Harkness Fellowships in Health Care Policy and Practice are for promising New Zealand health policy researchers and practitioners to conduct a policy-orientated research project and work with leading health policy experts in the US. One or two awards valued at up to US$107,000 are granted each year, towards up to 12 months of research.
Closing date: 16 September 2013
The awards are offered by The Commonwealth Fund, an American private foundation working toward a high performance health system. The awards are administered in New Zealand by Fulbright New Zealand.
The Commonwealth Fund hopes to enrich health policy thinking as Harkness Fellows study how the United States approaches health policy issues, share lessons learned from their home countries, and develop an international perspective and network of contacts to facilitate policy exchange and collaboration that continues beyond the fellowship experience.
Fellows work with leading US experts to conduct a research study that addresses a critical issue on the health policy agenda in both the US and New Zealand. The Commonwealth Fund’s principal areas of focus are health care system performance, including access to care, insurance coverage, quality improvement, efficiency, and equity; quality of care for children, the elderly, and minorities; and patient-centered primary care. The Fund place Fellows with mentors who are experts in the policy areas to be studied, based at universities, think tanks, health care organisations or government agencies.
A rich program of seminars organized by the Commonwealth Fund throughout the year further enhances the fellowship experience.
Up to 16 awards are offered each year, typically three from New Zealand and Australia, one from Canada, three from Germany, two from the Netherlands, one from Norway, one from Sweden, one from Switzerland and four from the United Kingdom.
To be eligible, you must:
- be a citizen of New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland or the United Kingdom;
- have a master’s degree or doctorate (or the equivalent thereof) in health care services, health policy research, or a related discipline, such as economics or political science (consideration may be given to candidates with a bachelor’s degree only, depending on work experience);
- show significant promise as a policy-oriented health services researcher or practitioner (clinician, health services manager, government official, or journalist);
- have a demonstrated expertise in health policy issues and a track record of informing health policy through research, policy analysis, health services, or clinical leadership; and
- if academically based, be at a mid-career level (e.g. research fellow to senior lecturer).
Up to US$107,000 including:
- roundtrip airfare to the United States ;
- fixed monthly stipend for US living expenses;
- set up and shipping allowances;
- support toward the portion of the project conducted in the home country, if appropriate;
- funds for project-related travel, case studies, conferences and research expenses;
- travel funds to attend Harkness Fellowship events;
- institutional allowance for US mentor/placement;
- health insurance coverage while in the United States; and
- US and state taxes.
A supplemental allowance including roundtrip airfare, living allowance, and health insurance is also provided to Fellows accompanied by a spouse and/or children up to age 18.
In some cases, Fellows may opt to arrange paid leave from their home institution in lieu of the fellowship monthly stipend to maintain their current income. Where full home institution salary support is provided during the fellowship, a monthly supplement of up to US$600 is available.
- You must plan to be in the US for a minimum of seven months and a maximum of 12 months, commencing in August-September of the year after you are selected;
- You will be expected to refine your project design in the US, review the relevant literature and set up a cross-national component, if applicable;
- You will also be expected to identify and collect data, resolve methodological issues, conduct site visits or interviews and meet with experts;
- You will present your project findings at final reporting seminars main centres of New Zealand in June of the year following your return. You will also prepare a final report and disseminate your findings through peer-reviewed journals, published reports, the national press, presentations and policy briefings.
- You must complete the three part application form, available from The Commonwealth Fund website;
- You must attach a summary of professional objectives, a curriculum vitae, a preliminary proposal for a policy-orientated research project that fits within the Fund’s national programme areas, a letter of reference from your department chair or institution and three professional references from senior health policy researchers, policymakers, or senior level managers, who can comment on your past work and the potential contribution of your proposed project;
- Interviews will be held in Auckland in December, and successful applicants will be announced the same day.
Candidates are encouraged to structure projects around topics presented in The Commonwealth Fund’s List of Suggested Project Themes (available from their website), or to propose original ideas on other topics relevant to the Fund’s work.
On 1 May 2012 a webinar was held for prospective applicants to 2013-2014 Harkness Fellowships in Health Care Policy and Practice. This detailed presentation, featuring representatives of the Commonwealth Fund, the Harkness Fellowships Representative for New Zealand and several past fellows discussing their exchange experiences, was recorded and is available to view online at www.readytalk.com (requires registration).