Postdoctoral Fellows in Human Development and Family Science

University of Missouri
Posting Date

Hiring Three Postdoctoral Fellows
Human Development and Family Science
Center for Family Policy and Research (CFPR)

University of Missouri

The Department of Human Development and Family Science (HDFS) at the University of Missouri is seeking applicants for three Postdoctoral Fellows to work with faculty at the Center for Family Policy and Research (CFPR). These postdoctoral fellow positions are 12-month appointments, with potential for renewal or long-term academic appointments (Research Scientist or Non-Tenure Track Research Faculty), pending an externally funded program of research. The successful candidate will have a doctorate in Human Development and Family Science or a related field, a demonstrated trajectory towards excellence in scholarship, recent publications in top-tier journals, and of utmost importance, the familiarity with external funding and the potential to develop a federally funded program of research.

The prospective candidate will join an active group of researchers interested in a wide range of translational and policy-relevant topics at CFPR. Successful applicants will be engaged in scholarship that is theoretically and empirically driven, innovative, methodologically rigorous, and has implications for improving the lives of individuals and families. The successful applicant will contribute to a team science infrastructure to build multidisciplinary collaborations working with faculty who have active research funding through the CFPR. They will aid faculty with seeking and writing federal grants, building on a strong state contract infrastructure, as well as seeking training grants and other larger projects. The successful candidates will collaborate with teams of faculty on peer-reviewed research publications and traditional scholarly outputs. They will also work on the translational side of their research by assisting the CFPR faculty and CFPR Director in translational documents such as white papers, policy reports or infographics. Finally, these postdocs will focus on writing NIH Pathway to Independence Awards (K99/R00) or related federal grants for themselves.

We will hire one Fellow with a scholarly emphasis in each of these three primary research areas: 1) Early Childhood Education, Care, Health, and Development; 2) Interpersonal, Familial, and Intimate Relationships; and 3) Adult Family Relationships, Stress, Health, and Well-Being.

CFPR at the University of Missouri is committed to hiring Postdoctoral Fellows with demonstrated experience in research in historically underrepresented and underserved communities. We are particularly interested in candidates who have strong quantitative research skills, who are interested in informing social policy, and whose research complements the growing translational multidisciplinary teams at Mizzou; areas include social determinants of health, health disparities, school readiness, intervention, and prevention pathways to resiliency, and/or strengthening individual health and family well-being.

Successful applicants will demonstrate scholarly activity consistent with the University’s status as an AAU member and a “Very High” Research Productive institution. Postdoctoral Fellows will maintain an active and vibrant program of research that complements the research of current CFPR faculty and work to secure external funding to support independent and team science research efforts.

The start date is July 1, 2024. Salary is commensurate with experience, and the position includes ongoing supplemental monetary support for scholarly activities. Review of applications will begin on November 15, and continue until the position is filled. Applicants from underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply.


• Maintain and establish an active, externally funded program of research and scholarship.
• Conduct research on translational policy-relevant topics that improve the lives of individuals and families.
• Contribute to a team science infrastructure to build multidisciplinary collaborations with current center faculty.
• Write issue-, white- or policy-briefs, talking points, infographics, news briefs with the Center Faculty and Director.

Minimum Qualifications:
• An earned doctorate in Human Development and Family Science or a related field

Candidates will be evaluated on:
• Record of scholarly productivity and evidence of maintaining such scholarship.
• Success or potential for success as principal investigator or co-investigator on externally funded projects.
• Demonstrated ability to produce high-quality research on policy-relevant topics.
• Ability to work and engage with department, university, and community members.

These positions will be housed in the Center for Family Policy and Research in collaboration with the Department of Human Development and Family Science at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

Organization Summary

The Center for Family Policy and Research. CFPR was established in 1997 to become a state and national resource for the development of effective social policy relating to children, families, and communities. CFPR’s mission is to focus on the integration of research, policy, and practice by conducting research and disseminating evidence-based findings to inform policymakers and to enhance program development; facilitate collaboration and provide leadership for systems- building efforts at the local, state, and national level; and work in communities to provide education and support services to programs that serve children, youth, and families. CFPR is committed to creating a bridge between high-quality translational research on child and family development and the programs and policies that impact our state’s and nation’s families. CFPR’s mission and activities contribute to the university’s four missions: research, public service, teaching, and economic development. CFPR outreach programs provide critical services for low- income and at-risk populations in nearly every county of Missouri. The faculty and staff at CFPR partner with more than two dozen other units on campus, over 300 organizations statewide and have directly impacted nearly a quarter million children, youth, parents, adults, or providers across the state per year. The total amount of grants awarded to CFPR during the last five years is just over $23 Million.

The HDFS Department. Faculty in the department conduct research on child, adolescent, and adult development, diversity and multiculturalism, family and relationship science, health, and family functioning. HDFS offers both undergraduate (BS) and graduate (MA, MS, and PHD) degrees, and has a significant presence on campus and within the state through its Extension outreach and services. HDFS is home to two large centers: Center for Family Policy and Research (CFPR) and Child Development Laboratory (CDL). The CFPR offers faculty and students opportunities to work on grant-funded research and intervention projects that directly serve children, families, and communities. The CDL provides childcare for children under six years and serves as a teaching and research laboratory for faculty and students. The Department currently has over $4 million in externally funded grants and contracts.

The College of Education and Human Development. The College of Education and Human Development serves more than 2,700 students in degree programs spanning the baccalaureate, Master’s, and doctoral levels. In 2021, U.S. News and World Report ranked it in the top 50 colleges of education in the nation. Several of its degree programs are recognized nationally as leaders in their fields. The College boasts an impressive research and outreach footprint, with over $45 million in externally funded grants and contracts, as well as outreach activities in every county throughout Missouri.

The City of Columbia, MO. Ranked by the American Institute for Economic Research as one of the nation’s top 10 college towns, Columbia combines small-town comforts, community spirit, and a low cost of living with big-city culture, activities, and resources. Our city of about 120,000 people lies midway between Missouri’s largest metro areas: St. Louis and Kansas City. It is home to nationally recognized public schools including two top-ranked high schools and two other colleges and educational centers. It is packed with restaurants and entertainment venues; home to multiple parks and outdoor recreation sites such as Rock Bridge State Park and the MKT Trail; and hosts more than a dozen annual cultural festivals, such as the True/False Film Festival. See why Money magazine, Fortune magazine, U.S. News & World Report, Men’s Journal, and others have all named Columbia, Missouri one of the best places in the country to live.

Job Overview

Job Type
Full time

University of Missouri, 102 Gwynn Hall
526 Hitt Street
Columbia, MO 65211
United States

How to Apply

How to apply. Upload application materials including a cover letter describing research/ scholarly interests, curriculum vitae, two reprints or preprints of recent manuscripts, and names and contact information for three references (no reference letters are required at this time) to:

Questions about the online application system are best directed to MU Human Resources at (573) 882-7976. Questions about the position should be addressed to the search committee chair: Dr. Brenda Lohman ([email protected]).
The University of Missouri is fully committed to achieving the goal of a diverse and inclusive academic community of faculty, staff, and students, and is an equal opportunity/access/affirmative action/pro-disabled and veteran employer. To request ADA accommodations, please contact our ADA Coordinator at 573-884-7278 (V/TTY).