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: Unconventional Weapons and Technologies Program Manager


JOB OPPORTUNITY: Unconventional Weapons and Technologies Program Manager

June 7, 2013

Position Announcement:
Unconventional Weapons and Technologies Program Manager

(University Rank: Faculty Research Assistant) The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) is now hiring a program manager to work at START's headquarters at the University of Maryland, College Park. This is a full-time position, with an initial term of 12 months (start date of July 1 preferred, although as late as August 1 potentially possible). Responsibilities:
Special Projects consists of a number of relatively short-term and intensive research projects on various aspects of terrorism and counter-terrorism. The Unconventional Weapons and Technologies (UWT) Program Manager will be responsible for managing Special Project's portfolio of research projects related to UWT, i.e. non-state actors' use or attempted use of chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear (CBRN) weapons and other emerging technologies. While the Program Manager will be responsible for the quality control of UWT projects, he/she will spend more than 75 percent of his/her time on program management (i.e. resource management, development of on-going and new research proposals, budgeting/contracting/human subjects approvals, project oversight, quality control and transition of research findings) rather than research. The Program Manager will not serve as a Primary Investigator or co-Primary Investigator on grants or contracts. The Program Manager will serve as the supervisor for several teams of project staff (approximately 10 full-time employees) in order to ensure the meeting of milestones and deliverable deadlines and compliance requirements, as well as to maximize efficiencies between related projects. He/she will serve as the liaison between the PI(s), project team and project funders. The Program Manager will report to the Director of Special Projects. He/she will implement the programmatic elements of the UWT Program while assisting in the development and management of UWT's strategic goals and objectives. The primary strategic goal for the next year is to formally launch the UWT Program, including developing a website for disseminating research products. The Program Manager will be instrumental in pursuing additional projects and funding for UWT. With this aim, the Program Manager will liaise with potential public, private and non-profit project funders and donors to provide information on current and past projects while proposing potential new and continuing projects. The UWT project portfolio is currently focused on the following research areas:

  • CBRN acquisition and use by non-state actors
  • Identification and profiling of non-state actors most likely to seek unconventional weapons
  • Technological innovation by non-state actors
  • Technical and practical knowledge requirements of weapons technologies
  • The role of the nexus of criminal organizations and terrorist organizations in radiological/nuclear (RN) smuggling
  • Assessing the effectiveness of CBRN-specific countermeasures
  • Developing recommendations for making improvements to and addressing vulnerabilities in current counterterrorism efforts regarding CBRN weapons

Special Projects uses a multi-method analytical approach, including:

  • Qualitative case study methods, especially process tracing
  • Quantitative data collection and analysis, including both basic and advanced statistics
  • Geospatial analysis
  • Elicitations and surveys
  • Red teaming
  • Formal modeling
  • Agent-based modeling

Required Qualifications:

  • At least three years of relevant program management experience
  • A relevant graduate degree and/or at least 5 years of relevant experience
  • Ability to develop project proposals and work-plans
  • Proven ability to effectively supervise project staff, including full-time researchers, research assistants and interns
  • Ability to handle pressure and meet deliverable deadlines
  • Flexibility to effectively switch between tasks or multi-task as required
  • Experience implementing project quality control procedures
  • Superior writing and presentation abilities
  • Broad policy-relevant knowledge of the unconventional weapons and technologies field OR CBRN pursuit and use by non-state actors OR basic non-proliferation issues and relevant U.S. government and third-sector entities

Preferred Qualifications:

  • At least one year of prior terrorism-related experience
  • Familiarity with terrorism and counterterrorism literature
  • A basic understanding of radiological and nuclear (RN) detection technologies and operations
  • Contemporary and historical knowledge of relevant research related to CBRN and non-state actors
  • General understanding of a variety of analytical methods
  • Training and/or experience with one or more research methodologies
  • Budgetary and/or contracting experience
  • Current positive relationships with relevant public sector grant and contract sponsoring entities
  • Current positive relationship with potential private and non-profit donors

Additional Considerations:

  • Program and/or Project management certification(s), e.g. PMP or PgMP
  • Familiarity with MS Project or comparable management software
  • Fundraising and/or capture management experience
  • Experience working in an administrative role on federally-funded grants and contracts
  • Familiarity with technical aspects of non-state actor relevant CBRN technologies

The annual salary for this position will be in the range of $65,000 to $95,000 (depending on education and experience), plus full University of Maryland benefits (as explained at http://uhr.umd.edu/benefits/benefits-at-a-glance/). The person selected for this position will work on site at START's headquarters on campus at the University of Maryland, College Park, and will report directly to START's Special Projects Director. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Candidates are encouraged to apply by June 23, 2013 for best consideration. Please submit a cover letter, resume/CV, 2 page writing sample and three references to braniff@umd.edu with "UWT Program Manager" 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.