Asst. editor needed for Global Volcanism Program

Position Available: Smithsonian science-editor

            Starting in June or July 2011 a one-year contract position for an Earth-science editor is available with the Global Volcanism Program of the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum.  This will be a part-time (~20 hour/week) contract position without benefits, at a wage of $12 to $20 per hour commensurate with the candidate’s abilities.  Longer-term funding is a possibility. The place of work is in the Natural History building.  Work hours are flexible; some telecommuting is possible.

We study volcanism in a global context and produce a monthly newsletter, the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network (  The Bulletin discusses recent eruptions, ongoing monitoring, and related aspects of volcanology, geophysics, atmospheric impacts, and volcano-related hazards.  Reports are contributed by an informal network of volcano watchers.  We need assistance preparing, organizing, and laying out the Bulletin.  This involves computer-aided preparation of maps and diagrams, and editing reports.  Writing and computer skills are vital.  We also produce related reference materials and maintain a database of active volcanoes and their behavior.

Your job will entail acting as a technical liaison, editing submitted manuscripts, and seeing edited manuscripts through our internal review process.  We also strive to improve the clarity of figures, tables, and photos.  Your specialized skills might include volcano geology, geophysics, geography, cartography, natural hazards, meteorology, technical writing, and graphical software (eg. Adobe Photoshop).

Many network contributors are volcanologists, remote sensors, and geophysicists who work at universities, volcano observatories, and government geological surveys.  Some contributors have limited English writing ability, and perhaps ten percent of submitted volcano reports require translation.  Common languages include Indonesia, Spanish, Japanese, French, and many others.

If you are interested in applying for this position, please send a resume and cover letter to Richard Wunderman at or call 202 633 1827


One response to “Asst. editor needed for Global Volcanism Program

  1. The Smithsonian might want to advertise this as an internship; the bottom end of the pay scale is actually rather insulting. Most copy editors (read: skill level below editor and certainly below what the Smithsonian is requiring) make at least $20-$30 an hour if you’re talking 10 pages edited per hour.

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