Senior Research Scientist (Principal Researcher)



Impact Investing / Social Finance





About the Organization

Hopelab strives to help create a world in which young people, in particular BIPOC and LGBTQ+ teens and young adults, are thriving, free from barriers to their mental health and wellbeing. We take a systems approach by using our unique research and youth-centered design capabilities, our financial capital, and our networks to positively shift the systems impacting BIPOC and LGBTQ+ teens and young adult mental health. Hopelab does this through a model of: impact investing; advisory services to investees, grantees, and other partner companies and organizations; and development of applied research to innovate in the fields of youth wellbeing, digital engagement, and health equity.

For more information about Hopelab and its mission please visit its website.

About the Position

The Principal Researcher supports Hopelab's mission by serving as a research expert in digital well-being and emerging technologies (e.g. Web3, metaverse, AI) to support teen and young adult mental health and well-being. They will leverage their domain and methodological expertise to lead research projects and collaborations that advance the field of BIPOC and LGBTQ+ youth mental health and well-being, deliver responsive and high-quality advising support to Hopelab's portfolio companies and organizations (including digital health investees, grantees, and partners), and participate in due diligence efforts of potential investees.

Knowledge-building: sources and executes partnerships and projects that create new knowledge at the intersection of technology and the mental well-being of LGBTQ+ and BIPOC youth

  • Leads efforts including surveys, polls, participatory research, and data science applications to build new knowledge at the intersection of technology and mental wellness, with a focus on emerging tech and BIPOC/LGBTQ+ young people, including strong youth voice in development and dissemination
  • Participate in and/or lead exploratory work and projects to more deeply understand the scientific evidence base and innovation landscape, and the needs and challenges faced by young people, especially those who are BIPOC/LGBTQ+
  • Collaborate with colleagues, independent contractors, and vendors to vet, scope, and manage novel research sector collaborations and support network creation and partnership development across a range of mental health and well-being science spaces (e.g. collaborations that enable researchers to be more effective and/or more in service to tech-enabled applications and youth-led activities)
  • Manages independent contractors and vendors (e.g. research/data analysis support, participant recruitment firms) in service to knowledge-building
  • Supports Hopelab's thought leadership and strategic communications by disseminating research and knowledge to scientific and general audiences

Advising: supports our investees, grantees, and other partner organizations through advising on digital well-being and applied research methodologies

  • Sources and scopes advising opportunities and serves as a research team member on advisory engagements, bringing domain expertise in digital well-being and emerging technologies to our advising engagements
  • Provides methodological advising on impact and measurement by advising teams on how to design and test for impact (e.g. study design, informing interview and/or survey protocols, theory of change, etc)
  • Supports digital product design, product, and prototype development by bringing expertise in research science and digital well-being to create more engaging and efficacious products
  • At times, leads research-focused advising engagements, including owning the timeline, workflow, deliverables, client management, and team management
  • Supports the Head of Investments in sourcing and evaluating potential investees (e.g. assessing the science behind an intervention, scoping investments from a research lens)

Candidate Requirements:

  • Subject Expertise

    • Doctorate-level training in a research discipline relevant to health and well-being (e.g. psychology, public health, neuroscience, health services and policy)
    • Has 8+ years of experience in an academic or industry role and has created a body of research related to digital health and technology, ideally as it relates to emerging technology
    • Engages in research using a health equity lens, ideally as it relates to BIPOC/LGBTQ+ young people
  • Communication and Relationships

    • Has deep connections in technology, particularly emerging tech and mental health tech
    • Develops strong relationships with others in the field and leverages them for impactful collaborative work
    • Communicates complex ideas effectively and shares stories in ways that support youth impact
    • Engages with and incorporates youth voice into models of research and impact
  • Collaborative Project Management

    • Has strong project management skills including sourcing vendors, developing timelines, executing contracts, and driving projects from ideas to completion
    • Has experience mentoring team members including junior researchers
    • Has experience and enthusiasm working in an interdisciplinary environment and learning about approaches from other fields

Compensation and benefits:

The total salary range for this position is $164,635 to $193,869, with a starting salary range of $164,635 to $174,320, commensurate with training and experience (this is an SF Bay Area rate, salary is tied to local job market data). Hopelab provides a generous benefits package that includes medical, dental, vision; phone and internet stipends; wellness programs, including 8 therapy and 8 coaching sessions a year for you and dependents; paid time off; 401K contributions exceeding industry standards; all this, plus the opportunity to work with amazing colleagues to create a more equitable world for young people.

Hopelab is committed to attracting and retaining a diverse staff and encourages people from underrepresented groups to apply. Hopelab is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, marital status, ancestry, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Employment offers will be contingent on a background check that is limited in scope and compliant with best practices for Fair Chance Hiring. All inquiries are held in strict confidence.

On-Ramps is committed to the inclusion of all qualified individuals in the hiring process, including but not limited to those with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodation(s) to participate in the application or interview process, please contact