New Position at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Update—March 3, 2021: the Historian of the Life Sciences position has been extended to a two-year initial appointment (with possibility of extension) and applications are still being accepted.


The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives, with the support of the Goelet Family Trust, seeks to fill a two year Historian of the Life Sciences position (with a possibility of extension) to assess historical collections of original materials in our archive, participate in writing grants for history of science projects, and contribute to the activities of our Center for Humanities & History of Modern Biology.


The historian will join an ongoing project to review the content of our extensive historical holdings. They will work through collections, identify broad themes and highlight “hidden jewels” to illuminate them, and contribute original content to expand our guide to the CSHL historical collections. The historian will report to the Executive Director of CSHL’s library and archives.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Survey the depth and breadth of the Archives’ collections and assess their historical, cultural, and scientific importance.
  • Contribute brief descriptions and longer thematic essays to the Guide to the CSHL Historical Collections.
  • Participate in collective planning for the Archives and the CSHL Center for Humanities & History of Modern Biology and in writing grant applications to support these plans.
  • Serve as a liaison between the international history-of-science/humanities communities and CSHL’s archivists and scientists. Contribute to CSHL’s membership in the Consortium for History of Science, Technology and Medicine.
  • Work with the executive director of the library and archives to plan history of science conferences and other initiatives.
  • Contribute to our intellectual community of visiting scholars and recipients of fellowships through CSHL’s Center for Humanities & History of Modern Biology.
  • Present research and/or represent CSHL at meetings/workshops on history of science.


Position requirements 

Education: a Ph.D. in History of Science (or a related field) is required.



Preference will be given to candidates with a background in biology and especially to those who have research experience in the history of the twentieth-century biology. Experience in writing for both general and scholarly audiences is required.


Required skills

Historical research and analysis. Familiarity with historiography of modern biology.

Excellent written and oral communication skills. Experience applying for grants and/or fellowships.


Desired skills

Experience in digital humanities and/or web design and development.


Please apply for the position via the CSHL careers website at:


Position Number 00492-E


Applications will be reviewed as soon as they arrive. We hope to appoint the chosen candidate as soon as they are available, ideally with a starting date between April and July 2021.


For any questions about the position, please email Ludmila Pollock, Executive Director of CSHL Library and Archives. <>


We offer a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package.


The CSHL Archives ( has been recognized consistently over the last three decades through substantial support from our institution, government agencies, foundations, and private donors for its programs and projects. Through this generous support, we have been able to preserve our collections, create exhibitions, initiate and successfully complete many digital projects, and develop outstanding educational and academic programs.


The Archives houses a rich repository of rare books, manuscripts, correspondence, photographs, and scientific reprints documenting international genetics research since 1890. These materials provide deep insight into the history of molecular biology, genetics, and biotechnology. The Archives strives to develop novel ways of presenting and preserving the records of the discoveries in biomedical sciences as a topic of historical interest. We bring together important figures in the history of the molecular biology and genetics fields by collecting original materials that these individuals generated over their careers and conducting oral history interviews with them. As a result, we are able to merge discussions of the past and the future, thereby framing cutting-edge research in terms of detailed knowledge of the past. We are focused on creating a “living history” of important aspects of molecular biology and genetics research that blend the traditional discussions of current scientific research with lectures on the history of science; scholarly works; using our collections in public exhibitions; and scientific meetings in which the pioneers of the field interact with the current scientific community.


For more information about CSHL, please visit us at


CSHL is an EO/AA Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability or protected veteran status.


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