Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology

Evidence for Action (E4A) Post-Doctoral Fellow

Posted: 1/20/2020 (Employment)

Evidence for Action (E4A), a program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, awards grants to support innovative, rigorous research on how systems, programs, and policies influence population health and health inequalities. The E4A National Program Office reviews research proposals and recommends the most rigorous and high-impact proposals for funding.

Numerous methodological challenges arise in efforts to field rigorous, cost-effective, and convincing research in E4A’s priority areas. In 2018, the National Program Office (NPO) launched an internal initiative with the goals of identifying these methods issues, providing relevant evidence and tools to overcome these challenges, and sparking attention to these challenges from the broader community of quantitative researchers.  We seek to hire a post-doctoral fellow to play a key role in this initiative.

Competitive candidates should have training and interest in both quantitative research methods (e.g., epidemiology, sociology, economics) and multilevel influences on health and health inequities, including social, behavioral, and systems-level risk factors. Specific projects will be prioritized on an ongoing basis by the NPO and National Advisory Committee but may include: (1) writing manuscripts or developing teaching tools to bridge disciplinary differences in approach to causal inference; (2) conducting empirical research on major sources of bias or uncertainty in common approaches to evaluating determinants of population health and health inequities; (3) running simulation studies to evaluate the performance of recently proposed methodological advances when applied to E4A’s priority research areas in population health or health inequities; (4) contributing to E4A’s Methods Blog. Previous projects have included manuscripts and teaching tools that
crosswalk different disciplinary approaches to causal inference and that discuss considerations for selecting plausible and actionable effect sizes as inputs to power and sample size calculations for studies of social interventions.

The E4A NPO is housed in the Center for Health and Community at the University of California, San Francisco. The post-doctoral fellow will work with NPO leadership team and most closely with Maria Glymour, Associate Director for the NPO, and Ellicott Matthay, the E4A Methods Lab’s inaugural postdoctoral scholar.


–       PhD or equivalent training in epidemiology, sociology, or a related
–       Experience with quantitative research, including expertise in
statistical software (SAS, Stata, or R)
–       Familiarity with quasi-experimental methods, such as
difference-in-difference, regression discontinuity, or instrumental
–       Strong writing skills, ideally for technical, applied, or
non-research audiences.
–       Commitment to methodologically strong research that advances health

Applicants may apply to Maria Glymour at or reach out to Maria or Ellicott for more information about the position.

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Location: UCSF Center for Health and Community (Open until filled)