ESSAC and J-DESC announce a call for expressions of interest in hosting the International Ocean Drilling Programme (IODP³) Science Office

Download the call here

The International Ocean Drilling Programme (IODP³) will begin in January 2025and will succeed the current International Ocean Discovery Program which ends in 2024.


IODP³ will be led jointly by the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling (ECORD) and Japan as Core Members and involve collaboration and partnership with other non platform-providing ocean drilling research programmes/consortia as Associate and Temporary Members. This is a call for expressions of interest from senior scientists based in IODP³ Core Member nations (i.e., current ECORD member nations and Japan) to lead and host the new IODP³ Science Office (IODP³-SO) to deliver the mandate described below.

Mandate | The main tasks of the IODP³-SO will be:

  • to develop and maintain a database management system for community-led drilling proposals and their evaluation, together with an associated site survey data bank, accessible to Science Evaluation Panel (SEP) members and other IODP³ entities.
  • to provide logistical support for the Science Evaluation Panel, the Mission-Specific Platform Facility Board (MSP-FB), and the Scientific Drilling Forum.
  • to gather and analyse data (statistics and metrics) aimed at monitoring and improving equality, diversity and inclusion within IODP³, and propose measures to further facilitate an inclusive culture in scientific ocean drilling.
  •  to design and maintain the IODP³ website that will act as the primary source of programmatic information for the international scientific ocean drilling research community.
  •  to implement a programme-wide application portal for all aspects of IODP³ activities including calls for expedition participation, panel and board membership, training events, scholarships and grants.
  •  to develop and implement an online, open-access publication system for IODP³ expedition-related reports (Scientific Prospectuses, Preliminary Reports, Scientific Proceedings, Data Reports), including associated editorial and reviewing processes, and maintain an expedition-based bibliographic database.

Leadership, staffing, budgets and location

The IODP³-SO will be led by a Director or two Co- Directors who are leading scientists with substantial experience of scientific ocean drilling and are based in IODP Core Member nations. The level of salary support for the Director/Co-Directors will be negotiable and subject to approval of an overall IODP³-SO annual budget. Three to five full-time equivalent additional staff may also be employed (on either a full or part-time basis) to perform the key tasks of the IODP³-SO, with salary support defined in advance in the annual IODP³-SO budget. The annually approved budget will also include travel and subsistence support forIODP³-SO staff, support for organization of SEP, MSPFB and Scientific Drilling Forum meetings, IT costs, and funding for the suite of IODP³-SO expedition related publications.
The IODP³-SO may be located in any IODP³ Core Member nation or may adopt a distributed model across more than one Core Member nation. In the latter case, however, financial management of the IODP³-SO should be provided by a single institution contracted to the ECORD legal representative. Servers for related IT support and databases must also be located in an IODP³ Core Member nation to comply with data protection legislation.

A contract between the host institution of the IODP³-SO and the ECORD legal representative will facilitate transfer of the IODP³-SO budget, which must be agreed annually. The contract will initially be from 1 May 2024 to 31 December 2029. The first eight months of the contract will cover a start-up period to allow IT systems, workflows and protocols to be established prior to the start of IODP³ on 1 January 2025. A review of the IODP³-SO will be conducted in the first quarter of 2029 by the ECORD Council and JAMSTEC and the results will guide a decision to either re-compete or renew the contract for a second five-year period (1 January 2030 – 31 December 2034).

Submission of Expressions of Interest

Senior scientists based within IODP³ Core Member nations (i.e., current ECORD member
nations and Japan) interested in leading the IODP³ Science Office as its Director/Co-Director
are invited to submit expressions of interest consisting of the following elements:

  •  two-page CVs for the Director or Co-Directors outlining their prior experience in scientific ocean drilling and relevant international leadership and management experience.
  • a two-page statement of their vision for implementing the mandate of the IODP³-SO, including information on proposed staffing levels required to deliver this mandate.
  • a provisional, indicative annual budget statement indicating estimated staffing, travel and subsistence and all other support costs. This should also provide information on expected institutional overheads if applicable. Note that actual budgets will be finalised annually by negotiation if an award is made.
  • a letter of support from their institution(s) confirming that they agree to host the IODP3-SO and associated staff members and administer the annual IODP³-SO budget.


This package of documents should be submitted as a single PDF document by email
to Dr Gilbert Camoin (Director of the ECORD Managing Agency) at ema@cerege.fr
by 17.00 CET on 30 November 2023.
Informal email enquiries should be directed to both Dr Angelo Camerlenghi (essac@ogs.it)
and Dr Sanny Saito (jdesc@jamstec.go.jp).