Mission & Functions


The Office of Science (SC) manages one of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) largest Program Offices and is one of the principal sponsors of U.S. basic research in the Federal government.  The mission of SC is to deliver the scientific discoveries, capabilities, and major scientific tools to transform the understanding of nature and to advance the energy, economic, and national security of the U.S. SC advances the scientific and technology foundations necessary to accomplish the DOE mission areas: efficiency in energy use, diverse and reliable energy sources, improved health and environmental quality, and fundamental understanding of matter and energy.

The SC research programs offices include High Energy Physics; Nuclear Physics; Basic Energy Sciences; Biological and Environmental Research; Advanced Scientific Computing Research; and Fusion Energy Sciences.  The programs are carried out at the Department's National Laboratories, other laboratories, universities, non-profit research organizations, and industry.  These program offices plan and execute some of the Nation's most critical, complex, and highest priority science initiatives, and construct and operate world-leading, open scientific facilities essential for advancing research in the physical and life sciences and ensure a competitive U.S. position in science and technology.  SC also oversees ten world-class DOE national laboratories, operated under contract.  The DOE national laboratory system and numerous advanced R&D user facilities (located primarily at the SC laboratories and SC-supported universities) make up the most comprehensive research system of its kind in the world. Site Offices located at each SC managed laboratory are responsible for administration and oversight of their laboratory's Management and Operating (M&O) contract, in collaboration with SC and DOE sponsors.  The SC field system also includes the Consolidated Service Center, which provides administrative, business, and technical services to the SC program offices, Site Offices, and other DOE Program Offices, included the administration of the large volume of SC financial assistance awards (grants and cooperative agreements).

The Principal Deputy Director is responsible for:

  • providing high-level management direction and oversight of the SC;
  • ensuring the SC research and facility portfolio is strategically conceived and integrated across the SC programs, with other DOE offices, and other Federal agencies;
  • setting SC control standards for effectiveness, efficiency, and productivity and assesses all organizational policy, program, and project viability; and

Organizational Structure

  1. Office of Budget (SC-21)
  2. Office of Management (SC-22)
  3. Office of Project Assessment(SC-23)
  4. Office of Engineering and Technology (SC-24)
  5. Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Research Integrity (SC-2.1)
  6. Office of Strategic Planning and Interagency Coordination (SC-2.2)
  7. Office of International Affairs and Science Security (SC-2.3)
  8. Office of Crosscutting and Special Initiatives (SC-2.4)


