Postdoctoral Scholar

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Who We Are

The Learning Policy Institute (LPI) is a national organization that conducts and communicates independent, high-quality research to shape education policies and improve learning for each and every child. Nonprofit and nonpartisan, LPI connects policymakers at the local, state, and federal levels with the evidence, ideas, and actions needed to strengthen the pre-k to grade 12 education system and address the complex realities facing public schools and their communities. Working with policymakers, researchers, educators, community groups, and others who care about improving public schools, the Institute advances evidence-based policies that support empowering and equitable learning for all children. 

The Position

LPI seeks a full-time Postdoctoral Scholar to join its research, policy, and communication staff for a full year. The Postdoctoral Scholar will participate in one or more research teams, which focus on early childhood education, educator quality, equitable resources and access, and whole child education. The specific responsibilities will depend on the skills and interest of the candidate as well as the needs of LPI. The goal is to support new scholars to learn how to conduct policy-relevant research, typically on a relatively tight timeline, and to communicate effectively to policymakers. 

Major Responsibilities

  • Work on LPI research projects in one or more of LPI’s areas of focus (early childhood, educator quality, equitable resources and access, and whole child education) in a role appropriate to skill level and experience.
  • Participate as an active member on one or more of our content area teams, which involves regular team meetings to review and provide feedback on each other’s work and to strategize on the team’s research direction.
  • Help to draft research reports.
  • Prepare summary documents of our research and present those to policymakers and other audiences.
  • Represent LPI at public forums and conferences.
  • Participate in LPI’s internal race and equity work.
  • Continue to pursue your own research (up to 20% time).

Qualifications and Experience

The ideal candidate will possess many of the following professional and personal abilities, attributes, and experiences:

  • Doctoral degree in the social or behavioral sciences, awarded no later than Spring 2021 and no earlier than Spring 2018.
  • Strong quantitative or qualitative methodological training.
  • Passion for and clear commitment to the equity mission of LPI: supporting empowering and equitable learning for all students.
  • Knowledge of state and federal education policy arenas.
  • A strong knowledge of pre-k–12 education issues.
  • Excellent and persuasive written and oral communication skills.
  • Must be authorized to work in the United States, with appropriate visa if needed.


  • Passion for ensuring that all children receive empowering and equitable learning, especially historically underserved students.
  • Self-starter mentality and the ability to both work independently and foster collaborative working relationships, and to work well in a team setting.
  • A demonstrated commitment to excellence and equity.
  • Ability to execute and exhibit good judgment.
  • An understanding and appreciation of the varied and complex educational policy landscape, and the ability to translate that understanding to policymaker and lay audiences.
  • An optimistic outlook and a flexible, innovative nature.

To Apply

Please submit a resume, cover letter, and short writing sample here. Candidates invited to continue through the interview process will be asked to complete a job-related task/performance assessment at that time. 

The Learning Policy Institute is deeply committed to its staff’s health and well-being and strives to embody the organization’s values within the organizational structure. LPI offers competitive compensation and benefits; prioritizes and provides financial support for professional development; supports diversity, equity, and inclusion work internally; and values a collaborative culture. LPI is an equal opportunity employer. Candidates of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.