Associate, Networked Improvement Science

Position Description

The Carnegie Foundation aims to build a field around the use of improvement science and networked improvement communities to solve longstanding inequities in educational outcomes. In pursuit of this aim, the Foundation engages in partnerships with organizations who are looking to build their improvement science capacity and form their own Networked Improvement Communities. The Foundation also raises awareness and advocates for the use of Networked Improvement Communities in the larger field of education as a powerful mechanism for creating educational systems that provide educational opportunities to all students. 

The Carnegie Foundation is seeking an Associate with the Networked Improvement Science team with knowledge in the science and practice of improvement and the power of networks. The Associate will work with external teams of researchers and practitioners on the design and execution of improvement efforts while simultaneously building the team’s improvement capacity. The Associate will guide networks through a process of identifying unwanted variability in performance, understanding the root causes of these gaps, and organizing groups in collaborative change efforts. This will include facilitating, consulting, coaching and teaching all aspects of improvement science to organizations working on making progress on undesirable and inequitable outcomes.

Key Responsibilities

The Associate will be expected to:

  • Coach partners on their application of the tools of improvement science: work with school, district, and other teams of educators engaged in applying improvement science to solve local problems of practice.
  • Facilitate the process of initiating and developing NICs: coach network teams to articulate a vision, to enroll and onboard membership in pursuit of that mission, to build improvement science capacity, to shape network culture, and to mobilize coherent collective action deploying improvement science methods to reach an ambitious collective aim.
  • Lead, manage, and support ongoing collaboration that promotes networked learning: Design and execute collaborative work processes (convenings, meetings, virtual collaboration) and train others in the design and execution of collaborative work processes utilizing improvement science.
  • Lead projects and facilitate collaboration: Assess and proactively work with project staff to address internal resourcing needs, capabilities, and capacity to properly support project deliverables and goals.
  • Design and execute learning experiences: Teach workshops and create all forms of teaching materials for workshops and virtual experiences focused on applying networked improvement science methods.
  • Enabling knowledge management efforts: Ensure that the appropriate research knowledge-base and content expertise is accessible to network members; support the capture, organization, and use of practical knowledge being generated in the NICs.
  • Design and develop knowledge products for the broader field: contribute to the field’s knowledge about improvement science carried out in networks.
  • Continually pursue the development of her or his own improvement and education skills. Participate in cross-unit learning within the Foundation to enhance its operation, performance, and culture as a learning organization.
  • Other projects or tasks as they develop. 
Education and Experience Requirements
  • An advanced degree, preferably in the social sciences, education, or a relevant field.
  • Knowledge and practice of Improvement Science
  • Three or more years of experience coaching and teaching in educational and professional settings.
  • Knowledge of and experience in adult learning in practical settings.
  • Knowledge of educational systems and their norms, structures and operational routines.
  • Experience working effectively in a dynamic, collaborative, matrixed organization is highly desirable. 
Skill Requirements and Qualifications
  • Ability to approach challenges with an improvement mindset
  • Ability to design, develop, initiate, and support networks of professionals engaged in the pursuit of a common improvement aim.
  • Ability to design and facilitate productive workshops, convenings, and meetings with colleagues.
  • Must have strong analytic skills and demonstrate superb communication skills, both verbal and written.
  • Apply adult learning theory to build the capacity of professionals to lead, innovate, and collaborate.
  • Foster productive team dynamics and able to work in highly collaborative and interdependent teams.
  • Navigate complex school contexts.
  • Manage relationships with a variety of constituents, including school leaders, researchers, technologists, designers, etc.
  • Proven organizational skills are essential.
  • Strong team leadership skills with past experience in mentoring, motivating, and/or managing others
  • Must be flexible and comfortable working in an environment where processes and timelines are fast paced, evolving and changeable.


  • The Foundation offers a collaborative, community-building atmosphere grounded in an environment of mutual respect.
  • The facility is located in Stanford, California in a quiet pastoral setting near a hiking trail.
  • Amenities include a communal kitchen (coffee, tea, and drinks provided), weekly catered lunches, and outdoor eating/gathering areas.
  • We also offer on-site yoga classes, free parking, and electric car charging stations.
  • Full medical, dental, vision, life, accidental death, disability, and long term care insurance, as well as employer subsidized flexible spending plans
  • A retirement savings plan, including employer contributions and the opportunity for your own tax-advantaged savings
  • Generous time-off benefits including 16 paid holidays and up to 6 weeks paid parental leave
  • Matching Gift program to benefit charitable organizations and Educational Assistance to further your professional development