Director of the Center for Survey Research

Job Description:

The University of Massachusetts Boston seeks an accomplished scholar and a visionary, effective and dedicated leader to be the next Director of its Center for Survey Research (CSR). CSR is a full scale academic survey research center conducting and supporting basic and applied research that contributes to knowledge and understanding of important social issues and sound public policies. Depending on experience and qualifications, the successful candidate will also be considered for a tenured or tenure-track faculty appointment at the rank of Professor or Associate Professor in an academic department appropriate to the candidate's educational background and teaching and research interests.

The Director has the overall responsibility of carrying on the Center for Survey Research's strong tradition as a center of excellence in survey research methodologies and social, behavioral, health science, and policy research. The Director will also be responsible for articulating an inspirational vision and formulating an ambitious research agenda for the Center's future. The Director will lead the development and implementation of new survey research methodologies to take the full advantages of available cutting-edge technologies, to adequately respond to the information needs for solving the large-scale, complex and dynamic problems of the twenty-first century, and to best serve the approaches and requirements of the modern Information Age. The Director is expected to maintain a very active and productive externally funded research program. He/she will also be responsible for leading the efforts to secure external funds from federal, state, local and private sources to support the educational, research and service programs of the Center, supervising and supporting the projects of the Study Directors, affiliated faculty, Senior Research Fellows, post-docs, graduate and undergraduate students, managing the Center's budget and personnel, and representing the Center in the university, the community, and various academic and policy arenas. The Director will also serve as a catalyst for interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary or trans-disciplinary research across the campus and in partnership with other academic and research institutions in the United States and around the globe. The Director will participate as part of the university leadership for the emerging research cluster in social, behavioral, and health sciences and policy and global studies. 



  • An earned doctorate in social, behavioral or health sciences, or public administration/public policy
  • An excellent record of externally funded projects or programs
  • A good understanding of the current issues, approaches, opportunities and challenges in survey research
  • Extensive experience in survey research and strong methodological skills
  • Proven record of visionary and effective leadership in a survey-related organization
  • If a tenured or tenure-track faculty appointment is sought, a strong record of peer-reviewed publications and relevant teaching and student mentoring
  • Evidence of successful experience in leading interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary or trans-disciplinary research and interacting with partners and constituencies in complex institutional, policy, or community environments
  • Superb communication, team-building and inter-personal skills
  • Prior experience in higher education settings is highly desirable


Additional Information:

The origins of the Center for Survey Research can be traced to a survey research project team assembled in 1964. In 1968, the entire original survey research staff became part of the Joint Center for Urban Studies of MIT and Harvard, which was directed by Daniel Patrick Moynihan from 1966 to 1969 and by Robert C. Wood, the former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, from 1969 to 1970. After Robert C. Wood was appointed as the President of the University of Massachusetts in 1970, the survey research team moved to the University of Massachusetts Boston in 1971 to formally establish the Center for Survey Research, with Dr. Floyd J. Fowler, Jr. as its founding Director.

The Center for Survey Research is a full scale survey research organization with ongoing professional telephone and in-person interviewing staff, computer assisted telephone interviewing facilities, question design and evaluation expertise, and survey sampling capacity. With the capability to do large scale in-person, telephone, web, and mail surveys, the Center conducts basic and applied research that contributes to the knowledge and understanding of important social issues.

The Center's work ranges from short term consultation on survey design to the investigation, analysis and reporting of major research issues. In addition to seeking funding for support of their own specific substantive areas of research, the largest activity of CSR senior staff is to provide high quality methodological expertise and the support staff needed to assist those at UMass Boston, other universities, and state and local government agencies who want to carry out high-quality survey research projects. For most of the past 20 years, the staff of the center included 5 to 7 Study Directors, Ph.D. level researchers who were responsible for carrying out their own research and working with others to conduct high-quality survey research projects. The Center also includes extensive support staff to assist Study Directors with the various practical activities that are essential to the execution of survey projects such as question design and testing, data collection in all forms, creation of data files and analysis. At any point in time, CSR usually has 15 to 30 active research projects. For most of those years, external funding to the center ranged from $2 to $3 million dollars per year.


Application Instructions:

Review of applications will begin on September 1, 2015. The search will remain open until a candidate is selected. Applicants must submit online a curriculum vitae, contact information for a minimum of three references, and a cover letter highlighting the relevant educational background, professional experience, accomplishments, and other qualifications for the position.

UMass Boston provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment.








The Center for Survey Research, UMass Boston, has openings for an important study of the health of residents of Metro Boston.  Household interviewing will be conducted in Boston and immediate suburbs.

Paid interviewer training and data collection will take place from August through Fall 2015. Strong interpersonal skills, comfort using a computer, use of a reliable car, and ability to work flexible hours; daytime, evenings and weekends are required.  Some college preferred.  Interviewing experience is valued but not necessary. Must be available a minimum of 16 hours per week, including evenings and weekends. 

Pay is $15-$16 per hour, depending on prior interviewer experience, which includes travel time and all other interview-related time.  Paid training in August. Mileage reimbursed at the federal government approved mileage rate.  AA/EOE.  Email resume to CSRjobs@umb.edu.