Job opportunity: Engagement and Research Associate

The Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS) and NH Sea Grant (NHSG) are seeking to co-hire an Engagement and Research Associate. The successful candidate will work with a regional team of engagement specialists, researchers, and stakeholders to identify shared goals, challenges, information gaps, and priorities that need to be addressed to enhance the blue economy of the Northeastern U.S., particularly as related to the development of ocean renewable energy (ORE). This will include both ongoing development in Southern New England and prospective development in the Gulf of Maine. The Associate will help stakeholders, including communities, state agencies, and decision makers navigate the evolution of the ORE sector in the context of existing (e.g., fishing, shipping, tourism) and emerging (e.g., offshore aquaculture) industries. The Associate will work with people and data to help inform state, regional, and federal ORE planning and decision-making processes in ways that enhance blue economy goals, including through geo-spatial and other analyses.


  • Stakeholder engagement & communications
    • Establish and maintain connections among commercial and recreational fishermen, ORE developers, research program administrators, agency personnel, and other stakeholders to facilitate engaged research in New Hampshire and the Northeast
    • Educate stakeholders about the services provided by Sea Grant and U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) that can help them better navigate policy, economic, and environmental changes
    • Track public discussions about relevant issues in the Northeast in the press, social media, policy forums, and other venues, and contribute information and insight where needed in cooperation with communications experts at NHSG and NERACOOS
    • Present work outcomes on behalf of NHSG and NERACOOS at relevant workshops, conferences, and other forums
    • Support colleagues in the Sea Grant and U.S. IOOS communities in better understanding and contributing to more collaborative energy development processes
    • Participate in a regional Sea Grant ORE Community of Practice. Support emerging engagement and communications efforts that are prioritized through stakeholder needs.
  • Fostering science
    • Work with stakeholders and state/regional entities to identify data and analyses needed to address user concerns and ecosystem impacts of different ORE development alternatives. Participate in regular regional strategic research meetings to help identify, refine, and address research needs.
    • Organize data, promote additional data collection, perform analyses, and present results to address questions identified through stakeholder engagement
    • Identify ocean observing priorities for improved planning, assessment, and operational needs during different stages of energy development
    • Determine priorities for new resources and capacities needed for NHSG, NERACOOS, and partners to contribute to sustainable ORE development processes and implementation
    • Identify sources of new funding that can help to continue and expand the position and work with NHSG and NERACOOS colleagues to develop grant and project proposals
    • Track and document activities, participation, accomplishments, and outcomes, for annual reporting and network sharing
    • Fundraising and strategic planning


  • Master’s degree in a relevant field (e.g., resource economics, marine policy, fisheries science, oceanography, geospatial technologies, etc.) or bachelor’s degree with 3-5 years of relevant experience
  • Demonstrated ability to plan and execute applied scientific analyses
  • Excellent communication skills including science communication, technical report writing, and grant proposal development
  • Experience in stakeholder outreach and engagement, or strong willingness and potential to develop engagement skills


  • Demonstrated knowledge and/or experience working with current users of Gulf of Maine coastal and marine resources
  • Knowledge of and/or experience working on issues related to Northeast marine and coastal ecosystems
  • Familiarity ORE industry, policies, and technologies
  • 3-5 years of experience in data integration and analysis
  • 3-5 years of experience in stakeholder outreach and engagement


This is a full-time (40-hour/week) position supported by 50% funding each from NERACOOS and NH Sea Grant. Funding is committed for one year with potential to extend based on performance, demonstrated need, and additional fundraising success. The position will be administered by NERACOOS, with guidance and oversight provided jointly by NERACOOS and NH Sea Grant. Compensation will be commensurate with experience and available funding and includes the NERACOOS organizational benefits package.


​This position is based at the NERACOOS office in Portsmouth, NH, with some time spent at NH Sea Grant offices on the campus of UNH in Durham, NH. Teleworking part of the time is also possible pending coordination with colleagues and following COVID-19 protocols. Standard business hours are Monday through Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, although the position will require regular travel up to 25% of the time and periodic work on weekends and in the evening as conferences, workshops, and other engagement opportunities dictate.


Submit CV, 1-page cover letter, and contact information for three professional references as a PDF to Rob Cardeiro (

The search committee will review applications beginning September 1, 2021 and will continue until the position is filled.


NERACOOS is an independent non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that is one of eleven regional associations comprising U.S. IOOS. Our mission is to produce, integrate, and communicate high-quality information that helps ensure safety, economic and environmental resilience, and sustainable use of the coastal ocean. NERACOOS provides oceanographic information to the Northeast region, a large, dynamic, environment that stretches from the Gulf of Maine to Long Island Sound. People who work and play on the water, as well as those who live in coastal communities, depend on NERACOOS data and forecasts to make important decisions, such as when to bring oil tankers into port, where to go for the best surfing, and whether it is safe to go fishing. Scientists and meteorologists utilize NERACOOS data to better understand and predict storms, sea-level change, animal migrations, harmful algae blooms, and more. The information NERACOOS provides helps protect lives and property, empower coastal economies, and improve the health of our oceans.


NH Sea Grant is a partnership between the University of New Hampshire (UNH) and the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program. NH Sea Grant is a member of the Northeast Sea Grant Consortium. Sea Grant programs are based in every coastal and Great Lakes state, as well as in Puerto Rico and Guam. Sea Grant programs integrate research, extension, education, and communications approaches to accomplish its mission to “support a coastal environment that sustains healthy ecosystems, economies, and people.” Sea Grant provides unique access to research-based knowledge and expertise. Through its researchers, educators, communicators and outreach specialists, Sea Grant generates, translates, and delivers cutting-edge, unbiased information to help address the most complex coastal issues and support the most promising coastal opportunities. NH Sea Grant is a team-oriented, community-centered, and mission-driven organization that emphasizes partnerships and networks in its work. NH Sea Grant emphasizes justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in its organizational culture and work.

NERACOOS is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from all qualified individuals. This job description can also be found at