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Innovation Advisor- Focused on Sustainability

Engineering Research
Innovation Advisors (Division)
211MP Requisition #


Are you motivated to have impact beyond yourself – for your team, for clients, and for the world? Do you have experience evaluating the environmental impact of materials, products, services, or policies? Do you want to work for a mission driven organization, filled with smart people, who are passionate about what they do and who want to make the world a better place? And do you want to help clients achieve their own missions by finding ways to reduce waste and engage in the circular economy?  

If yes, you may be the right person to join RTI Innovation Advisors (RTI IA). Our team has been helping global corporate, federal, and foundation clients solve their toughest technology and innovation challenges for more than 50 years. We share your drive to make the world better and your desire for work with purpose: to solve challenges facing science and society, and to learn and grow in a diverse and ever-changing global environment. We make that happen by investing in you—dynamic professional development, employee wellness, and world-class benefits which include paid parental leave and childcare subsidies. We empower you to accomplish our shared mission. 

We’re looking for an Innovation Advisor to support our clients with a broad range of environmental sustainability and climate resilience initiatives that are either enabled by technology or will support technology-based products. As a strategic partner to our clients, you will lead teams of researchers tackling sustainability questions and guide clients through multi-stakeholder sensemaking discussions, collaborative decision making and planning.  You will work directly with RTI Innovation Advisors' client engagement managers and matrixed-project teams to support global corporate, federal, and foundation clients. 

As a part of our insights research team, clients will depend on you for rigorous, independent research that will enable their initiatives to have meaningful human and business impact. As a business unit of RTI International—an independent nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition—RTI IA provides an environment that promotes our values of quiet confidence, learning, and collaborating, empowered by a culture of trust and respect, responsibility, and accountability. 

What You’ll Bring 

Because you’ll educate our clients and help them set goals, prioritize their activities, and model their impact, you’ll bring a solid background in environmental sustainability. In addition, you will: 

  • Have technical expertise in solid waste (especially packaging and recycling), environmentally sustainable chemistry and materials, water, or carbon management strategies. 

  • Demonstrate strong oral and written communication skills (including English fluency), and a proven ability to develop well-structured, logical, and audience-relevant communications; must have strong MS PowerPoint and MS Excel skills. 

  • Be a self-directed team member and leader committed to quality and efficiency, with proven ability to: work in highly ambiguous and complex environments; interface with client executives; motivate and guide client teams. 

  • Show a commitment to mentoring and developing others and sharing your expertise. 

  • Work well under the pressure of supporting multiple clients, projects, and deadlines. 

  • Have strong organizational, critical thinking, and analytical skills; a proven ability to assess client challenges, develop hypotheses, frame problems, lead research and generate relevant insights. 

  • Approach problems with a healthy dose of curiosity that helps you, your team members, and your clients imagine different possibilities and solutions; an ability to combine technical rigor with creative thinking and see beyond the obvious to imagine “what could be.”  


What You'll Do 

We are seeking candidates with skills and experience to: 

  • Lead matrixed teams of RTI IA's insights researchers to provide custom business and technology intelligence for clients working on environmental sustainability initiatives including: 

  • new product or service development or product and package redesign 

  • evaluating potential partnerships to further their innovation initiatives and meet sustainability or circular economy goals 

  • identification and assessment of circular economy opportunities (including investments, product/service expansions, and more) 

  • modeling the business and environmental impact of sustainability interventions. 

  • Guide our external clients through understanding the current and future state of technology related to environmental sustainability, including alternative materials and sustainable chemistries, recycling processes, renewable energy (including waste-to-energy), electrification, and more.  

  • Develop hypotheses, frame problems, and generate relevant, impactful insights based on supporting data. 

  • Build relationships with existing clients and cultivate new clients to maintain and grow RTI IA's profile as a long-term trusted advisor and partner. 

  • Provide thought leadership and specialized insights to our internal and external clients around environmental sustainability and climate change (including mitigation as well as adaptation and resilience) in areas including technology, policy, or environmental impact. 

  • Coach and guide teams in the creation of client deliverables (e.g., reports, presentations, decision support models), including executive summaries, and detailed research (market and technology) deliverables and recommendations. 

  • Co-design and co-deliver virtual and in-person working sessions and workshops as a central part of client engagements. 

  • Lead overall client engagement activities, proposal development, and support service delivery and business growth initiatives and development of new offerings. 


Who You Are 

We recognize the value of your education and experience, which includes or is equivalent to: 

  • Bachelor's degree (or higher) in Business, Economics, or Science/Engineering or MBA, with experience in project management, strategy, or facilitation. 

  • Broad knowledge of, and expertise in, market modeling, environmental impact modeling, or life cycle assessment 

  • At least 2 years of business or innovation consulting experience including direct client engagement (internal or external), project management, synthesis and presentation of recommendations, and experiential learning, including workshop design and facilitation.  

  • At least 6 years (total) of industry-relevant experience in sustainability programs, waste management, environmental policy. 

Ideal candidates will also have: 

  • familiarity with innovation management practices and frameworks 

  • a willingness to travel as needed 

  • authorization to work in the United States 

Our Commitment to Our Employees

RTI International is committed to our Lead Forward values: to innovate, develop talent, collaborate, communicate, think globally, act strategically, and engage inclusively. If these align with your values, we would like to hear from you.  Join us and experience the RTI Difference.



The anticipated pay range for this role is listed below. Our pay ranges represent national averages and may vary by location as a geographic differential may be applied to some locations within the United States.


RTI considers multiple factors when making an offer including, for example: established salary range, internal budget, business needs, and education and years of work experience possessed by the applicant. Further, salary is merely one element to our offer.


At RTI, we demonstrate our commitment to rewarding individual and team achievement through a total rewards package. This package includes (among other things) a competitive base salary, a generous paid time off policy, merit based annual increases, bonus opportunities and a robust recognition program. Other benefits include a competitive range of insurance plans (including health, dental, life, and short-term and long-term disability), access to a retirement savings program such as a 401(k) plan, paid parental leave for mothers and fathers, financial assistance with adoption expenses or infertility treatments, financial reimbursement for education and developmental opportunities, an employee assistance program, and numerous other offerings to support a healthy work-life balance.

Individuals interested in working for RTI please note that as of January 18, 2022, RTI will require all staff in the United States and, except where prohibited by law, all staff in the United Kingdom and the European Union to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated in order to work at RTI. Those who cannot get vaccinated for medical or religious reasons can request an accommodation.

As a global employer of choice, RTI is committed to equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging  in the workplace and the communities and markets where we serve our mission. We value diversity of thought, culture, background and perspective and welcome applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, creed, citizenship status, disability, protected veteran status, or any other classification protected by applicable discrimination laws or RTI policy.

We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Further information is available here.

RTI International is an independent, nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition. Clients rely on us to answer questions that demand an objective and multidisciplinary approach and one that integrates expertise across the social and laboratory sciences, engineering, and international development. We believe in the promise of science, and we are inspired every day to deliver on that promise for the good of people, communities, and businesses around the world. For more information, visit www.rti.org.
For USA Job Postings Only: RTI participates in the US Government E-Verify program. Further information regarding the E-Verify program and laws that are designed to protect you against discrimination relating to your legal right to work in the US can be found here.
For San Francisco, CA USA Job Postings Only: Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records. Further information is available here.


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