Director of Research

Job Description: Director of Research

Apply Now

Why you should join PCR

  • We work on exciting and ground-breaking global health research projects for competitive salaries
  • We are a global team of public health, biomedical, strategy, operations, external relations and economics professionals
  • Be part of an internationally respected non-profit research and policy organisation serving influential, high-profile clients around the world
  • Become an expert in the latest global health innovations being investigated to tackle the world’s most neglected diseases and health issues

Our story

Policy Cures Research is an internationally respected, non-profit research and policy organisation that provides data and strategic analysis on innovation for global health to high-profile organisations around the world. Our flagship project, G-FINDER, provides an annual picture of the global investments made in research and development (R&D) for neglected infectious diseases, sexual and reproductive health issues, and emerging infectious diseases. We also undertake targeted, in-depth research and analysis on a wide range of R&D facets, from historical sector funding trends and product pipelines to future-looking cost modelling and resource mobilisation strategies.

Global health R&D funders, product developers, and advocates use our data and analysis for several purposes including identifying product and funding gaps to guide investments and priority-setting exercises, advocating to decision-makers for sustaining and growing global health R&D budgets, and remaining accountable to constituents (e.g., taxpayers, investors, board members, etc.).

We offer staff the opportunity to work flexibly in support of an exciting and purposeful mission to advance ground-breaking global health research for the world’s most underserved communities. We also offer competitive salaries, and with a head office in Australia, who could say no to the occasional visit to sunny Sydney?

Director of Research role and profile

The Director of Research, a core member of the Senior Leadership team, will be responsible for the successful delivery of Policy Cures Research’s research and analysis portfolio – one of the foundational elements of the organisation’s work. Supported by a team of dedicated and exceptional analysts, the Director of Research will conceptualise, develop and deliver and analysis of the global landscape of biomedical R&D for historically neglected and underfunded health issues.

The Director of Research will have demonstrated experience leading policy-driven global health research and analysis, managing project teams, liaising directly with project stakeholders, funders, and expert advisory groups, and contributing to organisational initiatives including resource mobilisation and strategy development. Proven command of policy research methodologies and in-depth knowledge of global health actors are a must. Strong quantitative analysis skills, as well as a scientific background in medicine, infectious diseases or biomedical R&D would be looked on favourably.

The Director of Research will have outstanding analytical and writing skills coupled with excellent project and team management skills, be strategically minded, and able to comfortably build networks outside of the organisation that advance the goals and objectives of Policy Cures Research. The Director of Research is role (although this may be negotiable for the right candidate) and will report to the Chief Executive Officer.

Key responsibilities

Research management and oversight

  • Identify, secure, manage and deliver a portfolio of global health R&D analytical work for a variety for clients. This may include prospective trend/gap analyses, cost modelling, pipeline and product research, global health R&D policy recommendations, etc.
  • Lead the conceptualisation, development and delivery of PCR research projects, including G-FINDER-related investment analyses and reports, pipeline analyses, etc., and provide overall direction and quality control of a variety of analyses that utilise PCR-generated data.
  • Lead the development of codified research methodologies, including proposing and maintaining analytical tools and approaches to collect, manipulate and analyse quantitative and qualitative data.
  • In conjunction with the other members of the Senior Leadership team, develop and maintain an annual research agenda (thematic areas, outputs, external engagements, etc.) for PCR that ensures project commitments are delivered while also positioning PCR around global health issues and moments that align with our strategic goals and objectives.
  • In conjunction with the rest of the Senior Leadership team, and in consultation with key external stakeholders, drive efforts to continually adapt and improve PCR’s research outputs to better align with the needs of key global health policy and advocacy players.
  • In conjunction with the rest of the Senior Leadership team, develop indicators and tools for measuring the impact of PCR research outputs, including their uptake by advocates, their impact on stimulating efficient funding for R&D of biomedical innovations for historically neglected and underfunded health issues, and their direct influence on global health R&D policy.
  • Supervise the preparation of high-quality and accurate project progress reports to clients.

People management

  • Take responsibility for direct line management of a combination of domain Leads, , including managing annual and semi-annual performance review processes with direct reports.
  • Oversee and manage project leads and teams to design and deliver projects.
  • Review research undertaken by others and provide guidance and constructive feedback to improve team members’ ability to conduct independent, high quality research and data analysis.
  • Make decisions related to staffing, team structure and resourcing, and advise the Executive team on hiring requirements.
  • Coordinate recruitment efforts for the Research & Analysis team, manage internal communications with the team on changes in organisational policies/approaches, and take responsibility for driving team culture and performance.

