Principal Scientist, Material & Packaging Characterization

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Job Description

This position will enable food/beverage packaging innovation and sustainable packaging design for global R&D. It requires innovative ways of thinking and approaches to provide packaging performance and material evaluation for various packaging’s (paper, plastic, glass, and metal packaging). This includes Design of Experiment (DOE), characterization techniques, and problem-solving skills and providing solutions to the business. Candidates should have strong knowledge of food/beverage packaging industry trends and be proficient in developing and validating testing methods for current and future packages to support our company’s innovation and sustainable packaging goal. This position will formally or informally lead a group of scientists and engineers, and act as the technical lead for multiple packaging characterization projects. This position will closely work with several cross-functional groups and proactively provide material property and packaging performance insights to enable innovation, sustainability, and trademark protection. In addition, this position will also work with external professional societies (e.g. ISBT, Cetie, ILIS, AOAC, SPE etc.), and the packaging industry in establishing industry standards, monitoring new trends, and identifying new opportunity for capability enhancements.


  • Serve as deep subject matter expert (SME) in material & packaging characterization, works independently with guidance only in the most complex situations and as technical lead for multiple material & packaging characterization projects.
  • Guide others in resolving complex technical issues related to packaging performance and material properties based on existing solutions and procedures.
  • Apply relevant project management routines.
  • Develop, validate, and implement material & packaging characterization techniques and methods.
  • Conduct packaging performance and material evaluation for new technology Proof of Concept validation; provide strong technical support for packaging commercialization qualification and troubleshooting.
  • Provide SME level of support to IMCR to identify, manage or resolve incidents related to packaging performance to maintain the integrity of our product and Trademark.
  • Keep abreast of emerging trends and development in policies, regulations, and packaging performance and material science that could impact our business.
  • Effectively communicate analytical findings and make recommendations to business partners.
  • Participate in scientific, trade or professional associations to advance the Company’s sustainable business agenda.
  • Identify and validate of future material characterization and packaging performance evaluation capabilities as input to team business plan.


  • Minimum Master’s Degree and prefer Ph.D in Material Science and Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, or a closely related discipline and equivalent qualification background required.
  • US citizen or permanent resident


  • At least 10 plus yeas relevant working experience with extensive hands-on experiences in Material Characterization and Packaging Performance assessment using advanced analytical techniques. Deep subject matter expertise in packaging analytical includes but not limited to Chemical analysis, Material Property & Characterization, Packaging Performance evaluation. Relevant project management skills and proficiency in handling multiple projects. Strong collaboration with cross-function teams, Effective communication, Technical publication, Professional association involvement. People managerial experience is desired plus.


  • Strong knowledge and skills in packaging material characterization techniques using advanced laboratory instrumentations in evaluation of material properties: chemical, composition, microstructure, rheology, surface morphology, spectroscopic, and thermal/mechanical properties; relevant packaging physical performance and processing failure evaluation.
  • Extensive hands-on experience using advanced characterization techniques/instruments to perform food/beverage packaging material characterization and packaging performance assessment is required.
  • Ability to analyze data from multiple sources (design, packaging material property, polymer processing, additives, and packaging performance), analyze complex statistical data and DOE results.
  • Ability to acquire, establish, and apply new capabilities; and the desire and ability to collaborate and communicate across functions as well as with external entities are essential to this position.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and application of Good Laboratory Practices; LIMS and Quality Management systems.
  • Ability to convey information and ideas in a clear, meaningful, and timely manner; providing information to ensure understanding; solicits input from the project teams, suppliers and business partners. Generates reports and delivers presentations to key stakeholders, and cross-functional teams. In addition, ability to apply the Company policy to respond to product/packaging scientific or regulatory issues. Includes the ability to handle sensitive and complex contacts that require a high level of judgment, tact and diplomacy to minimize negative impact to the System and Industry.

Global R&D Functional Competencies:

  • Defines, develops and communicates technical strategies: Advises and educates colleagues by disseminating key facts and presenting complex information in a simple & easy-to-understand manner, tailored to the audience. Define, develop, and execute consumer-centric End-to-End technical strategies to drive the categories and brands required to accelerate our transition to a total beverage company. Define, develop, and execute processes that enhance the speed, efficiency, and quality of R&D work.
  • Applies project management principles: Establish priorities and lead processes for planning technical work and monitoring progress to achieve desired outcomes. Influence buy-in for strategic project plan from stakeholders and key contributors. Lead and maintain collaborative, proactive communication and ensure appropriate documentation with all involved parties to gauge and manage expectations.
  • Brings innovation to market: Generates and translates innovative ideas into sustainable, cost-effective and scale-able launches. Design, develop, and execute sustainable business and winning technical solutions by leveraging insights, technological opportunities, BU/bottler capability, business case creation/validation, risk assessment and management, leveraging the power of our System and it's people. Design, develop, and execute processes that enhance the speed, efficiency, and quality of R&D work.
  • Applies functional expertise for business impact: Acts as a catalyst for the application and transfer of expertise in action. Brings expertise in discipline which differentiates the function in the marketplace and serves as a competitive advantage. Design, develop, and execute technical projects ( e.g. product prototypes, packaging feature, process element, stability test, consumer validation, single research experiment, chemical analysis, etc.). Design, develop, and execute processes that enhance the speed, efficiency, and quality of R&D work.
  • Learning Agility: A person's speed to learn. Applies understanding of technical discipline, strategic platforms, and business systems and their interdependencies to advance organizational objectives. Ability to rapidly study, analyze, and apply new technologies. Ability and willingness to learn from experience and external benchmarking.
  • Acts with Growth Behaviors: Embeds growth behaviors (curious, iterative, empowered and inclusive) in actions every-day.


Curious - Keep seeking, never settle.

Staying curious about what is outside and two steps ahead inspires us to challenge the status quo. Having the courage to look and leap is the way we grow. Because asking “what if?” pushes us to the next level as people and as a company.

Empowered - Make it happen.

True empowerment is the result of taking responsibility. This means giving yourself permission to see it, say it and do it, and owning the outcomes. Because we move forward faster when we all take action.

1.0, 2.0, 3.0 - Push for progress, not perfection.

There are very few overnight successes. Greatness is borne of many little victories (and failures). Share v 1.0, test it, and make it better. Then create the next version. Because the moment we think something is perfect, it will be obsolete.

Inclusive - Include, value and trust each other.

We are smart alone but together we are genius. This means being inclusive, giving the benefit of the doubt and being responsible for each other. Because, for our company to thrive for the next 100+ years, smart isn’t enough. We need genius.

Company Info.


Coca-Cola, or Coke, is a carbonated soft drink manufactured by The Coca-Cola Company. Originally marketed as a temperance drink and intended as a patent medicine, it was invented in the late 19th century by John Stith Pemberton and was bought out by businessman Asa Griggs Candler, whose marketing tactics led Coca-Cola to its dominance of the world soft-drink market throughout the 20th century.

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