Associate Researcher

Position Overview

The Center for Public Partnerships and Research (CPPR) specializes in systems change and in finding innovative solutions to complex social problems. We are creating a new position devoted to dissemination of our work to an array of interested audiences including the research community, policy makers, and the general public. We are seeking a full-time associate researcher who is passionate about understanding and translating research so others can act on it. The successful candidate will possess deep knowledge of social science research and scholarly communications and thrive in a highly collaborative and iterative multi-disciplinary environment.

CPPR primarily pursues its mission by assisting partners, including national-, state-level, and community-based organizations, in their work to secure funding, facilitate stakeholder collaboration, orchestrate large-scale data efforts, and conduct research and evaluation. This position will promote healthy, happy, thriving communities by supporting CPPR’s research and project management staff with identifying and achieving dissemination goals. These goals may include publishing in peer-reviewed research journals, presenting at national and local research conferences, translating research into policy and practice recommendations, and disseminating information about research projects to a broad and diverse audience. Further, the person in this position will work with the dissemination team to evaluate the impact of CPPR’s research on issues related to organization’s mission.

CPPR is part of KU’s Achievement and Assessment Institute (AAI). AAI is dedicated to improving the lives of people in the many communities we serve. Our mission requires that we seek out and address the structural and systemic injustices preventing marginalized communities from thriving. We endeavor to not only be free of bias but to also adapt our approaches to the specific needs and lived experiences of each population with whom we work. Therefore, we commit to creating a supportive work environment where our staff, partners, and clients feel safe to share their ideas, critically examine their biases, and push positive, lasting change. We commit to uplifting the voices of all marginalized and oppressed communities as we strive toward a just and equitable future.

This position is contingent upon funding. The University of Kansas offers competitive benefits that include health benefits, paid leave and holidays, optional Flexible Spending, Health Savings Accounts, and life insurance; Employee Assistance Program, retirement benefits, and much more that can be found on the KU Human Resources Management page

Job Description

50% Center dissemination and impact metrics
  • Track and analyze state and national policies related to early childhood care and education (ECCE) and family support systems.
  • Develop and support dissemination effort to reform ECCE workforce and family support policies.
  • Develop dissemination products drawing on cross-project research findings to inform targeted and general audiences and contribute to general knowledge.
  • Identify opportunities to disseminate to new audiences, including conferences, journals, and other publications.
  • Synthesize and convey complex ideas into clear, compelling, and varied communications.
  • Collect, analyze, and synthesize Center impact metrics data.
  • Conduct ongoing literature reviews on research and scientific developments in key focus areas for the Center, including early childhood, services to children and families, equitable systems, and foresight methods.
  • Build and maintain a database of foundational research that informs those key focus areas.
  • Support posting of staff articles, reports, presentations, and other products to KU Scholar Works.
  • Stay abreast of legislative and policy changes that impact children and families, and prepare policy briefs, talking points, and other support documents to inform multiple audiences of these changes.
  • Develop and coordinate briefings and other learning activities, for CPPR staff and partners, to build expertise and understanding of key research and policy issues.
  • Establish and maintain working relationships with partnering organizations, state and national leaders, funders, and peer research centers or organizations.
40% Project research and analysis
  • Conduct policy analysis and prepare assessments of complex ECCE and family support policies.
  • Coach staff on communicating about their projects and developing recommendations.
  • Investigate, modify, and apply new procedures, techniques, or applications of evaluation methods.
  • Establish project goals, timelines, and identify strategies to undertake projects.
  • Develop reports, briefs, blogs, presentations, and other resources in order to disseminate and translate research and policy analyses into consumable information for various audiences.
  • Develop rapid response materials.
  • Coach and assist project staff in developing reports, needs assessments, framing documents, talking points, recommendations, presentations, articles, white papers, and blogs on research results.
  • Create publications, presentations, and other strategies to disseminate project results to the community as well as to regional/national audiences.
  • Support project staff with all aspects of the publication process including identifying appropriate journals, advising on the submission process, providing feedback, editing, and authoring or co-authoring when needed.
  • Respond to requests for technical assistance and expert advisement on complex dissemination issues.
  • Write and/or collaborate with other staff on manuscripts, abstracts, and other publications of research findings.
10% Other
  • Special projects and other duties as assigned.

Position Requirements

On-site, hybrid, and fully remote-based candidates and working arrangements will be considered. Travel and in-person work may be required.

Required Qualifications

  1. A doctorate or highest professional degree (including JD, MD or international equivalents) in Education, Social Welfare, Psychology, Sociology, Public Health, or related field OR a Master's degree in Education, Social Welfare, Psychology, Sociology, Public Health, or related field and 3 years of additional experience in the field/area of research.
  2. Expertise in a breadth of scholarly communication, including writing for peer-reviewed publications, presenting to technical and non-technical audiences, and translation of technical findings to general audiences, as evidenced by work history.
  3. Excellent written communication skills as demonstrated through application materials.
  4. Expertise in conducting social research and familiarity with a breadth of research methods, as evidenced by work history.

Preferred Qualifications

  1. Experience with social service, public health, or education programs for at-risk children, youth or families or related initiatives as evidenced by work history.
  2. Content knowledge in one or more of the following areas: early childhood; home visiting; mental health; behavioral health; services to children and families; diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging; child maltreatment; maternal and child health.
  3. Experience working with community partners and/or state agencies.
  4. Prior experience with grant writing or proposal development as evidenced by work history.
  5. Excellent oral communication skills as demonstrated by interview responses.

Additional Candidate Instructions

A complete application consists of:
  • Cover Letter
  • Resume
  • Names and Contact Information for 3 Professional References
  • Writing sample

Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Review of applications will begin on 06/01/2023 and continues until a qualified pool of applicants is identified.

Contact Information to Applicants

Virginia Musser

Advertised Salary Range

Minimum $70,000

Work Schedule

During the hours of 8am-5pm M-F

Application Review Begins

Thursday June 1, 2023

Anticipated Start Date

Monday August 7, 2023

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Posting Information

  • Posting ID:  25146BR
  • Department:  Achievement & Assessment Inst
  • Primary Campus:  University of Kansas Lawrence Campus
  • Assignment:  Hybrid
  • Reg/Temp:  Regular
  • Employee Class:  U-Unclassified Professional Staff
  • Review Begins:  01-Jun-2023

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