Research Assistant (Center on Education Data and Policy) (R&D)
About Urban Institute:
At the Urban Institute, we believe in the power of evidence to improve lives and strengthen communities. As a nonprofit focusing on social and economic policy, our researchers and policy entrepreneurs open minds, shape decisions, and identify transformative solutions to the most pressing issues of our time.
To open minds, shape decisions, and offer solutions through economic and social policy research.
Collaboration, Equity, Inclusivity, Independence, and Integrity
For more information on the Urban Institute, please visit https://www.urban.org.
Central to Urban's mission is fostering a truly inclusive community that ensures ongoing relevance to a changing world. The Education Data and Policy Center for the Urban Institute seeks a research assistant to work on a range of education policy projects on topics such as universal prekindergarten, school funding, school segregation, college affordability, and student loan debt. We are looking for individuals with a background in social science and/or public policy (especially education policy) and strong data management and analysis skills. Skills in project management, survey development, and qualitative research a plus.
The Urban Institute's Center on Education Data and Policy undertakes policy-relevant research on a wide range of issues from prekindergarten through postsecondary education, including research on universal prekindergarten, school funding, school segregation, college affordability, and student loan debt. We believe that education policy informed by hard data and rigorous research is crucial to realizing the education system's potential to increase socioeconomic mobility and address growing inequality.
What You'll Do:
The successful candidate will contribute to multiple project teams, including through the following types of tasks:
Write computer programs that clean, merge, and efficiently store education datasets.
Write computer programs that analyze datasets for a variety of research projects, ranging from blogs to major reports.
Contribute to original data collection efforts (e.g., educator surveys, stakeholder interviews, and direct student assessment).
Draft sections of reports and other research products.
Conduct background research (including literature reviews)
Support project management, including managing toward deadlines and short- and long-term project goals.
Contribute to development of proposals for external funding, including background research and document organization.
The successful candidate will be expected to contribute to and manage workflows on multiple projects.
Who You Are:
The successful candidate will have:
Completed (as of summer 2022) a bachelor's degree in economics, public policy, sociology, mathematics, statistics, or related disciplines, and possess 0-2 years of experience.
Strong coding and data management skills, including experience using statistical packages such as Stata or R to analyze datasets.
Demonstrated interest in education policy at the PK-12 and/or postsecondary levels
Demonstrated commitment to racial justice and to developing evidence-based strategies to dismantle racist institutions and structures.
Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
An ability to manage multiple tasks simultaneously across multiple teams to successful completion
Outcome-driven focus with a strong attention to detail
Comfort with working independently and as part of a team
Strong written and oral communications skills
What You'll Experience:
No matter your role with Urban, you will contribute to meaningful work that makes a difference for people and communities across the country. And whether you call the Washington, DC area or elsewhere home, you can expect to be part of a welcoming and hybrid workplace. We are committed to cultivating a community and working in a manner defined by collaboration, equity, inclusivity, independence, and integrity.
Urban's greatest asset is our people.
Urban is committed to supporting our staff's physical, emotional, and financial well-being through a robust benefits package for yourself, eligible dependents, and domestic partners. It includes generous paid time off, including nine federal holidays, medical (including prescription), dental and vision insurance, and transit benefits. Urban is unique in that we offer 403(b) retirement plan participation immediately after you're hired and a generous employer contribution after five months of service and 1,000 hours, with immediate vesting. You'll also have access to a health advocate, personal finance coaching, an Employee Assistance Program, and educational assistance for undergraduate and graduate degree programs.
As a federal contractor, Urban will comply with Executive Order (EO) 14042 that requires federal contractors, subcontractors, and their respective employees to comply with Covid-19 vaccinations. All Urban Institute employees must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 by Januray 18, 2022, and comply with masking and distancing requirements, regardless of responsibilities or work location. New hires must also be fully vaccinated before starting work. Employees may request exemption from vaccination against COVID-19 based on either a medical condition or a sincerely held religious belief that prevents them from being vaccinated. Where such an exemption is approved, Urban will discuss with each employee potential accommodation.
The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of the work being performed by the people assigned. This posting is not an exhaustive list of all duties, responsibilities, and requirements. Urban management reserves the right to amend and change duties, responsibilities, and requirements to meet business and organizational needs as necessary.
The Urban Institute is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. All qualified candidates will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender or gender identity, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, veteran status, pregnancy or family responsibilities, matriculation, disability, political affiliation, or any other protected status under applicable law.
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