The Office of Laboratory Policy and Evaluation (OLPE) develops uniform Office of Science-specific policies related to the management, operation, and overall well-being of the ten Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science (SC) national laboratories and ensures their effective and consistent implementation across the SC complex.
Introduction to the National Laboratories:
SC is responsible for the effective stewardship of Federally Funded Research and Development Centers, commonly known as national laboratories, which are operated under sponsoring agreements with private sector organizations known as management and operating (M&O) contracts. The M&O contract model, which dates back to World War II and the Corps of Engineers’ Manhattan Engineer District (MED), was designed to ensure the recruitment of the best people and the successful completion of the mission at hand—to win the War.
Today, the DOE national laboratory system represents the most comprehensive research system of its kind in the world and is responsible for performing research and development for which there is a strong public and national purpose. The M&O contract model, central to the laboratories’ operation, is a unique form of contract that is vitally important to the DOE’s ability to deliver the world-class research and the innovative technical accomplishments necessary to accomplish its missions. The M&O laboratory system under the DOE and its predecessor agencies has produced hundreds of Nobel Laureates, and the R&D Magazine has listed hundreds of DOE or predecessor agency research projects among its annual top 100.