CLOSER GCRF Senior Research Associate Post

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Social Science

Abstract

The UK is world leading in the collection, curation, storage and analysis of complex social data, and UCL is one of a small number of UK Research Organisations with broad ranging capability in this area. This post seeks to harness and expand UK expertise through working in partnership with other Research Councils, in-country organisations (e.g. research organisations, UK Department for International Development, policy actors, communities and charities), international organisations (e.g. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United Nations, World Bank, US National Institute of Aging) and existing investments (e.g. MRC's existing units, the Wellcome Trust and NIA's existing cohort studies in developing countries) to build capacity for data collection, research and analysis within and between countries and regions to enable better targeted development initiatives.

There are three key elements to this post:
1. To develop a strategic understanding of the issues and opportunities offered by this research, and help plan and execute appropriate subsequent activities to strengthen capacity in this area.
2. To play an active role in CLOSER's UK activities through, for example, research activity, communication and impact or assistance with training and capacity building.
3. To carry out high-quality research based on quantitative analysis of longitudinal studies in a development context.

The post holder and their GCRF work will be guided by, and report to, a small steering group of senior academics. They will be a member of the CLOSER team based at UCL's Institute of Education and will managed by CLOSER's Director, Professor Alison Park. Some overseas travel will be expected as part of the role.

Planned Impact

The GCRF Senior Research Associate will need to engage with a wide range of stakeholders as part of their development of a strategic understanding of the issues and opportunities involved in longitudinal research in an international development context. They will need to identify possible strategies to overcome key barriers to this sort of work, and where appropriate implement these.

Consequently, a range of the Research Associate's activities will relate to impact, and will require working with a wide range of stakeholders, both within and outwith the UK.

Example activities include:
* Working effectively with stakeholders within the UK and overseas, engaging with other relevant activities funded through the GCRF or of relevance to international development. Key stakeholders will include longitudinal studies (the CLOSER studies in particular) and research funders (including the ESRC, MRC and Wellcome)
* Developing a programme of activities aimed at building capacity (eg training workshops), and promoting impact, in relation to longitudinal research within developing countries
* Identifying and promoting opportunities for greater engagement between CLOSER and relevant UK-based and international longitudinal studies
* Developing lasting relationships, including generating proposals and exploring future collaboration between the UK and international studies
* Horizon scanning and promoting for opportunities to apply for GCRF funding, identifying networks of relevance to longitudinal studies.
* Reflecting on the effectiveness of the existing GCRF longitudinal fellowships scheme, and share learning with the ESRC and other relevant actors in the longitudinal studies' environment.
* Contributing where required to activities that promote the value of longitudinal studies. Areas where contributions would be particularly useful include promoting CLOSER's work and developing training and capacity building materials.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description CLOSER International is a GCRF project that aims to promote the use of existing longitudinal studies from low and middle income countries (LMIC), and to establish effective networks with the different stakeholders involved in the longitudinal landscape (study authors, funders, researchers, policymakers). As a first step, we set up an Advisory Group composed of senior figures involved in the funding, design and use of longitudinal surveys.

Together with this Advisory Group, we've established CLOSER International's strategy, and agreed on a series of major project deliverables. CLOSER International's first milestone will be the development of a catalogue of longitudinal studies (LS) from LMIC. Over the past three months, the team has mapped the existing landscape of LS, collecting the existing metadata, and creating it when it was missing. The catalogue itself will soon be operational: the upload of studies to the catalogue is planned to begin at the end of March.
Exploitation Route The first deliverable of the project, the Atlas Catalogue, will come online in the upcoming months, which will aim to be a useful resource for the wider longitudinal research community, including study funders, authors and reseachers.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Education,Other

 
Description While the project is still in its early stages, some initial impacts have already started to become visible. Our work on developing the Atlas Catalogue of longitudinal studies from developing countries has led to two parties already getting in touch with us, inquiring about the conditions for inclusion. One of them was the Institute for Fiscal Studies, who have large amounts of longitudinal datasets used in impact evaluations. The other is the Ministry of Social Development, Uruguay, who contacted us to find out what the required metadata format was, in order for us to include a cohort study that had not previously been made public. This is one of the key objectives of the Catalogue - to become a resource where study owners aspire to be included in, and therefore comply with basic metadata documentation standards.
First Year Of Impact 2019
Sector Other
Impact Types Policy & public services

