Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking an experienced science writer and content creator who is passionate about contributing to the nation’s decarbonization effort in response to global climate change. The position resides in ORNL’s Communications Division and is matrixed to the Energy Science and Technology Directorate (ESTD), which is focused on developing and deploying technology that can make a difference in decarbonization over the short term while performing cutting-edge research on longer-term developments to support national carbon goals.

ESTD plays a pivotal role in America’s transformation into a clean, efficient, flexible, and secure energy future. Our researchers deliver breakthroughs in energy from generation to distribution and storage to end use in support of Department of Energy missions. Our scientists and engineers work with many of America’s best innovators and businesses to research, develop, and deploy cutting-edge technologies and to break down market barriers in sustainable transportation, smart power systems, and energy efficiency for homes, buildings, and manufacturing.

The ideal candidate will bring passion, experience, and new ideas to the task of working with the scientists and engineers of ESTD, helping tell the story of their critical research. The successful candidate will join an existing team of accomplished communicators embedded in ESTD.

Major Duties/Responsibilities:

Be able to understand and communicate about complex science- and technology-related topics and work with senior scientists and managers to produce timely, interesting, and compelling science and technology content that conveys the importance and excitement of the work at ORNL.
Write feature articles, science highlights, news releases, website and newsletter content, marketing content, video scripts, internal communications products, and other materials that align with communications strategic plans while clearly and effectively communicating research findings, technical developments, and key programmatic messages.
Interact with scientific staff to identify and track upcoming results and accomplishments that can be made into compelling content.
Organize and analyze information from various scientific and often highly technical sources, including interviews with subject matter experts and review of published scientific papers, to produce written materials in concise and approachable language without loss of technical meaning.
Collaborate with technical editors to ensure adherence to grammar and style guidelines.
Assist in growing ESTD’s social media presence by developing content, planning campaigns, and identifying new channels for social media promotion.
Assist in creation of multimedia content for web, social media, and other uses.
Collaborate with the ESTD communications coordinator and other team members as well as Communications Division and Creative Services staff members to provide ESTD with needed support and required products and to elevate the multidisciplinary, team nature of ORNL scientific research.
Suggest visual material in support of scientific and promotional information needs; work with graphic designers, photographers, and videographers to develop attractive and high-impact visual products.
Work with external media, including science and trade publications, on coverage of ESTD.
Comply with environment, safety, health, and quality program requirements.
Maintain a strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics.

Basic Qualifications:

A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, public relations, marketing, English, a science, or other related field.
A minimum of 5 years of experience producing communications products on science- and/or technology-related subjects for diverse audiences.


The ideal candidate will have the ability to dive into the minutiae of scientific progress while maintaining awareness of high-level strategic objectives. Communications experience in a national laboratory setting or other large research institution, including academia and industry, is preferred. Experience working with and developing strategic communications plans is beneficial. Technical training or a background in science is a plus. Videography and video editing experience is also a plus.

The successful candidate should have excellent scientific/technical reading, writing, and editing skills (will be expected to provide writing samples). Demonstrated ability to work with scientists and engineers to build expertise and earn trusted collaborator status is necessary. The candidate should be able to manage communications projects from concept to completion in collaboration with other team members; develop content for multiple platforms, including social media, video, and web; and create content that aligns with existing communications strategic objectives. The successful candidate should have excellent attention to detail; the ability to understand, follow, and implement complex instructions; strong organizational skills; and excellent verbal communication and interpersonal skills.

The candidate should possess strong skills in solving problems and developing and implementing solutions; the ability to prioritize and meet deadlines; and the ability to work—both independently (under minimal supervision) and with all levels of researchers and staff—in a team-based collaborative environment.

This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email [email protected].

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply. UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.