The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of the Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system in the United States that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color.  

The Commonwealth Fund values diversity and is committed to the recruitment and retention of underrepresented minorities.

Open Positions:

 


Content Writer/Editor

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

ROLE OF COMMUNICATIONS

The Fund’s communications strategy is designed to position the foundation as a widely recognized leader in generating timely, authoritative information for health care industry leaders, policymakers, researchers, and the news media and to stimulate action to expand health care access and coverage and improve the quality of health care services. The Fund places a high priority on developing a public presence as an independent and nonpartisan information resource on health policy and health care issues.

The communications team has two operational areas: 1) harvesting the results of grant-sponsored and staff research by producing content such as publications, data visualizations, digital interactives, blog posts, and social media graphics  and 2) disseminating research and analysis through the foundation’s website, e-alerts, and social media presence, as well as by assisting Fund executives in developing working relationships with key journalists and drawing media attention to the Fund’s work. The Fund’s annual communications budget is $3 million.

Over a typical 12-month period, the Fund produces more than 200 publications and other products, including interactive tools and features, reports and issue briefs, blog posts, newsletters, infographics, videos and podcasts. The Fund’s Communications department manages a robust dissemination effort to promote the research conducted by grantees and Fund staff through email marketing, media outreach, social media, and other vehicles and the Fund overall conducts some 60 annual forums for expert and health policy audiences, including a retreat for Congressional health leaders.

SUMMARY DESCRIPTION

Reporting to the Vice President for Content & Strategy, the Content Writer/Editor will be an important member of the Commonwealth Fund’s Communications Department. The position’s primary responsibility will be to provide general writing and editing support to the Fund’s health care policy research programs, collaborating with on-staff and external grantee researchers and policy experts to develop a wide range of publications for both policy and lay audiences. Essential to this work is a demonstrated talent for translating academic, technical, or dense material into accessible, engaging, and concise pieces suitable for nonexperts. The Content Writer/Editor will also help draft and edit written materials produced by the Communications team, such as email alerts and website copy; materials produced for the Fund’s board of directors; and various internal documents and communications, as needed.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Collaborating closely with health care policy experts and academic researchers, both those on staff and based in our grantee institutions, to help conceive, develop, shape, write, and/or edit a variety of written content, from issue briefs and explainers to feature articles, blog posts, and op-eds
  • Meeting regularly with staff from our individual research/grant programs to learn about, prioritize, and schedule their writing projects
  • Help draft, edit, and proof materials produced by Communications, such as email alerts to promote new publications; Commonwealth Fund newsletters; descriptive copy for the website; and press releases and other media communications
  • As needed, assist the Director of Editorial Services with editing posts for the Fund’s To the Point blog
  • Participate in meetings with the VP for Content & Strategy, the VP for Outreach & Strategy, and program staff to develop individual communications strategies and timelines for proposed grant projects
  • Help edit the docket of grant proposal summaries that is produced three times a year for the Fund’s board of directors

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Bachelor’s degree in writing, journalism, or communications, preferred; health-related degree a plus.
  • Minimum of 5 years of writing and editing experience. A journalism background is preferred but not essential
  • Ability to translate often complex research findings and analysis into clear, accessible, succinct pieces for a broad audience
  • Knowledge of and interest in health care and/or health and social policy issues, including those related to health care delivery, Medicaid and Medicare, racial equity, mental and behavioral health, maternal health, health insurance markets, prescription drug pricing/costs, and international health system comparisons, among other topics
  • Ability to work collaboratively with academic researchers, policy experts, and Commonwealth Fund program and communications team members
  • Excellent communication and project management skills

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgement, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

LOCATION

Position can be based out of our NYC or DC locations. As of January 2022, The Commonwealth Fund Staff will be working in a hybrid environment, with the expectation of at least two days a week working in the office.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line: “Content Writer/Editor-[Your Name]” to: [email protected]

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package (medical/dental insurance, life/disability insurance, pension plan, tuition reimbursement, ample time off).

Employment at The Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.

