Work type



Capability Area

Research and Survey

Associate Director - Quant. Methods

Apply now Job no: 497675 Work type: Regular Full-Time Location: Bethesda, MD Capability Area: Statistics & Methodology


NORC at the University of Chicago, an objective and non-partisan research organization, seeks an Associate Director in the Methodology and Quantitative Social Sciences (‘Methods’) Department. The Associate Director assists the Senior Vice President and Director of the Methods Department in broad range of activities which include strategic planning; business and proposal development; client relations; project and contract administration and oversight; staffing assignments; financial management; professional development of staff; resource planning and recruiting/hiring; and corporate activities. This position is responsible for managing and directing research projects, including providing substantive input and direction on the project, managing the activities of staff, and providing oversight to ensure high quality deliverables.

To comply with the Executive Order issued by President Biden on September 9, 2021, all NORC employees and contractors – including those working remotely - must be fully vaccinated by Wednesday, December 8, 2021, as a condition of employment. This means that a 2nd injection (if applicable) must be given two weeks prior to the deadline (by November 24, 2021.)


The Methodology and Quantitative Social Sciences (‘Methods’) Department provides expertise on state-of-the-art methodologies that lead to insights about our society and inform decision-making. Quantitative social scientists and data scientists provide expertise in methods to advance research in areas such as social science, program evaluation, and policy analysis. Examples include causal inference methods applied to data from randomized experiments or gathered from observational sources, natural language processing, predictive and classification models, network methods, and spatial modeling. Research methodologists provide expertise in using existing and emerging data sources of importance for NORC projects; harnessing novel data sources and technologies to improve data gathering; assessing and improving data quality; understanding the cognitive processes informing the user experience for survey respondents; designing instruments for multiple modes; and developing and testing novel techniques to enhance recruitment and retention of study participants. The Methods Department collaborates with all NORC subject matter departments and works closely with the Statistics and Data Science Department on areas of synergy and intersection.

  • Lead and direct Methods research projects focused on quantitative social sciences, survey methods, advanced analytic methods, new data sources and/or data science.
  • Provide direction, supervision, technical assistance, and leadership on projects, including study and analytic design, specific approaches and analysis, monitoring, and quality review and oversight.
  • Provide technical assistance on a wide range of projects, particularly in special areas of methodological or analytic expertise.
  • Support methods staff on business development and proposals for other NORC departments.
  • Develop and maintain key collaborations with other NORC departments to ensure strong Methods support on projects and help foster cross-disciplinary collaborations.
  • Support the Senior Vice President in department operations and administration, including resource planning, department communications, project and contract administration and financial management.
  • Play a key role in staff management, including recruiting/hiring and fostering an environment that promotes mentoring and professional growth of methods staff, helping to build a cohesive, team-oriented culture.
  • Champion strategic initiatives for the Methods department and support NORC-wide administrative initiatives.
  • Lead Methods business development and proposal activity in a strategic focal area of the department, such as data science and emerging data sources, survey methodology or advanced analytic methods, including developing and maintaining client relationships in that area.
  • Disseminate Methods research via conference presentations and journal articles and participate in industry and professional organizations to further NORC’s mission and enhance the organization’s brand and prominence.
  • Master’s degree in data science, demography, economics, policy analysis, psychology, social sciences, sociology, statistics, survey methodology, or other relevant disciplines is required.
  • Minimum of 13 years applicable work experience in positions of increasing responsibility.
  • Expert knowledge in some key focal areas of the department, including quantitative social sciences, survey methods, advanced analytic methods, new data sources or data science.
  • Proven success managing research projects end-to-end, including providing overall guidance, ensuring execution and oversight of deliverables.
  • Experience building, developing, managing, and retaining staff.
  • Demonstrated experience presenting to governmental organizations, industry groups, or academia, publishing methodological and analytical research, or other relevant thought leadership activities.

NORC at the University of Chicago is an objective, non-partisan research institution that delivers reliable data and rigorous analysis to guide critical programmatic, business, and policy decisions. Since 1941, our teams have conducted groundbreaking studies, created and applied innovative methods and tools, and advanced principles of scientific integrity and collaboration. Today, government, corporate, and nonprofit clients around the world partner with us to transform increasingly complex information into useful knowledge.


For over 75 years, NORC has evolved in many ways, moving the needle with research methods, technical applications and groundbreaking research findings. But our tradition of excellence, passion for innovation, and commitment to collegiality have remained constant components of who we are as a brand, and who each of us is as a member of the NORC team. With world-class benefits, a business casual environment, and an emphasis on continuous learning, NORC is a place where people join for the stellar research and analysis work for which we’re known, and stay for the relationships they form with their colleagues who take pride in the impact their work is making on a global scale.


NORC is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer that values and actively seeks diversity in the workforce. NORC evaluates qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and other legally- protected characteristics.


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