This is an exciting opportunity to join a growing team focused on facilitating and promoting research that supports a more resilient, sustainable, and fire-safe world.
At SFPE and SFPE Foundation, we are driven by our mission to advance the scientific understanding of fire and fill in critical knowledge gaps in the field of fire protection engineering. In the last few years, our grant-making has grown exponentially, with numerous projects and grantees active in various areas of fire engineering research and related fields. We’ve also expanded our outreach to industry and academic audiences to build cross-sectoral, interdisciplinary research collaborations. With new research outputs coming in regularly, we need to expand our capacity to communicate our research impact with a diverse, global audience.
We are seeking an experienced project manager to join our team as our first Research Project Manager. You’ll be responsible for tracking and reporting on our funded projects, coordinating with grant recipients and research partners, managing projects in-house, and helping us share key research findings with both technical and general audiences. If you have the skills and motivation to support life-changing research that makes our communities safer and more resilient every day, we want to hear from you.
This position has four major responsibility areas; other duties may be assigned as needed:
Manage research projects and initiatives, including (30%):
Development of the SFPE Research Roadmap
Requests For Proposals / Open Call Research Project Solicitations
Student Research Grants
Student and professional awards with a research output component
Assisting Foundation Director in implementation of grants received by SFPE Foundation
Coordinate activities with research partners, including (30%):
Volunteers serving on various project Advisory Panels
Academic department heads involved in SFPE’s Academic Leadership Council
SFPE Corporate 100 and other industry partners
External project consultants
Working with SFPE staff to schedule speakers and promote the Research in Fire Engineering Webinar Series
Working with SFPE staff to conduct research-focused workshops, events, & conferences
Research impact dissemination (25%):
Build the research presence of the Foundation in digital outlets in collaboration with the marketing and communications team and at the direction of the Foundation Director
Work with the communications team to develop one-page summaries and infographics capturing key takeaways and insights from Foundation-funded research projects and related initiatives
Create brief summaries of research impact for use in donor communications materials, online, and other outlets
Conduct project/program data collection (15%):
Assist the Foundation Director in developing metrics for data collection across all Foundation-sponsored research projects
Collect and maintain a database of key metrics showcasing the Foundation’s impact across its research and educational program portfolio
Develop quantitative and qualitative measures of success that illustrate the Foundation’s impact
Assist the Foundation Director in drafting any grant reports required by those organizations providing grant funding to the Foundation
While not an exhaustive list, the following illustrates many of the activities you would be engaged in on a regular basis to fulfill the responsibilities enumerated above:
Coordinate end-to-end grant delivery, tracking, reporting, and preparation of project takeaways for dissemination.
Communicate with grantees and establish clear expectations for project timelines and deliverables.
Audit grantee deliverables to confirm they meet all grant requirements.
Review final research products and prepare key take-aways and – in coordination with marketing and communication staff – develop collateral for widespread dissemination of research findings.
With Foundation Director, develop a strategy for more effectively disseminating Foundation-funded research takeaways to a global audience, including tactics for reaching a more diverse audience.
With the marketing and communications team, provide the content to develop marketing materials (e.g. videos, interviews, one-pagers, social media posts, etc.) that highlight the contributions of Foundation funded-researchers.
Regularly conduct outreach activities with potential research partners, including academics and industry personnel.
Maintain database of academic contacts and academic programs/departments.
Contribute to the development of event programs; identify and recruit potential speakers, student volunteers, etc.
Supervise student intern(s) at the discretion of the Foundation Director.
Requirements & Qualifications
The successful applicant must be extremely detail-oriented, organized, exhibit a strong sense of ethics and commitment to transparency, be an excellent communicator with people from a wide variety of backgrounds, thrive in team-oriented and collaborative work environments, show initiative, and be able to work independently with minimal oversight. Other qualifications include:
Bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline and three to five years of research experience, or equivalent combination.
Significant experience managing research projects in the field and/or in the lab. Understanding of the scientific method and how to evaluate research project proposals and read scientific papers. Experience with data collection and research design (experimental, quantitative, and/or qualitative).
Experience with project or program monitoring and evaluation frameworks, data collection, and reporting; demonstrated success with project management.
Experience with applying for and successfully receiving grant funding preferred; experience supervising grant recipients or monitoring grantees and evaluating grant performance preferred.
Working knowledge of sustainability and resilience discourses and frameworks is required.
Familiarity with fire engineering, engineering, or related disciplines is a plus.
Ability to communicate with a technical audience as well as a general audience.
Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, schedule meetings in multiple time zones, and meet deadlines.
Proficiency in MS Office 365; experience with project management software a strong plus; experience with online communication and social media platforms; MemberSuites and/or Blue Sky Path experience a plus; experience with any CRM software a plus; experience with any AMS or LMS systems a plus; experience with grant management platforms or application portals a strong plus.
Experience working with volunteers is a plus.
Experience in a supervisory role of some kind is required.
The Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE), located in Gaithersburg, Maryland, was established in
1950 and is the world's leading professional society representing those practicing in the field of fire
protection and fire safety engineering. SFPE has over 4,800 members and over 100 chapters worldwide,
including more than 20 student chapters.