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The National Science Foundation has filled a new role leading its efforts to prevent and respond to sexual assault or harassment in the work it funds, the federal agency announced last week.

The NSF has faced pressure to address confirmed and alleged sexual misconduct in its labs and field sites.

In such cases, it can suspend research funds and make grantees replace or remove personnel. In 2018, it began requiring institutions to inform it when a funded principal investigator or co–principal investigator commits sexual misconduct or harassment of any kind, and to share any related administrative actions. Institutions must also notify the foundation when they suspend a PI or co-PI.

Renée Ferranti will fill the new role, called the special assistant to the NSF director for sexual assault and harassment prevention and response implementation, the agency said in a Thursday news release. The release said she’ll “coordinate cross-agency activities, drive policy implementation and provide expert analysis.”

“She brings over 25 years of experience in sexual assault prevention and response, making her ideal for this critical role, as NSF continues to strengthen our efforts to promote safe research environments for all,” Sethuraman Panchanathan, the agency’s director, said in the release. “Addressing this pervasive problem remains a top priority for me and the agency, and with Renée’s expertise we will continue to adapt and further accelerate our efforts.”