Skip to main content

Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory Associate or Full Specialist - Marine Science Institute, UCSB

Position overview

Position title: Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory Associate or Full Specialist
Salary range: The posted UC system-wide salary scales set the minimum pay determined by rank and step at appointment. See Table 24B for the salary range at UCSB. A reasonable estimate for this position is $72,400 to $183,600. “Off-scale salaries” and other components of pay, i.e., a salary that is higher than the published system-wide salary at the designated rank and step, are offered when necessary to meet competitive conditions.
Percent time: 100%
Anticipated start: Position start date is negotiable and ideally anticipated to start between July and December 2024.
Position duration: This appointment is for one year from the start date with the possibility of reappointment, contingent upon performance and funding.

Application Window

Open date: May 2, 2024

Most recent review date: Friday, May 24, 2024 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.

Final date: Saturday, Nov 30, 2024 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

The Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory ( is an applied research center at the University of California Santa Barbara’s Marine Science Institute. The Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory team works to leverage the power of marine science and technology to develop and implement tangible solutions to a wide range of ocean problems.

The Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory seeks an Associate Specialist or Specialist to manage a portfolio of projects focused on diverse marine topic areas, including deep sea mining, biodiversity protections and marine protected areas in the high seas. Expertise in marine science and policy, ideally in the international high seas, will be required for this position. The successful candidate will also lead marine data management, as well as work closely with several diverse collaborators and stakeholders. Some sea-going field work may be required, which will require the employee to work on research vessels ranging in size from 12' to global class vessels. The position may involve international travel; the incumbent must be able to legally travel between the US and these international sites.

The Associate Specialist or Specialist will have the following primary responsibilities:
● Manage and/or collaborate on a research project portfolio including topics such as:
○ Deep sea mining
○ Biodiversity in the high seas
○ Marine protected areas
○ Blue economy
○ Ocean equity
○ Climate change
● Manage, analyze, and visualize ocean datasets to produce scientific peer-reviewed research
● Research and report on ocean issue topic areas via concise written briefs or presentations
● Liaise with the following:
○ Partners and stakeholders in research, government, industry and NGOs on marine resource
management and
decision making
○ Contractors and service providers to carry forward technical projects
○ Media
● Build and manage teams of interns and volunteers to assist with projects
● Create communications materials and manage social media accounts
● Utilize expertise in marine science to independently design and execute research projects to evaluate the biodiversity of the high seas and independently interpret data to develop conclusions that drive the group’s future deep sea mining, marine protected areas, and blue economy research endeavors
● Assist with research tasks for other Benioff Ocean Science Laboratory projects based on interest and need.

Employment at a Specialist level may be considered for applicants with a PhD or at least 10 years of experience demonstrating expertise in a relevant specialization.

This appointment includes a competitive benefits package with medical, dental and vision insurance and a UC retirement plan. Salary is commensurate with the applicant’s qualifications and experience.

The Department is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching and service as appropriate to the position.



Basic qualifications (required at time of application)

Master’s degree or equivalent in marine science, biology, environmental studies, data science, or a related field is required at the time of application.

Additional qualifications (required at time of start)

At least five years of experience in one or more of the following areas is required at the time of appointment:
● Deep-ocean and high-seas issues
● Ocean governance
● Blue economy
● Science to policy interface
● Ocean equity
● Science outreach and communication
● Project management, including projects with multiple stakeholders
● Partnership and network building

Employment at a Specialist level may be considered for applicants with a PhD or at least 10 years of experience demonstrating expertise in a relevant specialization.

Preferred qualifications

● Experience in some of the following areas:
○ Conducting marine science or environmental science both inside and outside of university settings
○ Data management, analysis, and visualization, including proficiency with one or more computational analytical tools, including but not limited to R Studio, ArcGIS, QGIS, and/or Tableau
○ Project management, including projects with multiple stakeholders
○ Event planning and/or meeting coordination
○ Managing field research projects
o Science communications (newsletters, blogs, social media) and/or media relations
● Strong verbal and written communication skills
● Interest in deep sea biodiversity, high seas biodiversity, marine spatial planning or another relevant topic
● Understanding and acceptance of diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter

  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity - We encourage applicants to submit an optional Statement of Contributions to Diversity. These statements, if submitted, will be reviewed for evidence of research, professional and/or public service contributions that promote diversity, equal opportunity and equitable access.

Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)

The search committee will contact references of the top candidate(s) after the interviews. After references are checked, a top candidate will be chosen.

Apply link:

Help contact:

About UC Santa Barbara

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the University of California’s Affirmative Action Policy please visit: For the University of California’s Anti-Discrimination Policy, please visit:

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California Policy on Vaccination Programs, as may be amended or revised from time to time. Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.

Job location

Santa Barbara, CA UCSB