Posted: Apr 21, 2023

Data Analyst for Homelessness Research

Salary: $72,000.00 - $90,000.00 Annually
Application Deadline: Jun 1, 2023

About the California Policy Lab

The California Policy Lab translates research insights into government impact. Through hands-on partnerships with government agencies, CPL performs rigorous research across issue silos and builds the data infrastructure necessary to improve programs and policies that millions of Californians rely on every day.  CPL’s UCLA site is dynamic and growing organization with nearly 20 full-time employees, half a dozen graduate student researchers, and numerous faculty affiliates.

CPL recognizes the value of having a diverse staff at all levels of the organization. We are looking for equity-minded applicants who represent and understand the diverse racial and ethnic, gender identity, sexual orientation, educational, socioeconomic, cultural, and disability backgrounds present in California. When you join our team, you can expect to be part of an inclusive and equity-focused community. 

The Role

The California Policy Lab is seeking an experienced Data Analyst to contribute to our organization’s proven track record of bridging the gap between academic researchers and government policymakers. The Data Analyst will have the opportunity to apply methodologies from econometrics, statistics, and data science to original research projects primarily focused on homelessness, mental health, and the social safety net.  The Data Analyst may embed with public agencies in Los Angeles to support collaborative research partnerships.


The successful candidate will be well versed in data manipulation, wrangling, and cleaning, with experience running, testing, and interpreting a variety of linear models including OLS, logit, negative binomial, Poisson, and proportional hazards. They will be passionate about using data to find innovative solutions to the problems facing California policymakers and citizens. This position requires an individual who is able to work as a part of small research teams running multiple projects concurrently. We seek highly organized individuals with superior written and verbal communications skills and excellent time management ability. The Data Analyst will also be required to follow coding guidelines established by CPL and to contribute to the organization’s efforts to build richly detailed documentation of the data we use.

The Data Analyst will report to CPL’s senior research staff and will work collaboratively with CPL’s Executive Director, other CPL staff, and our partner agencies.  This position is based in Los Angeles, California.  

Education and experience required


Applicants must have a bachelor's degree in public policy, economics, statistics, or other relevant field or equivalent experience/training; master’s degree preferred. Applicants must also have at least one year of relevant research experience; experience gained in school counts toward requirement. Two to three years of professional post-baccalaureate experience preferred. 


Core Functions

  1. A) Data Analysis (40%)
  • Clean, merge, and match data from large and complex administrative datasets.
  • Perform exploratory analysis on new datasets and identify potential research questions or projects the data could support.
  • Create or add to existing data documentation that supports CPL’s research projects.
  • Write replicable code adhering to CPL’s coding guidelines.


  1. B) Data Modeling (30%)
  • Work with CPL’s Research Director and research managers to write detailed analysis plans that specify outcomes of interest, list covariates, and include power calculations.
  • Fit and test a variety of statistical models and summarize the results in neatly formatted and clearly written reports.


  1. C) Presentation of Results (30%)
  • Provide in-person progress reports to CPL Directors, research team members, and policymakers.
  • Prepare results in creative and visually appealing ways for memos and presentations for both policymakers and academic researchers.


Required Skills:

  • Substantive knowledge of quantitative research methods and causal inference (A, B)
  • Mastery of data analysis and data management in SQL, Stata, SAS, Python, or R (A, B, C)
  • Strong interest in applied policy questions in homelessness, mental health, poverty, or social services (A, B, C)
  • Attention to detail and ability to organize and document workflow (A, B, C)
  • Strong initiative and a resourceful approach to problem-solving (A, B, C)
  • Superior verbal and written communication skills (B, C)
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team (A, B, C)
  • Ability to multi-task with demanding timeframes (A, B, C)
  • Ability to work discreetly with sensitive and confidential data (A, B, C)


Preferred Skills:

  • Experience working in an academic or think-tank environment (A, B, C)
  • Substantive knowledge or experience in at least one of our core research areas – homelessness, health, criminal justice, poverty, education, or labor (A, B)
  • Project management experience (A, B)
  • Understanding of relational database concepts and experience with SQL (A, B)
  • Experience with business intelligence tools such as Tableau or PowerBI (BC)

To apply:

All applicants must apply online at UCLA Career Opportunities using requisition number 38860. Candidates who pass an initial resume review will be contacted for additional pre-interview screening.