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Program Officer: Health Systems

Division of Behavioral and Social Research
Program Officer: Health Systems

The Population and Social Processes Branch (PSP) in the Division of Behavioral and Social Research (BSR) of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) is recruiting a dynamic and experienced economist/health services researcher to manage and develop a portfolio of innovative grant-supported research and research training in health systems topics in aging and health.

BSR offers a scientifically energizing and collegial environment with opportunities to develop research initiatives; cultivate a portfolio of grant-supported research; lead and participate in transdisciplinary research collaborations; and develop scientific programming (e.g., symposia, special journal issues, conferences, and workshops).

The successful candidate will have primary responsibility for developing and managing a portfolio of research grants on the connections between health systems and healthy aging, with emphases on the Medicare and Medicaid programs as well as long-term care. Topics include research on service and payment strategies to provide high quality long-term care; how payment system incentives drive patient and provider behavior and outcomes; trajectories of care across acute care systems, short stay and long-term care services in different settings, and consequences for health outcomes; research on models of care and care delivery to improve quality of care; health services and health care financing for older people with multiple chronic conditions; provider-level and regional variation in health expenditures, services, and outcomes for older persons; cross-national studies of the impact of different health and LTC systems on outcomes at older ages. The portfolio features research utilizing large research data sets, quasi-experimental techniques as well as pragmatic trails and field experiments.

Responsibilities include:

  • Scientific administration throughout the grants process, including reviewing and approving progress reports.
  • Identifying significant research findings and communicating results to NIA leadership and other audiences.
  • Proposing future program emphases and developing Funding Opportunity Announcements.
  • Communicating about NIA program emphases and the NIH grant process to the research community.
  • Presenting and justifying funding plans to NIA leaders and the National Advisory Council on Aging.
  • Participating in initiatives related to the NIA Strategic Plan, working with NIA and NIH colleagues, staff from other agencies, and stakeholders from the private sector and other levels of government.

Candidate Qualifications: The ideal candidate will possess a PhD or doctoral equivalent and substantial research training in health systems research, economics and/or related fields, as well as strong writing, communication and interpersonal skills. The ideal candidate will have expertise in health economics and/or health services research; experience with relevant health systems data (e.g. Medicare claims data), and several years of significant experience in research or research management. Applicants preferably have experience working in interdisciplinary teams. Prior experience in aging research is ideal, but not required.

Candidates must be US citizens. All applicants will receive consideration without regard to ethnicity, gender, national origin, age, religion, disability, or sexual orientation. DHHS, NIH and NIA are Equal Opportunity Employers. The work site is in Bethesda, Maryland. Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience; excellent benefits are offered. The position will be posted at the GS-12, 13, and 14 federal government salary grades, with an annual salary between $86,335 and $157,709.

For more information: Interested parties should contact John W. R. Phillips ( This is a preannouncement of the vacancy. A Global “Social and Behavioral Scientist Administrator” job announcement will be posted on on January 21, 2020. Applications must be submitted through that website by January 30, 2020, to be considered. To be notified of the posting, please send a request to Lyn Neil ( All inquiries will remain confidential.