 


GRANTS ASSISTANT

GRANTS MANAGEMENT OFFICE

 

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE DEPARTMENT

The grants management office provides administrative and financial management support for the Commonwealth Fund’s grantmaking activities. Grants management is centralized with many of the administrative responsibilities shared with the program staff who support each program area. The Grants Assistant will join the grants management department team, comprised of three full-time and two part-time staff members. The Grants Assistant will be engaged in all aspects of the Fund’s grant making process, including budget planning, program planning, project development, financial and compliance monitoring, completed grant reporting and evaluation, and historical archiving of completed grant materials.

GENERAL POSITION DESCRIPTION

Reporting to the Vice President, Grants Management, the Grants Assistant works collaboratively with the Grants Associate and Grants and System Administrator to support efficient and effective grantmaking operations at the Fund.  The Grants Assistant will have an active role in using and maintaining the Fund’s grants management system built on the salesforce.com platform.

Candidates for a grants position should be excited about using technology as a tool to streamline processes and improve organizational performance.  There is great opportunity to take initiative and serve as an internal consultant to other departments, and to build additional CRM (customer related management) system programming and management skills.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

Grants Management Office
  • Responds to general inquiries from the public and from prospective grantees which come in via online portal, email, mail, and telephone.
  • Schedules and coordinates the board cycle and other grant review meetings. Helps to prepare and distribute all related materials in advance of the meetings.
  • Conducts due diligence on potential grantee organizations, including compliance and legal review, with support from the vice president.
  • Records discussion notes at grant review meetings along with any follow-up.
  • Supports preparation and distribution of Board materials, in coordination with communications staff.
  • Ensures that each electronic grant record is complete, with all required documentation and coding throughout the grant period and when ready to archive as a completed grant.
  • Following grant approvals, prepares award letters and agreements for assigned program areas, coordinating with program staff on payment and reporting schedules.
  • Supports the Fund’s Completed Grant Reporting process.
  • Serves as a resource to Fund staff, providing technical assistance proactively and as needed.
Grant Payments and Finance
  • Support bi-weekly grant payment request and processing, including preparation of related correspondence.
  • Processes grant payments on a bi-weekly basis.
  • Cross-trains with the Grants Associate on reconciliation of grant balances in Salesforce with Controller’s office balances from the general ledger.
  • Prepares Annual Report grants list for publication on the Commonwealth Fund website, assists with audit preparation, and the expenditure responsibility statements for the Commonwealth Fund tax return.
Electronic Records Management and System Administration
  • Assists the team with long-range planning, task analysis, procedures development, maintenance and implementation of the Fund’s grants management system.
  • Works with the grants management team and Rockefeller Archive Center staff to implement the Fund’s records retention and digital archiving system.
  • Supports administration of Salesforce grants management system.
  • Maintains integrity of electronic grant records with responsibility for quality control and data integrity. This work will include utilizing software tools as well as developing guidelines for maintaining information electronically whenever appropriate.
Other Responsibilities
  • General administrative support for the Vice President and the Grants Management department including scheduling of meetings, completing expense reports, and processing vendor payments.
  • Takes on and completes special projects as assigned by the Vice President, Grants Management.
  • Cross-trains with the department staff and may be asked to provide program assistance to program officers as needed due to staffing transitions.
  • Co-leads grants management training and onboarding for new staff members. 

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the institution. This may include taking on responsibility for other program areas or departments if the need arises.

QUALIFICATIONS

Bachelor’s Degree and one year of work experience or some equivalent combination of undergraduate work and office experience are required. Excellent written and oral communication skills are necessary. Strong computer skills are expected and required. Microsoft Excel skills and knowledge of the salesforce.com database are a plus. Candidate must be detail-oriented and have demonstrated strong organizational and administrative skills. Candidate must be able to work on multiple tasks, work with schedules and work under tight deadlines. Candidate must have good judgment and the ability to act independently within standard guidelines. Flexibility and skill in working as a team member are a must as this is a highly demanding, multiple-task environment with changing priorities.

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgment, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

LOCATION

Position is based in our NYC location. As of January 2022, the Commonwealth Fund Staff will be working in a hybrid environment, with the expectation of at least two days a week working in the office.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line: “Grants Assistant – [Your Name]” to: [email protected]. Due to the pace of this search, candidates are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible. Applications will be accepted through Friday, October 29, 2021.

