Senior Researcher\Sampling Statistician
Washington, DC 
Posted Today
Job Description
Senior Researcher\Sampling Statistician
Job Location US
Job ID 11697
Job Location United States
Category Research

Established in 1946, with headquarters in Crystal City, Va, the American Institutes for Research (AIR) is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization that conducts behavioral and social science research on important social issues and delivers technical assistance and capacity building services domestically and internationally in health, social development, education, and workforce to a growing roster of clients and partners.

We are seeking a Senior Researcher/Survey Statistician to join AIR's Education Statistics program area. The Senior Researcher would conduct quantitative research to improve data quality in sample surveys and other data collection systems, with an emphasis on (1) improving sample designs to allow more efficient collection of data from rare populations; (2) calculating weights to allow unbiased estimation from survey samples; (3) analyzing the risk of nonresponse bias and other forms of non-sampling error and recommending appropriate corrective actions; (4) predicting survey response behavior to inform the targeting of data collection procedures; and/or (5) designing randomized experiments to test alternative data collection procedures. This research will contribute to the development of statistics about education that inform the discussion, debate and planning of decision-makers at international, national, and state levels through contracts with government agencies such as the National Center for Education Statistics, the Institue of Museum and Library Studies, the National Science Foundation, as well as contracts with state education agencies.

    Develop and execute theoretically-sound, practical approaches to achieve the statistical objectives of a study or project, including:
    • Develop and evaluate sampling frames
    • Select samples based on complex designs, inlcluding:
      • Two phase address-based samples with stratification at both the screening and topical-phases
      • Stratified school- and establishment-level surveys (including both equal-probability and probability-proportional-to-size selection within strata)
    • Construct weights for studies with complex designs, including:
      • Base weighting to correct for differential sampling probabilities
      • Nonresponse adjustment using linked auxiliary data (e.g., commercial and voter file data, administrative data, Census/ACS estimates)
        • Methods include weighting class (e.g., CHAID and CART trees) and propensity score adjustments
      • Poststratification and raking to external control totals (e.g., ACS population estimates)
      • Weighting for longitudinal surveys
    • Conduct bias analysis
    • Plan and conduct imputations of missing data and disclosure avoidance procedures
    • Use appropriate procedures to produce point and variance estimates from samples with complex designs
    • Conduct multivariate analyses
    • Assess the potential to supplement, improve, or replace survey data with administrative or other extant data
  • Disseminate the results of methodological research both internally (e.g., memos and short oral presentations) and externally (e.g., journal articles, technical reports, and presentations to professional conferences)
  • Manage small- to medium-size tasks and projects, including: liaising with clients, reviewing deliverables, tracking costs, filling staffing needs, and overseeing junior analysts conducting quantitative analyses
  • Write technical sections and provide budget estimates for proposals
  • Mentor and train junior analysts on statistical concepts and best practices
  • Master's degree with 7-12 years of experience or PhD with 3-5 years experience in such fields as survey methodology, economics, psychology, sociology, statistics, computer science, public policy, public health, or other social science related fields.
  • Coursework or experience in inferential statistics required; coursework or experience in survey methodology a plus.
  • Experience programming in at least one statistical software language (e.g., R, Stata, SAS), and strong familiarity with Microsoft Excel.
  • Experience or training in basic multivariate modeling methods (e.g., regression) required; advanced predictive modeling techniques (e.g., decision trees, random forests) a plus.
  • Familiarity with common public-use datasets of U.S. households (e.g., American Community Survey, Current Population Survey) and/or schools (e.g., Common Core of Data) a plus.
  • Experience analyzing complex survey data, including appropriate handling of weights and variance estimation, a strong plus.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including the ability to communicate complex research methods and findings to audiences with a range of technical backgrounds.
  • Strong attention to detail and commitment to rigorous quality control at every stage of data collection, preparation, and analysis.
  • Excellent organization and time management skills; ability and willingness to quickly learn new research methods when necessary.
  • Ability to collaborate within a team environment.

Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the U.S. on a full-time basis. Employment-based visa sponsorship (including H-1B sponsorship) is not available for this position. Depending on project work, qualified candidates may need to meet certain residency requirements.

Candidates hired for the position might initially start working remotely but will ultimately have the option to work from one of our offices located in Crystal City, VA, Rockville, MD, Austin, TX, Chicago, IL, or Chapel Hill, NC or continue to work remotely.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability.

AIR adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks.



Job Summary
Start Date
As soon as possible
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Required Education
Master's Degree
Required Experience
7 to 12 years
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