Social Science Research & Data Analytics Fellow

Employer
New America
Location
Washington, Dist. of Columbia
Closing date
Oct 27, 2021

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Position Type
Research Scientist / Analyst
Specialty
Science and Technology Studies
Organization Type
Business
New America is a think tank and civic enterprise dedicated to renewing the promise of America by continuing the quest to realize our nation's highest ideals, honestly confronting the challenges caused by rapid technological and social change and seizing the opportunities those changes create.

From our founding in 1999, New America has been building a different kind of think tank: one dedicated to public problem solving. Our talented team is more than just policy specialists- we're visionary researchers, changemakers, technologists, and storytellers who understand the challenges and opportunities presented by dramatic social and technological change.

The Future Frontlines program is a public intelligence service for next generation security and democratic resilience. Nested within New America's International Security Program, Future Frontlines focuses on novel security threats posed by technological disruption and the resulting radical redistribution of global power among states, and transnational, cross-sectoral networks. The program's mission is to leverage open source data and tools to generate fresh, policy relevant insights into how emerging technologies are changing the character of conflict, political violence, governance and statecraft. A core goal of Future Frontlines is to train a diverse new generation of unconventional journalists, technologists, and human rights defenders to use datasets to change mindsets.

About the position:

The Social Science & Data Analytics Fellow will help advance the goals of the Future Frontlines program by conducting research and activities in support of program projects. The Fellow will serve as a key member of the research team we have assembled to support the launch of the Jan.6 Research Consortium, an interdisciplinary working group of academics and practitioners focused on investigating the circumstances leading up to and surrounding the violent breach of the Capitol during the 2020 presidential election on Jan.6, 2021.

In addition to the monthly fellowship stipend, all fellows and research support staff will receive intensive training in open source investigation techniques and tools, and gain unprecedented exposure to some of the leading researchers in machine learning and big data analysis. The fellowship also provides opportunities to publish original research and to network with media and university partners.

The position requires strong analytical and organizational skills and an appetite for solving complex puzzles about the relationship between online and offline social behaviors. The position requires strong data analysis and data visualization skills, superior command of the English language, and solid interpersonal skills. Strong preference will be given to candidates from diverse backgrounds with demonstrated interest in international affairs, political science, investigative journalism, sociology, and/or anthropology. This part-time position is ideal for a graduate student entering the final year of their studies, a recent graduate of a social science or journalism Master's or PhD program, or an early career working professional interested in gaining real world experience in producing policy relevant research in the national security sphere.

Duties & Responsibilities
  • Collect, collage, and analyze large amounts of data
  • Develop data driven research and data visualization products that explain complex topics to a wide audience
  • Manage project data flows and maintain data documentation to support project coordination
  • Collaborate across organizations to coordinate the translation of data driven research into written publications, briefings, and presentations

Qualifications:
  • A bachelor's degree (required), graduate degree (desired) in the fields of journalism, sociology, anthropology, public policy, political science, international relations, data science, information science or technology policy
  • Two years prior experience in a related field preferred
  • Comfortable with a high degree of autonomy and a small team environment
  • Ability to handle multiple projects and deadlines while maintaining a high level of work quality
  • Excellent writing and communication skills, with an emphasis on concise writing for a diverse lay audience
  • Ability to discern patterns from large data sets and communicate the "big picture" through data visualizations and written products that concisely convey nuance and relevance
  • Experience with data set summarization using basic summary statistics and social network analysis
  • Collaborative team player with a willingness and curiosity to delve deeply into various policy topics
  • Keen eye for new opportunities to advance our work; knowledge of how to balance limited resources to ensure their greatest effect
  • High level of flexibility and creativity with the ability to solve problems and identify creative approaches to challenges
  • Skilled in Python and/or R, and basic familiarity with data visualization software such as matplotlib/ggplot, Datawrapper, and/or Tableau as well as basic command of MS Office/Google Apps are a must
  • Experience implementing web-based data exploration tools is a plus
  • Previous experience working in a newsroom, technology or a start-up environment is a plus
  • Candidates with a degree of language proficiency in Russian are also encouraged to apply

Application Process:

To apply, please submit a resume and cover letter, and two (2) writing samples. We will consider applications on a rolling basis.

New America is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce at all levels of the organization thereby creating a culture that allows us to better serve our clientele, our employees, and our communities. We value and encourage the contributions of our employees and strive to create an environment where everyone can reach their full potential and drive outstanding results. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state, or federal law. This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one's employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits, and termination.

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