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Economist, Innovation Economics and Science Policy

RTI International
Durham, North Carolina, US
Closing date
Feb 7, 2023

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Academic / Research
Policy / Legal
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time
RTI's Center for Applied Economics & Strategy (CAES) is a team of more than 40 economists and social science researchers conducting evidence-based assessments in innovation economics, science and technology policy, health innovation, environmental and natural resource economics, energy efficiency, climate policy and land use, food and agriculture, and economic development. The Center conducts numerous short- and long-term projects on a shifting variety of topics to generate data-driven analyses and solutions. Sponsors and clients of our work include the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Health and Human Services, the US Department of Agriculture, the National Science Foundation, the United States Agency for International Development, and an array of international and philanthropic research funders. CAES has an immediate opening for an applied economist to support our work in the evaluation of technology and innovation programs and policies. Recent projects relevant for this job include:- Quantifying the social return on investment of new technologies and research programs- Evaluations of philanthropic programs and alternative funding models to accelerate progress in science and engineering- Evaluating biomedical innovation accelerator program performance and outcomes- Assessments of the economic implications and scientific and technology outputs associated with signature research infrastructure in the United States and globally- Estimating the impact of broadband internet connectivity in the US and lower-income countries- Estimating the impact of a novel Ebola vaccine on macroeconomic outcomes in West Africa This position may be based remotely or out of one of RTI's U.S. offices, preferably our headquarters in Research Triangle Park, NC or our Washington, DC location. The successful candidate will demonstrate a broad interest in innovation in a wide range of sectors and apply creative analytical and strong communication skills within a portfolio of grant- and contract-funded research and analysis projects. The following skillsets and approaches are used heavily in this position: econometric analysis, benefit-cost analysis, network analysis, program evaluation, and literature reviews. The individual will work with teams of senior staff, research analysts, consultants, and clients. They must be comfortable in working on multiple concurrent projects at different stages of completion and in which communication, collaboration, and teamwork are essential elements.

• Collaborating with senior economists and research team members to design and execute economic evaluations and policy/program analysis tasks, and then leading such tasks over the life cycle of a project. • Supporting and executing the design, development, and implementation of econometric, benefit-cost, and other economic analyses using a variety of methods and techniques. • Participating in primary data collection activities, including interviews with subject matter experts and stakeholders. • Leading tasks in data collection, data cleaning and processing, data/database management, and data analysis, often by directing and coordinating teams of junior staff. • Presenting research details and findings in technical reports and manuscripts for professional and academic journals, and in closed and open professional meetings.• Communicating and collaborating effectively with clients, RTI team members, and partner organizations.• Supporting the development of grant, cooperative agreement, and contract proposals.• Contributing to the capture of follow-on work through successful completion of projects while optimizing quality, timeliness, cost/efficiency, and client satisfaction.• Adopting a "team player" mindset where flexibility, respect, good humor, communication and collective success is prioritized.

Minimum qualifications: • Master's degree in economics, public policy, business administration, or related social science field; or Bachelor's Degree and 3 years of related experience. • Broad interest in innovation, innovation-related topics, and conducting evaluations of policies and programs in the areas of basic and applied research and development.• Exemplary oral, written, and interpersonal communication skills. If selected to interview for the position, writing samples will be required.• Experience conducting valuation of social benefits and foundational knowledge in public economics.• Ability to work across multiple projects and tasks simultaneously in a heavily matrixed organization.• Proficiency in statistical programming tools such as Stata and/or R.• Experience working collaboratively in teams to develop project deliverables.• The candidate must be authorized to work in the United States and must not now or in the future require sponsorship.

The following skills are of interest, but not required to apply:• Detailed understanding of any of the following topics: science and innovation policy, global health and international development, biomedical innovation and academic entrepreneurship, start-up and small business support and entrepreneurship programs, funding of scientific programs and research infrastructure, climate change, environmental justice, racial and geographic equity, regional innovation ecosystems, and innovation programs. • Knowledge of study designs and econometric methods used to evaluate and identify effects of policies and programs including difference-in-difference, regression discontinuity, instrumental variables, propensity score matching, and synthetic control, and experience applying these econometric techniques.• Experience in a research, consulting, or similar setting requiring preparation of and delivery on grant and contract proposals and projects.• Experience in applying social benefit-cost analysis and qualitative analysis.• Experience with a variety of regression models and estimation techniques• Familiarity with bibliometric/scientometric analysis.• Experience working with large datasets.• Experience with survey design and analysis.• Some working knowledge of relational databases and SQL.• Proficiency in Python or a comparable scripting language to perform machine learning tasks (such as text analysis) or automated processes (such as web-scraping)

EEO & Pay Equity Statements:
As a global employer of choice, RTI is committed to equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging in the workplace and the communities and markets where we serve our mission. We value diversity of thought, culture, background and perspective and welcome applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, creed, citizenship status, disability, protected veteran status, or any other classification protected by applicable discrimination laws or RTI policy.We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Further information is available here.RTI International is an independent, nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition. Clients rely on us to answer questions that demand an objective and multidisciplinary approach and one that integrates expertise across the social and laboratory sciences, engineering, and international development. We believe in the promise of science, and we are inspired every day to deliver on that promise for the good of people, communities, and businesses around the world. For more information, visit USA Job Postings Only: RTI participates in the US Government E-Verify program. Further information regarding the E-Verify program and laws that are designed to protect you against discrimination relating to your legal right to work in the US can be found here.For San Francisco, CA USA Job Postings Only: Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records. Further information is available here. The anticipated pay range for this role is listed below. Our pay ranges represent national averages and may vary by location as a geographic differential may be applied to some locations within the United States.RTI considers multiple factors when making an offer including, for example: established salary range, internal budget, business needs, and education and years of work experience possessed by the applicant. Further, salary is merely one element to our offer.At RTI, we demonstrate our commitment to rewarding individual and team achievement through a total rewards package. This package includes (among other things) a competitive base salary, a generous paid time off policy, merit based annual increases, bonus opportunities and a robust recognition program. Other benefits include a competitive range of insurance plans (including health, dental, life, and short-term and long-term disability), access to a retirement savings program such as a 401(k) plan, paid parental leave for all parents, financial assistance with adoption expenses or infertility treatments, financial reimbursement for education and developmental opportunities, an employee assistance program, and numerous other offerings to support a healthy work-life balance.

Hiring Salary Range:
$66,000 - $80,000

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