Exhibit Project Manager

San Francisco, CA
Full Time


Come join a team dedicated to the Academy’s mission, vision and values! Currently, the Academy has a new strategic plan including three initiatives – Hope for Reefs, Thriving California, and Islands 2030 – that leverage biodiversity science, environmental learning, and collaborative engagement to regenerate fragile ecosystems around the world. Learn more at https://www.calacademy.org/about-us/major-initiatives.

We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every ­one of the qualifications for the position.

The position is a hybrid of on-site/work from home in California and this arrangement can change as business needs warrant. Employees and jobs who meet the eligibility requirements for work from home may do so as long as they work out of their home in California and can easily come onsite in San Francisco.  The Academy is located in Golden Gate Park. Candidates are required to have up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination, including receiving a booster shot, as a condition of employment, absent qualifying exemptions in accordance with applicable laws. Individuals receiving a conditional offer of employment from the California Academy of Sciences will be provided the full text of the vaccination policy.

The California Academy of Sciences seeks an Exhibit Project Manager who is innovative, solutions-oriented, highly organized, and adept at managing exhibition projects from concept through execution. This includes managing scope, schedule, and budget for all phases of assigned projects, as well as managing and tracking the integration of exhibition elements being produced externally by vendors and internally by the exhibits team and a number of in-house departments. This position reports to the Director, Exhibit Planning and Production.

The Exhibit Project Manager will have excellent communication skills, the ability to lead diverse teams, and guide their projects toward a successful and timely completion.

We are committed to ensuring diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are intrinsic to Academy culture and operations, from recruitment and retention to science and advocacy. Explore Our Commitment to Racial Equity to learn about our intentional engagement of traditionally excluded groups in an effort to spark interest in or foster pathways to scientific careers.


  • Manages several exhibit projects of varying sizes and budgets concurrently
  • Manages all phases of the project life-cycle, from design through construction, installation, and project closeout.
  • Oversees the exhibit development process on projects and keeps teams focused on deliverables and milestones, including calling and facilitating meetings
  • Organizes the efforts of exhibit teams including content developers, 2D and 3D designers, educators, scientists, registrars, and preparators.
  • Develops project strategies and detailed schedules and monitors progress against deadlines.
  • Documents and tracks budget for all project scope elements so that they can be delivered within set budget constraints. 
  • Develops and assembles requests for proposals, solicits bids, evaluates bid responses, and manages construction and fabrication/installation contracts.
  • Collaborates with media producers, audio-visual engineers, electricians, facility engineers, and others from a variety of departments throughout the Academy on the development of exhibit interactives and experiences.
  • Manages the efforts of outside vendors, tradespeople, and contractors, including supervision of on-site installation and troubleshooting when necessary.
  • Effectively communicates concepts to a wide variety of people including designers and exhibit builders in order to effectively execute the vision for an exhibition.  
  • Regularly visits fabrication shops to monitor progress and review work. 
  • Tracks exhibit products and efforts by other departments to help ensure that exhibit topics are presented in a compelling and coordinated manner.
  • Meet regularly with manager to provide status of projects and strategize ways to remove roadblocks.
  • Follow all Academy safety regulations. 
  • Other duties as assigned. 



  • At least 5+ years of project management experience focused on developing and translating concepts into high quality exhibitions in a museum setting.
  • Significant experience leading project teams to develop new exhibits, including concepting, design, content development, fabrication, evaluation, and more.
  • Track record of managing complex, high visibility projects with diverse teams, set budgets, and marketing-driven “Grand Openings” or “Release Dates.”
  • Bachelor’s degree preferred, but relevant experience, certificate in project management, or on the job learning or a combination also acceptable


Skill in leading teams and keeping a variety of in-house staff and external consultants focused on the common goals of the project.

  • Can craft and manage budgets, schedules, and other key project documents.
  • Ability to communicate with designers and content developers to understand their intent and help ensure that the project intent is carried out in production. 
  • Can manage several complex projects simultaneously within fixed timelines and budgets and work independently on more than one project at a time in a fast-paced environment.
  • Ability to read and understand design and architectural drawings and specifications.
  • Knowledge and understanding of construction/fabrication practices, trades, building materials, code compliance, ADA guidelines, and engineering.
  • Understanding of design and content solutions that inspire and delight visitors
  • Fluency with a range of computer software including:
    • MS Office and Google Apps
    • Familiarity with one or more online, cloud-based project management and collaboration tools (examples: Asana, Smartsheet, Box, etc.)
    • Basic knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite
    • Interest in learning and implementing new tools as our work evolve
    • Commitment to equity and inclusion.


Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities who meet the job’s essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to use a computer, and communicate on the phone, in person, and online meetings/calls. Ability to perform repetitive motions 75% of the time. Ability to transport 30 lbs.  

Regular on-site work for installations, collaborative meetings, and reviews of the public floor will be required, sometimes in early morning or evening hours. This will include work in active construction or exhibit installation areas. Other work may be done remotely, in keeping with Academy and Exhibit Studio policies.


This position will be open until filled. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Please upload a resume, cover letter, and complete the brief online application.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, place of birth, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, height or weight, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.



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