By: NSF Office of Polar Programs Staff


Dr. Jennifer Mercer has been appointed as Section Head for the Arctic Sciences Section within the Office of Polar Programs effective 25 October 2021.

Dr. Mercer has been a Program Director for Arctic Sciences and Arctic Research Support & Logistics since 2016, and she recently served as Acting Section Head for Arctic Sciences. She also chairs the international Forum of Arctic Research Operators (FARO). Dr. Mercer has a broad scientific background with extensive field experience in both the Arctic and Antarctic. Prior to joining the federal government, she served as a Senior Research Scientist at the University of Wyoming, where she conducted NSF-funded atmospheric research, mostly based in Antarctica.

Jennifer Mercer, Section Head for the Arctic Sciences Section, NSF Office of Polar Programs. Photo courtesy of NSF.

In 2009, Dr. Mercer joined the US Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL). She became a permanent NSF employee in 2016, and in 2017 completed an Embassy Science Fellowship (ESF) with the US Embassy in Denmark. During that fellowship, she focused on facilitating increased engagement between the Greenland and US research communities. Dr. Mercer also serves in the US Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC). She holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Physical Science from Black Hills State University in South Dakota, and a doctorate in Earth Sciences from Dartmouth College.