Program Manager (Cultural Context of Health) - (2000124)

The Program Manager will be responsible for conducting literature reviews of relevant topics; maintaining communication among a group of external scientific advisors; organizing annual meetings of the high-level Expert Group; commissioning and working with researchers to produce policy briefs on selected topics; liaising with WHO-Europe; and managing day-to-day operations.

The Cultural Context of Health and Well-being Initiative is a joint effort between Vanderbilt University, The World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Office for Europe, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The cultural contexts of health and well-being (CCH) approach looks beneath the surface manifestations of health and well-being to address the underlying values and conventions that drive behavior. This three-year project will identify and document several topics and corresponding international cases in which understanding the cultural contexts lead to better health policies and better health outcomes. Our ultimate goal is to show how a global CCH approach can be worked into U.S. public policy and healthcare delivery in a way that saves lives and improves well-being. We will achieve this by: (1) solidifying an emergent network of CCH-oriented researchers and practitioners; (2) convening an annual Expert Group meeting of academics, policy makers, practitioners, and other stakeholders to assist in developing a CCH model for U.S. contexts; (3) identifying several key topics (with the Expert Group and in consultation with RWJF) to explore in-depth, and commissioning research on global cases to illustrate those topics; (4) producing four policy briefs, three of which will be based on the in-depth case studies, with the fourth being an overarching policy brief on the utility of the CCH model; and (5) disseminating these findings through professional associations, open webinars, and the RWJF network of grantees.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Research and Planning
    • Conduct literature reviews of relevant topics for expert group meetings
    • Search for possible expert advisors on selected topics
    • Maintain contact with and consult with members of both the Vanderbilt and the expert groups throughout the year
    • Organize annual meetings Logistics
    • Developing agendas and promotional materials
    • Manage website interfaces and Social media updates
    • Job responsibilities listed herein are intended to be a thorough representation of the duties, responsibilities, expectations, and qualifications for this specific
    • role at the time of hire but should not be considered all-encompassing as actual responsibilities may evolve to include additional duties as assigned based on
    • organizational and operational needs.
  • Produce Policy Briefs
    • Identify and select appropriate researchers to contract for research and writing of Policy Briefs.
    • Manage the research and writing process of Policy Briefs, providing feedback and consulting with director or expert group as needed.
    • Oversee and add creative input into the style and format of Policy Briefs
    • Manage the design, printing, and distribution of Policy Briefs
  • Serve as a Liaison with WHO-Europe      
    • Work with the staff of the Cultural Contexts of Health project at the World Health Organization European Regional Office
    • Travel regularly to the WHO Copenhagen office, and spend first six months of this contract embedded in the Copenhagen office
    • Coordinate project topics and scope between the WHO and Vanderbilt projects
  • Manage day-to-day operations     
    • Maintain and monitor annual conference and special events budget.
    • Handle travel arrangements and reimbursements

Profile of an Ideal Candidate

  • A Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education is necessary.
  • A MA, MPH, or PhD in a health related humanities or social science, such as medical anthropology, history of medicine etc., or equivalent experience, – is preferred
  • Education and experiences related to international affairs (e.g., foreign travel, foreign language ability) are preferred.
  • Proficient in one or more additional language is highly preferred.
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills is necessary.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Vanderbilt University is committed to achieving the goal of a diverse and inclusive academic community of faculty, staff, and students. We seek individuals who are committed to this goal and our campus values.

Please apply online at

Vanderbilt University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and protected veterans are encouraged to apply.


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