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Senior Substance Abuse Health Researcher

Job ID 714-3

Position Description:

Mathematica Policy Research is a nationally recognized research and consulting organization dedicated to improving public well-being by bringing the highest standards of quality, objectivity, and excellence to bear on information and analysis for our partners and clients.

Mathematica is searching for a senior health researcher who can lead evaluation and technical assistance projects focused on prevention, treatment, and recovery from substance use disorders. Mathematica’s work focused on substance use disorders includes evaluations of major federal initiatives to combat the opioid crisis and integrate mental health and substance abuse treatment, the development and implementation of clinical quality measures to monitor the delivery of care, and technical assistance to help state Medicaid programs and providers implement new models of care. Mathematica also conducts large-scale surveys of substance abuse and mental health treatment facilities and conducts policy analyses on a range of topics including the substance abuse treatment workforce, access to care, and trends in service utilizations and costs. Our clients include the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Social Security Administration, the Department of Labor, the Administration on Children and Families, foundations, and state and local government agencies.

The successful candidate will join our group of over 400 health policy professionals, including staff with backgrounds in public health, public policy, economics, statistics, behavioral or social sciences, medicine, nursing, data analytics, and other relevant disciplines. We offer our employees a stimulating team-oriented work environment, competitive salaries, and a comprehensive benefits package, as well as the advantages of employee ownership.

Duties of the position:

  • Lead multidisciplinary teams, drawing on your past experience, analytic skills, and technical knowledge to conduct research, data analysis, and/or technical assistance projects that address the prevention and treatment of substance use disorders and other related topics
  • Work directly with clients to ensure that projects are executed successfully and provide clients with high-quality services and deliverables
  • Apply rigorous analytic thinking to the collection and interpretation of quantitative and qualitative data
  • Bring creative ideas to business development and actively participate in submitting proposals and obtaining new projects
  • Author reports, memos, technical assistance tools, issue briefs, webinar presentations, and journal manuscripts
  • Interact with clients, policymakers, academic partners, and the broader behavioral health community to disseminate work and stimulate new ideas
  • Actively mentor junior colleagues and contribute to internal thought leadership activities to support a collegial environment

Position Requirements:

  • 10+ years of experience conducting research and/or technical assistance focused on substance use disorders
  • Highly qualified applicants will have expertise in how states and Medicaid programs organize and finance substance abuse treatment services, the integration of substance abuse and mental health treatment, and the role that substance abuse plays in other social services such as child welfare. Broader knowledge of state Medicaid policy, some recent clinical experience, and familiarity with billing for substance abuse treatment are also desired.
  • Masters or doctoral degree or equivalent experience in public health, public policy, data science, statistics, economics, behavioral or social sciences, economics, or other relevant discipline
  • Proven quantitative and/or qualitative skills and the ability to appropriately interpret findings within the context of program implementation and broader health policy landscape
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including an ability to explain observations and findings to diverse stakeholder audiences including program administrators and policymakers
  • Demonstrated ability to provide task leadership and coordinate the work of multidisciplinary teams
  • Strong organizational skills and high level of attention to detail; flexibility to lead and manage multiple priorities, sometimes simultaneously, under deadlines

To apply, please submit a cover letter, CV, and writing sample at the time of your application.


We offer our employees a stimulating, team-oriented work environment, competitive salaries, and a comprehensive benefits package, as well as the advantages of employee ownership.  We provide generous paid time off (and an on-site fitness center).

Various federal agencies with whom we contract require that staff successfully undergo a background investigation or security clearance as a condition of working on the project. If you are assigned to such a project, you will be required to obtain the requisite security clearance.

Available locations: Princeton, NJ; Washington, DC; Cambridge, MA; Ann Arbor, MI; Oakland, CA; Chicago, IL; Woodlawn, MD; and Seattle, WA. Highly-qualified applicants may also work remotely.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

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