The Manager, Scientific Communications researches, writes, edits, and proofs
content for communicating the research and mission of the Salk Institute with
our internal community, donors, media, members of the general public, and
other stakeholders. The individual manages two direct reports, a Science
Writer and Science Illustrator, as well as freelance contract writers and
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Develops a range of public-facing content for the Institute, including but
not limited to: Institute magazine, press releases, Salk.edu pages, lab
websites, podcast materials, brochures, video scripts, social media posts,
exhibit copy, promotional materials, media advisories, tip sheets,
biographies, leadership messages, talking points, development-related
content that requires a high degree of scientific knowledge (e.g., for
scientific campaign or initiative-specific appeals or proposals); and
other science-related collateral.
Serves as a primary editor and copyeditor, overseeing the proofing and
editing of all content, with an emphasis on senior faculty- and
leadership-focused materials and those with urgent deadlines, to ensure
adherence to Salk style and branding.
Develops and maintains positive working relationships with faculty and
leadership to collect information and apply science communications best
practices and expertise to translate research for a wide variety of lay
audience materials. Ensures that final drafts are approved by scientists
and other stakeholders.
Maintains relationships with scientific journals and publishers to best
serve the Institute. This includes setting embargos and publication dates
that will increase reporter engagement when possible. Collaborates with
other external organizations, foundations, universities, and institutions
to write, edit, and promote Salk's science communication content.
Works in conjunction with the digital communications team to facilitate
processes for timely publication of content on websites and through
e-blasts. Edits and approves press release content before publishing.
Independently identifies appropriate photography, science images, and
graphics for newsletters, press releases, Inside Salk and the web to
couple with completed articles.
Serves as lead editor to continually update and maintain the Salk Style
In conjunction with video and AV staff, scripts, edits, and produces
scientific video shoots, animation videos, and podcasts. Conducts
interviews with scientists for video shoots to ensure the best and most
powerful sound bites are captured accurately.
Assists with special event support and media relations as needed and as
other priorities allow.
Performs other related duties as assigned by management.
Directly supervises 2 employees within the External Relations
department(s), the Science Writer and Science Illustrator, to provide
oversight, strategy, and guidance,
Oversees a team of freelance contract writers, including managing
contracts, planning and forecasting budgets, assigning work, managing
timelines, and editing copy.
Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the
organization's policies and applicable laws.
Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees;
planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding
and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems;
making recommendations for employee merit increases and other compensation
5+ years of experience writing and translating molecular/cell biology,
neuroscience, or related life science topics for a general audience, based
on reading primary research papers and interviewing scientists.
Previous experience working in a press office, media relations, or science
journalism, including writing and editing news stories or press releases.
Must be an excellent writer, editor, and communicator who can work
independently and in collaboration with scientists, faculty, leadership,
Basic knowledge of the scientific publication process.
Bachelor's Degree (BA) from four-year college or university in public
relations, journalism, communications, biological sciences, or equivalent
combination of education and experience.
Master's Degree (MA/MS) in science journalism, communications,
biological sciences, or related field preferred.
Computer skills required: Microsoft Office; Project Management Software,
such as Asana and Slack
Other skills required: Excellent organizational skills with ability to
prioritize daily operations to meet rigid deadlines, ensure smooth
workflow, and manage and execute multiple projects simultaneously, often
working under pressure with frequent interruptions.
Integrity - Guides our moral compass and underpins our every action.
We do what is right in all situations for no other reason than because it
is right. We uphold honesty and ethical behavior and make good on our
commitments. We understand that words and deeds matter and that integrity
leads to trust.
Community - Enables us to harness the power of our collective
talents. We work together towards common goals. We recognize the
importance of diversity where everyone's ideas, identities, backgrounds,
and perspectives are valued and pave the paths that propel us forward. We
understand our pioneering role in the broader scientific community and
take pride in our efforts to have a positive impact on the world.
Accountability - Keeps us focused, and keeps us honest. We are
responsible not only for our own success, but the success of our teams and
the entire Institute. We consider how the actions we take and the
decisions we make in our own work may impact others.
Respect - Creates the foundation of trust and brings out the best in
us all. We value the experiences, identities, and feelings of those we
work with, regardless of their position or their relationship to us. We
provide feedback in a constructive manner, use appropriate language, and
allow others to share their thoughts and ideas without fear of ridicule.
Empowerment - Amplifies all voices and inspires the pursuit of
greatness. We lift each other up, enabling us to grow continuously and
live to our fullest potential. We support the expression of ideas,
encourage self-advocacy, inspire confidence and recognize that an
environment of mutual respect is critical to our collective success.
The expected pay range for this position is $82,000 to $95,220 per annum.
Salk Institute provides pay ranges representing its good faith estimate of
what the institute reasonably expects to pay for a position. The pay offered
to a selected candidate will be determined based on factors such as (but not
limited to) the scope and responsibilities of the position, the
qualifications of the selected candidate, departmental budget availability,
internal equity, geographic location, and external market pay for comparable
Analytical - Synthesizes complex or diverse information
Judgement - Exhibits sound and accurate judgment; Supports and
explains reasoning for decisions; Includes appropriate people in decision-
making process; Makes timely decisions.
Managing People - Includes staff in planning, decision-making,
facilitating and process improvement; Takes responsibility for
subordinates' activities; Makes self available to staff; Provides regular
performance feedback; Develops subordinates' skills and encourages growth;
Improves processes, products and services.; Continually works to improve
Oral Communication - Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or
negative situations; Listens and gets clarification; Responds well to
questions; Demonstrates group presentation skills; Participates in
Organizational Support - Follows policies and procedures; Completes
administrative tasks correctly and on time; Supports organization's goals
and values; Benefits organization through outside activities; Supports
affirmative action and respects diversity.
Project Management - Develops project plans; Coordinates projects;
Communicates changes and progress; Completes projects on time and budget;
Manages project team activities.
Written Communication - Writes clearly and informatively; Edits work
for spelling and grammar; Varies writing style to meet needs; Presents
numerical data effectively; Able to read and interpret written
PHYSICAL DEMANDS AND WORK ENVIRONMENT:
Occasionally required to stand
Occasionally required to walk
Continually required to sit
Continually required to utilize hand and finger dexterity
Continually required to talk or hear
Occasionally exposure to wet and/or humid conditions (non-weather)
Occasionally exposure to outside weather conditions
While performing the duties of this job, the noise level in the work
environment is usually very quiet
The employee must occasionally lift and /or move 0-20 pounds
Specific vision abilities required by this job include: Close vision;
Depth perception and ability to adjust focus
The above is intended to describe the general content of and requirements for
the performance of this job. It is not to be construed as an exhaustive
statement of duties, responsibilities, or physical requirements. Nothing in
this job description restricts management's right to assign or reassign duties
and responsibilities to this job at any time. Reasonable accommodations may
be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential
functions. All individuals who accept a position with the Salk Institute must
be willing to work in an animal-related research environment, must
successfully complete the Institute's background investigation and must be
willing to sign a confidentiality agreement.
The Salk Institute is an internationally renowned research institution that
values diversity, equity, and inclusion. We seek bold and interactive leaders
passionate about exploring new frontiers in science. Our collaborative
community embraces diverse perspectives and unique life experiences, fostering
innovation, and a sense of belonging. Together, we strive to improve the
wellbeing of humanity through groundbreaking research.
Licenses & Certifications
Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities
The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against
employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or
disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However,
employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees
or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the
pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have
access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response
to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation,
proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the
employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish
information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)