Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Research Assistant (Religion) with Pew Research Center

Organization Overview:

Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research in the areas of U.S. politics and policy views; media and journalism; internet and technology; religion and public life; Hispanic trends; global attitudes and U.S. social and demographic trends. Pew Research does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. Pew Research Center’s work is carried out by a staff of 130.

Department Overview

The Research Assistant is a position within the Religion research group, which seeks to promote a deeper understanding of issues at the intersection of religion and public affairs. The Religion research group conducts surveys, demographic analyses and other social science research on important aspects of religion and public life in the U.S. and around the world.

Position Summary:

The Research Assistant helps with coordinating the work of student interns hired to code information on government restrictions on religion as well as religious hostilities and violence from major international reports such as the U.S. State Department’s annual International Religious Freedom reports and International Crisis Group Reports. Once the data are collected, the research assistant helps to analyze the data and write the annual Pew Forum report, other supplementary reports and analysis pieces. This position reports to the Director of Religion Research.

Primary Responsibilities:

Coding Tasks (35%)
Assist in planning for annual coding
Coordinate and supervise annual coding
Assist in managing the data

Data Analysis (35%)
Help to prepare a fully cleaned final dataset
Provide additional analysis for religion research reports that further analyze these data and compares them with other data from religion research surveys and other data sources, as requested

Writing (20%)
Assist in writing the next report and other related reports that analyze the restrictions data

Other Research Assistance (10%)
Assist with other religion research projects as requested

Knowledge and Skill Requirements:

  • Ability to manage quantitative data
  • Great attention to detail and accuracy
  • Strong written, verbal and communication skills
  • Strong project management skills
  • Excellent internet search skills
  • Excellent computer skills, including Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Must be proactive and able to anticipate needs
  • Must be able to manage multiple priorities and projects
  • Must be very results-oriented
  • Must work well in a high-paced, team-oriented professional environment
  • Must interact well with senior officials


  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • Must have a substantive interest in the cross-national study of government restrictions on religion and/or religious hostilities and violence in societies. The ideal candidate should be able to articulate how this research can contribute to his/her developing scholarship and already possess substantive knowledge of religion and world affairs.
  • Candidates with experience and skills in project management and/or coding are preferred.
  • Experience with data analysis software such as SPSS or Stata is a plus.
Learn more and apply at Careers4Terps.