Large Facilities Office Senior Associate (Program Officer)

Division: Research Infrastructure Office (BFA/RIO)
Office: Budget, Finance and Award Management (BFA)
Job Type:
Appointment Type:
Temporary / Rotator
This job is open to the public

Application timeline

Date Posted:
Closing date: Open until filled
Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin and will continue until a selection is made.

Position Summary

NSF’s Large Facilities Office (LFO) announces an opportunity for an individual with demonstrated experience in the design, construction, or operation of large research infrastructure to assist in strengthening NSF’s capabilities in project management good practice, agency oversight, and the sharing of lessons learned.

Position Description

The individual in this position serves as a program liaison under the supervision of the Head, Large Facilities Office (HLFO) within the Office of Budget, Finance and Award Management (BFA).  BFA is responsible for:

  • Overseeing the business and other non-scientific aspects of proposal generating documents, assistance awards and other agreements.
  • Negotiation, award, and administration of contracts; cost analysis and resolution of audit findings pertaining to the allowability, allocability and appropriateness of costs claimed under NSF awards.
  • Development, analysis, and execution of the Foundation's annual budget to the Office of Management and Budget and the Congress.
  • Financial policy and financial management of NSF.

In addition to funding fundamental research and education in science and engineering, NSF supports the development, implementation and operation of unique research infrastructure which requires significant oversight compared to standard grants.  LFO is NSF's primary resource for all policies and procedures related to the oversight of major and mid-scale research infrastructure projects which typically cost from $6M to $600M to construct and more than $1B per year (in total) to operate.  These include such things as optical and radio telescopes, observatories, accelerators, detectors, research vessels and research aircraft.

Working closely with the various divisions within BFA, LFO plays a dual role in both assisting the science programs and assuring compliance with applicable NSF policies, guidance documents, and internal procedures.  LFO acts as the NSF-wide resource on project management and provides expert assistance on non-scientific and non-technical aspects of project planning, budgeting, implementation, and management to further strengthen agency oversight.  LFO also facilitates the use of good practices by fostering coordination and collaboration through NSF’s major facility Knowledge Management Program which shares lessons learned across projects and programs throughout the full project life cycle, including development, design, construction, operations, and divestment.

As assigned by the HLFO, the individual in this position will support LFO in: (1) developing of policies, guidance and procedures related to the oversight of research infrastructure; (2) providing assistance in project management good practices and interpretation of agency policies and procedures to NSF staff and the research infrastructure recipient community; and (3) providing assurance to NSF Leadership and external stakeholders that NSF policies and procedures related to research infrastructure award oversight are being followed.

The position recruited under this announcement will be filled under the following appointment option(s):

Visiting Scientist, Engineer, and Educator (VSEE) Program: Appointment to this position will be made under the Excepted Authority of the NSF Act. Visiting Scientists are on non-paid leave status from their home institution and placed on the NSF payroll. NSF withholds Social Security taxes and pays the home institution's contributions to maintain retirement and fringe benefits (i.e., health benefits and life insurance), either directly to the home institution or to the carrier. Appointments are usually made for a one-year period and may be extended for an additional year by mutual agreement.

It is NSF policy that NSF personnel employed at or IPAs detailed to NSF are not permitted to participate in foreign government talent recruitment programs.  Failure to comply with this NSF policy could result in disciplinary action up to and including removal from Federal Service or termination of an IPA assignment and referral to the Office of Inspector General.

Applications will be accepted from U.S. 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 not be considered eligible. Non-Citizens are not eligible for positions requiring a security clearance.

To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

Qualifications:  Candidates must have a Ph.D. in a field of science or engineering plus, after award of the Ph.D., six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience pertinent to the position; OR a Master’s degree in in a field of science or engineering plus, after award of the degree, eight or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience pertinent to the position.

Applicants should have a broad knowledge of research infrastructure programs funded by NSF or other Federal agencies, and recent experience in a position with significant management responsibility for either construction or operation of a major research facility.  Certifications in Project Management, Earned Value Management, and Risk Management are desirable.

Applicants should send a cover letter and resume:

  • Vacancy Contact:  Matthew Hawkins, Head, Large Facilities Office
  • Application Submission Email Address:

Apply by Email