Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Program Officer / Senior Program Officer, Research-Evaluation-Learning

Princeton, NJ

Position Description

Executive Summary

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) is the nation’s largest philanthropy dedicated solely
to health. In recent years, the Foundation has launched an effort to align its goals and activities
around building a Culture of Health in the United States. In connection with their focus areas, the
Foundation funds a range of types of research to expand their understanding of what most shapes
health, and which types of interventions may have the greatest potential for impact.

The program officers/senior program officers (PO/SPO) in the Research-Evaluation-Learning (REL)
unit are professional staff responsible for creating, developing, implementing, and managing the
research and evaluation aspects of the Foundation’s initiatives. Their primary responsibility is to
work with colleagues in the REL, program staff across the Foundation, and the executive staff to
design and implement research and evaluation strategies that generate impact congruent with the
specific objectives of the teams and the Foundation. They are also responsible for the development
and management of performance measurement systems, and the maintenance of the publications
and research portion of the RWJF website to disseminate findings from research, evaluation and
policy investments. They may be responsible for the design and management of research and
evaluation efforts to accomplish foundation-wide goals. As with staff at all levels of the Robert Wood
Johnson Foundation, program officers/senior program officers in REL are expected to demonstrate
a passionate commitment to the Foundation’s mission of improving health and health care for all
Americans and to the Guiding Principles and promise that undergird that mission.

The REL unit is responsible for several important components of the Foundation’s new strategy
including (1) developing and overseeing a measurement system to track the country’s progress
towards a Culture of Health, (2) creating a research agenda to continue to generate an evidence
base about the most effective ways to create the change they are seeking, (3) building on the
Foundation’s long tradition of evaluations to better understand the impact of their strategies and
funding, and (4) sharing acquired learning across the Foundation and external audience.

The REL unit is comprised of an interdisciplinary staff of applied researchers and evaluators. They
are looking to bolster the range of expertise among their staff by adding a new officer with specific
training and experience in evaluation. The PO/SPO will serve as both an active contributor to RELdriven
programs and initiatives, as well as a strategic partner to the Foundation’s Healthy Children,
Healthy Weight theme, which aims to take a broad, social determinants of health approach to
reducing health disparities in children and families across the country. In support of this work, the PO/SPO must bring a systems-level perspective as it relates to addressing health inequities in the
United States. The ability to think and work beyond specific program evaluation will be critical to
the success of the role. While evaluators from a range of disciplines and areas related to public
health and well-being including public policy, economics, community transformation, psychology,
and related fields are encouraged to apply, individuals with experience in child and family policy are
of particular interest.

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