Research Associate – Illinois

Research Associate – Illinois

We are recruiting for a Research Associate position in Medical Social Sciences, a department within Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.  The Department provides a unique scientific home for applied researchers who integrate biomedical and social science approaches to improvement of health and health care delivery across the lifespan. Scientific themes of Departmental research are: (1) outcomes research including clinical trials and observational studies across multiple diseases; (2) measurement science including psychometrics and tool development ranging from patient-reported outcomes to direct assessments; (3) psychosocial health promotion research including quality of life, multi-component and symptom management; (4) applied methods including health information technology and advanced statistical modeling; (5) health disparities reduction including healthy literacy and gender-related disparities; (6) generation of standardized phenotypes including developmental and behavioral/social phenotypes and; (7) Linkage of these phenotypes to underlying mechanisms including psychosocial, genetic and neuroscientific processes.


The Research Associate will join the IMPACT LGBT Health and Development Program – founded and directed by Dr. Brian Mustanski.  The IMPACT Program conducts translational and community-engaged research focused on HIV prevention and care. It also seeks to develop the clinical research capacity of the community.  Extensive community ties have been a hallmark of the IMPACT Program since its inception, and currently we are a resident partner with space in the center of the Chicago LGBT community.  The integration of IMPACT within the Center on Halsted facilitates the translation of research into practice, state-of-the art evaluation of practice, training of clinical-researchers in LGBT health, engagement of the LGBT community with research, and gaining “on the ground” expertise to inform our research agenda and methods.  Since 2008, IMPACT has been the home to over a dozen federal- and foundation-funded research and training projects totaling over $16 million. The IMPACT Program’s multidisciplinary team includes 6 doctoral-level scientists, multiple masters’ level staff, a team of data managers, and full-time program managers and assistants for research and administrative support.


Job Summary:

The Research Associate will serve as the Project Director for a recently funded study that will build a dynamic dyadic-network cohort of YMSM by hybridizing two existing cohorts of YMSM.  The goal of this project is to apply a “next generation” multilevel model to understand the syndemic among a cohort of YMSM and inform “high-impact” HIV prevention with this vulnerable population. The Project Director will be involved with all phases of the project from design to deliverables, will identify critical tasks and personnel required to complete projects successfully, and will monitor project status and ensure that tasks and deliverables are completed on time.


Specific Responsibilities:

  • Hire, train, and supervise project staff, including the Biomedical Coordinator, Scheduling & Retention Coordinator, and Interview Coordinator
  • Direct day-to-day operations of the project: (1) drafting and adapting research and IRB protocols; (2) overseeing participant recruitment and retention; (3) overseeing data collection; and (4) assuring compliance with all data collection standards
  • Manage project budgets, track expenditures, and fulfill reporting requirements
  • Coordinate with the Scientific Advisory Board and the Community Advisory Board
  • Disseminate study findings through trainings with local CBOs and through the IMPACT Program website; Possibilities exist for participating in the preparation of journal publications and presenting findings at regional and national meetings
  • Conduct and lead project planning meetings and/or conference calls when required
  • Develop new skills as needed to meet project demands

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Successful candidates must have a Ph.D. or equivalent and a minimum of 2 years of relevant research training experience in a medical or social science research environment OR a Master’s or Nursing degree and a minimum of 5 years of study management experience in a medical or social science research environment
  • Knowledge of longitudinal study design and data analysis
  • Minimum 1-2 years of experience with project coordination including scientific proposals, budgets, contracts and tracking of project timelines
  • Ability to plan, direct and coordinate a research project proposal, needing minimal direction in addressing day-to-day tasks
  • Ability to manage competing priorities
  • Ability in high-level problem solving
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to communicate effectively one-to-one, in small groups and in public speaking contexts.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • More than 5 years experience in a medical or social science research environment including experience in study design, project coordination, and data analysis
  • Experience working with multidisciplinary teams of researchers
  • Experience in HIV research and/or research with YMSM


Please send a curriculum vitae and a detailed cover letter outlining your relevant experience, training, and skills to

Brian Mustanski, Ph.D., c/o of Robin Morrissey.  Email (preferred): Fax: 312-503-4800; Mail: Department of Medical Social Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, 625 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 2700, Chicago, IL 60611.  Apply by May 16, 2014.


The level of appointment will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.


Northwestern University is an Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.