Postdoctoral Scholar - Mathematical Sciences

Position Overview

School / Campus / College: School of Medicine

Organization: Health Metrics Sciences

Title: Postdoctoral Scholar - Mathematical Sciences

Position Details

Position Description

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent research organization that produces cutting-edge scientific and policy-relevant quantitative evidence for use by policymakers, donors, and other stakeholders. Based at the University of Washington, IHME’s ongoing work provides high-quality measurement of the world’s major health problems, assesses how these problems are being addressed, and identifies how best to dedicate resources to maximize health improvement.  IHME’s approach maximized cross-disciplinary, quantitative analytic approaches and methods aimed at incorporating all relevant data in order to produce policy-relevant results using ground-breaking science.  

IHME and the Department of Health Metrics Sciences has an excellent opportunity for a Postdoctoral Scholar to joint our team.  Scholar will develop new methods that can be applied across multiple projects to solve challenging analytic problems.  Examples include: improving the ability to use different dimensions of data into modeling efforts; improving the quality of inference; understanding and adapting emerging statistical and mathematical methods to IHME applications, and developing new targeted methods for IHME applications.  In each case, the challenges addressed by the individual will require an intensive understanding of the principles underlying the analytic task, command of cutting-edge methods, and contextual understanding of the key outputs desired by the analytic understanding.  We are looking for someone ready to advance in their career in population health sciences and/or methods development. As a Postdoctoral Scholar you will contribute to research design and training and mentoring junior staff.  The position requires the ability to translate from research needs into methodological possibilities.  The individual will be a vital member of the Mathematical Sciences and Computational Algorithms team

You will be integrally involved in producing, critiquing, improving, and disseminating results. You are someone that is capable of keeping your team on track to meet deadlines and research objectives. You have experience with the publication process, and at IHME, you will build out your portfolio with several peer-reviewed papers in a range of venues, from mathematical sciences to population health and medicine. You thrive in a collaborative work environment and are capable of working on multiple projects concurrently while meeting deadlines. You keep current of recent scientific, engineering and technical advances and are able to translate these into your research.  Overall, Postdoctoral Scholars are critical members of agile, dynamic research teams.  They are accountable for achieving agreed deliverables to make key indicators available and to produce ground-breaking science. This position is contingent on project funding availability. Anticipated start is November 2019, or as soon as available. 



  • Formulate and model problems using mathematical and statistical modeling tools.
  • Develop methods for specific application areas, and disseminate these methods using open source software.
  • Provide ideas and content for the development of internal trainings. Teach established trainings.
  • Exhibit command of one or more of the research areas at IHME, including the methodology and its components.
  • Independently carry out quantitative analyses and participate in reciprocal research projects. Interpret and vet results from junior staff, formulate conclusions and inform team leaders.
  • Develop, quality check, and distribute complex data sets to be used in epidemiological and statistical analyses.
  • Develop and implement new computational and statistical methods. Create, test, and use relevant computer code (Python, R, SQL or equivalent). Maintain, modify, and execute analytic machinery that results.
  • Draft presentations, manuscripts, and contribute to funding proposals. Lead and co-author scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Maintain scientific awareness and intellectual agility with data, methods, and analytic techniques.
  • Oversee staff to include: hiring and training; leading workflow; priority setting; critiquing work and establishing quality standards; conducting regular performance assessments, providing mentorship and professional development for employees.
  • Contribute to research design.
  • Other duties as assigned that fall within reasonable scope of research team.

Postdoctoral scholars are represented by UAW 4121 and are subject to the collective bargaining agreement, unless agreed exclusion criteria apply. For more information, please visit the University of Washington Labor Relations website.

Postdoctoral Scholar appointments are initially for 12-months with opportunities to renew. Appointment not to exceed 5 years, including postdoctoral experience(s) at other institutions. 


Condition of employment:

  • Appointment to this position is contingent upon obtaining satisfactory results from a criminal background check.
  • Weekend and evening work sometimes required.



  • MD, PhD, or foreign equivalent in mathematics, statistics, biostatistics, epidemiology, economics, public health, quantitative social sciences or related discipline plus four years related experience or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Excellent analytic, critical thinking, and quantitative skills.
  • Results and detail-oriented individual that can initiate and complete tasks under tight deadlines and changing priorities both independently and in a team environment. Flexibility with hours and workload is key.
  • Record of devising and executing statistical modeling techniques.
  • Demonstrated ability to quickly recognize problems in results and identify root causes in data, methods, and code.
  • Ease in designing, executing, and troubleshooting code in one or more languages (e.g. Python, R,  SQL).
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills required, including track record of success in co-authorship on multiple scientific papers, presenting results, and representing research at meetings.
  • Ability to work both independently and in collaboration with a team
  • A long-term interest in contributing to the overall mission of our research


  • Demonstrated expertise with optimization, machine learning, data science, and analytic techniques.
  • Record of mentoring and developing junior employees on soft and technical skills.
  • Demonstrated expertise with project management methods.
  • Peer-reviewed publication record.


Applicants should submit a curriculum vitae, a brief statement (500-word limit) outlining research interests and one letter of recommendation.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

University of Washington is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All
qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed,
religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, genetic information,
gender identity or expression, age, disability, or protected veteran status.