Postdoctoral Position in Global Dietary Intakes, Child Health, and Cardiometabolic Outcomes

Required/Preferred Education, Experience, Skills:

Applicants must have a PhD/DrPH/ScD in nutrition, nutritional epidemiology, public health nutrition, epidemiology, public health or related fields; as well as a strong record of original, first-author, publications in one or more of these areas. Candidates should have excellent written and oral communication skills, strong quantitative/analytical research skills, experience using STATA, SPSS, SAS, or R for both data management and analysis, and the ability to work well independently and as part of a team with collaborators.

Preferred education, experience and skills

In addition, formal training is preferred in some combination of dietary assessment and analysis, global demography, health indicators/metrics related to malnutrition, modeling non-communicable disease burdens, and epidemiology.

Duties & Responsibilities:

An outstanding candidate is sought to work on an original research project supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on expanding the Global Dietary Database. The aims of the overall project are to: (1) extend and expand innovative work to build and develop the Global Dietary Database (GDD 2.0) through data assembly, harmonization and quality control to characterize dietary intakes in all countries around the world on individual-level national or subnational data; (2) broadly disseminate the GDD 2.0 via a new online platform, scientific meeting strategies, deeper research collaborations, and strategic partnerships; and (3) perform new investigations and reviews on maternal and child diet diversity/quality, based on existing metrics as well as our prior work considering food consumption patterns, in relation to key health outcomes.

Through the broader networks of Tufts research, this GDD work will also interact closely with other ongoing relevant projects at Tufts such as the USAID-funded Nutrition Innovation Lab, the Gates-funded International Dietary Data Expansion (INDDEX), and the UK-funded Indicators of Affordable Nutritious Diets in Africa (IANDA); and projects that have been affiliated with Tufts such as the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition (GLOPAN), the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization/World Health Organization GIFT project (FAO/WHO GIFT), the Global Burden of Diseases Project (GBD), GALLUP’s development of new global survey instruments on diet quality, the UNICEF/WHO TEAM (Technical Expert Advisory Group on Nutrition Monitoring), and others.

This postdoctoral fellow will work with the principal investigator (PI), other project faculty, and the rest of the research team to help achieve the project aims. She or he will focus on leading of analyses, abstract preparation, and manuscript drafting, with a focus on policy-relevant, peer-reviewed scientific abstracts and manuscripts on global dietary data availability, data gaps, and trends, and in relation to key health outcomes. The postdoctoral fellow will also lead the assessment, standardization, and harmonization of the dietary surveys with individual-level 24-hr recall/record data, in close collaboration with the research team and our colleagues at the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Dietary recalls/records from around the world will be reclassified using the EFSA FoodEx2 food classification and description system. We anticipate the postdoctoral fellow leading -2 manuscripts assessing global dietary data availability, data gaps and global trends in dietary intakes including by relevant demographic subgroups, building on our prior work; and also 1-2 manuscripts assessing dietary habits as a risk factor for NCDs in specific countries or globally. The Postdoctoral fellow will also participate in planning and implementation of our strategy for deeper research collaborations, strategic partnerships, and dissemination of these findings to a broad international audience. The overall work and findings will be critical to inform evidence translation on global trends in food consumption and diet quality and on corresponding disease burdens. The publication of research results in high-quality journals and national and international conferences is expected.

The mentoring and training will be under the direction of faculty member Dr. Renata Micha; in close collaboration with PI Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, Dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy at Tufts University. Under their leadership, the post-doctoral fellow will also work with a multi-disciplinary team including nutritionists, public health experts, medical doctors, epidemiologists, biostatisticians/modelers, and decision scientists, and will also have the opportunity to interface with international experts and stakeholders. Major emphasis will be placed on leading original analyses and manuscripts, career development, and transition toward an independent research career. A competitive salary, benefits, and travel/educational opportunities in the interdisciplinary environment at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy are offered.

This position is anticipated to be for 2-3 years. The initial appointment is for 1 year with annual renewal conditional on performance. The ability to work in the US is required in order to apply for this position.

Preferred starting date in 2017. Candidates from all over the world are encouraged to apply who should be willing to conduct their research work in the US, in the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, Boston.

Application should include:

1. Cover letter describing previous achievements, research interests, career goals, and why the candidate is suitable for this position (maximum 2 pages),
2. CV including a list of relevant publications,
3. Official copy of academic transcript(s)
4. Names, e-mail addresses, and telephone numbers for at least two academic referees (or reference letters from these individuals, if available).

Applications should be sent by e-mail (one pdf file) with the subject heading “GDD 2.0 Post-Doc Application” to Carrianne Crummett (Carrianne.crummett@tufts.edu). Applications will be considered as they are received.

Position Type: 
Postdoctoral

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