Senior Associate Director, Research Development

Requisition # 2024-19177
Date Posted 3 weeks ago(5/23/2024 8:42 AM)
Dean for Research, Office of
Research and Laboratory
Job Type


Princeton University seeks a collaborative individual with strong personal motivation to join our research development team. As a key member of the Office of the Dean for Research, you will be responsible for driving strategic research and development initiatives, identifying new opportunities for growth and innovation, and fostering a culture of collaboration, creativity, and excellence within your portfolio. You will work closely with senior leadership, stakeholders, and external partners to develop and execute strategic plans that align with research priorities, and ensure that research development efforts are impactful, sustainable, and responsive to the needs of our community. Our research development services include providing competitive intelligence, research on funding agency priorities, outreach to program officers, project management support, professional writing of key proposal elements, and expert guidance throughout the entire proposal development process.


To be successful in this role, you must possess strong leadership skills to influence faculty leaders and guide the proposal team members, a deep understanding of the federal funding landscape to identify and assess funding opportunities, and a proven track record of partnering with faculty. You should be a skilled communicator, able to engage with faculty proactively about the highly competitive landscape for federal funding. You will be responsible for cultivating relationships with faculty and institutional leaders to be an effective thought partner in organizing diverse and inclusive research teams, engaging external partners, and developing management and outreach plans to capitalize on funding opportunities.


The ideal candidate for this position will have a strong background in research development, excellent communication and interpersonal skills, and a keen eye for detail. You should also be highly motivated and able to work effectively in a fast-paced, collaborative environment.



Mid- to Large-scale Proposal Development:

  • Strategize with faculty on research initiatives and multi-investigator/institutional research centers with a goal of enhancing the competitiveness and potential for securing large-scale federal funding, including new programs arising from the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022.
  • Gather and analyze information on proposal mechanisms, previous awardees, and the potential for success (competitive intelligence).
  • Work closely with faculty and administrative staff to organize strong teams and effective proposal processes to capitalize on funding opportunities.
  • Provide comprehensive editorial review and analyze proposal drafts to produce a compelling final product that is responsive to the solicitation and the funding agency.
  • Provide project-management expertise and proposal content for non-technical sections, and help prepare proposal submission packages in collaboration with other research administrators.


Capacity Building:

  • Partner with faculty on planning grants, building interdisciplinary teams, and other strategically valuable activities that serve as stepping stones to future large-scale proposals in priority areas.
  • Connect investigators with other relevant resources on campus such as community outreach, data management, and diversity and inclusion to support the development of such activities in their proposals.
  • Create and deliver workshops, panels, seminars, and information sessions that build grant seeking/writing capabilities.
  • Identify needs and develop resources for researchers from different disciplines and for different funding agencies, such as toolkits, templates, or guides.


Service-oriented Communications:

  • Develop a communications strategy for research development services to stimulate more engagement by researchers, campus partners, and University leaders.
  • Create communications about research development services and successes, such as web content, email campaigns, brochures, and periodic reports, for dissemination through a variety of channels.
  • Prepare qualitative and metric-based analyses on the impacts of research development services.


Coordination of Internal Funding Competitions and Other Duties:

  • Manage internal funding competitions, including publication of the call for proposals, proposal review, convening review committees, and finalizing committee recommendations.
  • Maintain records on submissions, awards, interim and final reports, and trends.
  • Other activities and special projects as needed.



Essential Qualifications

  • A BS or BA degree is required.
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills.
  • Four or more years of experience working in federal research development.


Preferred Qualifications

  • A PhD in physical sciences or engineering is desirable.
  • Experience with developing multidisciplinary proposals for the National Science Foundation and U.S. Department of Energy.
  • Ability to partner effectively with investigators who have different interpersonal styles and work in a wide variety of disciplines.
  • Demonstrated capacity to manage competing priorities while consistently delivering results in a timely manner.
  • Strong personal initiative, service-orientation, and willingness to perform tasks that range from strategic to detail-oriented.
  • Active membership with one or more professional research development organizations is preferred, such as NORDP.




Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS

Standard Weekly Hours


Eligible for Overtime


Benefits Eligible


Probationary Period

180 days

Essential Services Personnel (see policy for detail)


Physical Capacity Exam Required


Valid Driver’s License Required


Experience Level




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