Jobs

The Breakthrough Institute is an energy and environmental research center based in Berkeley, California. Our work is premised on the belief that humans can protect nature by using technology to limit the negative impacts on the environment. Basically, we envision a world that is good for both people and nature. We achieve this goal through our three focus areas: energy, conservation, and food and farming. Check out our open positions below:

Press Secretary

Are you a savvy communications professional with ecomodernist ideals? Are you an effective communicator and strong writer with a passion for solving humanity’s biggest challenges? We are looking for a new Press Secretary to expand our reach in the media and build connections with journalists, reporters, and newsroom editors.

This role is full-time; it will initially be remote but will ultimately be in-person in our office starting in the second half of 2021. This position will report to the Director of Climate and Energy.

The Breakthrough Institute seeks candidates who bring varied experiences, perspectives, and backgrounds, and who are eager to learn about many ways of viewing the world. Our goal is to create a community that is rich with cultural, social, and intellectual diversity.

Scope:

The Press Secretary will develop, implement, and assist in guiding media and digital strategies rooted in climate, energy, food, and agriculture with an ecomodernist emphasis. Additionally, the Press Secretary will be responsible for managing relationships between the Breakthrough Institute and media contacts on federal, state, and local communications efforts. She/He/They will coordinate with department leads under the supervision of the Director of Communications to plan and carry out media strategies.

Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Identifies opportunities and develops media strategies and plans to elevate Breakthrough Institute’s research, mission, and goals.
  • Drafts and pitches press releases.
  • Manages rapid-response programs, developing messages and pitching op-eds, letters to the editor, talking points, and other media materials. Creates strategic media responses to published comments regarding the Breakthrough Institute and to the positions of elected officials, institutions, or groups.
  • Performs necessary research to promote Breakthrough messages and stories, including but not limited to writing letters to the editor, reports, op-eds, press releases, fact sheets, and talking points.
  • Collaborates with leadership as well as coalition partners and outside consultants, providing assistance and guidance in developing long-range media strategies. Drafts communications plans and coordinates communications work around Breakthrough Institute campaigns across internal workgroups.
  • Develops relationships with reporters and serves as Breakthrough Institute point of contact for those reporters.
  • Advises and assists communications staff to pitch other Breakthrough Institute messages, events, and reactions to the working press as needed.
    Works with the communications team and research staff to train and develop media skills.
  • Performs miscellaneous duties as assigned.

Preferred Knowledge and Skill:

  • B.A. degree in communications, journalism, or a closely related field, or the equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • 2-4 years prior experience as a journalist, media liaison, or other position involving media/press relations.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Adept with technology platforms like Cision, Meltwater, and/or Yellow Book.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of environmental issues and a working knowledge of the media landscape.
  • Ability to interact cooperatively and effectively with staff and the public.
  • Ability to meet strict deadlines and work effectively under pressure.

Job Conditions:

Additional hours may be required to meet deadlines. Some travel and evening time may be required depending on events, invitations, presentations, meetings, and other job-related work outside of the office.

Salary:

Competitive salary commensurate with experience. Health insurance, vision, dental, and vacation.

Application Instructions:

Please submit your resume, cover letter, and two (2) writing samples to jobs[at]thebreakthrough.org. The writing samples should include one sample press release and another sample of your choosing.

Senior Energy Analyst

We are currently hiring a Senior Energy Analyst who will assist the Director of Climate and Energy in completing original research and analysis, writing articles for our website and external publication, and developing new projects. They will focus on energy research projects, writing for external publications, public speaking and workshop participation, building partnerships with new organizations, and advising on any related work internally. Ability to think creatively and work in a group is essential. We are particularly interested in applicants that have some background in nuclear energy and/or electricity grid modeling. This role is full time; it will initially be remote but will ultimately be in-person in our office in the East Bay starting in the second half of 2021. This position will report to the Director of Climate and Energy.

The Breakthrough Institute welcomes candidates who bring varied experiences, perspectives, and backgrounds, and who are eager to learn about many ways of viewing the world. Our goal is to create a community that is rich with cultural, social, and intellectual diversity.

Why join the Breakthrough team?

  • Learn from the best in the business. We convene a powerful network of social scientists, journalists, scholars, academics, innovators, and entrepreneurs. As a part of the team you will get to learn from the thought leaders and influencers in energy and the environment.
  • Brilliant coworkers who love what they do. We are in this for the same reason – to make a positive impact on the world around us – so we build each other up, support each other, and put our mission above our egos. We’re a friendly and collaborative group. That means you will be able to learn and work with a wide variety of people.

Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Execute existing energy research agenda
  • Attend meetings as Breakthrough’s expert, speak on panels, and give interviews on subject knowledge
  • Contribute ideas for Breakthrough Dialogues and other events
  • Propose collaboration with Senior Fellows and keep Senior Fellows informed of relevant Breakthrough work
  • Contribute energy projects to funding proposals and engage with funders as needed
  • Undertake qualitative and quantitative research for internal and external use, including memos, reports, working papers, and peer-reviewed publications
  • Write articles for the Breakthrough website and external publications
  • Contribute to research and funding proposals as needed
  • Engage with key audiences on social media such as Twitter
  • Follow the discourse on energy issues and propose new areas of research
  • Continuously develop quantitative and qualitative research methods and skills
  • Scope out energy-related projects for our Breakthrough Generation Fellowship program and supervise Generation fellows

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Minimum of 3-5 years of experience or academic background in energy, nuclear, or environmental policy
  • Demonstrated experience writing for non-technical audiences
  • Experience critically reviewing and synthesizing academic literature
  • Motivation to learn new skills, propose ideas, and take ownership of projects
  • Desire to develop thought leadership profile in area of expertise

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Master’s or PhD degree
  • Experience with nuclear energy technologies/policy and/or grid-scale modeling
  • Experience with data analysis in Python, R, or similar programs
  • Social media presence

Job Conditions:

  • Additional hours may be required to meet deadlines. Some travel and evening time may be required depending on events, invitations, presentations, meetings, and other job-related work outside of the office.

Salary:

  • Competitive salary commensurate with experience. Health insurance, vision, dental, and vacation.

Application Instructions:

  • Please submit a cover letter, resume, and writing sample to jobs[at]thebreakthrough.org. Your cover letter should reflect on Breakthrough’s work and how you could contribute. We encourage you to submit materials as soon as possible, as we will interview and hire on a near-term rolling basis.