Opportunities

The Social Science Research Council (SSRC) is an independent, not-for-profit research organization founded in 1923. Based in Brooklyn, New York, it mobilizes researchers, policy makers, professionals, activists, and other experts from the private and public sectors to develop innovative approaches to issues of critical social importance.

Measure of America is a nonpartisan program whose mission is to stimulate fact-based public debate about and political attention to issues of well-being and access to opportunity in the United States. The hallmark of this work is the American Human Development Index, a composite measure that reflects what most people believe are the basic ingredients of a fulfilling life of choice and dignity: a long and healthy life, access to knowledge, and a decent standard of living. Recent MOA projects include DATA2GO.NYC and a series of reports on disconnected youth that anchor the national dialogue on the issue. Measure of America breathes life into numbers, working with partners to create reports, online apps, and advocacy campaigns that tell the story of well-being and opportunity in America’s communities.

 

Los Angeles County Office of Child Protection, Consultant, Portrait of Los Angeles County Project

The OCP seeks a part-time Consultant to help guide the development, integration, and dissemination of an innovative new project, A Portrait of Los Angeles County. This report will be developed by the Social Science Research Council’s initiative: Measure of America (MOA), and it will be the job of this Consultant to work as part of MOA’s on-the-ground team in Los Angeles. The Portrait of Los Angeles is a report that will examine well-being in Los Angeles County by combining education, health, and income into a single understandable and evidence-based metric known as the American Human Development Index.

About OCP and MOA

The Office of Child Protection (OCP) was created by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and Chief Executive Officer in February 2015 to collaborate with County agencies, the community, and other entities to identify problems impacting child protection and safety and develop solutions that will improve how the child protection system serves children and families. Its focus is to strengthen the system and promote better communication, coordination, and accountability that will minimize, if not eliminate, the risk that a child known to one or more entities in the system will be harmed.

Measure of America aims to breathe life into numbers, using data to create compelling narratives that foster greater understanding of our shared challenges and greater support for people-centered policies.  Building on Measure of America’s state and county-level “Portrait” series, this initiative will identify gaps in opportunity among county residents and conduct new data analysis and research to explore underlying causes of these disparities using the innovative American Human Development Index. The data gathered from this report will also help further the OCP’s efforts to implement a countywide prevention plan that will minimize the number of children entering our child welfare system. Nearly a dozen foundations have come together to fund this report, an unprecedented collaboration.

About Portrait of LA

We have learned from past Portraits that sustainable and innovative policy changes require deep stakeholder buy-in and awareness. This part-time Consultant will work with MOA to lead a process of stakeholder engagement and build County departments’ ownership for the project’s findings and data-driven recommendations. The Consultant will also convene an Advisory Committee of County decision-makers, including county and city officials, non-profit and philanthropy leaders, scholars, and others. The Consultant will gather their input on what data to layer onto the Human Development Index to ensure that the recommendations are strategic, timely, and realistic in the context of the OCP’s and County’s priorities and constraints.

The report will conclude with an “Agenda for Action,” a set of broad policy recommendations to be identified based on what it would take for LA County as a whole to increase well-being in the county and move up the Human Development Index, as well as priority actions and policies for those groups with the lowest scores. The consultant will facilitate the Advisory Committee to develop and finalize the Agenda for Action as well as develop and implement strategies to nurture and develop new partnerships with the goal of increasing the reach and impact of these powerful tools.

In addition, this Consultant will work within the rich data ecosystem of Los Angeles County, helping to build collaboration and alignment with related efforts.  The Consultant will ensure related data efforts are included and lifted up throughout the process of the Report’s development, integration, and dissemination.

Criteria

This 18-month position, starting in July of 2017, will be based in Los Angeles. The ideal candidate is a strategic thinker, connector, and facilitator with strong contacts in Los Angeles who will lead partnership and stakeholder engagement efforts to engage, organize, and energize stakeholders around the Portrait of Los Angeles County report’s findings and recommendations. Furthermore, the Consultant will work with the OCP, County agencies and stakeholders to use the Portrait as a vehicle for priority-setting and change-making.

The Portrait of Los Angeles will support an 18-month, half-time position within the OCP to provide the necessary capacity to utilize this powerful tool to the fullest extent possible.

Duties:

  • Lead, convene, and facilitate an Advisory Group of stakeholders (philanthropic funders, possibly a partners group from academia and the nonprofit/advocacy community, etc.) and work one-on-one with stakeholders as necessary to gather input. These groups will convene to guide the issues the Portrait investigates and continue the work by integrating the data and recommendations into OCP and County initiatives.
  • Coordinate with and involve related data projects in the County to align community engagement and advocacy.
  • Develop, document, and share best practices for stakeholder engagement with MOA data tools in coordination with MOA’s staff & partnership specialist.
  • Develop and implement strategy to nurture existing and develop new partnerships with the goal of increasing the reach and impact of this powerful tool; key committed partners include policymakers, philanthropy, and nonprofit and social service delivery organizations.
  • Assist in the dissemination of this and related data efforts to strengthen and support community engagements and policy development to improve well-being in Los Angeles County. Such efforts will include but are not limited to:
    • Train County personnel and community stakeholders to understand the Portrait’s findings and methodology so they can utilize this data for their own initiatives.
    • Organize events to engage, energize and build capacity among important stakeholders.
    • Develop tools and materials to maximize reach, impact, and strengthen partnerships both among County departments and with community-based organizations and others who advocate for and serve low-income communities.
    • Present the project’s work at meetings and conferences and to prospective partners.

Qualifications:

  • Five or more years’ experience with robust experience working in the County around community well-being, which may include working on projects related to health, education, and/or economic well-being of families and children.
  • Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree desirable.
  • Robust personal contacts with philanthropic, advocacy, policy-making, and public agencies in Los Angeles County.
  • Understanding of the structures and inner workings of Los Angeles County and the political process for advancing policy priorities at the County level.
  • Proven success in constituent engagement, mobilization, public education campaigns or other strategies to bring individuals or organizations together around an issue or cause.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills and public speaking experience.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects successfully.
  • Flexible, resourceful self-starter who thrives in a collaborative environment but who can also work independently.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, cultural competence, and a positive attitude.

Application Submission:

To submit an application, please email your resume and cover letter to Elizabeth Cohen at ecohen@ocp.lacounty.gov by Monday, July 17, 2017, at 5 p.m.

Candidates’ resumes will be evaluated on experience, level of expertise, and scope of job preparation for this position.  Interviews will be scheduled for only those most qualified for this position.

 

The Social Science Research Council Is An Equal Opportunity Employer.