Conservation Ecologist
Fully Remote

Do you love to travel? Do you want to work on large, complex projects that require strategic thinking and problem solving? Are you excited about contributing to international conservation targets of protecting 30% of terrestrial and marine areas by 2030? Are you highly motivated by the prospect of developing management plans for conservation practitioners and stakeholders? Do you feel as comfortable in the field as behind a computer?

Job Description

Great Ecology is looking for an early to mid-career conservation ecologist who will play a pivotal role in conducting in-depth feasibility studies and developing management plans for targeted terrestrial and marine protected areas, as well as capacity building for protected area planners. This position requires a blend of field work, analytical expertise in collecting and assessing ecological data (including spatial data, using GIS), and proficiency in drafting technical reports. The successful candidate will work closely with interdisciplinary teams, including social scientists, to ensure conservation strategies are inclusive of socioeconomic assessments and aligned with IUCN guidelines. 

Key Responsibilities

  • Technical report writing – Formulate detailed technical reports encapsulating findings from feasibility studies and management plans and integrating socioeconomic dimensions in collaboration with social scientists;
  • Field work – Participate in field visits, coordinating logistics and methodologies to collect data across varied terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Extensive international travel time (up to 90 days per year) required, necessitating adaptability to remote locations and seasonal environmental characteristics;
  • IUCN guidelines adherence – Ensure that conservation planning and management approaches are in strict compliance with IUCN guidelines, incorporating best practices for biodiversity conservation and sustainable development (e.g. ecotourism, fisheries, etc.);
  • Capacity building – Contribute to the capability building of the client’s Protected Areas Team through knowledge transfer and training, enhancing their technical skillsets in conservation planning and execution; and
  • Collaborative development – Work in tandem with Great Ecology’s team and the client to develop methodologies and templates for feasibility studies and management plans, ensuring alignment with project objectives and deliverables.

Additional Information

The person hired for this position must be able and willing to travel to, and around, a country with a Level 3 travel advisory from the US State Department for up to 90 consecutive days each year. The primary project that this position will support is anticipated to last for three years; we anticipate follow-on conservation targets that will extend beyond this three year period. 

The candidate selected for this position’s primary focus will be on this project; however, the candidate may also be assigned to support other project work, as needed.

Preference will be given to candidates who live within commuting distance of San Diego or New York City or can relocate within the first 60 days; however, highly qualified remote candidates will be considered.

Recent Master’s or PhD graduates from programs in conservation biology, ecology, environmental science, or a related field are strongly encouraged to apply.


Required Skills & Experience 

Candidates must meet the following minimum requirements for consideration: 

  • Advanced degree in conservation biology, ecology, environmental science, or a related field;
  • Proven experience in conservation planning, protected area management, and biodiversity conservation aligned with IUCN guidelines;
  • Expertise in field data collection, ecological survey methods, and remote area logistics;
  • Exceptional skills in technical report writing and communication;
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in interdisciplinary teams, with a commitment to collaborative problem-solving and knowledge sharing; and
  • Flexibility for extensive international travel for up to 90 days at a time, including stays in remote locations as required for field work.

Preferred Skills & Experience (but not required) 

Preference may be given to applicants who provide these skills:

  • Strong knowledge of ecotourism and other forms of sustainable development, with an emphasis on visitation of protected sites;
  • Strong background in IUCN guidelines or other international conservation frameworks, as well as protected area financing and/or planning;
  • Demonstrated experience with environmental impact assessments and/or mitigation planning;
  • Demonstrated knowledge of, and experience working in, remote mangroves, coral reefs, deserts, and/or mountainous ecosystems;
  • Professional certifications, such as Certified Ecologist (ESA) Professional Wetland Scientist (SWS), Certified Ecological Restoration Practitioner (SER), etc.; and
  • Demonstrated experience in networking with regional organizations.
Salary Description
$85,000 - $100,000 / year