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

A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

JOB OPPORTUNITY: Project Manager/Senior Researcher for Special Projects


JOB OPPORTUNITY: Project Manager/Senior Researcher for Special Projects

October 31, 2011

Position Summary/Purpose of Position: As a result of substantial expansion of its research activities, the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) is currently seeking to fill the position of Project Manager/ Senior Researcher for Special Projects at its headquarters at the University of Maryland. START is a research and education center based at the University of Maryland, College Park, involving faculty, researchers, and students from more than 40 institutions around the world.

With grant funding and contracts from a range of sources, including, but not limited to, the Science & Technology Directorate of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, START supports the conduct of original research that applies the theories and methods of social science to the study of the human causes and consequences of terrorism and works to transition findings from this research to a broad community of students, homeland security professionals, and interested members of the public.

This is a full-time (12 month/year) position, classified as Research Faculty by the university. The holder of this position will be actively involved in managing and conducting research for several projects being conducted by the Special Projects unit at START.

In particular, the Project Manager / Senior Researcher (PM/SR) will support overall project coordination and be a member of two research teams engaged in multiyear studies assessing various aspects of non-state actor behavior with respect to unconventional weapons, including but not limited to the pursuit and use of radiological and nuclear weapons by terrorists. This will include: (1) supervising research on at least two terrorism-related projects and ensuring milestones and deliverables meet quality and schedule specifications; (2) supervising student and other workers on these projects. This position combines substantive research tasks (i.e. research design, theory development, theory testing, data coding and analysis) with sponsored research coordination and monitoring.

The PM/SR will work with the Director of Special Projects and the Special Projects Program Manager and will also assist in transitioning project results to the policy and academic domains, including presenting the results and status of projects that have been completed, are in progress, and are in development to a range of audiences, such as external sponsors, potential clients, academics, and the general public.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Project Coordination:

    Coordination of research teams involving over a dozen senior researchers and approximately 20 interns, including facilitating collaboration, scheduling research activities and maintaining a high level of communication across the research teams.

  2. Project Reporting and Expense Tracking:

    Managing all reporting requirements to the project sponsor, including reviewing all expenses associated with the project.

  3. Project Research:

    Supporting research under several research topics. This will include, but is not limited to:

    • Managing the coding and quality control of a CBRN events and perpetrator database, Profiles of Incidents involving CBRN use by Non-state actors (POICN)
    • Identifying, collecting and summarizing open-source information on terrorist and other perpetrators
    • Production of a variety of case studies, such as examples of terrorist adoption of advanced technologies or behavioral profiles of violent actors and nuclear weapons.
  4. Final Report Production and Transition Activities:

    Assisting with the preparation, editing and publication of all final reports and other products of the research. Also, assisting in the transition of research products into formats appropriate for various stakeholders.

Qualifications for Position

Minimum Qualifications:

  • A graduate degree (as of Summer 2011) in a field relevant to the nature of this project, such as foreign affairs, psychology, political science, public policy, criminology, security studies, or history.
  • Graduate level coursework in qualitative and/or quantitative research methodology.
  • At least one year of experience in a coordinating or leadership role as part of a substantial, collaborative research effort. This must include direct supervision of undergraduate research assistants.
  • Two or more years of experience in coding social science data. Extensive coursework or practical research experience related to both terrorism and unconventional weapons.
  • Superior communication skills (both written and oral).


  • Experience working with U.S. government agencies at the Federal, state, and/or local levels, especially agencies that are part of the homeland security enterprise.
  • Experience in constructing large-sample databases, as well as demonstrated experience in systematic data collection and analysis from a range of open-source resources.

The Project Manager / Senior Researcher will report directly to the Director for Special Projects, and will work in conjunction with the Special Projects Program Manager.

The annual salary for this position will be commensurate with education level and experience (ranging from $44,000 to $50,000) plus full University of Maryland benefits (as explained at http://www.uhr.umd.edu/documents/New%20Hire%20Overview%20Exempt-Faculty.pdf). The person selected for this position will work on site at START's headquarters on campus at the University of Maryland, College Park.

How to Apply:

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Apply online at https://jobs.umd.edu/. For best consideration, applicants should submit materials by November 6, 2011.

Please note that the University of Maryland, College Park, and START actively subscribe 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.