Associate Advisor - Canada

The Behavioural Insights Team

    Closing: 11:59pm, 26th Jul 2020 EDT

Job Description

About the Behavioural Insights Team

The Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) is a leading social impact consulting organization bringing evidence-based policy making to governments and nonprofits across the world. We believe that if you understand how people make decisions in the real world, you can design and deliver better policies and services.

This belief means that we draw on the lessons from the behavioural sciences to design creative and scalable solutions in fields ranging from health to criminal justice to humanitarian response. We are also committed to using and generating evidence, so we test our interventions using techniques like randomized controlled trials (RCTs) before they are scaled. We have run around 400 RCTs to date. For some of our recent projects, please see

BIT was created inside the UK government in 2010 as the first government organization dedicated to applying behavioural science to policy and programs. We became a separate social purpose corporation in 2014. We opened our Canadian office in Toronto, ON in October 2019.

Who we are looking for

As our portfolio of Canadian projects grows, we are looking to expand our team in Toronto. We’re now looking for an Associate Advisor to join us.

Associate Advisors typically hold Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees along with one to two years’ work or research experience, although we are open to candidates with a range of work experience / academic backgrounds. If you are interested in joining the team but aren't sure if you are a fit for this role, we encourage you to apply. 

At BIT, we develop programs and policies that serve people more efficiently and effectively, and we are particularly focused on populations who have not benefited fully from existing approaches. For example, we seek to increase uptake of government services among vulnerable communities, such as primary care for low-income families, job search support for people who have lost their jobs, or counseling for victims of intimate partner violence. We also work on increasing representation for traditionally underrepresented communities by bringing their perspectives to applied behavioural science research, e.g. conducting exploratory research with these communities or ensuring their participation as stakeholders during project planning. We therefore value candidates who bring knowledge and experience around issues facing these populations.

We seek candidates who embody the BIT values: prioritizing social impact; empiricism and humility; fresh thinking, collaboration; and public service. In real terms, that means we turn down projects that we don’t think will make a positive impact on the world; we hold project meetings where staff of all seniority levels are asked to contribute their perspective; and we are constantly checking our ideas and assumptions against the growing social science evidence base--and changing course when it turns out we were wrong. A successful candidate for this role will be both a critical thinker and an empathetic, collaborative teammate.

Successful candidates will need the right to live and work in Canada.

About the role

BIT’s Associate Advisors work under the direction of Advisors and Senior Advisors. They are expected to contribute to applied behavioural science projects in many ways, including but not limited to:

  • Developing interventions and trials, e.g. applying concepts from behavioral science to the design of communications, processes, and programs; assisting in the design of field experiments, including power and sample size calculations, developing plans for data collection, cleaning, and analysis

  • Research and analysis, e.g. helping the team conduct field research and desk research; conducting statistical analysis; contributing to the synthesis of findings 

  • Written and oral communication, e.g. drafting and editing client-facing notes, reports, and PowerPoint slides; co-facilitating client workshops

  • Client management support, e.g. drafting client emails, meeting agendas, and similar products; joining client meetings and calls 

  • Work planning and project management, at minimum by proactively keeping tabs on their own tasks and timelines, responding to project needs, and in some cases taking a more active role in work plan development and coordination

  • Operational support, e.g. scheduling meetings, booking travel, and preparing workshop materials

Note: For all tasks, AAs receive close supervision, guidance, and support. As an AA develops in the role, they will be expected to take more ownership of specific tasks within the project development process

Some of your typical daily tasks may include:

  • Research and analysis

    • Scan the evidence base for relevant behavioural science findings; assess quality of research supporting those findings; suggest behavioral intervention approaches based on that research and analysis

    • With support from Advisors and Senior Advisors, develop the experimental design for randomized controlled trials

    • Investigate and respond to gaps, errors and irregularities identified through field research or data analysis

    • Conduct randomizations, power calculations, descriptive and multiple regression analysis in Stata

Note: We provide on-the-job training for specific data tasks and techniques, so extensive experience in this area is not a requirement. However, successful candidates will typically be familiar with the underlying statistical concepts (e.g. randomization, hypothesis testing, sampling) and will be comfortable reviewing results and considering how those findings apply to a particular problem or setting.

  • Work planning and project management

    • Deliver tasks on time, or proactively communicate around challenges to on-time delivery 

    • Provide input on project planning and scoping

  • Client management support

    • Schedule and participate in client meetings and phone calls

    • Support project team in maintaining a high level of responsiveness to client communications, e.g. by drafting email responses on tight deadlines

  • Written and oral communication

    • Write clearly and concisely with appropriate style for the audience

    • Communicate behavioral science concepts clearly and concisely

    • Present to external partners on BIT projects and behavioral science concepts

  • Strategic and operational support 

    • Contribute to proposals and policy notes 

    • Actively engage in relevant policy agendas by reading widely, attending conferences and events

Associate Advisors at BIT come from a range of backgrounds, and there is no single profile required for success. However, there are certain needs we anticipate in this important role as one of the first team members of BIT Canada. The following backgrounds, interests and qualifications will be prioritized for this role but are not required:

  • Wide policy interests and a willingness to take on a broad range of projects and project tasks;

  • Comfort working for a small, new organization (BIT Canada), including a high tolerance for ambiguity / change; 

  • Experience developing or contributing to the design of randomized controlled trials and other types of evaluation; 

  • Experience working in or with public or non-profit sector organizations in Canada; 

  • Understanding of core concepts from behavioural science; and

  • Fluency in French.

More generally, the following backgrounds and qualifications are often helpful for success at BIT:

  • Intellectual curiosity and open-mindedness

  • Dedication to achieving social impact

  • Experience balancing multiple priorities and projects in a work environment, particularly in a client- or customer-facing role

  • Ability to write clearly and concisely

  • Strong academic performance

  • Ability to work collaboratively with teammates and clients with a broad range of backgrounds, political affiliations, and skill sets

  • Comfort with travel inside and outside Canada

About the opportunity

  • Office Location: Toronto, ON

  • Type: Full-time

  • Compensation: $51,500 - $60,500 per year, plus benefits. Placement within the salary band will be commensurate with the candidate’s experience.

To learn more about what it's like working at BIT, check out this handy FAQ sheet and feel free to make suggestions:

BIT is partially owned by our employees. We strive to provide a supportive work environment where you can develop your skills and knowledge in this fast-evolving field. We offer flexible working arrangements and other policies to support the health and wellbeing of everyone on the team.

The Behavioural Insights Team is committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity and is determined to ensure that no applicant or employee receives less favorable treatment on the grounds of gender, age, disability, religion, belief, sexual orientation, marital status, or race, or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.

Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be blind reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the blind review

Applications closed Mon 27th Jul 2020


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be blind reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the blind review

Start your de-biased application