Botanic Gardens Conservation International
BGCI provides a global voice for all botanic gardens, championing and celebrating their inspiring work. We are the world's largest plant conservation network, open to all. Join us in helping to save the world's threatened plants.

6 month Curatorial Internship, Friends of Jerusalem Botanic Gardens, Israel

This posting is no longer current. Please check out our Jobs & Opportunities Noticeboard for the latest postings.

Interns at the JBG are fully integrated into the professional team of botanists and horticulturalists. They are regarded as members of staff; expected to work independently, taking on substantial responsibility while still being guided and taught. The level of responsibility offered to our interns means they are unlikely to be suitable for applicants who have less than two years' experience,  However, if you have less experience than this and can prove your suitability, we'd like to hear from you.

Curatorship track, 6 months

Mapping and labelling

The timeframe enables interns to complete a well-defined project in this field and there is relative flexibility in selecting the project(s) according to the needs of the Gardens and the intern's interests and abilities.

Possible projects include (but are not limited to);  mapping and labeling newly-planted beds, refreshing existing signs and labels around the Gardens, taking on a project of plant identification and phenology.

All projects include field work and work with the Gardens’ digital database.


Interns work directly with the Gardens curatorship coordinator and in contact with the head scientist but unlike in the gardening and propagation departments, work in the Curation Department offers relative flexibility in terms of hours and the interns are given the chance to manage their own time. However, with freedom comes responsibility and so high abilities and a strong work ethic are especially important.

Required skills: Good knowledge of plants, attention to detail, responsible attitude, strong work ethics, good handwriting, computer skills, mapping experience – preferably with ArcMap.

Other components of the internship (applicable to both tracks):

* Interns will be invited to learn from the staff at the JBG and share their own experience and interests in a more structured setting through monthly talks and tours during their stay.

* Opportunities to join research trips and visits to other gardens and growers in Israel.

* On a pilot basis, interns may be offered the option to get involved in the Garden’s educational activities to supplement the work on their areas.

* 2.5 hours of study time a week to work on a research project and/ or to fulfil commitments to the sponsors of the internship.


The internship is a two-way commitment between the intern and the Gardens.  While the hope and intention is that both sides are completely satisfied, potential interns must be aware that tasks are fixed according to the Gardens’ needs.  These are affected by many factors and may require the internship plan to change, as may the intern's demonstrated expertise and abilities.

Interns are expected to commit to the following:

1. Interns are given work which is essential to the Garden and they are expected to carry the work out demonstrating an appropriate sense of responsibility and commitment.

2. Commitments to the sponsors: Interns are expected to provide:

a. Once a fortnight a short (approx. 1x A4 page) botanical blog accompanied by at least 2 photos to be used by the UK Friends of JBG in its publications (which can be printed, online or social media);

b. Every 3 months a longer report (approx. 2 A4 pages) on their internship, including their current work, what they learned, and any other activities including social aspects.

c. At the end of the internship and before leaving Israel, a final report, including photos, summarizing the full internship period which can be published by the UK Friends of JBG and a separate report for internal use detailing positive/negative aspects of the internship, with suggestions for any future improvements;

d. An undertaking to give at least 2 illustrated talks to external audiences within the first 6 months of their return to raise awareness of the internship scheme and the work of the JBG

3. Primarily the objective of the internship is to allow less-experienced horticulturalists to gain hands-on experience in a garden operating in a different set of circumstances – from the climate to the culture. Interns are expected to keep an open mind to learn and experience all that they can from the work and from life in Jerusalem. We believe that such an internship can prove a significant addition to a CV, enriching it with experience in a botanical garden operating in conditions radically different in every way to those they may have encountered previously.

How to apply

You may download the application form from Forms should be completed and returned electronically to  stating the internship for which you are applying.  You should also send a covering letter explaining why you are interested and suitable for the particular track for which you are applying.

Applications should be submitted by 31 May (if past this date, email to find out whether the internship has been awarded).  Interviews are usually held in June, usually via Skype or VOIP.  The scholarships/internships usually begin in September/October each year (depending on the timing of the Jewish High Holydays).

The Friends' Operations Manager will, whenever possible, acknowledge applications within 48 hours.  Please note that due to staffing limitations, we can only correspond with those applicants who are called for interview.

Back to jobs list