Research Assistant or Research Associate

Job Type

Full Time




United States


Research Assistant and Research Associate Role Descriptions

About HTI Labs

We use data science and social science to conduct research, advise policy, and support investigative efforts on violence against women and girls. We:

  • Connect information sources to generate new and unique datasets
  • Support policymakers, law enforcement, service providers, and the broader academic community

We are a growing organization* that values rigor, intellectual creativity and collegiality. With demonstrated performance, all employees of HTI Labs have the opportunity to take on significant responsibility. We believe that knowing the world as it is allows us to bring about the world as it should be.  

We are hiring for two roles: Research Assistant and Research Associate. These positions are based in Omaha, Nebraska.  


Role and Responsibilities of the Research Assistant and Research Associate

The core function of both the Research Assistant and Associate roles is to perform applied research. In addition, both roles will provide operational and administrative support on an ad hoc basis. The Research Assistant or Associate will work under the Director of Research and collaborate with HTI Labs’ other analytical, programming and administrative staff members as necessary. Both positions require significant autonomy, but will also offer regular opportunities to learn from other colleagues. The positions are based on one-year contract. Given mutual interest, there is the potential to be hired in a permanent role the following year. 

While both the Assistant and Associate perform similar functions, the Associate is expected to take on significantly more responsibility for shaping and executing research projects. The Associate will also perform fewer administrative tasks than the Assistant. In contrast, the Assistant will receive more guidance in implementation of defined tasks. The Research Assistant role would be a good fit for a recent graduate who wants to build their skill sets whereas the Associate role is appropriate for someone with significant experience conducting applied research.

Perform applied research to support HTI Labs’ work (80%+)

The Research Assistant or Associate will work closely with the Director of Research on most research tasks. Each role will have the opportunity to shape analyses by noting gaps in our current understandings and diving deep into data to understand anomalies. These tasks will take 80% or more of the RA’s time. Potential tasks include:

  • Reviews of academic literature, reports from social sector organizations, media accounts and other sources to inform:
  • Efforts to change legislation
  • New plans for system-wide data collection
  • Evaluations of community-wide service provision to survivors of violence against women
  • Interviews with key stakeholders to understand current practices
  • Descriptive exploration of HTI Labs’ unique dataset tracking the commercial sex industry to understand particular contexts and trends over time
  • Basic quantitative analyses of survey data to understand attitudes toward human trafficking
  • Building, cleaning or coding datasets
  • Authoring or contributing to reports and presentations

Provide operational and administrative support (20%-)

The RA will work with other administrative staff to support HTI Labs’ work as needed. We expect these duties to take 20% or less of the RA’s time. Potential tasks include:

  • Addressing scheduling and other logistics of meetings and conferences
  • Gathering necessary office materials and completing some basic housekeeping to maintain the office environment
  • Taking notes during meetings


Skills and Qualifications

The Research Assistant position requires:

  • A BA (or experience allowing the RA to meet other qualifications)
  • An empirical orientation. By this, we mean the RA synthesizes facts and marshals evidence to understand the world and has the humility to change those understandings when different evidence becomes available
  • Familiarity with social scientific methodologies and basic statistical concepts
  • Ability to creatively employ multiple approaches to answer analytical questions
  • Capacity to understand how detailed data relates to the big picture and to synthesize across findings to show their relevance to policy and practice 
  • Substantive interest in HTI’s areas of work

The ideal Research Assistant may have:

  • Experience performing quantitative or qualitative research using statistical software (e.g., R or Stata) or primary sources
  • Familiarity with local, state or federal policymaking 
  • Experience with research or advocacy related to any of HTI’s substantive areas of work
  • Competence in Python

In addition to the above, the Research Associate position requires:

  • An advanced social science degree (e.g., Economics, Political Science or Public Policy) or three to five years of experience performing applied research 
  • Demonstrated ability to implement complex social science research projects, including quantitative analyses
  • Solid understanding of statistical methods and significant experience with at least one statistical software (e.g., R or Stata)


* Our new website is in the works. To learn about our past work in the meantime, google Human Trafficking Initiative and Creighton University!

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply


To apply, send a cover letter explaining your interest in and qualifications for either the Assistant or Associate role and a resume or cv to Please:

  • Attach the cover letter and resume as separate documents (either word or PDF) named as Lastname_document_role (e.g., Lastname_coverletter_researchassociate)
  • Use the subject line “Research Assistant application” or “Research Associate application” 

No phone calls, please!