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Deputy Director, Research Development & Communications

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Date Posted:


Job Summary

The Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) at the University of Colorado Boulder encourages applications for the Deputy Director for Research Development and Communications. The Deputy Director is a senior member of the LASP executive leadership team and is responsible for strategically enabling laboratory wide research growth, technology and business development, complementary communications alignment, and information technology services. The Deputy Director will represent the Director as required and will serve as a LASP advocate within the CU system and the global space research community.

LASP seeks applicants with the following qualifications: outstanding leadership; a deep sense of scholarship; thorough comprehension of the issues involved with space exploratory research; broad awareness of business infrastructure amongst a diverse community of researchers and partners; and the ability to serve effectively as a key member of the LASP management team. This position will report to the Director of LASP, and manage and guide the efforts of the Technology and Business Development Office, Office of Communications Management, and Information Technology Services Departments to optimize, enable, and advance LASP research.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

LASP is a research institute of the University of Colorado Boulder. With a focus on solar, stellar, space plasma, atmospheric and planetary sciences, LASP employs both experimental and theoretical approaches to answer key science questions. Since its inception in 1948, LASP has developed, operated, and analyzed the data from scientific instrumentation for solar science, earth atmospheric, planetary, deep-space, and Earth-orbiting spacecraft missions investigating all eight planets, Pluto and beyond.

To achieve its scientific and technical goals, LASP relies on cooperative and collaborative engagements between management, scientists, engineers, mission operators, data analysts, and support personnel.

Through wide-ranging research projects, LASP participates actively in the training of the future leaders of space research and leads the University of Colorado Boulder in educating students with highly-valued technical and scientific skills.

The progressive development of research capabilities and the use of innovative technologies in pursuit of emerging research initiatives ensures a continued leadership role for LASP in the growing “new space” era.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

LASP is at the cutting edge of space research, attracting and retaining a highly motivated and hardworking staff, making it an inspirational place to work. The Deputy Director will be instrumental in shaping and guiding the future research endeavors of LASP’s science and technology in response to global space exploration and discovery aspirations.

  • In collaboration with the Science, Engineering, and Operations fields within LASP build the research development vision and framework necessary to empower research growth through knowledge, technology, and capability development.
  • Partnering with the Director, acts as a prominent and vigorous LASP advocate for innovation, support, and sustainment within the CU system.
  • As an integral member of LASP’s executive leadership, strategically plans and champions research in emerging opportunity areas to include the government, commercial, foundation, and international sectors.
  • Promote the internal and external communication messaging, marketing, and strategic relationships that foster LASP’s current research activities, capabilities, and goals.
  • Join with the Director, Deputy Director for Finance and Operations, and the operational Division Directors for Science, Engineering, and Mission Operations and Data Systems to facilitate the strategic research orientation across LASP and its members.
  • Leadership is all-encompassing. The research tempo at LASP varies in intensity, focus, and interest. The areas below are representative of the roles and responsibilities this position encompasses. It is expected the Deputy Director for Research Development and Communications to engage, guide, collaborate, and direct as necessary to accomplish the vision and mission of LASP.

Strategic Research Development
  • Leads all aspects of the development of strategic research perspectives, especially with respect to the research initiatives being proposed and/or contemplated internally by LASP scientists, engineers, and operations, and external to LASP, CU, government, and international space research community.
  • Acquire and sustain a deep knowledge of LASP research capabilities in terms of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
  • Maintain a broad understanding of the overall space and Earth science research environment, areas of key interest, and growth projections.
  • Identify new and unexplored research opportunities, including the awareness of new domains/products/sectors eligible for research expansion, which may or may not complement existing LASP research.
  • Strategically assess research capabilities and the possible need for expansion, retention, or cessation of functions.

Research Competitiveness 
  • Strategically enable the Technology and Business Development Office in technology improvement/maturation efforts, future business strategies, and approaches to sustain and cultivate research growth.
  • Maintain and coordinate awareness of competitor developments in the academic, governmental, commercial, and international sectors.
  • Contribute a detailed understanding of the basis for research programs & projects of current sponsors and dependencies.
  • Support knowledge of research sponsor profiles; existing and potential opportunities.
  • In collaboration with LASP operational Division Directors, improve processes and refine resource utilization for higher award rates.
  • Manage technology and alignment with LASP strategic research intent.

  • Oversee the internal and external communications strategy to include marketing, education, and outreach.
  • Drive LASP essential messaging and advocacy within the CU system.
  • Ensure critical messaging development in cooperation with the operational Divisions and their members.
  • Represent LASP at external public forums, events, and space research and industry venues as required.
  • Strategically direct and supports public outreach program.

Information Technology Services 
  • Drive the Information Technology strategies necessary to enable LASP to meet its research goals through enterprise-wide technology applications and services, available internally and externally, that support research development, science, engineering, operations, and overall strategic management.
  • At an enterprise level, advocate and oversee the IT services provided by LASP and CU Office of Information Technology to strategically support the requirements necessary for LASP to meet and efficiently sustain research requirements.
  • Improve IT services, processes, and resource utilization, in collaboration with the Director, Deputy Director for Finance and Operations, and the operational Division Directors for Science, Engineering, and Mission Operations and Data Systems.

What You Should Know

Occasional travel and out-of-nominal hours of work are required (especially in support of spacecraft launch and mission activities, public talks, and other public events). 

What We Can Offer

Salary range: $199,000.00 to $235,000.00. Relocation is available per institute guidelines. 


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be dynamic. Be strategic. Be Boulder.

What We Require

The successful candidate should have an advanced degree with a preference for a Ph.D. degree or equivalent experience in a relevant field of engineering or science. Substantial program/project management experience in a research capacity is also required. 

What You Will Need

  • Must possess excellent collaborative and adaptive thinking perspectives, and high emotional intelligence.
  • Exhibit good cross-cultural and multi-discipline communication skills.
  • Dedication to promoting LASP’s and CU’s Diversity and Inclusion goals.
  • Ability to lead and define new directions in science, engineering, and mission opportunities.
  • Knowledge of government, commercial, and international space research goals, objectives, and opportunities.
  • Ability to identify academic, financial, and political factors that impact commercial and international research opportunities.
  • Assess business, social, and cultural factors of commercial and international research activities for academic research institutes.
  • Demonstrate ability to recognize and manage commercial and international research/business issues.
  • Background in use and understanding of enterprise-based IT services.
  • Resilience.

What We Would Like You To Have

  • Higher education academic experience.
  • Prior experience with federal and/or international space agencies.
  • Commercial business development and marketing experience.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover Letter
Review of applications will begin July 12, 2021 and continue until the position is filled.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Boulder Campus Human Resources

Posting Contact Email: