Call for Applications: Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) Managing Director

Posted: October 15, 2021
Deadline: November 29, 2021

Position: Managing Director, Society for Social Studies of Science

Time Fraction: 0.6FTE (3 days a week)

Salary: $67,080 USD per annum

Length of contract: 3 years, with possibility of renewal

 Applications open: October 15th 2021

 Applications close: November 29th 2021



4S has grown substantially over its 45-year history from a group of 50 scholars to its current membership of 2,021 and over 3,000 participants at the most recent annual meeting. It currently holds assets of over 600K USD and an annual turnover of around 500K. This growth comes at a time when there is increasing international recognition of the importance of STS from scholars, government, and industry, in part a reflection of the multiple and intersecting global challenges of COVID-19, global environmental changes, racial justice and much more. At the same time, the role of this professional society is changing due to increasing virtual collaboration and research, increasing participation from scholars based in the Global South, and changing career structures for STS scholars. In light of this context, 4S Council has approved the creation of a Managing Director (MD) position at 0.6 FTE (3 days a week) for 3 years, with the possibility of renewal subject to performance and Council approval.


All responsibilities of/work conducted by the MD will occur under the direction of the President and Council, and assisting the Secretary, Treasurer and relevant Standing and Ad Hoc Committees. These include:

  1. Manage day-to-day correspondence of the Society.
  2. Assisting the Secretary, support meetings of Council, Standing and Ad Hoc Committees, and Society Business Meetings, circulate agendas, take minutes and, where appropriate, post minutes.
  3. Work with the President and Elections Committee to organize annual online elections for the President-Elect and new Council members.
  4. Work with the Publications Committee and paid and volunteer officers of Society publications in relation to financial transactions and contracts.
  5. Work with the Prize Committees to facilitate nominations, access to books and articles, and production of awards.
  6. Support the President and Council in considering and implementing updates and review of the 4S Charter as necessary but at least on an annual basis.
  7. Draft bylaws and/or operational procedures for consideration by Council to clarify governance and finance processes.
  8. Assist the President with Society business as required.
  9. Work with the President and local organizing team to organize annual meetings (in-person or virtual) of the Society, including exploring alternative membership and registration software to All Academic. Should meetings be virtual or hybrid, the MD would work with local organizers to select platforms and software.
  10. Assisting the Treasurer, keep financial records of the Society, manage financial transactions including membership dues and meeting registration, and –working with the Treasurer—prepare annual and event budgets and produce quarterly financial reports for the Finance Committee, who will in turn report to Council.
  11. Support the President and Council to review the current 4S business model and consider sustainable alternatives, including investigating new sources of income such as grants, donations, webinars, workshops, etc.
  12. Review data storage and protection systems to ensure compliance with current standards.
  13. Update the website as required, in collaboration with an external contractor.
  14. Report to Council meetings about all relevant ongoing activities including any changes in operational policy.


Selection Criteria

 Essential Capabilities and Personal Attributes:

Desirable Capabilities:

Arrangements for the position: 

Guidelines for Application: 

Applications should include four elements and be submitted by or on November 29th by email to

Selection process:

Shortlisted applicants will be contacted and invited to a 30-minute online interview with the Selection Committee. It is expected that a contract will be offered to the successful applicant in December 2021.

Selection Committee:

Knut Sørensen, Chair

Emma Kowal (4S President)

Hebe Vessuri

Alan Irwin

Wiebe Bijker

Two additional Council members to be determined


Enquiries should be directed to

Information about 4S can be found on our website.

Published: 10/15/2021