Current Openings

 Program Associate

Pure Earth is an international non-profit organization based in New York that is dedicated to solving toxic pollution problems in low- and middle-income countries where human health is at risk. Since its inception in 1999, Pure Earth has completed more than 90 pollution cleanup or risk-reduction projects in 21 countries. The organization focuses its work on sites where chemicals and other toxic pollutants have contaminated soil and water.

Pollution of soil, water and air is responsible for more than nine million deaths annually—more than AIDS, war, natural disasters, smoking or malnutrition. Tens of millions more have reduced neurological development, damaged organs and immune systems, and long-term health problems from exposures to chemicals and other pollutants. Women and children are especially at risk. Despite this, pollution is one of the most underreported and underfunded global challenges.

Pure Earth’s priority is to work in locations throughout the developing world where human health is most affected by pollution. The organization has three primary programs to identify, assess and reduce pollution-related health risks:

1) Toxic Sites Identification Program
Over the past ten years, Pure Earth has developed the only global database of toxic hotspots, known as the Toxic Sites Identification Program. To date, Pure Earth and its local partners have identified more than 4,000 sites where toxic pollution threatens public health, and have conducted on-site environmental
assessments at 3,000 of these locations. Data from site assessments is uploaded into an online global database and used for prioritizing remediation projects and other risk-reduction activities.

2) Pollution Cleanup and Risk-Reduction Projects
When Pure Earth identifies a site that poses substantial risks to human health and has the funding to support a remediation or other type of risk-reduction project, the organization works with the local government, community members and technical advisors to design and implement a project to reduce public health risks at the site. Such projects involve controlling active contamination sources,
remediating abandoned (or “legacy”) contamination, or a combination of both. These projects typically focus on sites where chemical pollutants have contaminated the soil or water, and where the party responsible for the contamination no longer exists and cannot be held responsible.

3) Assisting Governmental Efforts to Control Pollution
In addition to programs and projects implemented by Pure Earth at contaminated sites, the organization works with national, state and municipal governments to assess and prioritize pollution challenges and to design broad policy-based solutions. These programs, called Health and Pollution Action Plans, aim to
elevate pollution as a national priority within the subject country, and to design and facilitate additional projects and programs to reduce public health risks.

Pure Earth seeks a Program Associate to report to the Director for Global Policy and Planning and the Regional Director for South and East Asia (this is a single supervisor who has two roles/titles). The Program Associates will provide assistance on both global policy and planning work conducted with governments, and on regional field-based pollution projects in S. and E. Asia.

The Program Associate will assist in the development and implementation of a global program conducted with national governments called Health and Pollution Action Plans (HPAP). The HPAP program is designed to assist governments of low- and middle-income countries to prioritize pollution challenges and develop and implement solutions.

The HPAP program brings together national Ministries of Environment, Health, Industry, Transport, Energy, Mining, Agriculture and others to review available data on the health impacts of specific pollution issues, identify gaps in the country’s response, and advance concrete actions to reduce risks from priority issues. The Program Associate will assist with research, writing and administrative needs related to the implementation of the HPAP program.

The Program Associate will also assist with the coordination of regional programs in South and East Asia, particular in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and China. The regional work includes the implementation of the Toxic Sites Identification Program and pollution cleanup and risk reduction projects (see
descriptions of both above). The Program Associate will be responsible for coordinating program activities with field-based Country Directors and other staff, compiling and reviewing expense reports, tracking and amending budgets, drafting project reports, reviewing site assessments, and generally providing administrative and logistic support to the supervisor and regional staff in Asia.

Although this position is located in Pure Earth’s New York headquarters, the supervisor for this position works remotely. Daily communication with the supervisor by email, phone and video conference is required.


  1. Provide program management, logistical and administrative support to the Director of Global Policy and Planning.
  2. Coordinate communications between national and international staff.
  3. Prepare and review expense reports from international programs and those related to supervisor’s travel.
  4. Assist with the management of a portfolio of grant-funded toxic pollution assessment, mitigation and remediation projects throughout the region, including: tracking budgets and expenditures; hiring, training and overseeing personnel; liaising with public, private and non-profit sector stakeholders; monitoring project progress; reporting to donors; and publicizing project outcomes and results.
  5. Develop and maintain contacts within relevant ministries of national governments, UN agencies, universities, NGOs, international scientific organizations and other partners.
  6. Draft project reports describing project activities for donors.
  7. Assist the development (i.e. fundraising) team in identifying new funding opportunities and preparing grant proposals, including designing program activities, budgets, timelines, organizational charts, and other planning documents.
  8. Assist the communications team in preparing articles, blog posts, press releases and other communications materials.
  9. Assist the research team in drafting peer-reviewed papers reporting and analyzing environmental health data collected through the organization’s programs.


  1. Fluency in English (written and spoken)
  2. Bachelor’s degree or higher
  3. Minimum three years of relevant work experience in the fields of environmental health, environmental management/engineering, international development, or other related field.
  4. Excellent computer skills. Fluency in MS Office and Mac operating systems.
  5. Ability to operate comfortably and effectively in diverse cultural environments and coordinate an international team.
  6. Ability to work autonomously for an off-site supervisor.
  7. Ability to develop clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identify priority activities and assignments; adjust priorities as required; allocate appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresee risks and allow for contingencies when planning; monitor and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; use time efficiently
  8. Ability and willingness to travel internationally (10% of the time).


  1. Masters degree in public health, environmental science, environmental engineering, international development or related field.
  2. One or more years of experience working outside of the U.S. or working on international programs.
  3. Experience with grants management.
  4. Experience creating and managing budgets, expense reports, and other administrative aspects of project management.
  5. Foreign language fluency is a plus (particularly Hindi, Bengali, Chinese, Spanish or French).

As the person in this position gains experience, travel to project sites in Asia and elsewhere is possible. Travel within the first year is not expected. Travel is frequently to rural areas in low-income countries where accommodations and amenities are very basic. Applicants must be willing to enter diverse cultural
environments that may have different attitudes and traditions related to religion,
food, clothing, gender and other issues.

This is a full-time position that requires a minimum of forty hours per week. Work is performed at a desk in an office environment, with the exception of possible travel.  Pure Earth’s office is located at 475 Riverside Drive, Suite 860, New York. Applicant must live in, or within commuting distance of New York, or be willing to relocate at his or her own expense.

The anticipated salary range for this position is $47,000 – $51,000 depending on experience, and includes a standard benefits package.

It is the policy of Pure Earth to provide equal opportunity for all qualified persons and not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, gender, age, national origin, veteran status, disability, sexual orientation or any other protected status.

Applicants should send a single document containing: 1) a one-page cover letter, 2) a one or two-page resume/CV, and 3) a list of references to with the subject “Program Associate – South Asia and East Asia.”

Pure Earth will contact only those applicants selected for an interview. Applications will be accepted until the close of business on February 15, 2018. Applications received after this date will not be accepted.
Interviews will be scheduled for mid-late February 2018. Expected start date is March 12 or March 19, 2018. More information about Pure Earth is available at