General Characteristics: This is the fully competent professional, independent researcher level. Plans and executes laboratory research. Capable of working independently and without direction on assigned tasks/projects. Plans and conducts work requiring independent judgment in the evaluation, selection, and substantial adaptation/modification of standard techniques, procedures and criteria. Devises new approaches to problems encountered. Uses a wide application of complex principles, theories and concepts in the specific field. Works on complex problems of diverse scope where analysis of data requires in-depth evaluation of identifiable factors. Project results may impact UW research mission; results are visible/impactful in peer community. Requires sufficient professional experience to assure competence as a fully functional researcher/engineer.
Knowledge: Has established technical expertise; serves as a resource to research unit/department and UW. Possesses and applies a comprehensive knowledge of particular field of specialization to the completion of complex assignments; advances state-of-the-art research in field of specialization.
Direction received: Independently performs most assignments with instructions as to the general results expected. Receives technical guidance on unusual or complex problems and supervisory approval on proposed plans for projects.
Typical duties and responsibilities: Manages multiple or significant projects which may require the use of sophisticated project planning techniques. Plans, schedules, conducts, or coordinates detailed phases of the work of a major project or in a total project of moderate scope. Makes substantial contributions to determining feasibility of goals/objectives; may evaluate proposed or ongoing projects; interfaces with client/customer project managers and UW research/engineering management for existing or proposed projects. Creates opportunities to enhance technical methodology or content through expansion of existing, or development of, new efforts; may extend technology into new application areas; contributes or leads in major intellectual development activities. Chairs sessions at technical meetings; gives invited papers; participates in external seminars, workshops, professional societies and committees. Provides innovative problem-solving approaches to enhance organizational capabilities; uses peer network to expand technical capabilities and identify new research opportunities. Understands broad strategic objectives and contributes to them; nurtures and maintains relationships with major customers/grantors of external research and development grant funding. Identifies grant/project extensions and persuade customers/grantors to fund; impacts customer decisions and strategies. May initiate new project concepts and seek funding; develops technical proposals and makes presentations to potential customers/grant sponsors.
Responsibility for directing others: May supervise several scientists, engineers or technicians on assigned work; provides major input to staffing of overall project teams; builds teams and staff to optimize efficiency and cost effectiveness. Identifies and evaluates candidates for open positions; mentors/trains staff in development of technical, project and business development skills.
Education requirement, minimum: Master's degree or higher in an appropriate field; or a PhD with significant experience in the required field of specialization. Bachelor's degree candidates with exceptional qualifications may be considered.
Experience requirement, minimum: Four or more years experience in a related area, or equivalent combination of education/experience.