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AmericaSpeaks Seeking Research Director for Democracy Lab

AmericaSpeaks (www.americaspeaks.org) is looking to hire a Director for its Democracy Lab for Research and Innovation. AmericaSpeaks’ Democracy Lab has built an impressive track record in the field of civic engagement over the last five years. This newly created position is an extraordinary growth opportunity for an entrepreneurial professional to strengthen the Lab within the context of a vibrant, growing nonprofit committed to engaging citizen voices in local, regional, and national governance.

The Democracy Lab Director would strengthen the research and evaluation activities within the organization and the field, as well as identify, promote and develop new ways to approach civic engagement – online and face to face – particularly focused on institution and movement building at the national level.

General responsibilities of the Director are:
· Carry out regular investigations into the state of the “field” of civic engagement, specifically the areas of citizen participation and public deliberation, online and face-to-face. The results of these investigations should be made available through a variety of channels including print and electronic communication.
· Support AmericaSpeaks in delivering higher impact projects for citizens and decision-makers by developing strategies to sustain participation, integrate research and evaluation into citizen engagement projects, and support the development and implementation of systems to monitor and track project outcomes.
· Lead the development of a national infrastructure that moves the U.S. closer toward institutionalizing public deliberation at the national level through knowledge-building, coalition-building, and advocacy.
· Support the organization in its efforts to cultivate a nation-wide network of citizens inspired by the prospect of a renewed democracy through online community-building and outreach.

Specific Responsibilities Include:
· Develop and implement a strategy that defines the key activities of the Democracy Lab and revenue streams over the next five-years.
· Develop and implement all aspects of an internal evaluation procedure for the organization’s public engagement activities.
· Carry out regular investigations into the field of civic engagement and author reports, whitepapers, and other documentation that build knowledge in the field.
· Develop and implement innovative approaches to online engagement as part of the organization’s civic engagement activities.
· Build working partnerships with a range of civic engagement interests, including academic, corporate, government and civil society researchers.
· Communicate findings from research activities to key networks and participate regularly in knowledge-sharing forums such as conferences, roundtable discussions, and online forums.
· Support the President and Vice-president for Development in raising funds for the Democracy Lab, including the development of revenue streams, corporate gifts, venture philanthropy and grant-writing.

Knowledge and Skills Preferred for the Position
· Five years experience in the nonprofit sector with a track record of project management.
· Demonstrated success in fundraising through a variety of channels and activities.
· Enthusiasm for and broad understanding of the field of civic engagement, including its sub-fields like deliberative democracy.
· Familiarity with qualitative and quantitative research methods and a track-record of publication.
· Enthusiasm for and thorough understanding of online civic engagement and the intersections of online politics, activism and social networks.
· Familiarity with online engagement tools and Web2.0.
· A strong commitment to the mission of AmericaSpeaks.
· Ability to multi-task and work with people of different levels of experience and backgrounds.
· Ability to think strategically and solve critical problems requiring originality and creativity.
· Strong communication and organizational skills; excellent writing and oral presentation skills.
· Computer proficiency; some knowledge of web development preferred.
· Willingess to travel and adjust schedule to the demands of the job.
· Position is based in Washington, DC.

This is a full-time position. Salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits. To apply, send cover letter and resume to lhtorres@americaspeaks.org. Enquiries please call 802-563-2759.

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Sandy Heierbacher
Sandy Heierbacher co-founded the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) with Andy Fluke in 2002, with the 60 volunteers and 50 organizations who worked together to plan NCDD’s first national conference. She served as NCDD's Executive Director between 2002 and 2018. Click here for a list of articles and resources authored by Sandy.

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