Provide Strategic Leadership and Vision
The Senior Associate Provost will work closely with the Vice Provost for Academic Programs, the Provost and other academic and administrative leaders to understand evolving data needs and to develop effective data-driven strategies to enable senior leadership to achieve goals and to meet the University’s data reporting needs. The individual will build and enhance partnerships across the university to ensure that academic and administrative units view the Senior Associate Provost as their primary partner for data reporting and analysis. With the overarching goal of optimizing Columbia’s capacity to collect and report accurate and timely data, the Senior Associate Provost will think proactively and strategically about the data collected by the University and support senior leaders in its use.
Spearhead the University’s Data and Analytic Efforts
The individual will strive to develop innovative and efficient ways for constituents to access and employ data and reports that meet their requirements and further their goals while balancing the safeguarding of confidential, sensitive, and regulated data. To this end, it will be critical for the Senior Associate Provost to communicate complex information in a clear, concise, and accessible manner to diverse stakeholders across the University. Additionally, the Senior Associate Provost will lead the IR team in generating reports and developing visualizations that clearly and accurately communicate data to diverse internal constituencies and external organizations, such as state and federal government agencies, academic consortia including COFHE and the AAU, and institutional accreditors.
Oversee External Reporting
It is essential that the Office of Institutional Research meets all external reporting obligations with accurate and timely data and data reports. The Senior Associate Provost will be responsible for providing accurate and timely data reporting to local, state, and national agencies and authorities. To that end, the Senior Associate Provost will lead conversations across the institution and craft procedures regarding the sharing of data between academic and administrative units and with external partners to ensure all relevant parties have access to the data they need. Because each office and department utilize data and reports in unique ways, it will be important for the Associate Provost to learn and understand the individual needs, expectations, and timelines for each.
Lead and Mentor Staff
The Senior Associate Provost will oversee an IR team and will ensure that the office continues to be an effective organizational unit with a commitment to customer service. They will assess the current office structure and staffing capacity to ensure it operates with optimal efficiency and that it is meeting institutional needs. They will establish a strategy for staff development and resource allocation to ensure the team maximizes its talents and impact and that data analyses are timely and rigorous.
- Master’s degree in a quantitative field required, doctoral degree preferred
- Ten years’ experience in institutional research and institutional effectiveness in higher education expected
- Five years of demonstrated experience with quantitative and qualitative research methods.
- Five years of senior management/supervisory experience or relevant departmental or program leadership.
The Senior Associate Provost should possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities:
- Proven leadership abilities to strategically guide the institutional data-driven, decision-making needs.
- Excellent statistical and analytical skills, with an ability to explain complex data analysis to a diverse set of constituencies.
- Excellent judgment, discretion, accuracy, and attention to detail.
- Demonstrated knowledge of data collection and institutional reporting in a research university.
- Knowledge and facility with diverse software and data query and retrieval systems, including SQL, Microsoft products (Access and Excel), Oracle Business Objects, Tableau and SPSS.
- Ability to manage multiple projects concurrently and work collaboratively with various academic and administrative partners.
- Ability to prioritize and delegate work in a fast-paced environment.
- Knowledge of state and federal requirements for the gathering, reporting, and dissemination of data from higher education institutions.
- Extensive experience with both database management systems (including the extraction of such data) and analyzing and interpreting complex data sets.
- Experience with regulatory reporting and survey management.
- Experience with institutional accreditation.
- Demonstrated knowledge of the essential components of the academic enterprise at an R1 research university.
Columbia University is seeking a strategic and innovative leader who thinks broadly about institutional research and the way that this critical office should interface with other University functions and offices to most effectively support the academic enterprise. The Senior Associate Provost will be responsible for leading a collaborative, experienced staff team to support the IR office and fostering a culture of strategic and data-informed decision-making. They will bring superb analytical skills and a sophisticated understanding of effective, rigorous institutional research in the context of current higher education challenges and imperatives. This individual will have a demonstrated track record of data management and analytics, a collaborative leadership style, and the capacity to work and communicate effectively in a complex institution with multiple stakeholders with diverse perspectives. The successful candidate will be an intellectually curious professional who possesses strong leadership and management skills, and at least ten years of progressively deeper responsibilities relating to institutional research.
Reporting to the Vice Provost for Academic Programs, and working closely with the Provost, the Senior Associate Provost will serve as a thought partner to senior academic and administrative leaders across the institution to ensure they have the data and analyses necessary to support the institution. The Senior Associate Provost will be responsible for data integrity and will lead an office that serves as the central resource for data reporting to state, federal, and other external agencies.