Call for Academic Researchers: Join Our Network to Apply for Exclusive USAID-Funded Research Opportunities


  • POSTED September 30, 2019
  • General Information

WASHINGTON, D.C. – NORC at the University of Chicago is pleased to invite leading academic researchers across development sectors to apply to join the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Research Technical Assistance Center (RTAC).

Launched in 2018 through the U.S. Global Development Lab, RTAC serves as a strategic resource to USAID, leveraging the expertise of the world’s leading academic researchers to provide short-term cutting edge research, training, and technical assistance to USAID offices across the globe.

“RTAC provides exciting opportunities for academic researchers to use their expertise to solve real world problems,” said RTAC Research Director Gabriela Alcaraz Velasco.  “Through RTAC, USAID is able to tap into a robust pool of academic researchers who can meet the Agency’s short-term research needs on critical development challenges.”

Led by NORC at the University of Chicago, in collaboration with its 12 partners, at present RTAC is comprised by 262 graduate and post-doctoral students, lecturers, and faculty affiliated with over 130 Institutions around the world.  Their work helps to accelerate the impact of USAID’s development investments in a variety of sectors as they conduct timely research on a wide range of development issues to inform the design and adaptation of programs, influence and shape policies, strengthen capacity, and guide future investments.

RTAC areas of technical expertise include agriculture and food security; democracy, human rights and governance; economic growth and trade; education; climate and environmental protection; gender equality and women’s empowerment; global health; water and sanitation; and working in crises and conflict.

Researchers in the RTAC network are eligible to apply for short-term, USAID-funded research projects and can gain access to many professional opportunities and resources, including networking and collaboration opportunities, expert panels and agenda-setting consultations, and innovative research utilization tools and resources.

Applicant Information:

To be eligible, a researcher must be affiliated with an academic institution and hold research expertise in at least one of the technical sectors and countries in which USAID works. More information about eligibility requirements as well as access to the online application portal is available at:

For questions about RTAC, contact: [email protected]. For questions about the RTAC network application process, contact: [email protected]



For Press Inquiries

Contact: Carolyn Rodehau, Senior Communications and Engagement Lead

Research Technical Assistance Center

Telephone: +1 202-939-5406

Email: [email protected]



RTAC is a part of USAID’s Higher Education Solutions Network (HESN) 2.0 portfolio of programs, which is managed by the agency’s U.S. Global Development Lab. The project is led by NORC at the University of Chicago in partnership with Arizona State University, Centro de Investigación de la Universidad del Pacifico (Lima, Peru), Davis Management Group, the [email protected] University, Forum One, the Institute of International Education, the Pulte Institute for Global Development (formerly the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development), Population Reference Bureau, the Resilient Africa Network at Makerere University (Kampala, Uganda), the United Negro College Fund, the University of Chicago, and the University of Illinois at Chicago.