Call for nominations for membership in Rubin Science Advisory Council

Call for nominations for Rubin Observatory Science Advisory Committee membership

The Vera C. Rubin Observatory has a Science Advisory Committee (SAC), which represents the community of scientists preparing to use data from the Legacy Survey of Space and Time. The SAC is looking for 3-6 new members; this announcement is to solicit nominations from the community. Self-nominations are welcome and encouraged. We will begin to consider nominations after July 31st, 2023.

The nomination process is described below.

A full description of the Rubin SAC, including its role, responsibilities, and the membership criteria, can be found in the Charge to the Rubin Observatory Science Advisory Committee.

The Science Advisory Committee was constituted in 2014, and will continue to be a standing committee through the operational lifetime of the Rubin Observatory Legacy Survey of Space and Time. The SAC advises the Rubin Observatory Construction Project and Operations Directors on matters of scientific import, including those that bear on the Rubin scientific community, or are related to the hardware and system design, the survey planning, policies related to data access, and other aspects of the Rubin Observatory. The SAC also serves as a mechanism for members of the Rubin scientific community to express concerns and give input to the Rubin leadership.

SAC members include scientists with expertise in all areas in which Rubin will have impact. However, SAC members do not formally represent the Rubin Science Collaborations; rather, they advocate for the productivity of the Observatory and the scientific community overall.

The SAC typically meets between two and eight times a year. Most meetings will be remote, but there will be at least one in-person meeting, often as part of a yearly broad Rubin-related meeting, such as the Rubin Project and Community Workshop (PCW). Travel will be fully supported to the in-person meeting (although a hybrid option will be made available). The time commitment of being a SAC member (other than the Chair) shall not be more than 16 hours (2 working days) per half-year. Membership on the SAC is for a two-year term, with the option of a renewal for another term (i.e., a total of four years).

The SAC consists of roughly 12 members, selected to reflect the Rubin science community, and thus diverse in scientific expertise, nationality, career stage, gender, and racial and ethnic identity. All SAC members must have Rubin data rights and may not be employed directly by the Rubin Project or Operations. Nominations from the UK, and French communities (operational partners of the Rubin Observatory) are especially encouraged. (By agreement with AURA, the University of Chile appoints Chilean members to the SAC based on input from the full Chilean community). We welcome nominations for scientists with all areas of expertise, but particularly encourage those with specific domain knowledge in solar system studies, supernova, variable stars, cosmological probes, and pipeline software.

Nominating a candidate for the Rubin SAC requires filling out a brief Google form. Again, self-nominations are encouraged! If you have any questions, please contact the current chair of the SAC, Michael Strauss (

The Google form may be accessed here, and includes the following questions.

  1. Nominee name.
  2. Nominee email.
  3. Nominee institutional affiliation.
  4. Nominated by (if not a self-nomination).
  5. Career stage that best describes the nominee for the next two years (e.g., postdoctoral researcher; research staff scientist / engineer; junior / senior / emeritus professor).
  6. Science Collaborations (if any) the nominee is a member of.
  7. Nominee’s Rubin-related science interests (one paragraph).
  8. A description of why the nominee is well-suited for the SAC, what their connection to the community is, and/or what specific perspective they would bring to the SAC (1-2 paragraphs).