New job opportunity – postdoc, UC Berkeley, Science and Technology Studies (STS)

Postdoctoral Scholar in The Politics of Expertise in Biofuels and Geoengineering Regulation

Affiliations: Program in Science and Technology Studies (STS), UC Berkeley

Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, UC Berkeley

Reports To: Professor David Winickoff

The Program in STS at the University of California-Berkeley seeks a postdoctoral researcher to help conduct a qualitative study of how technical knowledge operates within the regulation of biofuels and geoengineering. These technologies are co-emerging within complex regulatory environments that span levels of governance and public and private sectors. Forms of technical reasoning­­––e.g., risk analysis and modeling––are at the core of regulatory approaches and have become politically contested. It has become clear that the choice of particular assessment strategies for risk and sustainability carry significant implications for distributive justice, democratic governance, and ecological integrity. The project responds to an urgent need for good public policy on the governance of biofuels and geoengineering, and will provide tangible ideas for improving the legitimacy of administrative process. It is funded by a two-year National Science Foundation research award (1331256).

The successful applicant will be a PhD scholar with demonstrated ability to conduct high-level qualitative work (quantitative skills in modeling and risk analysis are a plus but not necessary). Relevant training includes science and technology studies, science policy, innovation studies, regulation, economics, political economy, and political science. Areas of topical expertise could include the politics of integrating science into policy, social dimensions of modeling and/or risk analysis, multi-level governance systems, quantification and standards, and international environmental institutions. Specific expertise in either biofuels or geoengineering policy is preferred.

Required Knowledge and Experience:

Relevant expertise and/or experience (see above)

Qualitative analytical skills and ability to work in a team

Excellent organizational skills

Experience conducting research interviews

Desirable Additional Experience (any of the below):

Legal analysis

Life cycle analysis and/or Greenhouse Gas Accounting

Risk analysis

In addition to their team-based research, the postdoctoral researcher will:

  •  Do primary field work in the U.S. and/or Europe
  • Get involved in the events, communities, and working groups of the Program in STS at UC Berkeley, including regular colloquia, reading groups, and other events
  • Teach or contribute significantly to one undergraduate course
  • Convene a small workshop on the research topic to generate ideas from other scholars
  • Disseminate results at scientific professional conferences and in peer-reviewed literature
  • Develop new grant proposals stemming from this work

Salary: Salary is $41,000. This position includes benefits.

Timing and Duration: One year with possibility of renewal. Begins September 1, 2014, but an earlier start date preferable.

Location: Program in STS (<;), Center for Science, Technology, Medicine and Society, University of California, Berkeley, CA, (

How to Apply: Please submit PDFs of a CV, one publication or paper, a brief cover letter highlighting your relevant experience, interests and career goals, and names and contacts of 3 references by email to no later than January 15, 2014. Applicants should have a recent PhD degree, or their degree will be conferred before the starting date.

Applications may be reviewed as they are received. For further information about the project, contact Professor David Winickoff directly at

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to excellence through diversity. Applicants should ask referees to review the UC Berkeley Statement of Confidentiality found at

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