Research Fellowship at Harvard in Indigenous Community Well-Being

Harvard University Native American Program logo

The Harvard Medical School Department of Global Health and Social Medicine seeks a postdoctoral fellow to coordinate a new action-research project dedicated to advancing Indigenous Partnerships for Community Well-Being.

Many Indigenous peoples in the USA experience overwhelming social problems stemming from legacies of conquest and dispossession that have led to unremitting poverty. These problems include mental health inequities such as high community rates of trauma, addiction, and suicide. And yet, conventional clinical approaches to helping individuals with psychological distress and disability are not always well-tailored for Indigenous communities. By engaging in participatory fashion with knowledgeable and resilient Indigenous community partners, the Indigenous Wellness project will assess the relevance, efficiency, and effectiveness of mental health and psychosocial helping services and, together with community partners, re-imagine and re-design such services toward greater cultural consonance, therapeutic benefit, and community self-determination. In-depth consultation with community leaders, traditional healers, and other local knowledge carriers—and circulation of lessons learned through routine academic publication and community dissemination—will be essential to the success of these endeavors.

This fellowship will be under the supervision of Prof. Joseph Gone, Faculty Director for the Harvard University Native American Program, and in collaboration with regional and national Indigenous community partners, the fellow will assume mentored responsibility for: (1) advancing research projects, analyzing associated data, writing manuscripts, and submitting these for publication; (2) coordinating existing partnerships and supporting new partnerships toward efficient and effective action-research dedicated to services innovation; (3) managing the logistics of community-engaged action-research, including ethics review, financial reporting, grant preparation, etc.; (4) consolidating a relevant network of community-engaged researchers and Indigenous knowledge keepers who are committed to promoting innovative Indigenous wellness projects; and (5) supervising students, trainees, and volunteers who contribute to these efforts. Ability to travel routinely to project sites, whether regional or national, is required.

Full position details including qualifications and application instructions available here.

Start date:  Interviewing in October for December 1, 2019, start (or as soon as possible thereafter)

Location: Boston/Cambridge, MA, USA

For additional information regarding the project or the post, please email: Professor Joseph Gone (

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