External engagement and communications

  • Present PCR’s research products and outputs in various settings, including dedicated launch events, panel discussions, conferences and media interviews.
  • Represent the organisation in relevant discussions with PCR’s funders and stakeholders.
  • In conjunction with the other members of the Senior Leadership team, proactively identify opportunities for PCR to present key projects and findings and elevate our profile.
  • Advise the Director of Communications on the design and execution of PCR-organised launch events and provide inputs to the organisation’s editorial and external engagement calendar to help maximise reach and impact of the outputs we produce.

Strategy and business development

  • In conjunction with the other members of the Senior Leadership team, help to shape the strategic direction of Policy Cures Research and provide input into the organisation’s operations.
  • Identify potential funders and calls for proposals, developing budgets, writing concept notes, building consortia, pitching to clients, etc.
  • Supervise the creation of project proposals, budgets, expense management dashboards and timelines.
  • Provide input to the other members of the Senior Leadership and relevant staff involved to assist in developing key thematic strategies, for example external engagement and communications strategies, as needed.
Position Requirements
  • 10-15 years of experience as a policy analyst, programme manager/director, or consultant working on projects related to global health policy, infectious diseases, poverty-related neglected diseases, sexual and reproductive health, global health R&D/product innovation, access to medicines, or other related areas, with increasing levels of leadership and responsibility.
  • An advanced degree in global public health, biosciences, medicine, pharmacy, or a related field with strong health or health policy training is highly desirable.
  • Strong problem solving, analytical skills and strategic thinking, including the ability to design and oversee quantitative and qualitative analysis of raw data.
  • Outstanding attention to detail.
  • Strong policy-orientated writing skills and ability to communicate in a professional and concise manner, and to communicate complex ideas simply to a wide variety of audiences.
  • Existing and strong global health R&D policy stakeholder and industry networks.
  • A sound understanding of the global health policy/funder landscape and of product development (e.g. drugs, vaccines, diagnostics) and R&D phases and processes is highly desirable.
  • Excellent communications and interpersonal skills with an ability to and interest in representing the organisation externally in a variety of forums.
  • Intermediate-to-advanced Microsoft Excel skills, and good knowledge of other Microsoft Office programs.
  • Proven project and people management skills, with an ability to successfully design and deliver projects at the head of a small team.
  • Comfort working in a matrix organisation with shared responsibilities and flexibility in undertaking tasks as needed.
  • Direct line management experience a must.
  • Excellent written and spoken English required.


PCR’s head office is in Sydney, Australia, and we have staff in Australia, Europe and Africa. We will consider candidates across the Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia for this role.

The successful candidate will work from home/fully remote, except if located in Sydney, Australia, where either hybrid or fully office-based options are available. The successful candidate will be expected to work flexibly and attend meetings outside of traditional core working hours, accommodating international time zones. The successful candidate will also be expected to travel internationally to represent PCR in various meetings or events, as well as occasional visits to Australia.

How to apply

Submit you application, including CV and cover letter on this site.

For any questions regarding the position, you can email Applications close Friday 1 December 2023.

We will not be acknowledging receipt of individual applications while the application period is open. You will be advised shortly after the conclusion of the application period whether or not your application has resulted in an offer of interview. Interviews will be conducted in December 2023.

Employee benefits

Policy Cures Research offers a range of benefits to its employees, including competitive salaries which are reviewed annually, flexible working arrangements, a strong culture of promotion and recognition, access to employee assistance programs for mental health and well-being, and generous entitlements such as paid parental leave, and learning and development and volunteering allowances.


Base salary AU$200,000, £100,000, €95-115,000 (dependent on country), CHF110,000 or equivalent.

Final salary offers will take into account regional benefits/costs to ensure fairness and balance in total compensation within the organisation.

Values and behaviours

All employees of Policy Cures Research are expected to adhere to and display the following five key values:

  • Dependability – Dependability is a core element of trust, which is essential to collaborative growth. Following through on our commitments is essential to progressing projects, building a strong reputation and making time for non-project work.
  • Enthusiasm – By drawing energy from our passion, curiosity, vitality and determination we will continue to learn and lead, strengthening the foundations of the organisation. As a small team, we all influence the atmosphere in which we work, and each of us are responsible for contributing to a positive team morale.
  • Collaboration – Our work relies on the expertise, skills, and contribution of each PCR team member, and our individual strengths are magnified when we work together and share.
  • Kindness – Every person in the team is a valued individual who deserves to be treated with kindness and empathy, and our collaborations will be enhanced by strong personal relationships
  • Trusting others – A lack of trust damages our relationships with each other, stunts individual growth and limits what we can achieve as an organisation.

In addition, employees are expected to always act to deliver work that is consistent with the seven key organisational characteristics of Policy Cures Research:

Independent | Reliable | Rigorous | Knowledgeable | Insightful | Engaged | Vocal