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Research Specialist / Senior Research Specialist

The mission of the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) is to advance and transform public health practice by championing performance improvement, strong infrastructure, and innovation. PHAB is the accrediting body for Tribal, state, local, and territorial governmental public health departments in the U.S. Accreditation provides a means for a public health department to identify performance improvement opportunities, to improve management, develop leadership, and improve relationships with members of the community.

Position Summary:

This position is responsible for participating in both internal and external research and evaluation activities related to PHAB, with a particular emphasis on qualitative data analysis. Research and evaluation activities are a key aspect of PHAB’s operations given the centrality of quality improvement to the accreditation process. PHAB must maintain and strengthen its infrastructure to ensure that the organization itself embraces the values it espouses, while recognizing that research and evaluation are key components of PHAB’s own quality improvement processes. In addition, the accreditation program generates important data that can be analyzed to build the evidence base for public health practice.

Position Responsibilities:

·        Support and conduct internal evaluation activities related to PHAB operations:

o  Conduct or oversee data collection related to PHAB activities

o  Code and analyze qualitative data

o  Include relevant internal evaluation findings in publications and presentations

o  Share findings with staff in order to foster continuous improvement.

·        Support and conduct internal research projects:

o  Conduct or oversee data analysis and contribute to publish and present the results of research using accreditation data;

o  Mine data generated through the accreditation program (e.g., Site Visit Report comments, documentation submitted by health departments, Annual Reports) to inform development of new tools and resources, including revision of the Standards and Measures;

o  Support research activities with staff in the Strategic Initiatives unit

·        Track the evidence base about accreditation and public health infrastructure:

o  Conduct literature searches and maintain database of articles

o  Read articles, summarize key findings, and compile results

·        Support external researchers studying public health accreditation or using PHAB data to build the evidence for public health systems:

o  Implement/support the implementation of the data request, management and delivery system and accompanying procedures that allow researchers timely access to pertinent data;

o  Provide technical support to external researchers;

o  Participate in the process to periodically update PHAB’s research agenda;

o  Explore opportunities to collaborate with other organizations to promote research on accreditation in public health;

·        Support external evaluation activities contracted out by PHAB:

o  Contribute to development of requests for proposals for outside evaluation activities and assist in choosing outside evaluators;

o  Serve as liaison between PHAB and evaluators and manage their work;

o  Assist in the dissemination of evaluation results

·        Support the efforts of PHAB’s various committees, such as the Accreditation Committee, Research Advisory Council, and Accreditation Improvement Committee.

·        Oversee and collaborate with interns and practicum students focused on research and evaluation.

·        Provide support to other PHAB staff as appropriate, particularly related to literature reviews, citations, guest editors of journal issues, and information management

·        Provide staff support on special projects, for example, development or revision of program standards and measures, research concerning other accreditation organizations' practices, development or revision of elements of the PHAB accreditation process, or the development of e-PHAB modules.

·        Represent PHAB in meetings, conference calls, and other activities, as assigned.

Knowledge and Skills Required:

The Research position may be filled by a Specialist or a Senior Specialist. The applicant for a Specialist position will fully meet the minimum requirements below while a Senior Specialist will exceed the minimum requirements in years, variety and depth of experience.

·        Advanced degree in public health or related field is required;

·        Minimum of 3-years’ experience working in public health systems/services research is preferred;

·        Ability to search for, read, analyze and interpret professional journals;

·        Strong writing skills, particularly as related to writing reports and peer reviewed publications;

·        Knowledge of the field of public health, particularly issues relating to governmental public health infrastructure and operations;

·        Demonstrated experience applying qualitative research skills (e.g., coding for qualitative data);

·        Knowledge of quantitative research methods; (Ability to use SAS or similar statistical package is preferred);

·        Ability to explain the results of quantitative and qualitative research studies to PHAB constituents.

·        Ability to travel as required.

DISCLAIMER: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified. All personnel may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed.

EEO STATEMENT: PHAB is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, veteran status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, or disability (in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act) with respect to employment opportunities.


Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Your cover letter and resume should be sent to: [1] and all applicants must indicate if they wish to be considered for the position as a Specialist or Senior Specialist.


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