General Engineer (Program Director)
National Science Foundation - Arlington, VA

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Applicants wishing to apply for a VSEE, IPA or Federal Temporary Appointment should see Job Announcement CMMI-2013-0006 .

Become a part of our mission to maintain and strengthen the vitality of the US science and engineering enterprise. For over 60 years, the National Science Foundation (NSF) has remained the premier Federal agency supporting basic research at the frontiers of discovery across all fields, as well as science and engineering education at all levels.

The National Science Foundation is seeking qualified candidates for a Program Director in the Directorate for Engineering (ENG), Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI) Division, Dynamical Systems (DS) Program, Arlington, VA.

The Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI) Division is one of the four academic research divisions in the Directorate for Engineering at the National Science Foundation. Its mission is to fund fundamental research and education in support of the Foundation’s strategic goals directed at advances in the disciplines of civil, mechanical, industrial and manufacturing engineering, and material design. In addition, the Division has a focus on the reduction of risks and damage resulting from earthquakes and other natural and technological hazards. The Division encourages cross-disciplinary research partnerships at the intersections of traditional disciplines to promote transformative advances in civil mechanical and industrial systems and manufacturing technologies. It also encourages discovery enabled by the use of cross-cutting technologies such as adaptive systems, across all programs of the Division.

The Dynamical Systems (DS) program supports innovative research on the theories of dynamical systems, including new analytical and computational tools, as well as the novel application of dynamical systems to engineered systems. The program is especially interested in transformative research in dynamical systems related to uncertain or stochastic nonlinear systems, discrete nonlinear systems, or infinite dimensional systems, and advances on modeling, simulation, analysis and design of multi-scale multi-physics dynamical systems.

More information about CMMI and its programs can be found, here .
    KEY REQUIREMENTS
  • Background investigation.
  • Preview questions at bottom of Qualifications & Evaluations--see tab above

DUTIES: The responsibilities of the NSF Program Director are constantly evolving. The Program Director is guided by the goals of NSF’s Strategic Plan: (1) Transform the frontiers, (2) Innovate for society, and (3) Perform as a model organization. NSF fulfills its mission through: visionary, dedicated to excellence, learning, growing, and broadly inclusive core strategies.

Responsibilities of the Program Director include:
  • Maintain a healthy balance of support for the needs of the research and education enterprise through program, division, directorate, Foundation, and interagency activities.
  • Manage program resources and exercise scientific judgment to ensure integrity and consistency in the grant award /declination process while avoiding conflicts-of-interest, and obtaining balance among appropriate sub-fields and institutions.
  • Manage an effective and timely peer review process with attention given to increasing the size and quality of the reviewer pool and ensuring participation by woman, minorities and disabled scientists.
  • Provide scientific expertise, evaluation and advice for other programs in NSF, including international programs and cross-directorate programs.

QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED: Applications must have a Ph.D. or equivalent professional experience in the relevant discipline, plus six or more years of successful research, research administration and/or substantial managerial experience in academe, industry, or government.

You will need to successfully complete a background security investigation before you can be appointed into this position.

You must meet eligibility and qualification requirements before 11:59 PM Eastern time on the closing date of the job announcement. You must answer all job-related questions in the NSF eRecruit questionnaire.

All online applicants must provide a valid email address. If your email address is inaccurate or your mailbox is full or blocked, you may not receive important communication that could affect your consideration for this position.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED: You will be evaluated on the extent and quality of your experience, expertise, education, and research activities relevant to the duties of the position.
We strongly encourage you to specifically address the Quality Ranking Factors below. This will ensure that you receive full consideration in the evaluation process.

Quality Ranking Factors:

  • In-depth knowledge and expertise in technical areas related to the Dynamical Systems (DS) Program and familiarity with the Dynamical Systems research community.
  • Research experience and analytical and writing skills demonstrating the ability to make sound judgments and funding decisions relating to fundamental research, and to explain such decisions in writing.
  • Ability to organize, implement and manage a proposal-driven grant program, allocating resources effectively to meet a broad spectrum of program goals.
  • Ability to lead interdisciplinary teams, cooperate and work effectively with peers in other engineering and scientific disciplines on joint ventures, and present and advocate program plans and policies to individuals within the Foundation, other government agencies, academic institutions, private organizations and in the research community at large.


  • To preview questions please click here .

    BENEFITS: A GREAT LOCATION! The National Science Foundation is conveniently located one block from the Ballston Metro Station, a few blocks from Routes 66 and 50, and about three miles from downtown Washington. Employees may rent parking spaces in the building garage. There are many shops and restaurants within easy walking distance. Employees receive the Federal benefits package and NSF offers:

    • Pre-tax parking
    • Public transportation subsidy
    • Child development center on site
    • Child care subsidy
    • Flexible working hours
    • Telecommuting
    • Physical fitness facility on site
    • NSF Federal Credit Union on site
    • Health services unit on site
    • Employee assistance program

    OTHER INFORMATION: If you do not have civil service status or reinstatement eligibility, you will not obtain civil service status if selected.

    If you are currently in the competitive civil service, you will be required to waive competitive civil service rights if selected.

    This Program Director position is in the bargaining unit.

    Relocation expenses will be paid, contingent upon availability of funds.
    For additional information on the NSF eRecruit system, please visit our NSF eRecruit Frequently Asked Questions .

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