Assistant Professor – Tenure Track in Planetary Sciences



Job description

Seattle, WA

The University of Washington (UW) Department of Earth and Space Sciences seeks an outstanding faculty member to work at the forefront of planetary research on the surfaces, atmospheres, or interiors of planets, exoplanets, or moons. This is a tenure-track, full-time, 9-month faculty position at the rank of Assistant Professor, with an anticipated start date of September 1, 2021. The position will remain open until filled.

The University of Washington is located in the greater Seattle metropolitan area, and offers one of the most exceptional research and teaching environments in the United States.  It serves a diverse population of 80,000 students, faculty and staff, including 25% first-generation college students, over 25% Pell Grant students, and faculty from over 70 countries. The UW is a recipient of a National Science Foundation ADVANCE Institutional Transformation Award to increase the advancement of women faculty in science, engineering, and math (see

The Department of Earth and Space Sciences, located in the College of the Environment, has four broad and overlapping focus areas: the solid earth, surface processes, geobiology, and planetary/space studies. The department is also home to USGS employees who study natural hazards in the Pacific Northwest. Several centers and programs, closely linked to the department, allow for unparalleled interdisciplinary educational and research opportunities. These include the School of Oceanography, the Department of Atmospheric Sciences, and other units in the College of the Environment; Departments of Civil Engineering and Applied Mathematics; Quaternary Research Center; Program on Climate Change, Pacific Northwest Seismic Network, the Virtual Planetary Laboratory and the UW Astrobiology Program (

The successful candidate will be expected to collaborate and connect with other scientists; build a vibrant, externally funded, and internationally recognized research program that addresses scientific questions of fundamental significance; and provide high quality teaching, mentor students, and advance equity and inclusion.

QualificationsThe successful candidate will have a demonstrated record of research (through observation, experimentation, and/or modeling) in one or more of the following: planetary geology, geomorphology, geochemistry, glaciology, or geophysics. Positive factors for consideration include, but are not limited to, involvement in planetary exploration or use of remote sensing data. A Ph.D. or foreign equivalent in Geophysics, Geology, Planetary Sciences, or a related field is required by the time of appointment.

How to apply

Applicants will be directed to submit materials via Interfolio. Preference will be given to applications (including letters of reference) received prior to May 7, 2021, but applications received after this date may be considered. Required materials include the following:

  • Curriculum vitae with publication list,
  • three statements (no more than 10 pages total) addressing 1) research and leadership accomplishments, as well as future research plans, 2) a statement on teaching and mentoring, including evidence of teaching effectiveness, and 3) contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion (, and
  • contact information for three (3) referees that will prompt invitations for them to submit referrals confidentially through the Interfolio application.

Note: applications will be considered incomplete until receipt of all three referrals. Applicants should notify referees upon submission of their application to ensure timely submission of their letters.

Questions about the application process or position in general should be addressed to [email protected]

For questions about potential disability accommodation during the application process, please contact the UW’s Disability Services Office at 206-543-6450, or 206-543-6452 (TTY), or [email protected].

Equal Employment Opportunity StatementUniversity of Washington is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, genetic information, gender identity or expression, age, disability, or protected veteran status.

Commitment to Diversity

The University of Washington is committed to building diversity among its faculty, librarian, staff, and student communities, and articulates that commitment in the UW Diversity Blueprint ( Additionally, the University’s Faculty Code recognizes faculty efforts in research, teaching and/or service that address diversity and equal opportunity as important contributions to a faculty member’s academic profile and responsibilities (

The University of Washington (UW) is proud to be one of the nation’s premier educational and research institutions. Our people are the most important asset in our pursuit of achieving excellence in education, research, and community service. Our staff not only enjoys outstanding benefits and professional growth opportunities, but also an environment noted for diversity, community involvement, intellectual excitement, artistic pursuits, and natural beauty.