Carnegie investigators are leaders in the fields of  astronomy, Earth & planetary science, genetics & developmental biology, global ecology, matter at extreme states, and plant science.

The work is conducted at six research departments:

The Department of Embryology, in Baltimore, MD, (Genetics & Developmental Biology); Allan Spradling, Director

The Geophysical Laboratory, in Washington, DC, (Earth & Planetary Science and Matter at Extreme States); George Cody, Acting Director

The Department of Global Ecology, in Stanford, CA, (Global Ecology); Chris Field, Director

The Observatories, in Pasadena, CA, (Astronomy); John Mulchaey, Acting Director

The Department of Plant Biology, in Stanford, CA, (Plant Science); Wolf Frommer, Director

 The Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, in Washington, DC, (Astronomy & Earth and Planetary Science), Rick Carlson, Director