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Jun 15 / BARD CEP

Senior Research Associate – Washington, DC

Organization: Social Progress Imperative

Position Title: Senior Research Associate

Location: Washington, DC

Hours & Compensation: Full-time, with occasional periods of unusually long hours (1-2 times per year) and occasional weekend work. Salary commensurate with experience.

Application Deadline: June 30, 2013.

Posted On: June 14, 2013.

Organization Overview:

Do you want to change the world by putting people and planet at the center of how countries plan their future development? We do. We are the Social Progress Imperative, a Washington, DC -based nonprofit that is providing actionable information to government, business and civil society on how to make sure that development means not just economic growth but better lives for millions of people. In April 2013 we launched the Social Progress Index, an assessment of the social and environmental performance of 50 countries designed by Professor Michael E. Porter of Harvard Business School. You can read all about in the Wall Street JournalFast CompanyForbesVoice of America and The Guardian, or listen to Professor Porter talk about it on BBC Radio. We are now rolling the index out across the world, working with leaders and grassroots champions to identify the policies, programs and initiatives that will improve the lives of citizens. In 2014 we will present the second Social Progress Index, covering even more countries.

We are a small team of six people, centered in Washington DC but with half the team currently working remotely. Following our successful launch, we are now looking to expand our capacity to meet the phenomenal response. With the generous support of our sponsors—Avina Foundation, Cisco, Compartamos, Deloitte and Skoll Foundation—we are looking for outstanding individuals to join our team.


The Senior Research Associate will conduct research and analysis to interpret the results of the Social Progress Index and develop companion measures, including a planned index measuring the capacity of governments, civil society organizations and businesses to contribute to solving social and environmental challenges. The position requires quantitative analysis, creative thinking, writing and project management. The work will on occasion (once or twice a year) require unusually long hours for up to two or three days at a time, and will occasionally require work over the weekend.


  • Assist with research, conduct data searches, prepare case studies and write literature reviews for current and future initiatives. Topics may include health, education, environmental sustainability, opportunity, inequality, governance and social entrepreneurship.
  • Collect, manage, organize and analyze large datasets on these topics.
  • Conduct statistical analyses and econometric modeling using Excel and Stata.
  • Assist in the preparation of presentations, blog posts and working papers.
  • Manage an external research grants program, including evaluating applications, liaising with awardees, coordinating a peer review process and preparing research for publication.
  • Maintain partnerships and collaborative relationships with researchers in partner organizations and universities.
  • Supervise graduate level interns.


  • Master’s degree in International Studies, Economics, Public Policy or other relevant field.
  • 3-5 years of relevant full-time paid experience.
  • Strong quantitative analysis and data management skills, with extensive experience using Excel and Stata.
  • Familiarity with a wide range of topics in the areas of social and environmental development.
  • Excellent ability to communicate complex technical material, both orally and in writing.
  • Entrepreneurial and adventurous spirit, respectful or and curious about other culture.s
  • Willingness to work in a startup environment in which roles, priorities, and plans are still evolving.
  • Eligibility to work in the U.S.
  • Foreign language skills preferred.
  • Experience working internationally preferred.
  • Willingness to travel internationally.

How to Apply:

To apply, send a cover letter, resume and writing sample as attachments or link, to before midnight on Sunday June 30th. The interview and selection process will take place in Washington, DC during the week commencing July 15th. Social Progress Imperative will cover candidates’ reasonable travel expenses as needed.

Contact Information:

Social Progress Imperative,

1000 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20005

Job URL:

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