Senior Research Fellow

Jun 11, 2018 Massachusetts

Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has an immediate opening in its Boston office for a Senior Research Fellow to support the Healthy Neighborhoods Research Consortium, the research and knowledge creation arm of the Markets and Innovation group. The Markets and Innovation group is an interdisciplinary team within CLF working to solve critical environmental and public health challenges. The team uses innovative market-based strategies, rigorous research, and tailored metrics tools to unlock new sources of capital and accelerate investment to build communities that foster good health for all people.

While there are a wealth of studies and models about what makes a healthy community, there is far less evidence on how to build them. To fill these gaps, the Markets and Innovation group launched the Healthy Neighborhood Research Consortium (HNRC), an interdisciplinary community-based translational research partnership. Through the HNRC, CLF partners with academic institutions, government organizations, non-profit neighborhood organizations and local residents to better understand the relationship between neighborhoods and health, and use what we learn to pilot new models for building healthier communities. The HNRC conducts formal research, evaluation and knowledge creation projects using engaged research methods such as community-based participatory research (CBPR), participatory action research (PAR), and popular education.  The consortium leads a number of research, evaluation and knowledge creation projects, including the Healthy Neighborhoods Research Study – a multi-site, mixed method, longitudinal study that aims to understand the impacts of urban development on the health and well-being of residents living in low-income communities with poor population health status.

Building on the success of the first two years of the Healthy Neighborhoods Study, CLF received a 2.5 year grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to continue the study through June of 2020. The Senior Research Fellow will provide leadership and work directly with community partners to shape the study’s design and methodology, facilitate day to day research activities, and share new learning with communities and the broader field of practice.

A deep understanding of health equity, the social determinants of health and the relationship between the environment, urban development, and population health are critical for this position. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated experience leading or assisting with community-engaged research/evaluation. S/He will also have experience: working directly with communities, diverse populations, organizations and from different sectors and disciplines; leading or participating in community organizing, civic movements or citizen engagement; and using research in an applied manner to support systems transformation and social change. Additionally, s/he will have command of a wide array of qualitative and qualitative research/evaluation methods, tools and analysis models to draw from to inform the design of the Healthy Neighborhoods Study. Experience with data entry, coding, qualitative and qualitative analysis, conducting literature reviews are required, along with strong written and interpersonal communication skills, and the ability to convey complex concepts/information in a clear and simple manner.

The Senior Research Fellow is a full-time exempt position.  Consideration may be given to exceptional candidates who demonstrate the ability to meet the requirements of this position on a part-time basis of no less than 32 hours per week.


The Senior Research Fellow is a full-time exempt position.  Consideration may be given to exceptional candidates who demonstrate the ability to meet the requirements of this position on a part-time basis of no less than 32 hours per week. Key responsibilities include:

  • Provide strategic guidance in the design of participatory research methods and mixed-method analysis models;
  • Coordinate and manage day to day research activities related to the Healthy Neighborhoods Study;
  • Work closely with the Director of Research and Partnerships, and partners from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Urban Studies and Planning to manage and facilitate data collection and analysis, including primary survey and interview data from community partners and big data from institutional health and planning data sets;
  • Manage relationships with community and institutional partners;
  • Capture and disseminate research findings to a wide array of audiences including academia, philanthropy, public health, local government, urban planning, housing, economic development, transportation and community through scholarly and editorial writing, web, case studies, story-telling, conference presentations and workshops;
  • Work with the HNRC to identify opportunities to apply the research findings to the local field of practice to help improve neighborhood conditions, housing development and health.


  • Demonstrated commitment to health equity, social justice and inclusion, required along with a deep understanding of the social determinants of health and the relationship between health and place;
  • Masters degree or equivalent in urban planning, public health, or related fields required. PhD student or postdoc preferred;
  • Minimum of 5 years of progressive applied or community-based research required;
  • Strong command of community-based participatory research methods (including but not limited to CPBP, PAR, popular education, social participation, civic engagement, anthropological observation etc.) required;
  • Experience in the design and management of qualitative and quantities data analysis models and processes, including data entry, coding, cleaning, modeling and analysis required;
  • Experience using research in an applied/translational manner to drive systems transformation and/or social justice;
  • Experience working directly with academic, government and community partners – including community-based organizations and residents in communities of color – and ability to lead diverse cross-disciplinary teams;
  • Excellent interpersonal communication and relationship building skills; ability to communicate complex concepts and in a clear, simple and compelling manner to diverse audiences;
  • Genuine enjoyment working in teams and with partners from various backgrounds in a long-term collaborative manner required;
  • Experience with data analysis systems such as, but not limited to: SASS, STATA, Tableau, R, GIS, RedCap, Qualitrics is a plus!;

Ability to travel to communities in the Boston-metro area via public or personal trans

Salary and Benefits CLF offers a competitive salary, an extensive benefits plan, and an open and accepting work environment where differences are highly respected.

To Apply Send your resume titled “your last name-first initial-resume” (e.g. “SMITH J RESUME”) and a detailed cover letter titled “your last name-first initial-cover” (e.g. “SMITH J COVER”) to Please make “Senior Research Fellow” the subject of your e-mail. Application materials must be received no later than June 29, 2018. No phone calls please.

Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) protects New England’s environment for the benefit of all people. A non-profit, member-supported organization, CLF uses the law, science and the market to solve the region’s most challenging environmental problems from climate change to ocean conservation to transportation. Every day, CLF advocates stand up for New Englanders—in state houses, court houses and board rooms, regulatory hearings and community gatherings—to forge innovative paths to environmental progress and economic prosperity for all in our region. To that end, CLF works with communities of color, and also communities that are economically or otherwise disadvantaged, which often suffer disproportionately the impacts of environmental degradation. CLF is committed to representing New England’s diversity in our staff, volunteers, boards and membership and creating a positive, inclusive workplace culture where all can thrive. People of color are encouraged to apply.