The Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska seeks a recognized leader in the field of early childhood and child development research and evaluation to serve as Director of Research and Evaluation. Envisioned as a new model for how public higher education is engaged in the first years of life, the Buffett Early Childhood Institute is a four campus, university-wide, multidisciplinary research, practice, policy, and outreach institute of the University of Nebraska committed to transforming early childhood development and education in Nebraska and across the nation. Established with a generous gift from Omaha philanthropist Susie Buffett and matching funds from the university and other private sources, the Institute represents the largest commitment of resources that any university – public or private – has made to the field of early childhood development and education.
The Director of Research and Evaluation is responsible for leading the Institute's efforts to build a world class research and evaluation function that contributes to the work of the Institute and helps to shape the focus of work in the early childhood development field. Reporting to the Executive Director, the director serves as a member of the Institute's senior management team and plays a formative role in the Institute's overall work and commitments. While this position is supported by the Institute's endowment income, the director will be expected to obtain partial salary support from grants, contracts, or other existing external sources.
In conjunction with Institute staff, faculty, and staff from the University of Nebraska, and state- and community-based organizations, the director plays a leadership role by developing and contributing to a variety of applied studies involving children (birth to age 8) and their families placed at-risk due to poverty, family distress, or developmental delay. The director will be actively engaged with the Institute's two signature programs, the Achievement Gap Challenge and the Early Childhood Workforce Development Program, conducting translational research and implementation studies, and developing, designing, and leading rigorous research studies and a research agenda relevant to the Institute's mission of transforming the lives of young children by improving their learning and development. The director will serve as a spokesperson for the research and evaluation conducted by the Institute, sharing and translating evidence-based findings to internal and external audiences, the early childhood community, the business community, and the legislative community. The director will be expected to leverage and maintain partnerships within the community and find ways to break down silos and increase collaboration.
The ideal candidate will have a background designing applied research programs using mixed-methods approaches; conducting evaluation studies; leading or coordinating complex research projects; and working in a collaborative setting. She or he will also have experience in conceptualizing and preparing briefs, reports, articles, and proposals and responding to media requests for research-based information related to early childhood programs, policies, and development. Candidates should have outstanding academic credentials (an earned doctorate in education, psychology, or related discipline) and a record of scholarly publications; at least 10 years of experience in program evaluation and research in child development or related field; a demonstrated commitment to research with strong practical applications; ability to work with communities and systems to implement evidence-based practice; skills in quantitative and qualitative analysis; excellent communication skills, and highly developed interpersonal abilities.
The Buffett Institute has retained the services of Diversified Search for this assignment. Screening will begin immediately and continue until an appointment is made. All communications will be treated confidentially. Nominations, inquiries, and applications (including a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and the names of five references) should be directed electronically in confidence to BuffettInstitute_Research@divsearch.com.
For further information, please consult http://buffettinstitute.nebraska.edu and contact:
Kim M. Morrisson, Ph.D. Senior Managing Director
Nancy Helfman, Vice President and Senior Associate
2005 Market Street, Suite 3300, Philadelphia, PA 19103
The University of Nebraska is an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer, which seeks and encourages expression of interest from minorities and groups traditionally under represented.