Natural Climate Solutions (NCS) Research Internships

Clean Wisconsin has a number of agricultural science, economics, GIS, and policy internships available throughout the year for undergraduate and graduate students interested in nature-based climate solutions, and with backgrounds in agricultural science, applied economics, GIS, political science, and other related fields.

Projects are suitable for either a graduate student, or highly motivated undergraduate student with advanced skills. Applicants should be able to demonstrate strong analytic and technical abilities, excellent writing skills, and an interest in and commitment to addressing environmental issues facing Wisconsin.

2023 NCS Interns will assist Clean Wisconsin’s Natural Climate Solutions team in support of our emerging natural climate solutions work:


Projects for 2023 Agro-Economic Research Internships include: 

I) Advanced Forecasting: Cost of inaction to WI agricultural sector under “business as usual” 

In 2022, Clean Wisconsin analyzed 30-year historical data (1990-2022) indicating trends in yields and crop insurance payouts to understand the historical cost of risks/hazards to WI’s top earning commodities. Building upon this work, NCS interns will seek to answer the question,​ What are the economic risks to WI’s agricultural sector from climate change under “business as usual”? 

Intern Research:

  • Utilize creative non-volatile variable analysis​ and auto-regressive functions (AR or ARIMA models) to create point and interval forecasts (R/Stata software) in a time-series format
  • Conduct future forecasting analyses to understand how historical commodity crop trends will likely change under state climate change projections
  • Summarize findings for internal use and public policy, advocacy efforts 

II) Economic Opportunities for Natural Climate Solutions

In 2022, Clean Wisconsin identified the agricultural practices most effective and efficient at sequestering carbon and reducing other greenhouse gas emissions. Building upon this work, NCS interns will seek to answer: What are the economic opportunities for Natural Climate Solutions in the agricultural sector under the various climate projections? 

Intern Research:

  • Analyze historical and current trends in “specialty” and “emerging” crops, including crop productivity, and wholesale and market prices, and environmental externalities
  • Conduct future forecasting analyses to understand how historical trends may change and provide future economic opportunities under climate change projections 
  • Analyze bottlenecks and investment needs for supply chain development
  • Summarize findings for internal use and public policy, advocacy efforts


Projects for Agronomic and GIS Research Internships include:

III) Climate-smart WI: Mapping the next generation of WI Agriculture

WI agriculture is currently dominated by a handful of commodities in large scale production. How will the projected climate changes affect the suitability of what and where WI farmers can produce high-value crops and products? What are the best climate-smart crops to transition to in different parts of our state?

Intern Research:

  • Analyze and map current commodities and emerging NCS crops suitability to current and projected soil and climate conditions across Wisconsin
  • Summarize findings for internal use and public policy, advocacy efforts


Applicant Requirements:

  • Completed advanced coursework or other relevant background knowledge/experience in agriculture and applied economics, public policy, GIS, environmental sciences or other related fields
  • Strong technical, analytical, and writing skills
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct independent research under guided instruction
  • Demonstrated ability to synthesize economic and scientific information and summarize key findings
  • Interest in, and commitment to, addressing environmental issues facing Wisconsin
  • Ability to commit at least 10-15 hours per week

Number of Openings:

  • (2) Summer NCS Interns
  • (2) Fall NCS Interns

Intern Stipend:

A stipend is provided to interns by Clean Wisconsin.

Clean Wisconsin is committed to equity and inclusion. Our mission is to protect and preserve the clean water, air, and special places of our state for all residents, and is non-discriminatory.


Applications and Deadlines:

  • Summer Interns will be accepted on a rolling basis until positions are filled. For best consideration, please submit all materials by Mon, May 15th.
  • Fall Internships will begin on Friday, August 25th. For best consideration, please submit all materials by Tues, August 1st.

To apply, please send a brief cover letter, resume (with copies of unofficial transcripts, if desired), and three relevant references, in an email with the subject line: NCS INTERNSHIP APPLICATION, to Kata Young (Natural Climate Solutions Manager):

In your email and cover letter, please briefly summarize:

  • Which internship project you’re interested in,
  • Why you’re interested and how this contributes to your academic/professional goals,
  • Any relevant experience or skillsets you’d bring to the project,
  • Starting-date availability, and
  • Days/hours per week you’ll be available to work on this project.

Positions will remain posted until filled.


Further Information:

For any additional questions, please contact: Kata Young (Natural Climate Solutions Manager) at