Research Associate Cbrn –Quantitative Analyses And Modeling

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Posted by: Institute for Defense Analyses on Mar 25, 2020


Alexandria , VA

Job Description:


The Institute for Defense Analyses is a federally funded research and development center supporting the Department of Defense and other federal agencies that require rigorous and objective analysis of national security issues. The Strategy, Forces and Resources Division (SFRD) performs interdisciplinary analyses of plans and policies related to national security strategy; the structure and capabilities of US, allied, and adversary forces; chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear defense (CBRN); organizational efficiency and management issues; and human capital challenges. 

SFRD has an opening for a Research Associate (RA) to support a portfolio of studies on CBRN defense. These studies examine a variety of issues including the risks posed by threats identified by the intelligence community, quantifying the potential CBRN environment that might challenge both US military forces and civilians, human physiological response to CBRN agents and effects, developing scenarios and vignettes to support exercises, modeling infectious disease spread, and assessing defensive technologies.  The work is performed by interdisciplinary teams and while some tasks will be narrowly focused, others will address a broader spectrum of concerns.  Our analyses are highly technical and involve considerable modeling and simulation.  This work will require a willingness to learn the essentials of CBRN phenomenology and to execute quantitative analyses of the highest caliber.


RAs are junior members of the full-time professional staff working under the guidance and direction of IDA Research Analysts.  In response to assignments provided by IDA Research Analysts, RAs contribute to research teams with information gathering; modeling and simulation; data manipulation, analysis and presentation; and drafting of reports and briefings.  Accordingly, RAs are expected to have demonstrated proficiency in technical areas and to be familiar with computer languages and computational and data processing software. RAs are members of interdisciplinary research teams and must demonstrate good interpersonal communications skills and contribute effectively to a team approach to problem solving.  The issues that IDA addresses change constantly, and RAs are expected to be adaptable and self-motivated, demonstrating a capacity for independent thought and sound judgment, and creativity in applying quantitative analysis methods to complex technical problems.

A Bachelor’s degree is required, Master's degree preferred. Because of the breadth of our analyses, acceptable degrees include Applied Mathematics, Statistics, Physics, Engineering, Operations Research, and Computer Science. Recent experience (within the last 3 years) working with programming languages used in research (e.g., Python, R, C++, MATLAB, Mathematica, etc.) is required. Relevant experience in an academic, corporate, or government environment (e.g., via work/study programs, internships, or teaching or research assistantships) is required. Ability to identify information sources and assemble/organize large data sets is preferred. Candidates must demonstrate strong written and verbal communication skills. At later stages in the process, applicants will be required to submit a writing sample that demonstrates the technical qualifications above and a copy of their transcripts for full consideration. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable. Candidates with a doctoral degree will not be considered for this position.

U.S. Citizenship is required
Ability to obtain and maintain a security clearance is required
Equal Opportunity Employer

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About Institute for Defense Analyses

IDA is the Institute for Defense Analyses, a not-for-profit corporation that operates three Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs) in the public interest: the Systems and Analyses Center, the Science and Technology Policy Institute, and the Center for Communications and Computing. IDA exists to promote national security, preserve the public welfare, and advance scientific learning by analyzing, evaluating, and reporting on matters of interest to the United States Government.

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