The Principal Deputy Director

  1. Serves as the principal overall advisor to the SC Director on all aspects of the Office of Science. Examples include determining the strategic direction of SC, budget priorities across the SC organization, establishing SC-specific science and organization-wide scientific program and operation policies, setting standards for evaluation of organizational effectiveness, and identifying needs for major organizational improvements.Also serves as the principal advisor regarding matters relating to oversight of research and development (R&D) programs, projects, and scientific/technical leadership of the SC laboratories.
  2. Serves as first assistant to the SC Director. Serves as Acting SC Director in the absence of a Senate-confirmed SC Director.
  3. Assists the SC Director in carrying out all aspects of their scientific duties and responsibilities, including formulating the overall Office of Science budget requests, in collaboration with the other Deputy Directors.Also assists in the defense of the SC budget through DOE, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), and Congressional committees.
  4. Provides scientific and line-management oversight of, and related strategic direction to, the Office of Project Assessment, the Office of Budget, the Office of Management, the Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Research Integrity, the Office of Strategic Planning and Interagency Coordination, the Office of International Affairs and Science Security, the Office of Crosscutting and Special Initiatives, and the Office of Engineering and Technology, including the SBIR/STTR Program, Accelerator R&D and Production and Isotope R&D and Production.Recruits and appraises the performance of their Directors.
  5. Provides scientific and management oversight of the independent project evaluations and assessments of existing and proposed new projects and facilities, and related guidance to the SC Offices reporting to the Principal Deputy and to the Deputy Directors.
  6. Provides management oversight of SC international activities. Ensures SC’s international activities are strategically conceived, forward-looking, supportive of DOE and U.S. foreign policy, and effectively coordinated within SC, the Department, other Federal agencies, and other government agencies.
  7. Champions crosscutting initiatives that affect more than one SC Program Office and strategic research initiatives of priority to the SC Director and DOE senior leadership.
  8. Establishes SC-specific policies, plans, and procedures for cross-cutting topics related to strategic planning, evaluation, and execution of SC research and facility activities. Examples include the management and employment of Advisory Committees and Committees of Visitors, including those that support interagency initiatives; review of laboratory strategic plans and evaluation of SC sponsored activities at DOE national laboratories; assessments of staffing and resources needs across the organization; review and management of SC policies and practices for SC scientific user facilities, peer review, programmatic and administrative data, and digital data and software resulting from SC sponsored research; and strategic interactions with the scientific community.
  9. Establishes SC-specific policies, plans, and procedures related to scientific research conduct and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), in collaboration with the other Deputy Directors. Advances best practices for promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in SC research business practices and at the SC national laboratories. Ensures the effective implementation of Federal and DOE scientific research misconduct and scientific integrity policies.
  10. Provides oversight and strategic direction for SC’s interagency coordination activities and collaborations. Ensures appropriate SC representation on interagency subcommittees and working groups and alignment of SC’s engagement with SC and DOE priorities.
  11. Provides oversight and management, in collaboration with the other Deputy Directors, of integrated project teams established to execute the development of business management systems and resources that support core SC mission functions, including SC’s research awards management and financial management systems, and governance of SC’s external and internal websites.
  12. Coordinates the establishment of SC performance measures used to evaluate the execution of research and facilities funded by SC. Monitors and assesses the effectiveness of SC performance measures and reports outcomes to appropriate DOE elements.
  13. Ensures that Office of Science activities are integrated with the Department’s applied energy, environmental, and defense R&D programs, as well as those of other Federal agencies.
  14. Works with other Deputy Directors to integrate research program activities with operations-related activities and maintain collaborative working relationships between SC Headquarters, SC Field Managers, and the national laboratories performing SC-sponsored research.
  15. Manages activities common to multiple SC program offices and champions research and facility initiatives that affect more than one SC Office reporting to the Principal Deputy or the Deputy Director for Science Programs.Examples of common activities affecting the SC Offices include: coordination of responses to IG and GAO inquires, reviews, and investigations of research programs or facilities; coordination of responses to DOE, other-agency, OSTP, and Congressional inquiries; creation and maintenance of an archive of key reference documents such as governing legislation, MOU/MOAs, and strategic planning documents.Establishes consistent policies and procedures and establishes and chairs working groups when appropriate. Sets expectations for performance in these areas.
  16. Determines staffing and resources needs of SC to effectively carry out the responsibilities of the organization in collaboration with the other Deputy Directors. Establishes priorities for the Federal SC workforce and hiring for SC. Establishes consistent policies and procedures for IPAs and detailees. Coordinates DOE’s and SC’s participation in the AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship Program, and champions SC participation workforce recruitment programs such as the Presidential Management Fellows Program and Pathways.
  17. Determines SC’s resource commitments to the Oak Ridge Shared Service Center, and serves as the primary SC interface with DOE Human Capital for assessing the quality of service the Center provides to SC.
  18. Establishes priorities for the Program Direction budget for SC, in collaboration with the other Deputy Directors. Oversees the formulation and execution of the overall Program Direction budget.
  19. Establishes the SC position regarding the impact of proposed or revised legislation, Executive Orders, and DOE policies affecting the activities of the Office of Science.Resolves disputes within SC when necessary.
  20. Champions SC interests regarding the development of policies, requirements, or initiatives by the Department, other Executive Branch agencies, or the Congress affecting the activities funded by the Office of Science.Works to resolve disputes at the highest levels of the Department whenever necessary.
  21. Represents SC and makes commitments for the Department in discussions and meetings with high-level government and private sector officials.Typical meetings may be with members of Congress, and senior representatives within DOE and across other agencies, including OMB and OSTP.
  22. Manages the Forrestal and Germantown offices of SC-1 and SC-2, including activities such as: support for personnel recruiting of SC-1 and SC-2 staff; overseeing office moves; and ensuring effective management of calls and visitors, mail and correspondence, travel, and time and attendance for SC-1 and SC-2 staff.