Position Overview:

We are looking for a Postdoctoral Fellow to work with a multidisciplinary team based at the Alliance for Human Development, Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute and the University of Toronto on a large-scale intervention study (The EINSTEIN project), taking place in Mysore, India. The project forms part of the Healthy Life Trajectories Initiative (HeLTI; www.helti.org). HeLTI is a collaboration with the World Health Organization consisting four separate but harmonized longitudinal RCTs taking place in India, Canada, China, and South Africa, the goals of which are to evaluate whether maternal health promotion and supportive care, beginning preconception and continuing into the postnatal period, can improve the health of families and children. The current postdoc position will primarily focus on the HeLTI-India study (EINSTEN), a community-based, cluster-randomised intervention with three arms (preconception, pregnancy and control) and ~6,000 women recruited at baseline. Measurement centres on physical health (e.g., adiposity, overweight, obesity, glucose metabolism, blood pressure), maternal mental health, and multiple domains of child cognitive and socioemotional development.

Duties and Responsibilities:

The postdoc will participate in multiple initiatives and at multiple levels of the study. We are looking for someone who can help to develop, adapt, translate, and validate measures for use in low- and middle-income countries, and in India in particular, for inclusion as secondary outcomes in the trial. Thus, experience with measurement development and a strong psychometrics background is desirable. This also requires very strong interdisciplinary and collaborative skills for working with a large and diverse international team. Second, we are looking for a scholar with strong analytical skills as it pertains to RCTs and longitudinal data analysis, including, but not limited to: growth modelling, multi-level modelling, SEM, path analysis, etc. Finally, an ideal candidate will have a focal interest in family well-being generally, or child development specifically, and interests that lie at multiple levels of analysis (from genetics and biomedical factors to broader social-contextual factors). It is not expected that the postdoc will have skills or interests in all of these areas, and we welcome applications from all interested scholars. We are also committed to diversity and inclusion, and especially welcome applications from historically marginalized and underrepresented groups, as well as those with lived experiences relevant to the position.

This position is a 2-year funded opportunity and will be co-supervised by Dr. Stephen Matthews, Tier I CRC and Professor of Physiology at the University of Toronto and the Lunenfeld-Tannenbaum Research Institute, and by Dr. Mark Wade, Assistant Professor in the Department of Applied Psychology and Human Development at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. Specific duties include:

  • Developing, adapting, translating, and validating early child development (ECD) measures, in collaboration with Canadian and Indian researchers, for inclusion in the trial.
  • Analyzing data using traditional RCT analytic methods, as well as performing longitudinal data analysis using cutting-edge methods to examine change over time.
  • Preparing manuscripts for publication and conference presentations for dissemination.
  • Participating in virtual and in-person meetings locally in Toronto and abroad in India and elsewhere to help with data collection efforts and measurement implementation as necessary, and for team and conference meetings.

Education and Experiences:

We are looking for someone with a PhD in Epidemiology, Statistics, Developmental or Clinical Psychology, Physiology, Developmental Biology, or another health-related discipline with experience in the analysis of complex datasets using traditional statistics/psychometrics and AI/ML, and an interest in child neurodevelopment.

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Strong statistical skills related to RCTs and longitudinal data analyses.
  • Experience with measurement/scale development and implementation.
  • Programming skills using Python, Matlab, etc. are considered an asset.
  • Experience working with R, Mplus, or some other program that permits complex (longitudinal) modelling.
  • Ability to work independently and in a multidisciplinary, international team environment.
  • A background in developmental or clinical psychology, neurocognitive development, or early life stress is an asset.

Salary

As per LTRI policy

Please apply by sending a Cover Letter that clearly describes experience and interests, Academic CV, and the names and contact information (including email) for 2-3 references to both Stephen Matthews () and Mark Wade ()

Closing Date to receive applications: August 30th, 2022

Anticipated Start Date: October 1, 2022

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