Head of Science Team in the Technical Support Unit (IPCC WG I) [Closed]

Working Group I of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is filling the position of

Head of Science Team in the Technical Support Unit

The position is located in the Paris area, at Gif-sur-Yvette (France).

Deadline extended till 3 December 2023.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

The IPCC was established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1988 to provide policymakers with rigorous, transparent, and objective scientific assessments on climate change, its implications and potential
future risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation options. The IPCC is now undertaking its Seventh Assessment (AR7) cycle. The IPCC Working Group I (WGI) assesses the physical science underpinning past, present, and future climate change. The WGI Technical Support Unit (TSU) provides scientific, technical, operational and communications support that underpin and implement the WGI assessment.

The Technical Support Unit (TSU)

The TSU works at the unique IPCC interface between science and policy in the provision of the climate knowledge and information that is relevant for policy needs and decision making. The team is responsible for facilitating and implementing the assessment process undertaken by the author teams and overseen by the WGI Bureau. We are seeking someone who is highly motivated to join a team that spans different areas of expertise including climate sciences (observations, climate processes, global and regional climate modeling), visual design and communication, digital information development and management, and international project management. The team is hosted by Université Paris-Saclay and located in the facilities of Ecole normale supérieure (ENS) Paris-Saclay in the Paris area.

The Head of Science Team Role

We seek candidates that bring a broad understanding of state-of-the-art physical climate science, International research and coordinated activities, as well as demonstrated experience in team leadership and management, as well as international experience. We are looking for someone who is enthusiastic in supporting a high impact and rigorous WGI assessment and promote the value of information on the physical basis of climate change and its accessibility and usability by different communities around the world.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Head of Science Team will be responsible for the delivery and coordination of science-related activities of the Technical Support Unit (TSU) throughout the preparation, review and completion phases of the products of Working Group I during the Seventh Assessment cycle. The successful candidate will support the work of the AR7 authors, working closely with the WGI Bureau, the Head of TSU and the Strategic Networking Officer. He/she will facilitate the development of a network of regional scientists and liaise with the WG1 vice chairs and Heads of Science of the other TSUs. The Head of Science Team will report to the Head of TSU and the Co-Chairs of WGI.

The Head of Science Team will play a leading role within the TSU in supporting the development of the assessment reports and their production in due time, the preparation of the Technical Summary and the Summary for Policymakers, and the synthesis of the assessment findings therein. He/she will contribute to the overall coordination of the full breath of TSU activities in close collaboration with the Head of TSU.

The TSU Science Team is comprised of Senior Science Officers and Science Officers at the postdoctoral level. It has a distributed structure with staff based at the TSU office at ENS Paris-Saclay and at the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences in Beijing, China. The Head of Science Team will lead the team, line manage the Paris-based Science Team, as well as coordinate work done in collaboration with the members based in Beijing. The role will also include mentoring and supervision of projects undertaken with students and interns on science analysis.

The Science Team supports the assessment, the robustness, traceability and confidence of the assessment findings based on multiple lines of evidence. The team works on the consistent treatment of climate science topics within the Working Group I report and in relation to the wider AR7 assessment. The team also supports the author teams in terms of assessed digital information accessibility, reproducibility and curation for the transparency and provenance of the assessment outcomes, fostering open-source community practices, data literacy, information design and management. The science team also includes artificial intelligence experts.


  • PhD in climate science; 
  • A broad overview of climate science; 
  • Track record of independent research; 
  • Demonstrated team leadership and management of science teams including students and postdocs; 
  • Experience in research project development, resource mobilisation and management; 
  • Scientific publications in the peer-reviewed literature; 
  • Experience reviewing and editing peer-reviewed literature; 
  • Leadership and skills to work in an international team with a common long-term goal; 
  • Strong organisational skills to plan and execute complex multi-task projects according to tight time schedules, maintaining good time-keeping and communication across multiple activities;
  • High level of social skills and capability to interact with the international science community and support integration and coordination across disciplines


  • A highly motivated, independent scientist as well as an active collaborative thinker that seeks and creates opportunities; 
  • A strong team player who will support others as needed and who will actively engage with the international climate science community; 
  • Proficiency in written and spoken English.


The position is a fixed term contract from Université Paris-Saclay for 3 years with a possibility of extension for the duration of the IPCC Seventh Assessment cycle planned for 5-7 years.

Please send by 3 December 2023, your application consisting of a letter of motivation, curriculum vitae, and two letters of recommendation, to Clotilde Péan, Head of the WGI TSU.