Associate Director: Northwestern University Institute for Innovations in Developmental Sciences

January 27, 2017 9:22 AM | Anonymous

We are seeking an Associate Director for the Northwestern University Institute for Innovations in Developmental Sciences (DevSci). This newly-formed University-wide Institute builds on a vibrant established DevSci community that connects scholars and students from numerous disciplines from across the University. In particular, the mission of the DevSci Institute is to motivate and lead transformative research to engender a “healthier, earlier” population-beginning even before birth-and continuing throughout the lifespan. The Institute catalyzes developmental sciences research and training innovation at the intersection of biomedical and social sciences, promoting discovery of early life, modifiable mechanisms, and their rapid translation to real world applications to improve children’s long-term health and wellbeing across diverse contexts. 

The Associate Director is a research scientist faculty position. It is based in the Department of Medical Social Sciences and reports to the Institute Director, Laurie Wakschlag, PhD.We are seeking an energetic and highly collaborative developmental scientist to help shape and guide the Institute during this formative phase of its development. In so doing, the Associate Director will play a prominent role in advancing the Institute’s broader objective of Northwestern as a center of excellence and international leader in transdisciplinary developmental sciences. S/he will work closely with other Institute faculty leaders across a range of developmental science disciplines including pediatrics, psychology, neuroscience, economics, epidemiology, and prevention science.


The Associate Director will have primary day-to-day responsibility for Institute operations, strategic implementation, and communications. Operationally, s/he will work closely with the director and leadership to ensure smooth and effective functioning of the Institute. Responsibilities will include oversight of the Institute’s administrative core including fiscal and organizational oversight, staff supervision, serving as liaison to University offices, and creating and obtaining resources to ensure success and growth and sustainability of the Institute.   Strategically, the Associate Director will collaborate with leadership of the Institute’s scientific and training centers to provide a thriving collaborative platform, expand the University’s developmental sciences research portfolio and its leadership in large scale federal initiatives, and supporting a wide range of training opportunities.  An important aspect of this role will be facilitating cross-center communication and integration, and nurturing strong ongoing alliances with supporting partners throughout the University. The Associate Director’s public facing communications role will center on promoting the Institute, its knowledge generation and activities. This will be achieved via innovative dissemination modalities across the University, to national and international scholars, the public at large, service providers, educators and national constituencies determining resource allocation for developmental programs and research. 

The optimal candidate will have a doctoral degree in developmental psychology or a related developmental science field, with emphasis on early childhood research, and expertise in developmental methodology.   Individuals from a range of developmental science disciplines are welcome, and capacity to work across social and biomedical sciences is essential. Applicants at all levels are encouraged to apply, but demonstrated leadership and/or experience in program development and administration will be an important consideration.  This may include program development and administration roles both within and outside of academic contexts.  Within the University setting, experience within University research centers, knowledge of extramural funding mechanisms, and experience in University- level interactions are valued.  Strong organizational, problem-solving, written and verbal communication skills, and capability to manage day-to-day tasks and competing priorities independently are requisite.  A strong collaborative orientation is also essential to this role.

Salary and rank will be commensurate with experience and credentials. This is a full time continuing position. Start date is ASAP.  Please send a statement of interest, curriculum vitae and three references to Laurie Wakschlag

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