American Institutes for Research

  • Director of Data Science and Analytics

    Job Location US-VA-Crystal City
    Job ID
    Job Location
    United States
    Data Science
  • Overview

    The American Institutes for Research (AIR) is one of the largest behavioral and social science research organizations in the world. AIR’s mission is to conduct and apply the best behavioral and social science research towards improving people’s lives, with a special emphasis on the disadvantaged. Much of this work informs the development and implementation of policies that require and produce significant amounts of diverse data.

    The data science team at AIR uses a blend of technology skills and theory to contribute to cutting-edge research design, technology implementation, and capacity building, and our team is growing. As part of an organization-wide data analytics initiative, the Director of Data Science and Analytics is boundary-spanning across Professional Services to help identify, manage, and implement promising applications of data and emerging computational methods within a variety of policy domains, including education, public health, workforce, science and innovation policy, criminal justice, and housing. At the same time, the director ensures that we balance contemporary agile development with rigorous approaches to research design and technical assistance, all the while remaining outcomes-driven and aligned to our clients’ goals.

    The Director of Data Science and Analytics role is located within AIR’s Technology Solutions group, which promotes the strategic use of technology, data, and computational social science methods to support AIR’s mission and the work of our clients.


    The Director of Data Science and Analytics is responsible for growing data analytics throughout AIR Professional Services. In this effort, the Director is responsible for the following:
    Architecture with a focus on data applications and emerging computational methods:
    • Consult with clients to understand future requirements and implications for architecture
    • Identify architecture solution alternatives, driving business requirements, and availability of new technologies
    • Identify emerging technologies and tools to support architecture(s) and determine architectural roadmaps
    • Encourage early adoption of tools and architecture across the organization
    • Review solutions and projects to ensure they are consistent with best practices in data science and analytics
    • Design and manage process and product innovations using data, methods, and technology to extend and integrate AIR research and evaluation services into AIR technical assistance, and vice-versa
    Data Science and Analytics Strategy and business development
    • Work with other Data Science and Analytics leads to manage the Data Science and Analytics budgets
    • Evolve and extend the current Data Science and Analytics vision to realize new ways of servicing traditional and non-traditional clients
    • Develop relationships with current and prospective clients
    • Devise and refine marketing plans and proposal materials for AIR’s Data Science and Analytics initiative
    • Communicate the Data Science and Analytics value proposition to internal and external stakeholders
    • Participate as a writer and reviewer on proposals across AIR content areas to generate new revenue
    • Design and conduct trainings for Data Science and Analytics business development purposes
    • “Spread the word” about Tech Solutions capability within AIR and to external clients
    • Develop relationships with clients
    • Research existing/competing solutions to address in AIR proposals
    • Analyze the merits of new business opportunities, e.g., supporting “bid/no-bid” decisions
    Team Management:
    • Act as a technical coach to data scientists
    • Provide constructive feedback; coach performance
    • Lead a team of data scientists to build a body of client work across AIR content areas; interpret and/or define needs and direct work accordingly
    • Promote a culture of transparency by creating processes that incorporate best practices, continuous reporting and improvement, and critical thinking


    • M.S. or Ph.D. from a statistics, mathematics, computer science, computational social science or operations research program is preferred.
    • 10+ years of overall work experience in IT and the social sciences
    • Ability to apply creative thinking at the intersection of data science, big data, technology, and the social sciences
    • Prior professional services and consulting experience a plus
    • Knowledge of and experience with Federal, state and local government clients and data sets
    • Well-developed leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills
    • Organized with the ability to lead multiple projects under moving deadlines
    • Works effectively with technical and non-technical staff
    • Experience with machine learning techniques to be able direct and implement such tasks and/or projects in support of AIR’s mission for social good
    • Ability to communicate complex quantitative analysis in a clear, precise, and actionable manner to non-technical audiences, management and experts in non-data fields.
    • Strong organizational and interpersonal skills


    All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability.


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