Research and Development Role Opportunity

We have an exciting opportunity to join our team. Supported through The Rank Foundation Time to Shine Programme, this role will support the team to continually learn from practice and research. We are looking for someone with interest in evaluation and data, who is able to engage with our community to gather feedback and prepare reports. As well as being part of The Why Not? Team the successful candidate will participate in the Time to Shine programme, which offers specialist and peer support.  

Closing date for applications is 23rd November, with interviews the following week.  The successful applicant must be available to commence the post prior to the 15th January 2024. The post is for one year and will be located in Scotland.

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Please see below for more details about this exciting opportunity to join our team.

Rank Foundation Time 2 Shine Programme

Research and Development Role within Why Not? Trust


The Rank Foundation Time 2 Shine Programme has two main purposes. To enable individuals with the right skills mix, talent and work ethic, the opportunity to experience a 12- month paid leadership and development placement in a charity; and to fill organisational, developmental and skills gaps in smaller charities by identifying a specific piece of work that can be completed in 12-months.  The programme supports the future leader through actions learning sets, residential learning opportunities, access to external mentors and paid development opportunities.

 The Why Not? role

The purpose of the Why Not? Research and development role is to ensure we continually learn from what we are doing and what others are doing around the world.  To identify examples of successful work with new parents, identify what aspects of the Why Not Trust are most successful and to develop the criteria and capture the data to evidence any impact of our work.

The role will feed into the continuing development of the work of The Why Not? Trust, providing action research to ensure recognition of the successful aspects of our work that need to be strengthened and the unsuccessful aspects which need to be reconsidered, as well as highlighting emerging research and successful practice being promoted in Scotland and beyond.


The post holder working with other team members and our research partners will support our evaluation, learning and research activities which include;

  • Identifying different ways to identify and engage expectant and new parents with experience of care.
  • Using our analytics to understand the most effective way of engaging new parents with experience of care.
  • Engaging with members of the care experienced new parent community within The Village aspect of our work, to capture:
    • What they believe the benefits and challenges of becoming a parent are.
    • How they believe what we offer supports the challenges
    • How we could further engage them in the community and support them to support each other (create a movement)
    • How we could reach more new parents
    • How we identify the gaps and provide innovative solutions
  • Researching practice across the world and identifying areas we should further investigate and learn from.
  • Developing systems, then capturing and analysing quantitative and qualitative data from our work which can be used to improve our work and evidence any impact.
  • Identifying opportunities for collaboration which will improve the resources available to the community or attract more new and expectant parents to our community.
  • Disseminate findings through events, publications, reports and other media opportunities, ensuring opportunities are taken to reduce stigma and discrimination, and promote the positive life changing event becoming a parent can be, when the required supports are in place.

Person Spec

The role will be suited to someone who has an interest in research and experience of working with people.  Someone who with support can work independently, as well as part of a team.  Someone who is perhaps a recent graduate or changing careers or returning to work following a career break. 

We welcome applications from people with lived experience or understanding of lived experience, including potential impact of stigma, judgement and discrimination.