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Irvine Chair of Anthropology

The California Academy of Sciences
San Francisco, California
Closing date
Dec 15, 2021

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Life Sciences, Environmental Science, Other, Anthropology/Sociology
Position Type
Organization Type
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The California Academy of Sciences is seeking candidates to fill the Irvine Chair of Anthropology. The Irvine Chair focuses on research that advances fundamental knowledge within the fields of archaeology, cultural and/or biological anthropology. The new curator would join nearly 100 staff and students in the Institute for Biodiversity Science and Sustainability (IBSS) and help us address some of the world’s most pressing problems related to biodiversity conservation, evolutionary processes, ecosystem health, and global environmental change – and communicate findings to diverse audiences. The successful candidate will be expected to maintain an active research program in anthropology (archaeology, cultural and/or biological), provide service to the scientific and Academy communities, pursue external funding, engage in outreach activities, and mentor students. In addition, this position helps steward the Academy’s anthropology collection, which includes over 16,000 objects encompassing ethnographic and archaeological material from around the globe with particular strengths in California, the US Southwest and Pacific Islands. The Irvine Chair will join the Academy’s innovative team striving to lead the world in addressing biodiversity conservation through research, science-based conservation, and engaging communities in our work. Currently, the Academy has a new strategic plan including three initiatives – Hope for Reefs, Thriving California, and Islands 2030 – that leverage biodiversity science, environmental learning, and collaborative engagement to regenerate fragile ecosystems around the world. Learn more at

 The Academy offers a unique and powerful setting to conduct scientific research and engagement. Housed in a Double LEED Platinum building in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, the Academy combines a world-class natural history museum, a research institute, and educational center all under one roof. Facilities include outstanding research collections (with over 46 million specimens); a world-leading digital planetarium/visualization studio; a premiere aquarium with nearly 40,000 living animals and unique culturing facilities; an indoor rainforest, living coral reef, and California habitats; numerous other public exhibits and educational facilities; and advanced research laboratories for genomics, specimen preparation, high-performance computing, microscopy, scientific visualization, etc. The Academy also has a powerful community science engine in our Center for Biodiversity & Community and iNaturalist, which engages global observers in high-quality biodiversity data collection.

 This is a full-time (10-month) position and applicants at the Assistant and Associate levels will be given consideration.

 We are committed to ensuring diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are intrinsic to Academy culture and operations, from recruitment and retention to science and advocacy. Explore Our Commitment to Racial Equity to learn about our intentional engagement of traditionally excluded groups in an effort to spark interest in or foster pathways to scientific careers. 

Applications must be submitted through the Academy’s careers page:

 A complete application should consist of: (1) Cover letter up to two pages; (2) Curriculum vitae; (3) Three two-page vision statements: one outlining your scientific background and research goals; one on your mentoring & engagement experience and goals; and a third on how your professional goals align with the Academy mission and/or strategic initiatives; (4) Two to three examples of research publications and two to three examples of other work (outreach publications, media projects, etc.); and (5) Names and contact information of at least three references. You should notify your references that they may be contacted.

Review of applications will begin December 15, 2021 and continue until the position is filled.

Please note: As of August 27, 2021 Academy employees and volunteers are required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or undergo testing and provide negative test results before they are able to work on-site or off-site with others.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.

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