Computer Scientist (Program Director)

Division: Information and Intelligent Systems (CISE/IIS)
Directorate: Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE)
Job Type:
Appointment Type:
Temporary / Rotator
Pay Grade/Scale:
This job is open to the public

Application timeline

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

Position Summary

The Division of Information and Intelligent Systems (IIS) within the Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering at the National Science Foundation (NSF) announces a nationwide search to fill a Program Director position covering robotics. 

The position would support the Foundational Research in Robotics program, which supports research on robotic systems that exhibit significant levels of both computational capability and physical complexity. The position would also support the National Robotics Initiative, a multi-agency robotics research program that complements the Foundational Research in Robotics program.  We are especially interested in candidates with expertise in aspects of robotics related to intelligence and computation.   

The responsibilities of the position would also include support for other NSF robotics activities.  The suite of NSF robotics activities is described at  That page includes links to program pages with listings of current NSF Program Directors, who may be contacted for additional information regarding this employment opportunity.

Position Description

Program Directors are responsible for specific research areas. They solicit, receive, and review research and education proposals; make funding recommendations; administer awards; and interact with relevant research and education communities. They also provide service to NSF-wide activities and often work across government agencies to enable interagency collaborations. Program Directors contribute to the accomplishment of NSF's strategic goals to (1) Expand knowledge in science, engineering, and learning; (2) Advance the capability of the Nation to meet current and future challenges; and (3) Enhance NSF's performance of its mission.

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

Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Assignment: 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 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 the negotiated funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. Initial IPA assignments are made for a one-year period and may be extended 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.

The candidate must have a Ph.D. in Computer Science or a related discipline, plus after award of the Ph.D., six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience pertinent to the position. 

Outstanding knowledge of the relevant research area and related areas; commitment to fairness, ethical conduct, and personal integrity; receptivity to new ideas; a strong work ethic and initiative; excellent interpersonal skills; expert communication ability; and familiarity with NSF activities are highly desirable.

Applications should be submitted electronically and must include: contact information, a current CV, a letter briefly describing the candidate's background that specifically relates to the appropriate program objectives, availability time frame, affidavit of eligibility (if applicable) and a list of references.

Please make electronic submissions to Joydip Kundu, Deputy Division Director, at


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