Assistant Scientist (Preventive Conservation Research)

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Application deadline: 
Monday, 3 April, 2023 - 00:00

Job Summary
We are looking for an Assistant Scientist to provide analytical and research support in the Getty Conservation Institute’s Science Department, as part of the Preventive Conservation research team. Initially, you will work on our Managing Collections Environments Initiative, which combines research, education, and field activities to address technical and practical issues pertaining to the sustainable control and management of collection environments in museums, libraries, and archives, of all sizes and resource levels, and in all geographic regions. Your work will be based in our laboratories and offices at the Getty Center in Los Angeles.


The Getty Conservation Institute (GCI) works internationally to advance conservation practice in the visual arts—objects, collections, architecture, and sites. The Institute serves the conservation community through scientific research, education and training, field projects, and disseminating information. In all our endeavors, we create and deliver knowledge that contributes to the conservation of the world's cultural heritage.

Major Job Responsibilities
Assist the Managing Collections Environments Initiative team in the development of a range of comprehensive—safe for collections and energy efficient—climate-control strategies for museums, libraries, and archives, particularly with respect to temperature and relative humidity control strategies.
Identify and apply appropriate instrumental techniques available at the GCI, to studies that will help identify more precisely the conditions under which irreversible damage occurs as a result of climatic agents of deterioration.
Deploy monitoring techniques, such as macrophotography, and 3D scanning, to validate the practical application of climate-control strategies for collections.
Use acoustic emission testing in controlled experiments to study how damage in sample objects can be correlated with specific environmental conditions.
As part of ongoing Preventive Conservation research, make advancements to standard methods for carrying out microfade testing for investigating light damage.
Monitor exterior and interior temperature, relative humidity, shock, and vibration conditions for a range of packing cases used by museums to transport artifacts, in order to assess the environmental performance of such cases.
Present research findings at professional conferences and contribute to the publication of papers in peer-reviewed journals.
In collaboration with the Managing Collections Environments Initiative team, assist with the organization of courses, workshops, and audiovisual didactic materials to disseminate our research to the conservation community
Prioritize your workload, prepare samples, collect, organize, manage, and interpret data, prepare reports, and perform literature reviews.
Contribute your own expertise in the development of new techniques and innovations.
As part of the Managing Collections Environments Initiative team, you will contribute to the short- and medium-term planning of project goals and the establishment of strategic priorities.
Professional development is encouraged and supported through attendance at specialized training courses and participation in professional meetings and workshops.
Bachelor’s degree in chemistry or other natural science is required; Master’s degree preferred.
1-3 years of experience in scientific research, preferably in the field of cultural heritage.
All employees must be fully-vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus as a condition of employment. Exemptions from this requirement as a reasonable accommodation due to medical contraindication, disability or sincerely held religious belief or practice will be considered.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
Must be able to operate analytical instrumentation, including dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), thermal analysis (TMA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), micro/nano-indenter, atomic force microscopy (AFM) and a universal testing machine (UTM)
Knowledge of acoustic emission, macrophotography, 3D scanning, digital image correlation, microfade testing, and shock and vibration monitors
Knowledge of the behavior and conservation issues associated with art objects composed of hygroscopic materials is preferred
Knowledge of database programing
Experience working with conservators in a conservation science laboratory is preferred
Creative problem-solving skills and an openness to learning new skills sets
Ability to work effectively individually and in a highly collaborative environment
Demonstrated excellent organizational, data management, prioritization, communication, and writing skills

All candidates must apply online. Please be prepared to upload your cover letter and CV/resume when prompted to so by the online application system. Candidates who successfully complete the online application process will receive an automated message via email. If you have questions about this position or the recruiting process, please email

Deadline for applications: April 3, 2023

Benefits and Perks
Here are just some examples that Getty offers/provides for full-time employees:
Medical, Dental and Vision insurance coverage, starting on date of hire. Getty pays 75%-95% of the premium, depending on the plan selected.
403(b) Employee Investment retirement plan – with up to 5% Getty Match
Getty contribution of 6%, on behalf of employee, to 401(a) retirement account
Educational Assistance and professional development
Paid Vacation, Sick and Personal Days
12 Paid Holidays
Many positions have bi-weekly Off-Fridays
On-Site Fitness Center at Getty Center
Community service opportunities

To learn more about our comprehensive benefits and long list of perks, go to Getty HR.

Equal Opportunity Employer
We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, citizenship or immigration status, color, disability, ethnicity, familial status, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other protected status.

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