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Employment Opportunity: Division Director, Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation, National Science Foundation (NSF)

Siddiq Qidwai's picture

National Science Foundation  

2415 Eisenhower Avenue   —   Alexandria, Virginia 22314


February 2, 2018 

Dear Colleague:

The National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Engineering (ENG) announces a nationwide search for an engineering professional to fill the position of Division Director, Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI). The position provides an unparalleled opportunity to lead the Division to support research at the forefront of advancing fundamental knowledge in engineering; to share in the management responsibility of the Directorate for Engineering to advance NSF’s overall strategic goal “to stimulate innovation and address societal needs through research and education, and to excel as a federal science agency.”

The Division Director for CMMI leads a team of professional and administrative staff in managing a broad portfolio of investments in research and education addressing the frontiers of knowledge that advance the Nation’s prosperity, health, and infrastructure.  CMMI funds research to enable advances in: manufacturing across scales ranging from nanometers to kilometers; the transformation and use of engineering materials, including the study of biomechanics; the design and use of civil infrastructure systems, including interaction with society and the natural environment; the mathematical and decision-making aspects of engineering, including design and optimization; and the control of dynamic systems (including robotics) and including the interface of systems with people. The Division Director plays a key role in positioning and advocating for program activities within the context of NSF’s strategic plan, and in managing resources effectively to advance ongoing efforts and nurture emerging opportunities.  The Division Director works proactively across NSF and in partnership with other federal and state agencies, industry, private foundations, and the academic community.  The position offers a challenging and demanding opportunity to effect change and provide intellectual leadership. 

The successful candidate will possess an established record of significant achievement in research administration, and increasing leadership responsibility in academe, industry or government. Additionally, the Division Director must be experienced and competent in technical, financial and administrative management. The incumbent must work well with people, be an effective communicator, and be committed to continuously develop the diversity of talents and skills of the team.

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 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 the area of civil or mechanical or material or industrial engineering or a closely related science based discipline.

2.     Substantial contributions and strong evidence of engineering research administration as evidenced in publications and innovative leadership in the academic research community and/or professional leadership and awards. 

3.     Demonstrated broad knowledge of diverse fields of engineering research and demonstrated ability to relate different fields of engineering and science to research problems critical to technological advancement. 

4.     Knowledge of grant and contract administration, fiscal management, and budget preparation with experience in engineering research support.

Appointment to this Senior Executive Service position may be on a career basis or on a one- to three-year limited-term basis.  Alternatively, the incumbent may be assigned to the position under Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) provisions.  Information about the IPA program is described below.

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.  The initial IPA appointment may be made for up to two years, with a possible extension for up to one additional two-year period. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides the negotiated funding toward the assignee’s salary and benefits. For additional information regarding IPA positions, please visit the NSF website at:

General inquiries about the Division Director position should be directed to:

Dr. Mihail C. Roco
Senior Advisor for Science and Engineering
Search Committee Chair
(703) 292-7032

The qualification requirements and application procedures are described in the vacancy announcement (CMMI-2018-0003) at

Applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. of the closing date of the posted vacancy announcement, CMMI-2018-0003, and may 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
2415 Eisenhower Avenue, Room W 15200
Alexandria, VA 22314
ATTN:  Sandra DeLeon


                                                                                    Dawn Tilbury
                                                                                    Assistant Director


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