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EAR 17-005

Dear Colleague Letter: Division of Earth Sciences (EAR), Directorate for Geosciences (GEO) - Employment Opportunities for a Program Director in Multiple Program Areas (IPA Position) (Open Until Filled)

April 28, 2017

Dear Colleague:

The NSF is seeking qualified candidates to fill multiple Program Director positions in the Division of Earth Sciences (EAR), Directorate of Geosciences (GEO), Arlington, VA.

Formal consideration of interested applications will begin May 8, 2017 and will continue until selections are made.

EAR supports research that improves understanding of the structure, composition, and evolution of the Earth, and the life it supports. In addition to programs administered in support of basic research, EAR supports workforce and education opportunities, facilities, and a wide spectrum of other scientific activities. Information about EAR and its programs can be found at

Programs in EAR include:

  • EarthScope
  • Education and Human Resources
  • Geobiology and Low-Temperature Geochemistry
  • Geophysics
  • Geomorphology and Land Use Dynamics
  • Hydrologic Sciences
  • Instrumentation and Facilities
  • Integrated Earth Systems
  • Petrology and Geochemistry
  • Sedimentary Geology and Paleobiology
  • Tectonics


The Program Directors are guided by the goals of NSF's Strategic Plan: (1) Transform the Frontiers of Science and Engineering, (2) Stimulate Innovation and Address Societal Needs through Research and Education, and (3) Excel as a Federal Science Agency. The incumbent Program Director will be knowledgeable in the scientific areas covered by the program and will help identify emerging opportunities in the Geosciences.

The responsibilities of the Program Director will include long-range planning for the areas of science represented by the program; administration of the merit review process and proposal recommendations; preparation of material describing advances in the research supported; and coordination with other NSF programs as well as those at other Federal agencies and organizations. In addition, the incumbent will be involved in the design, development, analysis, documentation, management and implementation of programs and activities within the program and across disciplinary boundaries.


Candidates must have a Ph.D. in one or more of the scientific areas covered by the Division, in addition to six or more years of successful research experience, research administration, and/or substantial managerial experience in academe, industry, or government after award of the Ph.D.

The successful applicant requires not only knowledge in the appropriate scientific discipline but also a commitment to high scientific standards, considerable breadth of scientific interest, and receptivity to new ideas. Also necessary are a strong sense of fairness, good judgment, and a high degree of personal integrity and ethics, decisiveness, and an ability to effectively lead teams across a variety of institutional cultures within Federal and state government agencies, legislative bodies, and private sector organizations.

The Program Director positions recruited under this announcement may only be filled under the Intergovernmental Personnel Assignment (IPA) Act. 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 IPA assignments are made for a period of one-year and may be extended by mutual agreement. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides the negotiated funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. For more information regarding an IPA assignment, visit our website.

For additional information on NSF's rotational programs, please see "Programs for Scientists, Engineers, and Educators" on the NSF website at: and

NSF is relocating to Alexandria, Virginia. In late summer of 2017, NSF will begin the transition from its current location in Arlington, Virginia to 2415 Eisenhower Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22314. The new location is adjacent to a Metro station (Eisenhower Avenue on the Yellow Line) and there is ample parking in the area. There are several amenities nearby, such as restaurants, hotels, and shops.

Applications will be accepted from US Citizens. Recent changes in Federal Appropriations Law require Non-Citizens to meet certain eligibility criteria to be considered. Therefore, Non-Citizens must certify eligibility by signing and attaching this Citizenship Affidavit to their application. Non-citizens who do not provide the affidavit at the time of application will be considered as an IPA only. We also ask that you complete and submit the Applicant Survey Form. This will help NSF to ensure that our recruiting efforts are attracting a diverse candidate pool; it will be used for statistical purposes only.

Individuals interested in applying for these Program Director positions should send a current CV and letter of interest to:

Dr. Carol Frost
Division Director
Division of Earth Sciences, Suite 785
National Science Foundation
4201 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22230