A Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

START fosters a collaborative, multidisciplinary environment to create a team to meet the needs of the homeland security enterprise and train the next generation of scholars and practitioners. 

Senior Researcher, Unconventional Weapons and Technology

Senior Researcher, Unconventional Weapons and Technology

May 11, 2018
Jobs at START


The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) is now hiring a Senior Researcher (University Rank: Assistant Research Scientist) to work in the Unconventional Weapons and Technology Division (UWT) at START’s headquarters at the University of Maryland, College Park. This is a full-time position, with an initial term of 12 months (starting approximately in August 2018). U.S. citizenship is required for this position. Advanced ABD PhD candidates are welcome to apply, but you must have been awarded and conferred your PhD by the end of the initial appointment to be eligible for a contract extension, contingent on the availability of funds.

Responsibilities: As one of the larger research divisions within START, UWT has a number of relatively short-term and intensive research projects on various aspects of violent non-state actor decision-making process; attacks against critical infrastructure; chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) terrorism; emerging technology; counter-terrorism; organized crime; and illicit trafficking. Initially, the senior researcher will lead the experimental design and implementation of those experiments in support of the Modeling Adversarial Activity (MAA) research project. The ideal candidate for this position will demonstrate that they can provide intellectual oversight and the conceptual architecture of the various empirical analyses undertaken in the performance of this specific as well as other research projects. In addition, the senior researcher will draw upon expertise in experimental methods to support START’s larger research mission concerning terrorism and responses to terrorism.

Specific duties of the senior researcher include but are not limited to:

  • Intellectual leadership of research projects
  • Research design, implementation, and analyses
  • Database and codebook design
  • Primary authorship of project deliverables
  • Peer-review editing of deliverables and proposals with multi-method research design
  • Quality control of analysis, data visualization, and research products/deliverables
  • Oversight of a small research team in conjunction with a project manager
  • Proposal development

Required Qualifications:

  • U.S. citizenship
  • At least ABD in experimental psychology or other social science disciplines with experimental methods training (If ABD, include letters of support clearly stating estimated finish date)
  • Demonstrated knowledge and strength in experimental design, implementation, and analyses
  • Demonstrated knowledge of terrorism or the behavior of other non-state actors
  • Ability to mentor junior research staff
  • Ability to effectively supervise project staff
  • Ability to handle pressures and efficiently meet deliverable deadlines
  • Ability to multi-task on several projects at once and flexibility to switch topics areas and tasks as required


Preferred Qualifications

  • Research experience in professional environment on federally-funded contracts
  • Experience in implementing quality control procedures
  • Experience in grant-writing
  • Superior writing and presentation abilities

The annual salary for this position will be in the range of $75,000 to $85,000 (depending on education and experience), plus full University of Maryland benefits (as explained here). The person selected for this position will work on site at START’s headquarters adjacent to the University of Maryland, College Park, and will report directly to the UWT Director.

Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Candidates are encouraged to apply by May 11, 2018, for best consideration.

Please submit a cover letter, resume/CV, 2-page (maximum) writing sample, and three references to Mr. James Halverson at jhalvers@umd.edu with “UWT Senior Researcher Application” as the subject line.

The University of Maryland, College Park, actively subscribes to a policy of equal employment opportunity, and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant because of race, age, gender, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, national origin, or political affiliation. Minorities and women are encouraged to apply.