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Terms and Dates:

  • Summer 2022
One Time Opportunity


Kurt Fritjofson

Cornell Affiliations:

Atkinson Center

Off-campus partner:

Environmental Defense Fund


Opportunity Description

(Important: please see the Requirements tab of this posting to ensure that you submit all necessary application materials.)

Job Title:
Atkinson Intern, Global Clean Air

Job Description: EDF offers internships and fellowships for students and recent graduates in a variety of programs and departments throughout the organization. The ultimate goal of our internship and fellowship program is to provide high-quality experiences (including relevant projects and opportunities for networking) that form the foundation for any individual who is serious about pursuing an environmental career.

Program/Department Overview: EDF is committed to improving public health by dramatically reducing environmental exposures that increase the risk of disease and death, especially in vulnerable populations. Our policy work consists of a range of legislative, regulatory, scientific and market-oriented projects aimed at improving air quality. EDF has long been a leader in reducing air pollution in the United States by strengthening and defending health-based policies, promoting market-based incentives, and building a broad based, grassroots advocacy campaign through our partner, Moms Clean Air Force. In recent years, we have expanded our efforts to harness new air pollution technologies and analytics to tackle air pollution within cities around the world. EDF is working with a diverse network of researchers, companies, advocacy partners, and government officials to scale new air pollution monitoring and mapping technologies to advance our understanding of health impacts, and empower local actors to identify, advocate for, and implement clean air policies around the world.

Overall Function: The intern will conduct a literature review to understand the current ability to describe the impact of adverse health outcomes caused by air pollution not just on individuals experiencing the health outcomes, but people in different generations who may rely on them for caregiving, as taxpayers, etc. The intern will develop arguments for which causal pathways are most significant and most persuasive. The intern will identify, test and develop new ways of describing the importance of public health.

Key Responsibilities:
Tasks will include but are not limited to:

  • Research on impacts traced to air pollution on:
    • health care expenditures (by private and public actors)
    • out of pocket expenditures
    • lost days of work and school, and their impacts (lost future earnings, lost future tax base)
    • unsafe staffing levels
    • increased caregiving days needed from working-age adults, etc.
  • Work with EDF’s social scientists to develop and test theories about new ways to persuade about the significance of public health
  • Participates in advancing EDF DEI goals in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected, included, and empowered to address the environmental and organizational challenges in alignment with EDF values.