Vice President of Research and Policy

Vice President of Research and Policy

Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Washington, D.C.   |   February 5, 2020

About the Institute for Women’s Policy Research

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), the nation’s preeminent think tank committed to winning economic equity for women and eliminating structural and institutional barriers to women’s full participation in the workforce and society, seeks a new Vice President of Research and Policy.

IWPR’s mission is to build knowledge and evidence to support policies that help grow women’s economic power and influence in society, close inequality gaps, and improve the economic security and well-being of girls, women and families.

We generate the ideas that build power and economic equity for all women.

How does IWPR achieve its Impact:

  • Evidence-Based Research: IWPR produces original research and analysis that is relevant, timely, and accessible on the economic reality of women’s lives. Our research helps drive change in public policy, in corporations, in homes, and in society.
  • Narrative and Culture Change: At IWPR, we believe that historic and pervasive gender roles and stereotypes about women in the workplace, at home, and in society have a profound impact on their economic mobility, professional, and career advancement, pay, and experiences in the workforce.

Policymakers, news media, and advocacy groups rely on IWPR to bring clarity to local, state, and national dialogues about the impact of policy issues on women. Our research and analysis are cited in over a thousand news stories each year, including in international, national, and local media and in digital media outlets, and its staff appear regularly before local, state, and federal policymakers and at policy-oriented research conferences.

  • Policy and Systems Change: IWPR supports and champions public policies that advance women’s power and influence in society and that lower barriers to women’s full participation in the economy.
  • Strategic Learning & Collaboration: IWPR brings together researchers, advocates, policymakers, and philanthropic leaders to collaborate, foster new ideas, and share information on how to improve the economic security and well-being of girls, women, and families. We do this through convenings, symposia, and partnerships that help to leverage our research and promote new evidence-based ideas and solutions.

IWPR has five core research and programmatic areas:

  • Employment, Education, and Economic Change
  • Democracy and Society
  • Poverty, Welfare, and Income Security
  • Work and Family
  • Health and Safety

Statement on Racial Equity and Intersectionality:

At IWPR, we believe social and economic mobility in the United States is determined and influenced by race, ethnicity, class, gender identity, sexual orientation, and other markers of difference. In working to achieve economic equity and to better understand the experiences of all women in the workforce and in society, we use both racial equity and intersectional frameworks in our research and analysis to help generate strategies and solutions that are grounded in the economic realities of women and families.

For more information on the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, please visit

The Opportunity

IWPR seeks a Vice President of Research and Policy to set and guide the research strategy and policy agenda for the Institute. They will play a critical role in ensuring that IWPR is leveraging its research for maximum impact and influence at the local, state and national levels, and that it lands in the hands of citizens, changemakers, key stakeholders and others who can use it to accelerate change in the lives of girls, women, and families. They will manage research and policy related fundraising efforts, and work to expand IWPR’s portfolio of foundation, corporate, and government partners.

They will also oversee and manage the research and policy programs and staff and will collaborate with the senior leadership team, the Board of Directors, and external stakeholders to advance the mission, vision, and values of IWPR.

The ideal candidate is a dynamic, forward-thinking, experienced, and collaborative leader. They are an innovative and respected scholar with excellent writing and editing skills. They also have experience with translating high-level research for broad audiences through op-eds, blogs, reports, briefing papers, or other similar mediums. They are a proven fundraiser with a strong interest in the intersections of research, policy, and practice and a deep commitment to racial and gender equity. Specifically, they have experience using and integrating racial equity and intersectional frameworks and analysis in research study designs, publications, technical assistance, and other resources.

Candidate Profile

The ideal candidate for this position will be an inspiring, pragmatic, resourceful, and strategic leader who has a strong commitment to economic and gender equity and expanding the power and influence of women in society and in the workforce; a deep understanding of the complex public policy issues at the local state and federal levels impacting the economic security and well-being of women and families and the research methodologies and policy strategies (qualitative and quantitative) that can illuminate those issues; and the managerial acumen to lead a research and policy strategy to achieve IWPR’s mission.

The ideal candidate will possess the following professional experience and expertise, as well as personal competencies and characteristics:

Research Strategy, Vision and Leadership

  • Develop and implement a cohesive research and policy strategy and agenda;
  • Identify and assess emerging research gaps in the field and potential innovations and opportunities for IWPR;
  • Work with researchers to refine research and policy priorities and issue areas;
  • Represent IWPR at high-level convenings, conferences, and meetings;
  • Guide the incorporation and integration of racial equity and intersectional frameworks and approaches into IWPR research and policy initiatives;
  • Nurture and expand existing funding relationships and cultivate new sources–both project-based and unrestricted;
  • Oversee and manage fundraising and development efforts of the research unit; and
  • Serve as a member of the senior leadership team.

Research Experience

  • Familiarity and experience conducting research and/or policy analysis on issues related to poverty and income inequality, paid sick or family medical leave, the wage gap and pay equity, women’s and family economic security, quality jobs, and/or educational equity and access;
  • Experience with multivariate statistical methods, survey research and/or qualitative research and design and analysis;
  • Experience using and integrating racial equity and intersectional frameworks and analysis in research study designs, written reports and briefs;
  • Ability to perform advanced, complex quantitative data analysis of large datasets and trends, utilizing econometric, network science and/or other statistical methods; and
  • Ability to write high quality working papers, reports, and presentations based on the data work and analysis.

Program and Research Management

  • In partnership with the research program directors, oversee the overall execution of all research projects and publications including major reports, briefs, government testimony, regulatory comments, data analysis, infographics and other visuals;
  • 7 + years of experience managing senior and junior level research and program staff;
  • Coordinate research content and report releases with the other IWPR programs and units;
  • Build a culture that attracts and retains top talent for all positions within the research unit;
  • Oversee engagement and professional development opportunities for all research staff; and
  • Work to ensure the research department meets internal and funder deadlines and obligations for the delivery of research products and reports.

Other Professional and Personal Qualities

  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including presentation skills;
  • A strong existing network—the candidate will be known and respected in the progressive research community, bringing existing relationships that will facilitate expansion of our research and policy work;
  • Proven track record of effectively interacting with diverse stakeholders including executives, researchers, practitioners, policy and advocacy organizations, public officials, and Boards of Directors;
  • Superior problem-solving, managerial, and interpersonal skills;
  • Ability to work strategically and collaboratively across the organization;
  • Effective, versatile, and action oriented; and
  • Ability to work well under pressure with tight deadlines and multiple priorities.


A PhD or equivalent experience/expertise in a related field (e.g., economics, sociology, political science, public policy, law etc.) is required.


$130,000 to $160,000 and will be commensurate with experience.


The Institute for Women’s Policy Research has engaged Koya Leadership Partners to help in this hire. This search is being led by Naree W.S. Viner and Tenley Bank. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume to Tenley Bank at the following [email protected]

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBT applicants.

About Koya Leadership Partners

Koya Leadership Partners, a member of the Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Leadership Partners, visit