Job Overview


About the Agency

Job announcement AMENDED to Extend the Closing Date to August 6, 2014.

Applicants wishing to apply for a Federal Temporary, IPA or VSEE Appointment should see Job Announcement PLR-2014-0010.

Special Conditions: Must meet US Antarctic Program medical and dental standards for extended summer deployment to Antarctica.

The NSF is seeking candidate(s) for an Antarctic Research Facilities & Special Projects Program Manager (Program Director) within the Antarctic Sciences (ANT) Section, Division of Polar Programs (PLR), Directorate for Geosciences (GEO), Arlington VA.

ANT encompasses six core Antarctic research programs (Astrophysics and Geospace Sciences, Earth Sciences, Glaciology, Integrated System Science, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, and Organisms and Ecosystems). Approximately $70M in research funding is awarded annually in response to competitively reviewed proposals. Research projects requiring fieldwork in Antarctica are supported by the U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) research infrastructure, managed by the Division of Antarctic Infrastructure & Logistics (AIL) that includes three permanent stations and associated laboratories, capabilities to support short- and long-term research at remote sites in Antarctica, two well-equipped research vessels, aircraft and helicopters. The annual budget for these support activities is approximately $270M.

More information about ANT and its Programs can be found at


The individual selected as the Antarctic Research Facilities and Special Projects Program Manager (Program Director):

  • Works with ANT and AIL program directors, identifying science support requirements, and making recommendations to the ANT Section Head regarding prioritizing as may be necessary due to resource constraints;
  • Works with AIL research support managers to ensure that the process for developing specific project support plans is maintained and revised as USAP needs evolve;
  • Participates with AIL in managing the process for thorough review of proposed field plans prior to award to ensure that all project plans can be achieved within available resources and recommends specific ANT actions that might be required prior finalizing plans each season;
  • Tracks the progress of planning and preparations, bringing issues to the attention of ANT program directors or Section Head as necessary in collaboration with AIL;
  • Serves as a focal point for interactions with personnel in other organizations (federal agencies and other national Antarctic programs) supporting Antarctic research in conjunction with the U.S. Antarctic Program, assisting with development of agreements and support plans as needed as delegated by the Division Director or the ANT Section Head;
  • Utilizes strong project management skills to manage ANT research support activities such as sample and data repositories, ice or rock coring facilities, the Polar Geospatial-information Center, and ANT interactions with NSF-supported instrument pools that are utilized by ANT such as UNAVCO and IRIS/PASSCAL;
  • Works with ANT program directors annually to refresh ANT research support plans including budgets for ANT-supported facilities;
  • Manages a budget of approximately $9M annually that is used for ANT-supported facilities and research instrumentation, and coordinates actions needed to reimburse AIL for grant-specific support of ANT projects;
  • Works with counterparts in ANT and AIL to review recommendations for improvement of support provided to USAP grantees via the Antarctic support contractor and other USAP organizations and develops implementation plans as appropriate;
  • Serves as an NSF Science Representative at McMurdo Station, Palmer Station, South Pole Station, at remote sites, or on the research vessels as required, working with on-site scientists, stateside principal investigators, other program directors in ANT, and counterparts in AIL to prioritize science support needs during the active field season; and
  • Works with counterparts in AIL to evaluate existing support modes with the goal of improving science support infrastructure and with the Polar Environment, Safety, and Health Section to assess the effectiveness of environmental and safety planning.

Relocation Authorized

  • Yes
  • Relocation MAY be paid contingent on the availability of funds.