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Arnold Ventures is a philanthropy dedicated to tackling some of the most pressing problems in the United States. Our mission is to improve lives by investing in evidence-based solutions that maximize opportunity and minimize injustice.

Position: Criminal Justice Research Manager

Salary: Competitive salary based on qualifications plus benefits

Office: New York City, preferably

Arnold Ventures' Criminal Justice initiative aims to advance community safety and the values of fairness, effectiveness, and racial justice. We fund innovative work in five domains: Policing, Pretrial Justice, Community Supervision, Prisons, and Reintegration. The Initiative works with teams of experts from inside and outside government and across disciplines to reform the U.S. criminal justice system through research, evidence, testing innovative pilot programs, and policy change.

We are seeking a Criminal Justice Research Manager to help research, analyze, develop, and manage high-impact projects in the field of criminal justice, with a focus on pretrial justice — including bail reform and the role of prosecutors, defense counsel, and the courts. This individual will help develop and implement the pretrial justice research agenda, manage research grants, and provide strategic research-related advice to the pretrial justice team. The Criminal Justice Research Manager will report to the Director of Criminal Justice Research for this domain.

Core Responsibilities

  • In collaboration with the Director of Criminal Justice Research, research, assess, and develop potential policy areas and projects, with a particular focus on strategies and programs that aim to advance pretrial justice and improve practices in prosecution and public defense;
  • Identify and develop charitable investment/grant recommendations that are aligned with the team’s strategies to Criminal Justice Initiative’s leadership and Arnold Ventures' Board of Directors, including reviewing proposals and advising applicants on scope, methodological (especially quantitative) enhancements to proposed research studies, and budget;
  • Present grant proposals to the Criminal Justice Initiative’s research directors and leadership team, as well as to Arnold Ventures' Board of Directors;
  • Manage and track grants approved by Arnold Ventures' Board, which will include working with grantees and partners to develop research plans, establish performance metrics, assist grantees in troubleshooting and overcoming research project obstacles, and monitor progress and impact;
  • Develop content for internal and external purposes, such as funding proposals, issue briefs, research summaries, and annual reports for Arnold Ventures' Board, Vice President and Executive Vice President of Criminal Justice, and other members of the Criminal Justice Initiative.

Essential Skills, Experience, & Abilities

  • A minimum of three years of relevant work experience, preferably in positions involving systemic policy reform, research, and/or project management with a focus on criminal justice, pretrial justice, prosecution, defense, and/or courts;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and the ability to communicate with high-level stakeholders and experts in various fields and adapt writing and communication styles based on the audience and purpose;
  • Exceptional organization skills and ability to work simultaneously on multiple projects;
  • Capacity to thrive in an entrepreneurial, fast-paced work environment;
  • Ability to understand and analyze complex policy and research questions;
  • Ability to overcome unforeseen obstacles and see projects through to completion;
  • Ability to work both collaboratively and independently;
  • Strong leadership skills, self-direction, and self-motivation.

Required Education

  • Undergraduate Degree required; advanced research degree(s) preferred in a relevant field such as criminology/criminal justice, sociology, law, public policy, statistics, or economics.

Desired Personal Qualities

  • Passionate about improving the U.S. criminal justice system;
  • Self-motivated and proactive;
  • Flexible, adaptable, and comfortable with change;
  • Creative and innovative;
  • Confident and humble;
  • Team-oriented and collaborative, yet also able to work well independently;
  • Able to interact confidently with junior, senior, and executive team members and navigate relationships with external experts, government leaders, advocates, and individuals impacted by the justice system.

We are interested in receiving applications from qualified candidates who have been directly impacted by the systems we are seeking to change.

To Apply

If you are interested in this position, please send a resume, a cover letter that indicates how you learned about this position, two writing samples, and contact information for three references to In the email subject line, please indicate that you are applying for the position of “Criminal Justice Research Manager, Pretrial.” Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.