The Breakthrough Institute is an energy and environmental research center based in Oakland, 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. We’re a great team to join. Here’s why.

1. Do a lot. You will get the chance to play an integral role in fundraising and event planning. You will gain first-hand experience working on everything from logistics to content creation to event production on a mix of events with diverse topics. Plus, you’ll get to support the development efforts that make them possible.

2. Learn from the best in the business. You may not have heard of us, but we guarantee you have heard of the ideas that have originated from our research. 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.

3. 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 and skills.

Food & Agriculture Analysts

Are you passionate about agricultural sustainability, climate change, or environmental policy? Come work our growing policy research program in beautiful downtown Oakland, California.

The Company
The Breakthrough Institute is an environmental think tank based in Oakland, California. We identify and promote technological solutions to environmental problems in three areas: energy, food & agriculture, and conservation.

We value integrity, imagination and audacity, and encourage research staff to:

  • Attend events and take online or in-person trainings.
  • Participate in internal reading and discussion groups.
  • Engage with leading journalists, academics, and analysts.
  • Conduct ground-breaking work on important questions.

The Position
We are seeking an inquisitive Analyst for our growing Food and Agriculture program. You will research trends in US and global agricultural sustainability, assess policy options to improve environmental outcomes, and contribute to public-facing articles and reports.


  • Conduct literature reviews, data analysis, and expert interviews.
  • Contribute to and write internal memos, public reports, and web articles.
  • Build professional relationships with scholars, journalists, entrepreneurs, and philanthropists through social media and one-on-one outreach.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • Experience critically reviewing and synthesizing academic literature.
  • Spreadsheet management and analysis skills.
  • Excellent written communication skills, particularly for layperson audiences.

Preferred Qualifications

  • 2+ years of analytical work experience or a Master’s degree.
  • Motivation to learn new skills, propose ideas, and take ownership on projects.
  • Experience conducting statistical analysis in Excel, R, GIS or similar programs.
  • Background in agricultural or environmental research, economics, or policy.

Competitive salary commensurate with experience.

Application Instructions
To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, three references, and a 2-5 page writing sample that demonstrates your ability to synthesize many different sources of information to The cover letter should demonstrate an understanding of Breakthrough’s work on food and farming. We encourage you to submit materials as soon as possible, as we will interview and hire on a rolling basis.