Senior Research Associate and Manager

Senior Research Associate and Manager

locationUnited States
PublishedPublished: 12/8/2023
Research / Development
Full Time


Senior Research Associate and Manager

Harvard Kennedy School


Job Summary

The Belfer Center seeks a Senior Research Associate and Manager to support Graham Allison, the Douglas Dillon Professor of Government at the Harvard Kennedy School and Director of the Belfer Center's Avoiding Great Power War Project, in conducting in-depth research on international security issues and supervising the collaborative activities of a small research team. 

Position Description

The Senior Research Associate and Manager will play a leading role in:   

  • Supervising Professor Allison’s team of approximately 7 researchers, including setting research and publication priorities with Professor Allison and delivering on targets; coordinating team’s workflow; and maintaining high standards across all research and publications.  
  • Conducting research on specific international security topics and producing in-depth analytic research memos, eventually building deep expertise in their area(s) of responsibility.  
  • Contributing to internal and external publications such as research reports, op-eds, academic articles, and book chapters.  
  • Leading team’s processes, including hiring staff, managing team’s financial reporting and grant writing, and supporting the Belfer Center’s activities, as needed.  
  • Overseeing the planning and research for high-level events, including private working groups and large public events.  
  • Other related job duties, as required.  

Basic Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in public administration, public policy, political science, international relations, or a closely related field. 
  • Experience in a managerial role and a minimum of 2 years' related work experience performing research (quantitative or qualitative).  

Additional Qualifications and Skills

  • Significant knowledge of, and interest in, current international security issues; exceptional writing skills; basic quantitative proficiency; and a demonstrated ability to work with minimal supervision under tight deadlines.  
  • Prior experience in an academic or think-tank and/or working for a senior principal (public or private sector) setting is a plus. 
  • Candidates should be mature self-starters with sound judgment; have the capacity to work with a wide range of individuals and manage both up and down; and have the ability to manage a variety of tasks/research projects simultaneously. 

Additional Information

This position is a fully benefits-eligible term appointment ending one year from date of hire, with possibility of renewal. 

Evaluation of qualified candidates may include a written assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interviews with the research team and Professor Allison.  

Please read: Application Instructions

All applicants must submit the following as a single PDF:

(1) Cover letter of 300 words or less. 

(2) Résumé or CV.

(3) Official or unofficial transcript.

(4) Analytic writing sample of 20 pages or less.  

(5) Names and contact information for three references.

Learn more about our work culture and see yourself at Harvard Kennedy School.

We regret that the Harvard Kennedy School does not provide visa sponsorship.
Harvard University requires pre-employment reference and background checks. 
Harvard University is committed to supporting a healthy, sustainable learning and working environment.

This is a hybrid position based on our campus in Cambridge, MA.  As a campus-based institution, we place a high value on the in-person experience, cross-team collaboration, and strong community building in order to create a vibrant campus for our students, faculty, staff, and research fellows. The position is required to work in-person on campus a minimum of three days per week during the academic year. Specific days and schedule will be determined between you and your manager.

The health of our workforce is a priority for Harvard University. With that in mind, we strongly encourage all employees to be up-to-date on CDC-recommended vaccines.

Salary Range: $74,200 - $126,200
Note: Starting salaries typically fall in the lower half of the salary range; however, they are ultimately determined by the scope of the position, the candidate's relevant experience, and internal equity. 

Work Format Details

This is a hybrid position that is based in Massachusetts. Additional details will be discussed during the interview process. All remote work must be performed within one of the Harvard Registered Payroll States, which currently includes Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, Washington, and California (CA for exempt positions only). Certain visa types and funding sources may limit work location. Individuals must meet work location sponsorship requirements prior to employment.

About Us

The Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs is the hub of Harvard Kennedy School's research, teaching, and training in international security and diplomacy, environmental and resource issues, and science and technology policy. In 2021, the Belfer Center was named a “Center of Excellence” by the University of Pennsylvania’s Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program, in recognition of the Center’s six consecutive years as the world’s #1 university-affiliated think tank. 
The Center has a dual mission: (1) to provide leadership in advancing policy-relevant knowledge about the most important challenges of international security and other critical issues where science, technology, environmental policy, and international affairs intersect; and (2) to prepare future generations of leaders for these arenas. 
We believe that creating a diverse and inclusive organization is central to our ability to achieve our mission. It is our goal to promote historically underrepresented groups within our organization and within the fields of science and international affairs. 


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website ( to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.
  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.
  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.
  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.
  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.
  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.
  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Job Function


Department Office Location

USA - MA - Cambridge

Job Code

RS0057 Researcher III Humanities

Work Format

Hybrid (partially on-site, partially remote)



Salary Grade



Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

Annual Salary Range

$74,200 - $126,200


00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Time Status


Pre-Employment Screening

Education, Identity

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard Kennedy School’s Mission and Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Anti-Racism

At Harvard Kennedy School, fostering a diverse and inclusive community where everyone feels they belong is a matter of basic fairness consistent with our core values as an institution. It is also essential to our mission of improving public policy and leadership—because recruiting the best people and creating an environment where they can thrive make us better at what we do, because we learn more from people with different perspectives, and because we work in diverse groups and serve diverse societies.

Learn more about Harvard Kennedy School’s commitment to Diversity Equity, and Anti-Racism.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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