 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council
Department ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (Cesagen)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation Government of the UK
Department Department for International Development (DfID)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation Institute for Fiscal Studies
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC)
Department Medical Research Council (MRC), MRC/UVRI Unit, Uganda
Country Uganda 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation UK Data Service
Department Health and Lifestyle Survey
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation UNICEF
Department UNICEF UK BabyFriendly Initiative
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation University College London
Department Centre for Longitudinal Studies
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation University of Cape Town
Department Centre for Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Research
Country South Africa 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation University of Oxford
Department Oxford University Clinical Academic Graduate School (OUCAGS)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation University of Southampton
Department University of Southampton Clinical Trials Unit
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description CLOSER International Advisory Group 
Organisation Wellcome Trust
Department Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility (Cambridge)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Established a diverse team of senior experts to help us guide the CLOSER International project. Conducted the first meeting on November 27th and planned the next for March 18th, 2019. Members of the AG: ESRC Pamela Mason MRC Gavin Malloch Wellcome Trust Erica Pufall DfID Kerstin Hinds UNICEF, GLORI Network Prerna Banati DataFirst Andrew Kerr Centre for Longitudinal Studies Emla Fitzsimons University of Oxford, links with CSAE Stefan Dercon (Kagera HDS) IFS-EDePo Sonya Krutikova University of Southampton; COHORTS group Caroline Fall UK Data Service Louise Corti
Collaborator Contribution Members of the AG commit to attending AG meetings on an academic term-basis, and provide input into the direction of the project. Propose new directions of work, point towards weak spots in the plan, and suggest points of contact in other institutions that we should be in contact with.
Impact First AG Meeting
Start Year 2018
 
Description Conference on the opportunities and challenges of conducting longitudinal research in low and middle income countries 
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council
Department ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (Cesagen)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution CLOSER International contributed to the brainstorming and planning of the conference, the design of the panels, and suggested speakers. We also will take part of the conference itself (due for late March) and present in at least two panels.
Collaborator Contribution RSS is taking the lead on the organisation and preparation of the bid to the ESRC for funding. LSHTM will provide a venue for the conference. Young Lives contributed to the planning of the conference and will provide speakers.
Impact The partnership has been established but the main output, which will be a conference to be had in late March, has not happened yet. CLOSER International is behind the organization of the conference and will also present in at least two panels.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Conference on the opportunities and challenges of conducting longitudinal research in low and middle income countries 
Organisation London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)
Department School for Public Health Research @ LSHTM (SPHR@L)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution CLOSER International contributed to the brainstorming and planning of the conference, the design of the panels, and suggested speakers. We also will take part of the conference itself (due for late March) and present in at least two panels.
Collaborator Contribution RSS is taking the lead on the organisation and preparation of the bid to the ESRC for funding. LSHTM will provide a venue for the conference. Young Lives contributed to the planning of the conference and will provide speakers.
Impact The partnership has been established but the main output, which will be a conference to be had in late March, has not happened yet. CLOSER International is behind the organization of the conference and will also present in at least two panels.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Conference on the opportunities and challenges of conducting longitudinal research in low and middle income countries 
Organisation Royal Statistical Society
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Learned Society 
PI Contribution CLOSER International contributed to the brainstorming and planning of the conference, the design of the panels, and suggested speakers. We also will take part of the conference itself (due for late March) and present in at least two panels.
Collaborator Contribution RSS is taking the lead on the organisation and preparation of the bid to the ESRC for funding. LSHTM will provide a venue for the conference. Young Lives contributed to the planning of the conference and will provide speakers.
Impact The partnership has been established but the main output, which will be a conference to be had in late March, has not happened yet. CLOSER International is behind the organization of the conference and will also present in at least two panels.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Conference on the opportunities and challenges of conducting longitudinal research in low and middle income countries 
Organisation University of Oxford
Department Young Lives
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution CLOSER International contributed to the brainstorming and planning of the conference, the design of the panels, and suggested speakers. We also will take part of the conference itself (due for late March) and present in at least two panels.
Collaborator Contribution RSS is taking the lead on the organisation and preparation of the bid to the ESRC for funding. LSHTM will provide a venue for the conference. Young Lives contributed to the planning of the conference and will provide speakers.
Impact The partnership has been established but the main output, which will be a conference to be had in late March, has not happened yet. CLOSER International is behind the organization of the conference and will also present in at least two panels.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Blog introducing the CLOSER International project hosted on the CLOSER website 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact A blog reporting on the plans for CLOSER International, and the general importance of data discoverability. Introduced the plans for the Atlas Catalogue, so it also set the scene for future developments in the project and the CLOSER website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.closer.ac.uk/news-opinion/blog/closer-international-data-discoverability-borders/
 
Description Presentation at the North East Universities Development Consortium (NEUDC) Conference at Cornell Univesity 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 30 people attended the presentation of my paper "Climate Change and Agriculture: Farmer Adaptation to Extreme Heat" at the 2018 NEUDC Conference at Cornell. This lead several additional conversations regarding my research and CLOSER International's work.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Twitter thread on the value and impact of longitudinal research in low and middle income countries 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact We kick-started a bi-weekly section in CLOSER's twitter web presence, where Francisco Oteiza presents examples of the value and impact of longitudinal studies from low and middle income countries. The plan is to take a research paper and summarise it in 4-6 tweets, pointing towards the valuable insights raised and the data used.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL https://twitter.com/CLOSER_UK/status/1089858180891533313