Research Assistant


To support the research activities undertaken by the Start Network’s Evidence & Learning team to assess and articulate the impact and key learnings of the Start Network and its programmes.

Working with the Evidence & Learning team, the successful applicant will work with the other members of the Evidence & Learning team to undertake research, interpret data, and communicate findings across a range of projects that evidence the impact and learning of Start Network activities. This could include supporting in the design and administration of data collection projects; cleaning, processing, and analysing primary data; and undertaking literature and desk reviews. Although some previous experience in social research would be advantageous, prior experience is not necessary. Rather, the successful applicant should be willing to learn and implement practical research skills learned on the job through guidance provided by the other members of the Evidence & Learning team.

This is a six month contract.


Support with Research   

  • Undertaking desk reviews, assimilating information and conducting landscape analyses and literature reviews using a range of materials and sources, including online platforms

  • Support with the design and implementation of data collection tools for primary data (e.g. surveys, focus group discussions, and in-depth interviews) and secondary data collection

  • Assist with managing and supporting external consultants hired to undertake primary data collection

  • Work with both qualitative and quantitative data, including interview transcription, data cleaning, processing, and analysis

 Presenting Research Findings  

  • Creating relevant graphics and visualisations to present qualitative and quantitative information

  • Co-developing technical reports, PowerPoint presentations, and other written pieces for a range of audiences and platforms

  • Writing and publishing blog posts on the Start Network website

 Information Management  

  • Establishing and maintaining databases of relevant stakeholder contacts and information relevant to the work of the Evidence & Learning team and the Start Network more generally

  • Creating tools related to information management (ex: informed consent forms) and in obtaining consent and permissions for various research projects and products from member representatives and other key stakeholders




  • Use relevant ways to communicate timely messages to the right audiences using appropriate channels

  • Build trust by doing what you say you will do, admitting when you don’t know something or when you have made a mistake

Strategic Thinking

  • Actively seeking to understand how your role fits into the work of the team and network by asking questions and working on cross-team initiatives

  • Able to plan and deliver flexibly to take account of changing internal and/or external factors by reprioritising and asking for help


  • Clear on own role and responsibilities and can communicate with others during day-to-day interactions, seeking clarity where needed

  • Build networks internally and externally by showing curiosity and learning from others

Leadership of Self and Others

  • Understand own strengths and shadows and how these interrelated with others through review and reflection

  • Open and responsive to feedback

Ability Adapt and Learn:

  • Seek to learn lessons and apply the learning to future work by actively asking questions, being honest, curious, and brave to abandon things that aren’t working

  • Able to reprioritise and shift focus in response to changing needs of the organisation or network by being aware of how your role sits in the system

Getting Things Done the Start Network Way:

  • Overcome obstacles by taking initiatives to identify issues, seeking help to address them and escalating appropriately


  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint necessary, experience with standard data analysis, graphics, and presentation tools and packages preferred

  • Familiar with best practices and practical application of both quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis


  • Strong communication skills, including being able to communicate ideas clearly and professionally to a range of stakeholders

  • Strong interpersonal skills, being able to work across the Start team, with members, consultants, and other stakeholders

  • Good organisational skills, being able to handle and manage multiple projects and datasets while working to deadlines



  • Degree or Master level in a quantitative or social science field

  • Experience in social research not required but advantageous

  • Experience using Salesforce (desirable)

  • Relevant language skills, particularly in French and/or Spanish (desirable)



  • To carry out the responsibilities of the role in line with the Start Network Code of Conduct and with a commitment to safeguarding adults and children

  • A commitment to the Start Network vision, principles, values and approach

Role posted - 2020-07-29T10:43:28Z 11:43am, 29th Jul 2020 BST