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Research Associate - National Resilience

Effective October 11, 2021, all current and newly hired IDA employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they have been granted a medical or religious exemption. Individuals who accept employment with IDA will be required to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated or receive approval for a medical or religious accommodation prior to starting employment. 

The Institute for Defense Analyses is a federally funded research and development center supporting the Department of Defense and other federal agencies that require rigorous and objective analysis of national security issues. The Strategy, Forces and Resources Division (SFRD) at IDA performs integrated, interdisciplinary analyses of plans and policies related to National Resilience (NR) in an effort to become more resilient against natural and man-made threats and conditions (e.g., public health events, terrorist activity, cyber-attacks, infrastructure failures, natural disasters, and humanitarian crises). Our analyses are highly technical and involve considerable modeling and simulation.

Challenging career opportunities now exist in our national resilience group, which we are trying to stand up. IDA takes great pride in the high caliber and timeliness of its analyses, which are produced in an atmosphere that encourages independent thinking and objective results. Work at IDA is conducted in a team environment and often involves a multi-disciplinary approach. The work is performed by interdisciplinary teams and, while some tasks will be narrowly focused, others will address a broader spectrum of concerns. This work will require a willingness to learn the essentials of National Resilience and to execute quantitative analyses of the highest caliber. Consequently, strong communications skills will be greatly valued.

Research Associates are junior to mid-level researchers, usually working under the guidance and direction of senior IDA researchers. RAs contribute to research teams with information gathering; modeling and simulation; data manipulation, analysis and presentation; and drafting of reports and briefings. Accordingly, RAs are expected to have demonstrated proficiency in technical and analytical areas and to be familiar with computer languages and computational and data processing software. RAs are members of interdisciplinary research teams and must demonstrate good interpersonal communications skills and contribute effectively to a team approach to problem solving. The issues that IDA addresses change constantly, and RAs are expected to be adaptable and self-motivated, demonstrating a capacity for independent thought, sound judgment, and creativity in applying quantitative analysis methods to complex technical problems. This position requires National Resilience experience which may include risk-based analyses, development of prevention and preparedness measures, and planning, preparation, and execution of emergency response and disaster relief exercises and operations. 

  • Highly qualified individuals are sought, particularly self-starting professionals. Successful candidates need to exhibit strong analytical and communication skills, a capacity for independent thought and sound judgment. Candidates will need to exhibit excellent interpersonal skills and demonstrate the ability to contribute effectively to a team approach to problem solving.
  • A Bachelor’s degree is required. Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in public health, health education or policy, operations research, applied mathematics, statistics, biology, data science, engineering or related field. 
  • A minimum of 4 years’ experience in government or private sectors addressing matters of planning and preparedness, public health, emergency and disaster management, infrastructure management and recovery, homeland security, risk management, or similar focus areas. Experience in multiple areas is desirable.
  • Ability to identify information sources and assemble / organize large data sets is preferred.
  • Familiarity with modeling, simulation and other quantitative techniques especially those employed in the analysis of, prioritization among, and selection of National Resilience capabilities is desired but not required. 
  • A pattern of assignments involving some or all of these responsibilities.
  • Candidates must demonstrate strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Candidates are encouraged to submit a cover letter outlining how their skill set, experiences, and education align with the defined responsibilities.
  • Candidates must be prepared to provide a writing sample.
  • Candidates must identify three references capable of attesting to the candidate’s skills in relation to the job qualifications described above.
  • Successful completion of a criminal background check is required.

U.S. Citizenship is required

Ability to obtain and maintain a security clearance is required

IDA is an equal opportunity employer committed to providing a fair recruiting process and working environment free from discrimination. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identify, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. Click here to learn more about IDA's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.