Researcher 4 - Rural Health Research Center


All required qualifications must be documented on application materials.


  • Bachelor’s degree with at least 4 years of experience or an advanced degree with 2 years of related experience.

  • Experience and demonstrated effectiveness conducting research (qualitative or quantitative) or participating on a research team.

  • Experience and demonstrated effectiveness in translating research results into reports, policy briefs, papers or presentations and communicating to diverse audiences such as local communities, federal agencies, policymakers, media, and health care providers or delivery systems

  • Demonstrated excellence in written, telephone, email, and in-person communication and strong interpersonal skills

  • Demonstrated ability to work independently as well as with a multidisciplinary team

  • Dedication to advancing health equity and justice


  • Bachelor’s degree in health policy, public health, public policy or a related field

  • Robust product development and data visualization skills using InDesign and other software, as appropriate

  • Website development and management experience (WordPress or other)

  • Demonstrated interest in rural communities and the health of rural residents, geographic variations in health, and rural-urban differences in quality of care and quality of life

  • Demonstrated experience in health care policy at the state or federal level, including engagement with legislators, executive agencies, and advocacy organizations

About the Job

The successful candidate for this position will participate in the design and implementation of rural health policy research projects and to support the dissemination of research findings. Research responsibilities include conducting comprehensive reviews of literature relevant to rural health research projects and synthesizing results; collaborating with research teams to collect and analyze data (qualitative and quantitative); and participating in the development of policy briefs, presentations, and peer-reviewed journal articles. Dissemination responsibilities include product design, layout and editing support, developing and implementing communications strategy, website and social media management, and coordinating external outreach to target audiences.

Additional responsibilities will depend on the projects funded, and may include developing survey protocols, conducting telephone interviews, and synthesizing results; coordinating project activities with other organizations; and collaborating on dissemination activities, which may include presenting project results at national, regional, and state professional conferences and meetings, updating website content, tracking website analytics, identifying content for social media, and formatting policy briefs, reports, manuscripts, and presentation slides.

This position has two essential functions: research support and dissemination. Specific responsibilities include:

Research Support
The research portion of this position includes supporting rural health research projects across a variety of substantive areas. Functions will include:

  • Conduct literature reviews and synthesize results

  • Collect and analyze qualitative and quantitative data

  • Participation in interpreting results, developing new project ideas, and writing products

The dissemination portion of this position includes product development, communications, and tracking, as follows:

  • Lead the development, editing, graphics, and layout for products related to the Rural Health Research Center grant using InDesign (training can be provided on the job) as well as PowerPoint and other software, as required.

  • Lead development of external content (Rural Health Research Center website, social media, news releases, etc.) and messaging; serve as liaison to the website developer, the Rural Health Research Gateway, communications staff in the School of Public Health and University Relations; and maintain lists of reporters, key policy makers, and other stakeholders

  • Track and report dissemination and use of research findings in media, policy discussions; compile and report on website statistics; maintain records and archives of products and website postings


  1. Participate in the design and implementation of policy-relevant rural health policy, research and evaluation projects; collect, synthesize, and analyze data; support write-up of research findings. (50% of time)

  2. Lead and coordinate dissemination activities for the RHRC grant through

    1. Product development (10-20%)

    2. Communications (10-20%)

    3. Tracking findings (5-10%)

In this role, you will have a measurable impact on the health of rural residents and communities and contribute toward the goal of greater equity in health and health care.  This position will contribute to the ongoing success of a long-standing rural health research portfolio, shape the culture of the Rural Health Research Center grant through effective communications leadership, exceed the expectations of funders, collaborate generously with colleagues, and disseminate findings widely so that they may inform clinical and policy strategies to improve population health in rural communities. Successful completion of project activities is essential to continued receipt of funding for this position and to the accomplishment of the goals of the program of research. 

In this role, you will be responsible for participation in rural health research, organizing and implementing grant-related communications activities, shaping the face of the Rural Health Research Center grant and its products, and communicating directly with funders and diverse external stakeholders. This position independently identifies needs related to the communications strategy of the grant and takes action to meet goals and address challenges. This position initiates timelines and engages with internal and external media relations contacts independently. The position is given latitude to make decisions, work independently and resolve most problems without assistance, but will receive necessary guidance and support from the PI(s) via regular meetings and frequent communication.

This position deals with varied situations that require time management and challenge management as unanticipated issues may arise in the course of planning and implementing a communications plan and interacting with the news cycle and a diverse range of audiences. The position routinely requires immediate response to quick turnaround requests from funders, reporters, and investigators/staff, while maintaining momentum on longer-term projects.  Facilitating effective communication requires ability to obtain and align resources when and where needed. It requires identifying and leveraging appropriate staff and quickly gaining knowledge and expertise in new policy areas as they emerge. This position may also require conflict management, undertaken in collaboration with the PI.

This is a 12-month, 75-100% time appointment, dependent upon continued funding, and offers the standard University benefits. Salary is based on experience and qualifications. This position is based in the Division of Health Policy and Management at the School of Public Health, in the University Plaza building on the Twin Cities East Bank Campus.

April or May 2019

About the Department

The Health Policy and Management Division (HPM) is one of four divisions in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota. HPM enjoys close working relationships with a variety of healthcare organizations locally and across the country, as well as governmental agencies at the local, state and national levels.  HPM has approximately 40 faculty and offers four active teaching programs with a combined enrollment of approximately 400 students, including a CAHME-accredited Masters of Healthcare Administration (MHA), a CEPH-accredited Master of Public Health (MPH) in Public Health Administration and Policy, and Masters of Science (MS) and PhD programs in Health Services Research, Policy and Administration. More information about HPM at:

How To Apply

Applications must be submitted online.  To be considered for this position, please click the Apply button and follow the instructions.  You will be given the opportunity to complete an online application for the position and attach a cover letter describing your qualifications, a CV/resume and three references.

Additional documents may be attached after application by accessing your "My Job Applications" page and uploading documents in the "Add Attachments" section.

To request an accommodation during the application process, please e-mail or call (612) 624-UOHR (8647).


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Background Check Information

Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check. Our presumption is that prospective employees are eligible to work here. Criminal convictions do not automatically disqualify finalists from employment.