Sustainable Polymer Postdoctoral Scholar

Lawrence Berkeley National Lab’s (LBNL) Division has an opening for a Sustainable Polymer Postdoctoral Scholar to join the team.

The Molecular Foundry Division leads a cross-disciplinary program in sustainable polymers with closed-loop materials lifecycles. The chemistry of these polymers incentivizes both their recycling after their service life ends and their regeneration into new products. They are a counterpoint to today’s single-use plastics and help secure our transition to a less-wasteful circular economy.

In this exciting role, you will lead the synthetic development of PDK polymers from which design rules underpinning plastics manufacturing, performance, and recycling emerge. These activities will be supervised by the Helms group, and coordinated with collaborating researchers at the Joint Bioenergy Institute (Keasling and Scown Groups), the Materials Sciences Division (Russell Group), and the Energy Technologies Area (Persson Group).

What You Will Do:

Provide technical expertise in organic and polymer synthesis.

Develop an understanding of structure-property relationships in dynamic covalent polymers in linear, branched, or networked architectures.

Polymer processing and thermomechanical characterization.

Play a key role in maintaining a robust and inclusive safety culture.

Publish in peer-reviewed journals; contribute to scientific research papers, program reports, review articles; present oral reports.

Mentor junior researchers associated with the program, while collectively meeting program milestones on schedule.

What is Required:

Ph.D. in organic chemistry, polymer chemistry, or chemical engineering.

Extensive experience in synthetic organic chemistry.

Demonstrated knowledge or expertise in characterization methods of organic and polymeric materials.

Demonstrated ability to conduct and perform collaborative research and effectively interact with a broad range of colleagues.

Demonstrated ability to accurately and eloquently represent and promote scientific projects to audiences of diverse technical backgrounds.

Experience in the preparation and handling of scientific manuscripts, reports, and research posters.

Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

The posting shall remain open until the position is filled.


This is a full-time, 1 year, postdoctoral appointment with the possibility of renewal based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs. You must have less than 4 years of paid postdoctoral experience. Salary for Postdoctoral positions depends on years of experience post-degree.

This position is represented by a union for collective bargaining purposes.

Salary will be predetermined based on postdoctoral step rates.

This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.

Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.

Equal Employment Opportunity: Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4. Click to view the poster and supplement: “Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law.”

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory encourages applications from women, minorities, veterans, and other underrepresented groups presently considering scientific research careers.

Berkeley Lab

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