Cornell University, CVM Department of Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences

Program ID:Cornell-PMDS-OSOFSKY [#18753, WDR-00026254]
Program Title: Fellow Position with the Cornell Wildlife Health Center and Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability
Program Type:Fellowship or award
Program Location:Ithaca, New York 14853, United States [map] sort by distance
Subject Areas: Veterinary Medicine
International Relations
Wildlife Health
Appl Deadline:2021/07/15 11:59PMhelp popup** finished (2021/06/04, finished 2021/09/29, listed until 2021/07/15)
Program Description:   URMs  

*** this program has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***

Fellow Position
Cornell Wildlife Health Center / Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability
One Health Governance Fellowship
Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine
Ithaca, NY 


The Cornell Wildlife Health Center strives to sustain a healthier world by developing and implementing proactive, science-based solutions to challenges at the interface of wildlife health, domestic animal health, human health and livelihoods, and the environment that supports us all. With an emphasis on the types of interdisciplinary collaboration often required to foster real progress along the science to policy and action continuum, we work with a diverse range of stakeholders including governments, local communities, nongovernmental organizations, and students in the U.S. and around the world to promote environmental stewardship, build capacity for sustainable change through training and education, and undertake collaborative research and discovery that leads to real-world conservation and related health outcomes. Humanity has brought changes to Earth’s natural systems at a pace and scale that are difficult to overstate – our domination of land and sea has no precedent. If we are to successfully address the challenges of saving wildlife on an increasingly human dominated planet, with species extinctions now one thousand times faster than before our rise, we must recognize that our own health, and that of the global economy, are inextricably linked to our stewardship of the natural world. The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored this for all of humanity.

The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability is the hub of collaborative sustainability research at Cornell University, forging vital connections among researchers, students, staff, and external partners. The center’s funding and programming accelerate groundbreaking research within and across all of Cornell’s colleges and schools. In turn, the center is one of the university’s key catalysts for bold ideas and powerful new models that ensure people and the planet not only survive, but thrive, with an emphasis on policy-relevant science, the uptake of which depends upon genuine stakeholder engagement.

Our February 2021 webinar, Emerging Disease, Wildlife Trade and Consumption: The Need for Robust Global Governance— Exploring Ways to Prevent Future Pandemics,” generated significant public interest on this important One Health challenge and the holistic framing that we see as key. One thing remains very clear: it is currently “no one’s job” to try to comprehensively manage the global public health risks associated with the set of upstream human behaviors that intensify our interactions with wildlife and the zoonotic pathogens potentially harbored— not WHO, OIE, FAO, or UNEP, not CITES or IPBES or CBD or INTERPOL, nor the G7 / G20. This new One Health Fellowship position is based on our belief that this glaring gap in global governance and accountability simply must be addressed.

While there are literally hundreds of thousands of viruses in mammals alone, there are really only three basic ways we, through our own behaviors, invite them into humanity’s living room: we eat the body parts of wild animals; we capture and mix wild species together in markets for sale; and we destroy what’s left of wild nature at a dizzying pace (think deforestation), all greatly enhancing our encounter rates with new pathogens along the way. Our species simply cannot continue to pillage what’s left of wild nature and our planet’s fellow species. We must acknowledge that our own health is intimately tied to how we treat the natural world. This is the essence of the One Health concept we first launched almost two decades ago. Forests, freshwater systems, oceans, grasslands and the biodiversity within them support humanity with (among other things) clean air, clean water, a climate stabilizing mechanism, and healthy food if we behave ourselves. So, whether we are talking about mitigating the global climate crisis or preventing the next pandemic, we need to redefine our relationships with wild nature and our fellow species at this critical juncture in the history of human civilization.

-Steve Osofsky, Jay Hyman Professor of Wildlife Health & Health Policy (and One Health Fellow Faculty Advisor for this Fellowship), Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine, Exploring Ways to Prevent Future Pandemics webinar, February 23rd, 2021.

We thus seek a Fellow with specific strengths in international policy and legal analysis, along with an earnest belief in the power of partnerships. As part of a collaboration between the Cornell Wildlife Health Center, Cornell Atkinson and a growing external advisory group of key partners and experts, the new Fellow will assist our team to:

Review the significant range of currently identified policy options, as well as propose new ones, for mitigating the upstream risks tied to those human behaviors that intensify our interactions with wildlife and the zoonotic pathogens potentially harbored, including but not limited to options for expanding existing international agreements and/or developing new ones, as well as capturing relevant lessons learned from international agreements focused on other sectors (e.g., nuclear non-proliferation, substances that deplete the ozone layer, etc.). This scope of work does not include risk mitigation as related to laboratory biosecurity or bioterrorism— important, of course, but beyond our purview.

Generate policy briefs and peer reviewed papers and that can be used with decision-makers and non-academic partners domestically and internationally.

Work with public and private sector stakeholders to further inform and support the building of partnerships and coalitions to advance effective policy action to truly prevent pandemics as far upstream as possible (which is a different emphasis than that of the many important endeavors currently focused on addressing public health emergencies once they have already been sparked).


The position location is, ideally, Ithaca, NY, but the opportunity to work remotely will be reviewed, noting Cornell’s approved US domestic locations that meet all liability and compensation policies. The fellowship is envisioned as being for two years, with the second-year contingent upon satisfactory performance in year one, and ongoing availability of funding. Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience.


We are searching for a highly motivated and skilled subject matter expert who has:

An advanced degree related to international policy / law (e.g., JD or equivalent, PhD). Candidates with highly relevant experience whose highest academic degree is at the MA / MBA / MPA level will be considered, and experience in the environmental sector is a significant plus.
Experience with one or more relevant international treaties / agreements
Experience with one or more relevant major multilateral institutions
Excellent communication skills, both in terms of professional writing, writing for non-expert audiences, and public speaking
Excellent interpersonal skills, and an affinity for working as part of a multidisciplinary team
Strong collaboration skills / ability to work with a diverse range of partners and stakeholders
Proven organizational skills and the ability to work independently while adhering to tight timelines
A genuine interest in creative thinking and problem-solving at a critical juncture in history for humanity.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE: All components of the application must be submitted through Academic Jobs Online Interested applicants should submit: (1) a curriculum vitae, (2) a letter of interest, including a brief description of how this position relates to their career plans, (3) a statement of contribution to diversity and inclusion, (further explained below, up to one page), and (4) the names (and contact information) of four references. Questions can be directed to Dr. Steve Osofsky ( Applications must be received by July 15, 2021.

What is a Statement of Contribution to Diversity and Inclusion? This statement invites applicants to describe their past, present, and/or future aspirations to promote equity, inclusion, and diversity in their careers as researchers and/or educators, and/or to convey how they see these commitments continuing at Cornell. Applicants can focus on teaching, research or service, or all three factors.

Cornell University embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty, staff and collaborating partners of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented and/or marginalized identities to apply. 

Employment Assistance: If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University’s Department of Inclusion and Workforce Diversity at voice (607) 255-3976, fax (607) 255-7481, or email at

Familiarize yourself with Cornell’s COVID-19 workplace guidance as well as the university’s COVID-19 services and information.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the program description.

Further Info:
email address
240 Farrier Road
Ithaca, NY 14853