SENIOR RESEARCH AND EVALUATION OFFICER
The Wallace Foundation
|Deadline||Open until filled|
|Date Posted||March 19, 2012|
The Wallace Foundation, an independent national philanthropy with assets of $1.3 billion, traces its origins back more than half a century to DeWitt and Lila Acheson Wallace, founders of The Readers Digest Association. Ranked by assets, it is among the 50 largest private foundations in theUnited States.
Its vision is that children, particularly those living in distressed urban areas, have access to good schools and a variety of enrichment programs in and outside of school that prepare them to be contributing members of their communities. They seek to fill important knowledge gaps in their areas of interest by developing and testing promising ideas on the ground, studying the results, researching related issues, and sharing what theyve learned broadly to help improve childrens lives.
The Foundation currently works in five areas:
- strengthening school leadership to improve student achievement,
- expanding time for learning during the school year and over the summer,
- enhancing after-school opportunities,
- fostering arts education for children and teens, and
- developing audiences for the arts.
The Wallace Foundation works in teams that assemble the mix of expertise and perspectives they need to design and carry out initiatives according to their approach. This means that staff members from units throughout the Foundation research, program, and communications, to name a few regularly work together in a cross-foundation effort rather than individually in their own department. Therefore, the Foundation seeks employees who are both highly skilled in their professions and able to work collaboratively with others. Wallace employees need to be able to think analytically and communicate clearly. They value the flexibility to adapt to change, a desire to learn, and the ability to work productively both on ones own and with colleagues inside and outside the Foundation.
The Wallace Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to maintaining a diverse workplace where differing perspectives are a source of strength.
The Senior Research and Evaluation Officer has an integral role in fulfilling the Foundations commitment to identifying high leverage knowledge gaps, integrating an evidence-based approach in their initiative strategies, designing and managing major research projects, and broadly sharing knowledge. The senior officer develops and manages large scale research projects to fill knowledge gaps and help shape policy in the Foundations fields of interest, contributes to the development of strategy for initiatives, and manages selected innovation site grants. The senior officer reports to the Director of Research and Evaluation.
- Contribute to strategy design for the Foundations initiatives: identify and analyze evidence of effects of related approaches, identify and analyze policy challenges and opportunities for an initiative to inform policy discussion, and ensure an evidence-based approach is fully integrated into the strategy.
- Identify knowledge gaps, and design and manage large scale research projects focused on generating results that would most benefit practitioners and policymakers, and advance knowledge in the field.
- Participate in the development of requests for proposals for their initiatives. Contribute to the review and selection of grantees and technical assistance providers to recommend for funding. Lead the selection of research and evaluation teams, often using a competitive proposal process.
- Manage site grants and technical advisors for progress against deliverables; prepare critical analyses; and foster positive and candid relationships to advance the work.
- Opportunityto lead an initiative or cross-cutting team.
- A PhD in policy analysis or a related social science discipline is very strongly preferred with a focus on applied and policy research and/or policy analysis, preferably in a field related to efforts to improve public education, youth development, urban systems or urban planning.
- At least 12 years relevant experience, of which at least five years experience is conducting research and several years in a policy or research management role.
- Superb skills in reviewing and positioning draft research and evaluation reports and findings (of varied kinds, such as quantitative effects studies, implementation research, and market research) for a policy audience.
- Capacity to work productively and contribute in a cross-disciplinary team structure.
- Ability to bring together and build relationships with and among external partners such as grantees, vendors and partners.
- Commitment to accountability and transparency.
- Experience writing and editing findings for a policy audience.
- Ability to synthesize and add value by connecting site lessons, research and the broader system.
- Excellent conceptual, analytic and forward-thinking skills.
- Excellent project management skills and ability to multi-task in a fast-paced environment.
- Outstanding communication skills: listening, writing, and speaking.
- Ability to travel 15 20% of the time.
Please send application, including cover letter and résumé, or nominations to Susan Meade and Paul Spivey at Wallace-SREO@PhillipsOppenheim.com.
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