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Research Officer

Drexel University
Pennsylvania, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Nov 11, 2021

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Professional Fields, Public Administration & Policy, Urban & Regional Planning, Administrative, Academic Affairs, Institutional Research & Planning, Research Administration, Business & Administrative Affairs, Public Relations & Marketing (Campus)
Employment Type
Full Time
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About Drexel

Drexel is one of Philadelphia's top 10 private employers, a comprehensive global research university and a major engine for economic development in the region. With over 24,000 students, Drexel is one of America's 15 largest private universities. Drexel has committed to being the nation’s most civically engaged university, with community partnerships integrated into every aspect of service and academics.

Job Summary

The Nowak Metro Finance Lab at the Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation at Drexel University is seeking qualified candidates for an 18-month-long project focused on the stabilization and inclusive recovery of local economies in response to the COVID crisis. Work would encompass writing, quantitative analysis, and presentations of research findings to key metro leaders across the US with a focus on Philadelphia. The Officer will work directly with Bruce Katz, the Director of the Nowak Metro Finance Lab, supporting the Director with original research and writing.

The Lab focuses on building Community Wealth by inventing and scaling models to upgrade skills, grow entrepreneurs, increase incomes, build assets and regenerate neighborhoods, and has shifted in the past few months to help cities respond to the COVID-19 crisis in the near, intermediate and long term.

Candidates will be allowed to work remotely, and candidates from anywhere in the US will be considered, particularly if s/he meets the experience requirements of having worked in local economic development. Periodic in-person meetings at the Lindy Institute’s offices in Philadelphia, PA, are expected.

Essential Functions
  • Perform original qualitative and quantitative research and develop strategies related to building community wealth, including increasing minority business ownership and entrepreneurship, creating inclusive growth in historically socio-economically distressed areas, harnessing the capacity of anchor institutions and their relationships to advancing equitable neighborhood development, and deploying public, private, and non-profit assets to achieve those goals.
  • Analyze and synthesize research findings into draft memos, white papers, and reports.
  • Supervise the related research efforts of Nowak Lab student research interns, co-ops, and/or graduate students.
  • Work with the Lindy Institute staff to coordinate graphic design efforts for report products.
  • Communicate and coordinate with internal staff and external stakeholders via email and phone to ensure deliverable timelines and expectations are met.
  • Other related duties as necessary.
  • The ideal candidate will be a creative thinker and problem-solver; a highly organized self-starter and able to work independently with minimal direction; and should possess the research, writing, and communication skills to synthesize complex research into digestible findings.
Required Qualifications
  • Bachelor's degree, public finance, public policy, public administration, city and regional planning, urban design, urban strategy, neighborhood and economic development, or an allied field, with preference given to dual-degree candidates.
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience
  • Must be knowledgeable about a variety of finance, planning, and urban economic policy issues
  • Must be a self-starter and able to work independently
  • Must have demonstrated ability to coordinate a variety of applied research and engagement projects
  • Must have strong research, writing, communications, and presentational deck design skills
  • Must have strong outreach and engagement skills for conducting meetings with senior city leadership and the public
  • Must be a creative problem solver, with a demonstrated ability to quickly assess all aspects of a public policy issue, find gaps, and source solutions
  • Must have an ability to understand the strengths and weaknesses of different methods of quantitative data analysis
  • Must have the ability to synthesize various research findings into policy-relevant decision memos for public, private, and nonprofit leaders in a clear and digestible format
Preferred Qualification
  • A Bachelors’ degree is required, with preference given to candidates possessing or pursing Masters degrees in real estate finance, public finance, city/regional planning (with a focus on public-private partnerships), urban strategy, business administration, public policy, public health or another allied field. Preference will be given to candidates with demonstrated prior work or research experience in the aforementioned fields, particularly who can demonstrate familiarity with challenges facing weak market cities.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who have experience analyzing quantitative data and using tools including, but not limited to ArcGIS, R, SPSS and/or SAS.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who understand the federal as well as the local policy landscape, and how the two interact.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who have demonstrated experience working with the leadership of metro-level public-private partnerships, particularly for innovation and economic development strategies.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who have a demonstrated knowledge of the unique business issues faced by small business owners and entrepreneurs of color.


Additional Information

This position is classified as Exempt with a salary grade of M. For more information regarding Drexel’s Professional Staff salary structure,

Special Instructions to the Applicant

Please make sure you upload your CV/resume and cover letter when submitting your application.

Review of applicants will continue until a suitable candidate pool is identified.

Advertised:Nov 11 2021 Eastern Standard Time
Applications close:Feb 14 2022 Eastern Standard Time

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