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CBET 12-003

Dear Colleague Letter - Division Director, Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems (CBET) Employment Opportunity

DATE: March 9, 2012

The Directorate for Engineering (ENG) announces a nationwide search to fill the position of Director, Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems (CBET) through an assignment under the Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA). Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin March 23, 2012 and continue until a selection is made.

The Division Director leads a team of Program Directors in managing a broad portfolio of investments in Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport systems research and education. The incumbent has managerial and oversight responsibilities for the effective use of division staff and resources in meeting organizational goals and objectives. This includes directing the activities of the CBET Division, assessing the needs and trends in research and education related to the Division's programs, implementing overall strategic planning, and policy setting. Supervises and provides leadership and guidance to senior executive level CBET staff, program officers, administrative and support personnel. Determines funding requirements, prepares and justifies budget estimates, balances program needs, allocates resources, oversees the evaluation of proposals and recommendations for awards and declinations, and represents NSF to relevant external groups. Fosters partnerships with other Divisions, Directorates, Federal agencies, scientific organizations and the academic community.

The Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems (CBET) is responsible for programs with a total annual budget of approximately $170 million. These programs support research and education that expands the knowledge base of chemical engineering, bioengineering, environmental engineering and transport systems, and involves the development of fundamental engineering principles, mathematical models, experimental techniques, devices and instrumentation systems. This research advances fundamental understanding and develops technological innovation related to industrial manufacturing processes, natural and living systems, land, air and water environments, and human health care. CBET has two principal objectives. The first objective is to enable and facilitate the deployment of new technologies in these engineering research areas that will contribute significantly to the knowledge base and thereby develop the workforce for the major components of the U.S. economy. The second objective is to advance chemical engineering, bioengineering, environmental engineering and transport systems education, particularly through the development of innovative programs by new faculty.

The successful candidate will possess an established record of significant achievement in research administration and increasing leadership responsibility in academe, industry or government. In addition to having a strong record of research and education accomplishments within their technical communities, Division Directors must be experienced and competent in technical, financial and administrative management. They must work well with people, be effective communicators, and act as mentors to continuously develop the diversity of talents and skills of their colleagues at all levels.

The Qualification Requirements of the position are listed below:

Executive/Managerial Requirements

  1. Leading Change. Demonstrated ability to bring about strategic change, both within and outside the organization, to meet organizational goals. Includes the ability to establish an organizational vision and to implement it in a continuously changing environment.
  2. Leading People. Demonstrated ability to lead people toward meeting the organization's vision, mission, and goals. Includes the ability to provide an inclusive workplace that fosters the development of others, facilitates cooperation and teamwork, and supports constructive resolution of conflicts.
  3. Results-Driven Leadership. Demonstrated ability to meet organizational goals and customer expectations. Includes the ability to make decisions that produce high-quality results by applying technical knowledge, analyzing problems, and calculating risks.
  4. Business Acumen. Demonstrated ability to manage human, financial, and information resources strategically.

  5. Building Coalitions. Demonstrated ability to build coalitions internally and with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, nonprofit and private sector l organizations, foreign governments, or international organizations to achieve common goals.

Professional/Technical Requirements

  1. Ph.D. or equivalent professional experience or a combination of education and equivalent experience in chemical, biological, environmental or transport engineering or a closely related field in the physical sciences.
  2. Substantial research contributions and strong evidence of scholarship in areas related to chemical, bioengineering, environmental and transport research as evidenced in publications, innovative leadership in research administration, and/or professional leadership and awards in these technical areas.
  3. Skill in changing and balancing complex and diverse program demands and available resources in response to major advances or changing needs of science and engineering research and technology and Demonstrated ability to exercise sound professional judgment in recommending the initiation of research in the field of engineering.
  4. Broad understanding of universities and other institutions where research and education in science and engineering is conducted. Knowledge of grant administration and fiscal management with experience in engineering research support.

Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Assignment: This position will be filled under provisions of the Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA). Individuals eligible for an IPA assignment with a Federal agency include employees of State and local government agencies or institutions of higher education, Indian tribal governments, and other eligible organizations in instances where such assignments would be of mutual benefit to the organizations involved. Initial assignments under IPA provisions may be made for a period of up to two years, with a possible extension for up to an additional two-year period. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. Further information regarding IPA positions is available at

Application Instructions: Please submit a current CV accompanied by a cover letter or supplemental statement that addresses the qualification requirements of the position. Applications should be transmitted electronically to or mailed or delivered to the following address:

National Science Foundation
Executive Personnel and Visiting Personnel Branch
Division of Human Resource Management
4201 Wilson Boulevard Room 315
Arlington, VA 22230
ATTN: Meredith Berwick

General inquiries should be directed to:
Dr. Steven H. McKnight
Search Committee Coordinator

NSF is an equal opportunity employer committed to employing a highly qualified staff that reflects the diversity of our nation.
Steven McKnight,
Search Committee Coordinator