Postdoctoral Fellowship-Implementation Science Research in Sierra Leone

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Postdoctoral Fellowship-Implementation Science Research in Sierra Leone

Postdoctoral Fellow RPCA, Research Program on Children & Adversity, Boston College School of Social Work

Deadline: 31st August 2019

The Research Program on Children and Adversity (RPCA) at the School of Social Work focuses on improving protections and care for children, youth, and families facing multiple forms of adversity, including due to armed conflict, poverty, and infectious disease. The Program is devoted to applied cross-cultural research in health and human rights. RPCA research directly addresses strategies and methods to close the global implementation gap in providing protections and effective services for youth and families experiencing adversity.

The RPCA is an applied research program dedicated to improving the evidence base on the epidemiology of mental health problems and family functioning as well as intervention research to develop and test mental health services for children and families affected by multiple forms of adversity, including armed conflict, poverty, and infectious disease. The current implementation science research project links with an ongoing scale-up study of a cognitive behavioral therapy-based intervention (The Youth Readiness Intervention; YRI) for youth exposed to violence and other forms of adversity in Sierra Leone. The current project aims to investigate the indirect mental health benefits of the YRI among peers and caregivers of youth who receive the intervention. The study will also include cost-effectiveness and return on investment analysis.

The Postdoctoral fellow will work on the implementation science research project at the direction of Drs. Theresa Betancourt (PI) and Alethea Desrosiers (Co-PI). The postdoctoral fellow will be required to spend at least 50% time in Sierra Leone, with the option of being fully based in-country. Remaining time will be at Boston College. The postdoctoral fellow will be responsible for overseeing all aspects of data collection and management, data analysis, study design, and implementation science related to the project. A strong focus of this position is to provide skills in multilevel modeling, data analysis, study design oversight, scientific writing, and implementation science processes. Previous NIH experience is also highly desired.

Essential Functions

Data Management (20%) • Contribute to refinement of qualitative and quantitative assessment instruments • Develop a data dictionary that standardizes data across sites • Review, process, and clean clinical trial data • Develop and implement procedures for data quality checks • Ensure that all processes for data entry and query resolution meet Good Clinical Practice requirements for the entry and reporting of clinical data • Develop a data quality plan and data management plan in coordination with study investigators • Develop and maintain databases for study clinical and implementation data • Prepare study data for analysis in STATA statistical software package

Data Analysis (50%): • Design, develop and execute statistical analysis leveraging research study databases in conjunction with study staff and other statisticians • Apply statistical analysis using multilevel modeling, coding, and multiple imputation to address missing data using STATA • Produce tables and figures depicting results of analyses, along with written interpretation • Utilize mixed methodologies to triangulate, analyze and interpret qualitative and quantitative data using STATA and MAXQDA

Research and Dissemination (30%): • Engage in high-level research and analysis, publishing on work related to RPCA research • Qualitative and mixed method analysis of process evaluation data related to implementation science • Collaborate on concept notes, grant writing, publications, multi-stakeholder reports, and presentations for national and international conferences.

Minimum Qualifications

Functional and Technical Competencies Doctoral degree in Public Health, Implementation Science, Social Work, Psychology, Epidemiology, or other related field.

Experience • Strong ability in use of advanced statistical and computational programming • Proficiency in utilizing computer applications including Microsoft Office, STATA, R, MAXQDA, and other applicable quantitative and qualitative data analysis platforms • Strong background in implementation science, including longitudinal studies and quality improvement approaches to fidelity and supervision that relate to long-term sustainability and scalability • Some background conducting research in culturally diverse contexts, preferably in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) • Publication record that demonstrates candidate’s capacities is also desirable • Expert knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies, including mixed-methods • Understanding of the use of technology for data collection as well as routine symptom monitoring, fidelity monitoring and quality improvement efforts in global mental health. • Some background in NIH-funded research

Working Conditions and/or Physical Demands

Working nights and/or weekends may be required in order to meet project deadlines. The ability to travel internationally to support research project activities in Sierra Leone will be required. The position will be based at minimum 50% time in Sierra Leone. The fellowship is funded for one year, with the option to renew.

We welcome questions from interested candidates. Please contact: or and visit this page for further information on the job description.