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University of Minnesota
St. Paul
Posted: 08/04/2023
Research Curator (Contract/Remote)




The Children & Nature Network (C&NN) maintains the world’s most comprehensive repository of summaries of peer-reviewed scientific research evidence relevant to the children and nature movement. With over 1,300 summaries, the C&NN Research Library and its related monthly Research Digest, are established resources for thousands of individuals and organizations seeking to ground their work in evidence.


Working under the supervision of C&NN’s Research Director Dr. Cathy Jordan and in collaboration with an existing part-time curator, the co-curator shares responsibility for maintaining the quality, relevance, utility and timeliness of information included in the Research Library collection.


Our ideal candidate has a passion for the mission of connecting children to nature; a strong belief in the value of scientific evidence for informing practice and policy; excellent synthesis and writing skills; at least basic academic preparation in research design and methods as well as statistical analysis; and experience in assessing the quality of scientific literature. 



  • Prepare 300-500 word lay summaries of 6-8 newly published research studies or articles per month and accurately tag each article according to an established taxonomy
  • Monitor and communicate needs for changes to the taxonomy, search functionality or other functions of the Research Library
  • Work with co-curator to edit each other’s summaries and double check tagging accuracy 
  • Collaborate with Research Director to determine themes of monthly Research Digests
  • Prepare content for the Research Digests including choice of articles to include and preparation of accurate annotations for 6 of 12 monthly Research Digest issues
  • Document work in a shared article tracking spreadsheet
  • Assist the Research Director as requested with compiling research in response to staff or external audience requests and in preparation for C&NN activities such as webinars.  
  • Collaborate with the Research Director as requested to create content for one-pagers, infographics and other communications pieces in collaboration with External Relations team
  • Respond to requests by C&NN staff and partners for topic-focused evidence-based information needed in support of the organization’s work

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities


Synthesis and Writing Skills: Most importantly, the Curator needs to be able to digest and efficiently synthesize scientific information, pulling out the most important information and translating it into well-crafted prose that facilitates understanding of the research for practitioners in the field.

Scientific methodology: The Curator needs enough scientific background to be able to distinguish research of sufficient quality and rigor (within a variety of methodological approaches, including quantitative, empirical methodology as well as qualitative methods) from research that is poorly designed or executed and does not advance the field. 

Excellent work habits: Efficiency, organization, and ability to meet deadlines.

Access to information: Although the student assistant, in our current model, is responsible for monthly literature searches and accessing article PDFs, it is helpful for the Curator to be able to retrieve articles from “behind the firewall.” This may require an academic affiliation with library access that permits retrieval of articles via print or online journal library subscriptions, interlibrary loan, etc. If you do not have access, we will develop a strategy for you to obtain access through our academic partner, the University of Minnesota.

Working remotely: Working with a remote, geographically dispersed team requires good communication, initiative, and a high degree of autonomy, responsiveness and accountability.


  • Graduate degree in any field relevant to children and nature (disciplines related to education; public health; health; child, youth or family development; landscape architecture; natural resources; etc.; or disciplines related to research methods and statistics) 
  • Experience related to literature searches, critiquing research, or communicating research to public audiences
  • Or combination of education and experience that provides required knowledge and skills 



The Children & Nature Network is a virtual organization with no central office. 



Compensation: $30 per hour

Status: Part-time (up to 14 hours/week)

Period: Contract with potential for annual renewal




1) a cover letter about your interest in the position and its key parameters

2) a resume or CV

3) a writing sample of any type

4) a document with short answers to the questions below: 


  • How does your background prepare you to effectively communicate scientific research to non-academic audiences?  
  • What is one thing you’ve learned in the recent past that has changed, to any degree, how you think about, value, or use research-based information? 
  • What is your commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ) and how is that commitment expressed in your personal or professional life? Do you have any personal experiences, skills or knowledge that would contribute to C&NN’s capacity to grow as an anti-racist organization?


For the questions, we won’t count, but we recommend no more than 300 words each. We recognize that applying for a position takes effort, and we look forward to reading your materials.


Submit applications to jobs@childrenandnature.org. Enter RESEARCH LIBRARY CURATOR in the Subject line.  


Application Period:  Position open until filled. Applications will be reviewed starting August 29, 2023 and reviewed until the position is filled.

We appreciate that diversity of all kinds contributes to greater impact and innovation. We are striving to build a diverse team that reflects the races, ethnicities, religions, gender identities, cultures, and lived experiences of the international children and nature movement. We are committed to values of equity and inclusion in the way we work with each other, with partners and peers, and in the communities we serve.