Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Project Officer

Publication date:
September 8, 2020

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent research center at the University of Washington. Its mission is to deliver to the world timely, relevant, and scientifically valid evidence to improve health policy and practice. IHME carries out its mission through a range of projects within different research areas, including the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors; Future Health Scenarios; Costs and Cost Effectiveness; Resource Tracking; and Impact Evaluations. Our vision is to provide policymakers, donors, and researchers with the highest-quality quantitative evidence base so all people live long lives in full health.

IHME is committed to providing the evidence base necessary to help solve the world’s most important health problems. This requires creativity and innovation, which is cultivated by an inclusive, diverse, and equitable environment that respects and appreciates differences, embraces collaboration, and invites the voices of all IHME team members.

IHME has built up specific expertise in developing and fielding surveys and implementing training and other data quality management measures. It has experience designing and implementing with health facility, household, patient, and verbal autopsy survey instruments. IHME has collected data in over 25 countries with strong partnerships with in-country collaborators and undertaken joint analyses of the data to help evaluate health system capacity, establish baselines of health costs, and test mortality methods, among other aims.

IHME has an outstanding opportunity for a Project Officer position on the Evaluations Team. The primary purpose of the position is to facilitate the implementation of multidisciplinary research projects, requiring timely coordination, management, and communication among different audiences. Specifically, this position will support relationship management and project management for survey implementation and other data collection for the Washington State COVID-19 Surveillance Project and other evaluations projects as needed.

The Project Officer will need to develop a working understanding of best practices in survey methodology; work with local collaborators across a wide variety of social, cultural, and linguistic settings; and implement training and data quality management measures that lead to the highest possible quality data being collected and used in analyses. The individual must exhibit intellectual dexterity in traversing multiple indicators and aims. He/she must be able to explain to collaborators, staff, and donors the key attributes of the surveys and the accompanying protocols. He/she must be able to summarize the key results and present them to different audiences.

In addition to becoming articulate about the aims and key attributes of different primary data collection projects, the Project Officer must be adept at facilitating communication among technical and project staff with varying degrees of experience from a variety of cultural settings and disciplines. Finally, the Project Officer must fully understand the project goals and be able to translate those goals into action by managing resources (including people) to achieve important deadlines for the delivery of complex products and tasks. Overall, the Project Officer will be a critical member of an agile, dynamic team. This position is contingent on project funding availability.


Research command
• Develop a command of the intellectual material and key analytic concepts that relate to the projects the individual must facilitate. Individual is expected to develop an astute understanding of the material presented in journal articles, policy reports, and presentations that result from the projects on which they work.
• Become thoroughly familiar with the details of complex interdisciplinary projects, including their goals, objectives, and activities. As a knowledgeable resource on a project’s intellectual substance, be integrally involved with all processes and key activities during the lifecycle of the project and be able to summarize the project’s progress to internal and external audiences. Specifically, this position will initially facilitate projects that implement survey data collection throughout a number of resource-poor settings with in-country partners. These projects collect information on costs, interventions, and health states of individuals through household surveys, health facility surveys, and clinical record reviews.
• Perform background research as needed to aid in project management, publications writing, and proposal development.

Project management
• Facilitate complex projects involving cutting-edge quantitative survey data collection, analyses, and tools for dissemination.
• Coordinate across major teams at IHME to ensure integration and methods alignment.
• Expertly carry out communications, relationship building, and project management with faculty and senior leaders from governmental, non-profit, research, academic, and service delivery organizations in order to attain project goals and facilitate productive collaboration.
• Manage primary data collection and data transmission with research sites. Manage data quality checks and site feedback, as well as internal analysis, to ensure high-quality and timely data. Ensure timely and effective data quality management throughout the process.
• Facilitate survey development to meet specific study needs. Facilitate the creation of protocols that align with surveys and site contexts.
• Create and implement survey trainings and data quality management training.
• Drive research forward by managing dynamic teams of researchers and professional staff. Turn intellectual agendas set by researchers into action plans that can be implemented effectively across multiple project participants to achieve demanding and time-sensitive project milestones. Confidently and effectively participate in project assignments with a solid grounding in project specifics and current status. Track progress and manage coordination and communication across the team.
• Monitor, report, and forecast workflow and deadlines through effective portfolio management.

• Manage staff, to include hiring and training, assigning work hours, managing workflow, priority setting, contributing to professional growth and performance assessment, resolving complaints, and initiating disciplinary action for supervisees.
• Mentor Data Professionals by providing guidance in the development of professional skills (e.g., time management, work organization, communication skills).
• Manage overall workflow of team in close collaboration with Principal Investigator and senior staff on the project. Develop overall work-plan timeline and task assignments.

• Interpret financial reports and participate in the budgeting process.
• Manage events and meetings, including logistical support and materials creation.
• Formulate effective strategies for motivating research teams and helping to ensure high achievement among all individuals on them
• Perform additional duties as assigned that fall within the reasonable scope of this position as a member of the Evaluations Team and of IHME overall.

• Bachelor’s degree in social sciences or related field plus three years’ related experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Additional Requirements:
• Must exhibit strong desire and ability to learn new intellectual content across different disciplines in a timely fashion.
• Demonstrated management experience required; supervisory experience a plus.
• Incumbent must be able to work independently and must be able to take multiple priorities and translate them into project completion through expert planning.
• Strong oral and written communication skills and relationship management skills are critical.
• Strong project management skills, including demonstrated ability to think independently, be flexible and juggle multiple priorities.
• Excellent interpersonal skills; a cooperative team player, energetic, able to develop productive relationships with colleagues and external collaborators.
• Ability to thrive in a fast-paced, dynamic environment is critical.
• Oral and written Spanish professional proficiency beneficial.

Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration.

Condition of Employment:
• Night and weekend work sometimes required. Must be willing to travel internationally to help implement trainings, manage project progress, give presentations as needed, and work with collaborators.

Application Process:
The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process.  These assessments may include Workforce Authorization, Cover Letter and/or others.  Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your “My Jobs” page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.