The Senior Education Policy Researcher will be the “face” of the Forum’s education research portfolio. He or she will play a key role in furthering the organization’s commitment to researching, monitoring, and improving the quality of public policy decision-making and academic performance across the spectrum of Wisconsin’s schools, school districts, higher education institutions, and early childhood education facilities. Primary activities will include serving as primary investigator and project manager for education research projects; researching and writing research briefs and lengthier reports for publication on the organization’s web site and distribution to elected and civic officials; creating and designing education policy research projects that are consistent with the organization’s research agenda; collecting, analyzing, and synthesizing data from various sources, including Wisconsin state government and local school districts; and developing effective ways to use and visualize data in Forum publications and via other communications strategies. The Forum values candidates with diverse backgrounds and encourages them to apply.
- Develop education policy research ideas, plan and design research methods, and conduct original and secondary research.
- Report and publicize research findings by writing research briefs and lengthier reports; constructing presentations and data visualization tools; and presenting findings orally to interested groups.
- Monitor the activities, performance, and finances of public school districts in Wisconsin by accessing data, monitoring committee meetings and hearings, and cultivating/maintaining regular contact with school district officials.
- Cultivate and maintain relationships with education leaders from state government; public and private higher education boards, campuses, and organizations; early childhood education providers and organizations; choice and charter schools; and civic entities.
- Coordinate and conduct data collection activities, including interviews, focus groups, and secondary data/documents; conduct data and statistical analysis.
- Solicit and administer research grants, including writing and editing grant proposals to foundations and cultivating relationships with funding organizations.
- Engage in community relations, including formal testimony at public hearings, presentations of research findings, and nonpartisan participation in appropriate community organizations.
- Lead the Forum’s Education Policy Committee by organizing committee meetings, communicating progress to committee members, and soliciting feedback.
- Participate in the activities of the Governmental Research Association, which is the national organization of governmental research professionals.
Master’s degree in a related field preferred. Preferred fields include public policy, public administration, political science, education, statistics, journalism. Bachelor’s degree in a related field and substantive work experience may be substituted.
- At least 3-5 years of related experience preferred, particularly in government or policy research setting. Strong academic credentials may be substituted.
- Knowledge of basic research principles and research design, including quantitative research.
- Strong verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to produce concise, high-level summaries and briefings.
- Knowledge of Microsoft Excel required; experience with Tableau or other data visualization tools preferred.
- Strong technical and analytical skillset, attention to details, and strong organizational skills.
- Ability to work with a variety of stakeholders and audiences.
- Ability to work both independently and as a member of a team. The Forum values a productive, respectful, and collegial staff culture. All positions require a positive, “can-do” demeanor.
- Commitment to the Forum’s mission as a reliable, objective, nonpartisan research organization.
We offer a starting salary in the $62,000-$67,000 range, based on the qualifications and experience of the successful applicant. Candidates with an extensive combination of academic credentials and professional experience may be considered for a higher starting salary. Available benefits include health/dental/vision insurance, employer-paid life/disability coverage, employer-paid parking, and a generous matching 401(k) program. We maintain a flexible work environment and we are considering additional flexibility post-pandemic that will include increased opportunity to work remotely. The Wisconsin Policy Forum is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Position Reports to
Research Director, Wisconsin Policy Forum
Madison or Milwaukee office
Due to COVID-19, our offices are currently operating with employees working remotely.
How to Apply
Interested applicants should send a resume and cover letter via e-mail to Jason Stein, research director, at email@example.com.