Project Manager

  • Requisition no: 498746
  • Work type: Full Time
  • Location: Morningside
  • School/Department: Inst Soc& Econ Research&Policy
  • Grade: Grade 12
  • Categories: Finance/Accounting, General Administration
  • Job Type: Officer of Administration
  • Regular/Temporary: Regular
  • Hours Per Week: 35
  • Salary Range: Commensurate with experience

Position Summary

The Justice Lab (JL) at the Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy (ISERP) at Columbia University is recruiting for a Project Manager. Reporting to the Co-Directors, the Project Manager will work to prioritize, organize, and facilitate the research goals of the Justice Lab by maintaining seamless day-to-day administrative and financial operations and functional efficiency of the lab. The incumbent should have the ability to gather, synthesize, and analyze information on different issues and clearly and accurately communicate findings. Duties will include providing financial oversight to ensure projects align with JL goals; coordinating the approval of timesheets and grant spending to ensure compliance with applicable policies and guidelines, assisting with the financial dimension of strategic planning; managing hiring and recruitment; administratively supporting project staff by assisting with grant proposals, budgets and reporting; monitoring lab expenditures and purchasing; assisting with IRB protocol submissions and updates; assisting with contracts for outside vendors; and hiring and supervising an administrative assistant. Serves as the lab’s main liaison to University administrative offices, faculty, students, and the general public. Collaborates with ISERP and the Columbia School of Social Work (CSSW) to ensure the smooth operation of the lab.


  • Reporting to the JL Co-Directors, the Project Manager will: support the Co-Directors and project staff with the preparation of budgets and grant proposals; provide JL policy interpretation on grant terms; assist with managing, organizing and interpreting budgets and expenditures to help ensure they are consistent with JL’s mission and project goals; work with Justice Lab staff and ISERP and CSSW administrative units to streamline processes and ensure compliance with university and sponsorship agency regulations; approve grant spending and timesheets.

  • Monitor monthly financial reports and advise the JL Co-Directors and project directors on spending trends and opportunities for cost savings. Work with JL Co-Directors to strategize on hiring based on current and future financial outlook. Assist with financial/administrative dimensions of strategic planning. Budgeting and financial responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
    o Review of all expenses across research and faculty accounts within his/her portfolio.
    o Review and management of all salary and effort allocations for research personnel.
    o Coordinate annual effort certifications.
    o Coordinate PI approval on grant-related transactions.
    o Coordinate grant deliverables, progress reports and financial reports to the sponsor.
    o Coordinate quarterly PI certifications of grant expenses.
    o Prepare Lab budget projections and assist with financial planning in conjunction with the Co-Directors and ISERP/CSSW.
    o Liaise with JL staff on purchasing and account allocation.
    o Review and obtain the Director's approval on all rent and telephone charges.
    o Meet with and update Co-Directors and project directors with grant and lab information.
    o Reconcile financial accounts to ensure that salaries and grant expenses are allocated appropriately in order to prevent overdrafts and suspense.
    o Prepare various reports as needed. 

  • Serve as a resource and facilitator for JL staff on Columbia administrative processes and policies, including purchasing and hiring consultants, Casual Employees, and Research Assistants. Act as point person for bi-weekly staff meetings, including agenda creation and logistics.

  • Supervise a full-time Administrative Assistant whose duties are to assist JL Co-Directors with scheduling, travel and reimbursement submission; purchasing of supplies; room reservations and logistics; and other administrative assistant duties.

  • Serve as the point person for all aspects of new staff and student hires including creating job descriptions; screening applicants; liaising with ISERP/CSSW to finalize new hires, and coordinating timesheet submissions.

  • Assists the PIs with IRB submissions and updates.

  • Additional duties as assigned

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree in related field plus a minimum of four years of related experience required.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Prior experience in an academic, research or not-for-profit setting and with criminal/juvenile justice environments and directly impacted people strongly preferred. Familiarity with Columbia financial systems, particularly the Accounting at Columbia (ARC) system, is also desirable, along with experience with running, interpreting and synthesizing financial reports for project reconciliation and using the RASCAL system.

Other Requirements

  • Must be highly proficient with computer applications. Experience working with Word, Excel, project management and other database applications is essential. Strong analytical skills needed. Must be organized and detail-oriented and possess financial management and budget experience. Experience supervising other administrative staff a plus. Prior financial, grants and/or foundation related experience required.
  • Strong writing and internet research skills. Excellent multi-tasking and organizational skills, particularly in an environment with multiple and conflicting priorities. Excellent interpersonal and communication skills. Ability to work independently with minimal supervision and to supervise others. Ability to handle complex and confidential information with discretion.

Equal Opportunity Employer / Disability / Veteran

Columbia University is committed to the hiring of qualified local residents.

Applications open: Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close:

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