Senior Research Associate, CIJ

Location: New York, NY

Department: Center on Immigration and Justice

Type: Full Time

Min. Experience: Senior Manager/Supervisor

The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, is an independent, non-partisan, nonprofit organization that combines expertise in research, technical assistance, and demonstration projects to assist leaders in government and civil society examine justice policy and practice, and improve the systems people rely on for justice and safety. Vera has offices in New York City, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, and New Orleans, and its projects and reform initiatives, typically conducted in partnership with local, state, or national officials, are located across the United States and around the world. Vera is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace.

Launched in 2006, Vera’s Center on Immigration and Justice (CIJ) works with government, nonprofit organizations, and communities to improve government systems that affect immigrants and their families.  Vera created the Center on Immigration and Justice to address the challenges presented by the convergence of the criminal justice and immigration systems. It has focused on two goals: increasing detained adult and child immigrants’ access to legal information and counsel, and improving identification of immigrant crime victimization and relationships between immigrant communities and law enforcement. Over the last decade, CIJ has developed legal information and services programs and conducted applied research across the U.S., including independent research and evaluation studies with funding from government and scientific agencies and private foundations. CIJ researchers perform regular data analysis for the federal government, and conduct evaluation and original research.

CIJ seeks an experienced social science researcher with a passion for justice and excellent statistical skills, experience in research design and knowledge of quantitative methods to join its team as Senior Research Associate. Working closely with the Research Director and other research and program staff, the Senior Research Associate will help guide, challenge and inspire a unique center to think about how its work on issues at the intersection of immigration and the justice system can achieve the greatest impact. 



Reporting directly to the CIJ Research Director, the incoming Senior Research Associate will help manage ongoing research studies that employ diverse research methods and help lead the development of the CIJ research program.

  • The Senior Research Associate will be responsible for advancing existing projects at the intersection of immigration and justice and identifying, developing and implementing ideas for new research. 
  • The Senior Research Associate will be responsible for supervising quantitative data collection and analysis and reporting for rigorous evaluations of innovative federal, state and local programs, as well as overseeing CIJ program data management, analysis and reporting. 
  • The successful candidate will work collaboratively with staff to perform analysis of administrative data, train and mentor other researchers, manage multiple research projects, prepare and deliver presentations and reports to funders, and write competitive grant proposals, research briefs and academic publications.  
  • The ideal candidate will have a strong background in quantitative methods, statistical analysis and evaluation research and expertise in mixed methods, with an interest in legal and/or immigration issues, and a record of successful proposals and published work in their area of research or policy expertise.



  • At least 6 years relevant work experience with a Master’s degree or 3 years with a Ph.D. in sociology, geography, anthropology, criminal justice, criminology, public policy, or a related discipline. A Ph.D. is strongly preferred.
  • A track record of successful proposal writing for federal solicitations and/or foundation grants.
  • Research project management experience and a commitment to teamwork.
  • Advanced skills in qualitative and quantitative research methods and performing descriptive and multivariate data analysis, including a combination of:
    • Use of statistical analysis software (e.g., Excel, R, SQL Server, SPSS) to conduct multivariate quantitative analyses
    • Managing administrative datasets
    • Survey construction and data analysis
    • Experience with qualitative interview techniques and data analysis
  • Experience with human subjects research ethics requirements and Institutional Review Boards
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills for research and non-research audiences
  • Experience working closely with government and other partners
  • Commitment to immigration and justice system reform
  • Demonstrated research and policy interest
  • A track record of published research
  • Spanish language proficiency is highly desirable 

Please note that this position requires government security clearance. That clearance is restricted to U.S. citizens and citizens of countries that are party to collective defense agreements with the US. The list of those countries is here: An additional clearance requirement is residence in the U.S. for at least five years before being hired



$80 K to $105 K depending on experience and qualifications, plus excellent benefits.


How to apply

Please submit cover letter, comprehensive CV and two sole or first author writing samples. Online submission in PDF format is preferred.

However, if necessary, materials may be mailed or faxed to:

ATTN: Human Resources / CIJ Senior Research Associate Recruitment

Vera Institute of Justice

233 Broadway, 12th Floor

New York, NY 10279

Fax: (212) 941-9407

Please use only one method (online, mail or fax) of submission.

No phone calls, please. Only applicants selected for interviews will be contacted.


Vera is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.  All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, military status, prior record of arrest or conviction, citizenship status, current employment status, or caregiver status.

Vera works to advance justice, particularly racial justice, in an increasingly multicultural country and globally connected world. We value diverse experiences, including with regard to educational background and justice system contact, and depend on a diverse staff to carry out our mission.


For more information about Vera and CIJ’s work, please visit


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