Research Specialist

Ariadne Labs is a joint center for health systems innovation at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Our goal is to drive scalable solutions for better care at critical moments in people’s lives everywhere. Better care means better health outcomes, lower costs, and more actual caring. Critical means solving health systems failures that have major impact, typically touching people by the millions. Ariadne Labs currently has research programs in the areas of childbirth, surgery, palliative care, and primary health care.

The Research Specialist will be a key member of the Science and Technology team and will have the opportunity to work on projects across the lab, gaining exposure to the breadth of programmatic areas, from maternal and child health, rural home hospital care, serious illness care, vaccine delivery, and safe surgery. Under the supervision of the Platform Manager on Science and Technology, the Research Specialist will be responsible for working collaboratively with faculty and staff  to conduct a wide range of research activities across a variety of projects at the Lab. Ideal candidates will have experience working with qualitative and/or quantitative data and a strong interest in applying their skill set to help solve health systems problems. The Research Specialist will be based in Boston.

The candidate must possess strong analytical and organizational skills. They must have time management skills,  work independently, and must demonstrate excellent communication skills, both verbal and in writing. Interpersonal skills are also essential, i.e. interacting effectively with colleagues and partners at all levels (including research and clinical professionals). The candidate does not need to have all of the skills listed but must have a willingness to learn new skills.

Position Description

Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Qualitative research
●Work with senior staff to develop interview and focus group guides, code and analyze data, and write up reports/results.
●Act as lead moderator/interviewer in the gathering of insights through qualitative research methods, primarily through focus group moderation and/or in-depth interviews and mentor / train other staff to conduct interviews and focus groups.

Background Research
●Conduct background research including literature, guideline, and white paper reviews.
Dissemination of work
●Collaborate on dissemination of work including writing manuscripts and presenting lessons learned and findings in relevant local, national, and international forums.
●Collate, organize, and/or draft material for the preparation of research papers, convenings, tool development, manuscripts, progress reports, articles or other documents for publication and/or presentation

Other responsibilities could include:
●Design interview and survey tools (including building survey tools in RedCAP, Qualtrics, or Google forms)
●Support grant submission processes; preparing grant proposal documents
●Process, organize and summarize data, report results using a variety of scientific, word processing, visual management, spreadsheet or statistical software applications
●Performs other duties as assigned

PLEASE NOTE: This position has a term appointment of 1 year from date of hire with the possibility of extension. This is a hybrid position and this position will be based in Boston, MA.  Additional detail pertaining to this position will be discussed during the interview process.  All remote work must be performed in a state in which Harvard is registered to do business (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, California (exempt staff only), Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, Virginia, and Washington).

Basic Qualifications

  • 4+ years of relevant experience is required; a combination of education and experience may be considered
  • Experience with qualitative software packages, such as NVivo, Dedoose, Atlas.ti, required

Additional Qualifications and Skills

The following job-specific skills and competencies are preferred:

  • Bachelor’s Degree, preferably in a related field of research study
  • Masters or equivalent work experience, preferably masters in public health, anthropology, social science, or related field

The following cultural competencies are also preferred:

  • Awareness of and aptitude to appropriately and effectively understand, respect, and adapt to cultural and identity-based difference within group environments
  • Knowledge of and commitment to concepts and issues tied to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Skills related to creating and supporting an environment that allows for inclusion, effective intercultural engagement, and personal humility and authenticity

Additional Information

Harvard University offers an outstanding benefits package including:

  • Time Off: 3-4 weeks paid vacation, paid holiday break, 12 paid sick days, 12+ paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days per year.
  • Medical/Dental/Vision: Excellent and affordable medical, dental & vision plans, with coverage beginning as of an employee’s start date.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance & Reimbursement Programs: $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School, discounted options through participating Harvard graduate schools, and reimbursement options for accredited schools outside of Harvard.
  • Transportation: 50% discount on MBTA passes, as well as additional options (rideshare, biking, etc.) to assist employees in their daily commute.
  • Wellness & Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, hard & soft skills development, career planning, massages, nutrition, meditation, and complimentary health services. Additionally, access to Harvard athletic facilities, libraries, campus events — and many discounts for various cultural and leisure activities throughout metro Boston.

Join the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health to support our mission of health research and education, and to be a part of the oldest institution of higher learning in the country!


  • The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health does not provide visa sponsorship, now or in the future, for staff positions.
  • Harvard University requires pre-employment reference checks and background screenings.
  • This position has a 90 day orientation and review period. The O&R period will be waived for any internal Harvard employee transfers.  

The University requires all Harvard community members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and remain up to date with COVID-19 vaccine boosters, as detailed in Harvard’s Vaccine & Booster Requirements. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement, exemptions, and verification of vaccination status may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

At the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, we believe that diversity is integral to the Harvard experience and our mission of improving public health education, research and policy. Diversity of cultural backgrounds, identities, lived experiences, perspectives, and ways of understanding the world enriches our community and enables us to best meet the public health needs of the United States and the world. Ongoing learning and development related to diversity allows for both individual and institutional growth, and is necessary to foster and sustain a culture of inclusion. To achieve this, we are committed to ensuring equitable access to opportunities for learning, living, and working at the Harvard Chan School. We maintain an unwavering dedication to diversity, inclusion, and belonging as core to our institutional values and to actively counter, minimize, and address racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, gender bias, and all forms of discrimination.

Learn more about the School’s mission, objectives, and core values and our diversity, inclusion, and belonging initiatives.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

To apply please visit the Harvard Careers Website and search Requisition #60510BR