opportunity is available to U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR) only.

ORISE InformationThis 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 USGS. Participants do not become employees of USGS, 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.

Questions: If you have questions about the application process please email and include the reference code for this opportunity.


The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree in one of the fields listed in the eligibility requirements section, or be currently pursuing one of the degrees with completion by the end of May 2022. Degree must have been received within the past five years.

Preferred skills:

  • Knowledge of Indigenous Pacific Islander and Native Hawaiian governance and history
  • Experience interpreting, collecting, synthesizing, and or communicating traditional ecological knowledge and science
  • Knowledge of co-management and multi-jurisdictional management of natural and cultural resources
  • Experience identifying barriers to communication, access to knowledge, and ability to build relationships and transfer knowledge across communities
  • Experience with science translation and communication of climate concepts to non-experts
Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: LPR or U.S. Citizen
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree, Master's Degree, or Doctoral Degree.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Communications and Graphics Design (2 )
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (17 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (21 )
    • Engineering (27 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (14 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (48 )
    • Mathematics and Statistics (11 )
    • Other Physical Sciences (12 )
    • Other S&E-Related (2 )
    • Physics (16 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (28 )
  • Veteran Status: Veterans Preference, degree received within the last 120 month(s).