Research Director

New York , New York , United States

21 May 2019

Job Responsibilities

About OpenMind

OpenMind is a rapidly growing non-profit EdTech startup whose mission is to depolarize communities and foster mutual understanding across differences. OpenMind translates the best social science research into engaging, scalable, and evidence-based interventions to equip people with the skills to thrive in the 21st Century.

OpenMind was co-founded by social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, the author of the bestsellers The Righteous Mind and The Coddling of the American Mind. Since launching in 2017, our online program has reached more than 15,000 people in more than 400 classrooms and 40 organizations across 15 countries.

About the Role

We are looking for a Research Director who will work at the intersection of research and technology to design and validate research-based educational interventions to reduce polarization and strengthen social cohesion. The Research Director will be part of the leadership team and will be responsible for developing and executing OpenMind’s research agenda.

As Research Director, you will be expected to thrive in a fast-paced startup environment where you will need to manage numerous complex projects effectively and reliably, including contributing to the design of new interventions and developing creative methods to measure real-world outcomes. You must be conscientious and organized, with experience managing multiple projects in a demanding time frame. You must have excellent written and verbal communication skills to convey our research to wide and diverse audiences.

We are looking for an accomplished Ph.D. who has experience in all phases of research, from experimental design through publication in peer reviewed journals. The ideal candidate will have experience designing behavioral interventions, supervising junior research staff, and writing grant proposals.  If you love to be challenged and enjoy applying lean start-up principles to research, this is the role for you!

Key Responsibilities

  • Leadership & Project Management:
    • Develop and oversee the organization’s research agenda and activities, including being responsible for budgets, schedules, scientific leadership, and delegation to team members.
    • Build, lead, and manage a team of enthusiastic, high-performing researchers, including providing mentorship.
    • Work with external research collaborators to conduct experiments.
  • Research Design & Execution:
    • Manage the research team through all stages of the research process (developing research designs, methodologies, analytical plans, and data collection instruments, running analyses, and writing up research results).
    • Advise on the development of OpenMind’s behavioral interventions.
    • Maintain current awareness of trends and research in social psychology and behavioral intervention design through conference attendance and self-directed learning.
  • External Research Communication:
    • Contribute to grant proposals and reports for various stakeholders.
    • Communicate OpenMind’s research externally through conference presentations, public lectures/interviews, and blog posts on the OpenMind website.
    • Advise, support, and assist with the publication of reviewed journal articles in top research journals.

Skills Required

The Ideal Candidate


  • You have a Ph.D. in social, cognitive, developmental, or clinical psychology would be most relevant, but we are open to other fields. Experience in moral, political, or positive psychology and/or intellectual virtue development would be a plus.
  • You have 5+ years of experience designing assessments and interventions, running randomized controlled experiments, and conducting complex analyses using multilevel and mixed-effects modeling.
  • You have a demonstrated track record of success in project management and managing a team.
  • You have excellent written and verbal communication skills with experience writing for and presenting to a diverse range of audiences.
  • You have a track record of peer-reviewed publications.
  • Strong programming experience in R (preferred) and/or Python. Additional experience with SQL, R Markdown, the tidyverse, and Shiny apps is preferred but not required.
  • Experience with version control systems (e.g. GitHub, Gitlab, Bitbucket) is preferred but not required.
  • Experience with machine learning and natural language processing would be a plus.


  • You have an entrepreneurial spirit. You thrive in a fast-paced work environment, you are comfortable with ambiguity, and you are able to adapt to new circumstances.
  • You are action-oriented and intentional. You are deliberate with your communication and decisions, always focused on how your actions will drive our work forward through tangible next steps.  
  • You are intellectually humble and resilient. You are comfortable having your ideas challenged, you respond well to feedback, and you view setbacks as an opportunity to learn and try something new. You are ready and willing to change directions when necessary.
  • You are meticulous and hold yourself to high standards of excellence. You are detail-oriented and have excellent organizational and time-management skills.
  • You have integrity and empathy. You treat others with respect, you build trust, and you use your strong interpersonal skills to lead your team effectively and ensure alignment with internal and external stakeholders.

Job Details:

  • Compensation: Competitive salary is commensurate with experience and skills. All full-time employees receive a comprehensive benefits package including 401k, health, dental, vision, life insurance, disability insurance, and more.
  • Location: New York City (strongly preferred). Remote may be possible with occasional travel to New York.
  • Start Date: Summer 2019 (preferred)
  • Deadline: We are reviewing applications on a rolling basis. 

Equal Opportunity Employer

OpenMind is an equal opportunity employer; applicants are considered for all roles without regard to race, color, religious creed, sex, gender identity, national origin, citizenship status, age, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, marital, parental, veteran or military status, unfavorable military discharge, or any other status protected by applicable federal, state or local law.

Director/ Vice-President

Full Time

New York New York United States

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