Research and Evaluation Specialist

Evaluation & Impact Analysis · Vancouver, British Columbia
Department Evaluation & Impact Analysis
Employment Type Permanent Full-Time
Minimum Experience Experienced

The Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR) is BC's health research funding agency. Funded by the Province of British Columbia, MSFHR helps develop, retain and recruit the talented people whose research improves the health of British Columbians, addresses health system priorities, creates jobs and adds to the knowledge economy. 

Since our inception in 2001, we have built a reputation for excellence, responsiveness and action. This is thanks to our team of talented professionals who are committed to supporting BC health research and helping researchers create and apply research evidence to practice, policy, and further research.

Position Summary

Reporting to the Manager, Evaluation & Impact Analysis, the Research & Evaluation Specialist plays a key leadership role in the implementation of MSFHR’s organizational evaluation and impact analysis strategy. The strategy covers monitoring and evaluation of MSFHR programs, practices, initiatives and partnerships. The Research & Evaluation Specialist also leads and supports cross-cutting analyses and research projects on MSFHR’s impact as a health research funder.


The Research & Evaluation Specialist is passionate about transforming data into information that can be used to inform decision-making and contribute towards building a learning and evaluation culture. They are curious and creative, and bring a systematic and context-informed approach to research and evaluation. A natural team player, they are a strong communicator, and skilled at collaborating and communicating across teams. They have experience balancing competing tasks and priorities and driving multifaceted projects to completion.

Key Responsibilities

Leads accountability, learning and analysis activities in relation to MSFHR funding programs:

  • Refines and leads approaches for tracking the outputs and impacts of MSFHR funding programs including collecting information from award holders and other stakeholders (e.g., peer reviewers).
    • Seeks input from teams across the Foundation including the Research Competitions team, Strategy team and Knowledge Translation team.
    • Designs award holder progress reports and peer reviewer surveys and leads the analysis of these data to generate insights about the outputs and impacts of MSFHR funding programs.
    • Generates data to support MSFHR’s program learning and improvement process, in collaboration with the Manager, Funding Program Design.
  • Refines and leads the development, operationalization and collection of performance measures under MSFHR’s accountability framework with government and strategic plan performance framework. This includes working closely with the Data Analytics Specialist and Finance team to ensure that data are accurate and robust.
  • Leads the response to internal and external data requests, in collaboration with the Data Analytics Specialist.
    • Ensures that data outputs are accessible to and meet the needs of users internally and externally.

Designs and leads rigorous research & evaluation projects:

  • Together with the Manager, Evaluation & Impact Analysis, leads, plans and implements research and evaluation projects utilizing multi-methods approaches (both qualitative and quantitative).
    • Demonstrates resourcefulness and creativity in the selection of data sources and methods.
    • Balances rigour and robustness with developing usable and timely information that answers strategic questions.
    • Keeps across relevant trends and promising practices and methods in ‘research on research’ and evaluation. This involves participating in and learning from relevant communities of practice (e.g., CES, CHSRPA, RoRI) and engaging in ongoing professional development.
    • Liaises with a variety of stakeholders including senior leadership to clarify scope and purpose of research and evaluation activities and ensure that deliverables meet their needs.


  • Conducts research and analysis to answer strategic questions about MSFHR’s programs and initiatives applying appropriate methods including literature reviews, surveys, interviews, trend analysis, online or document reviews on health research-related topics, analysis of MSFHR data holdings or data from other vendors (e.g., Dimensions for Funders).
  • Collaborates with Senior Specialist, Strategy to ensure connection between strategy and research/evaluation activities and relevance to emerging trends and policies relating to the health research funding sector in BC, Canada and internationally.


Data curation, synthesis, communication and knowledge dissemination:

  • Synthesizes findings in written documents, such as blogs reports, briefing documents, peer reviewed journal publications and presentations.
  • Collaborates with the Data Analytics Specialist to produce visualizations, data summaries and build dashboards for internal and external audiences.
  • Collaborates with the Communications team to develop infographics and narrative to communicate about our impact with external stakeholders.
  • Works with the Communications team to produce evaluation information in various formats for internal and external audiences (e.g., blogs, summary reports, infographics).
  • Leads and engages in collective sense making (e.g., data parties) with a cross section of staff to triangulate findings and build internal capacity for research and evaluation.
  • Builds internal capacity for evaluation and impact analysis by supporting staff to manage evaluation tasks related to their projects and programs.


This job description outlines the key responsibilities for the role, and is not meant to be exhaustive. Other responsibilities and tasks may be assigned, or may naturally become a part of this role over time.

Experience and Education Required

  • A graduate degree in a relevant field (e.g., research-related science, health science or social science discipline).
  • A minimum of 3 years of experience leading research, evaluation and/or performance measurement projects in a health-related setting. Preferably involving academia and other stakeholder groups such as government, health care, and the not-for-profit sector.
  • Experience developing and implementing rigorous multi-method evaluation plans or research plans, including experience with analysis and reporting.
  • Experience distilling complex information for a variety of different audiences.
  • Experience with data visualization tools and/or business intelligence pools (e.g., Power BI).
  • Experience with survey design and analysis.
  • Familiarity with research impact frameworks such as the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences health research impact framework an asset.


Key Skills & Attributes

  • Proactive with a mindset of continuous learning and improvement.
  • Detail-oriented while still able to keep the big picture in mind.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and the ability to synthesize information and communicate with appropriate stakeholders (e.g., writing briefing notes, correspondence, reports and other materials
  • Ability to produce robust, accurate, relevant and timely analyses. Takes a systematic and organized approach and is thorough and accurate with details.
  • Strong computer literacy including demonstrated Advanced level skill in a Windows environment, full competency in Microsoft Office programs (particularly Excel, PowerPoint, Word), and competency in a variety of data analysis tools (e.g., R, Stata, NVivo, QDA miner) and survey design software (e.g., Survey Monkey, Qualtrics).
  • Team player with excellent collaboration skills, including facilitation skills, conflict resolution and the ability to effectively give and receive feedback. Demonstrated ability to foster strong working relationships with colleagues and to collaborate across work teams.
  • Able to multitask and prioritize numerous tasks and competing priorities in a complex environment, and to deliver high quality results on time.
  • Understanding of data practices and privacy, especially as it relates to equity, diversity and inclusion in research and evaluation.

How to Apply

If this sounds like you and you would like to play a role in maximizing the impact of health research in BC, please submit your resume and cover letter by July 29th, 2021, online at We thank everyone for their interest but only suitable candidates will be contacted.

Thank You

Your application was submitted successfully.

  • Location
    Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Department
    Evaluation & Impact Analysis
  • Employment Type
    Permanent Full-Time
  • Minimum Experience