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5 Aug 2021

Full-Time Environmental Data Scientist

Material Innovation Initiative – Posted by Material Innovation Initiative Anywhere

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Job Description

How You Will Make a Difference

As the Environmental Data Scientist at MII, you will analyze the environmental impact associated with the materials and processes involved with next-gen materials to replace leather, silk, fur, wool, down, and exotic skins. In order for MII to meet its goal of accelerating the next-gen materials industry, the ecosystem is in need of comprehensive environmental impact and life cycle data in order to make informed decisions regarding the sustainability of materials and processes. You will ensure that replacements for incumbent materials are sustainable according to both qualitative and quantitative analysis. Working with the Science & Technology department and external stakeholders, you will ensure that sustainable next-gen materials dominate the market as quickly as possible by:

  • Identifying the spectrum of qualitative and quantitative metrics associated with environmental impact assessments for next-gen materials, and reviewing appropriate methodologies for making impact assessments.
  • Developing and maintaining a database of environmental impact data through reliable sources and informed assumptions that can apply broadly to the next-gen materials space.
  • Conducting life cycle analysis (LCA)* on materials or processes according to international standards and principles accepted by the LCA community.
  • Developing an approach to easily compare LCAs or other forms of impact assessments across the industry of next-gen materials, incumbent animal-derived materials, and other natural or synthetic textiles.
  • Translating impact assessment data and LCAs to MII insights and reports.
  • Working with next-gen material companies to add next-gen material data to the Higg Index database, while preparing supplemental internal information which goes beyond the Higg Index.
  • Launching and overseeing original research projects related to environmental impact of next-gen materials with contracted partners and collaborators.
  • Informing strategic decisions through insights derived from deep environmental analysis of incumbent or next-gen materials.
  • Identifying current linchpins and future whitespace opportunities in the sustainability of next-gen materials technology in order to support research and development in these areas. 
  • Build MII’s capacity as a knowledge hub on sustainable next-gen materials & technology, serving as a connector and force multiplier.
  • Performing other duties as assigned. 


Who We’re Looking For

We are currently looking for an Environmental Data Scientist to focus on understanding and analyzing the qualitative and quantitative sustainability factors associated with next-gen material technology. Next-gen technology is derived from a complex array of sources such as agricultural waste/byproducts, plant-based fibers, synthetic/biosynthetic fibers & resins, proteins or polymers produced via precision fermentation, or tissue engineering processes.  As many of the next-gen materials technology encompass a broad range of inputs, outputs, and manufacturing processes, we seek a talented scientist capable of holistically analyzing the environmental impact of such materials.

  • Preferably Masters or Ph.D. (or commensurate professional experience) in Environmental Science/Engineering, Data Sciences, Engineering Sciences (Materials, Chemical, Industrial, Mechanical, Bioengineering), or a related field. Individuals with experience who do not hold a Masters or Ph.D. are encouraged to apply.
  • Preferably a certified LCA professional, or with LCA preparation experience.*
  • Strong plus for candidates with anticipatory LCA experience.
  • Experience working with the Higg Index, or comparable life cycle assessment software and databases such as GaBi/Umberto, ecoinvent, SimaPro etc.
  • A proven track record of analyzing and organizing complicated sets of data.
  • Exceptional writing skills for technical and general audiences.
  • A functional understanding of the principles, methods, equipment, and techniques used to manufacture materials in order to make informed environmental assessments of these processes, including circularity or cradle-to-cradle assessments. 
  • Experience with supply chain management and its role in sustainability is a strong plus.
  • Experience with textiles/fashion materials is a strong plus.
  • Specific experience with bioprocessing methods such as agricultural upcycling, cell culture, or fermentation technology is a strong plus.
  • Strong support for MII’s philosophy and mission.

*The expectation is that LCA assessments will take the form of an LCA “lite” rather than a “full” LCA in most circumstances.

We want the best people and we don’t want biases holding us back. We strongly encourage people of every color, orientation, age, gender, origin, and ability to apply. Because we value a diverse workplace, we prioritize an inclusive climate absent of discrimination and harassment during the application process and after you join the team.

The Fine Print

  • Terms of employment: Full time, exempt
  • Reports to: Chief Scientific Officer
  • Location: Remote; with a preference for the United States.
  • Benefits: Working from home, medical insurance, flexible holiday and vacation plans, room for advancement, respectful managers, and supportive colleagues.
  • Salary: $70,000-$90,000 in the U.S., commensurate with cost of living and experience.

Application Deadline: Rolling

Start Date: Aiming for October 1st, 2021

How to Apply

Application Instructions: Send cover letter and resume to hiring@materialinnovation.org

Job Categories: Sustainability. Job Types: Full-Time. Salaries: 60,000 - 80,000.

Job expires in 6 days.

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