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package.

Employment at The Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


 

 


RESEARCH ASSOCIATE

INTERNATIONAL HEALTH POLICY AND PRACTICE INNOVATIONS

 

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of the Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON INTERNATIONAL HEALTH POLICY AND PRACTICE INNOVATIONS

The Commonwealth Fund’s International Health Policy and Practice Innovations program seeks to improve people’s lives by being the trusted source for international insights that spur change to the U.S. health care system. We compel U.S. health care leaders to act by generating research and analysis on international policies and practices that address common health care problems and promote a high-performing healthcare system. The Harkness Fellowship helps to achieve this goal by cultivating a network of international leaders and experts to inform our work.  Key activities include:

  • Surveying the public, patients, and physicians in 11 countries to compare health system performance annually (International Health Policy Survey).
  • Benchmarking U.S. performance compared to 11 countries on indicators in five domains: Care Process, Access, Administrative Efficiency, Equity, and Health Care Outcomes (Mirror, Mirror).
  • Commissioning research on health care in other countries that can inform U.S. efforts to improve access, quality, equity, efficiency, and affordability.    
  • Identifying and disseminating information about health care delivery system innovations abroad that might also work in the U.S. and working with U.S. delivery systems to pilot the most promising models, such as universal coverage, mental health, and drug pricing.
  • Sponsoring the Harkness Fellowships in Health Policy and Practice, which enable promising international health care leaders to spend 12 months in the U.S. conducting policy-oriented research.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Research Associate for International Health Policy and Practice Innovations will assist in conducting quantitative and qualitative analysis using statistical software, contribute to policy analyses and policy recommendations, and craft rapid-response commentary including written reports and talking points. The position requires strong writing skills, including supporting the team in translating complex research into easily digestible materials. The Research Associate will work closely with a collegial team and will report to the Senior Researcher on the team. In addition, the Research Associate will engage with other organizations, researchers, and international leaders (government and experts) to conduct topical research to advance international health policy and practice insights that are timely and relevant for improving U.S. health care.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES
  • Provide research support to the International Health Policy and Practice Innovations Team by brainstorming research ideas, providing input to questionnaire development, conducting statistical analysis, and co-authoring research briefs and memos on a variety of international health policy issues and contributing to the preparation of products and social media
  • Maintain and build knowledge base of the literature and policy environment related to international health policy issues. Conduct background research on current international health policy issues, including literature reviews and internet searches. Monitor working papers, survey reports and other information related to the program priorities
  • Assists with complex data analysis using Excel spreadsheets, STATA, and other data analytic software. Tasks may involve cleaning, manipulating and analyzing primary and secondary datasets using statistical software (STATA) to produce original analyses and display data in tables and charts
  • Provide research and analytic support and ensure data integrity for products, including:
    • Fact checks-determining need for further substantiation of material and informing author of need for additional sources, credits or data;
    • Collecting materials needed for verification;
    • Comparing manuscripts with sources to ensure fidelity to source, checking numerical data for accuracy in text, tables and figures;
    • Formatting and completing citations and source notes;
    • Revising notes to conform to the Commonwealth Fund style; responding to editor’s queries on manuscripts;
    • Suggesting alternative ways of presenting data when appropriate; may call additional information to the attention of the author or editor
  • Support qualitative research, including personal interviews and analyses of statutory, regulatory, and other policy documents
  • Participate in the development of online versions of reports, data visualizations, and related interactives.
    • Prepare charts and tables for publication and public presentations.
    • Present findings to professional and policy audiences.
  • Works with the Program Assistant/Associate on grant related matters as needed including the development of small grants/contracts related to data acquisition and measure development, and completed grant memoranda regarding grant achievements, issues in implementation, and lessons learned for Fund grantmaking
  • Develops slides and handouts for internal and external team presentations. Presents material as requested
  • Helps to organize and support meetings and collaboration for the program
CORE COMPETENCIES & QUALIFICATIONS
  • A Master’s degree (or equivalent experience) in a related field and at least 2 years of applicable work experience are preferred. Preference will be given to applicants with prior research or journalistic experience and/or formal education in economics or health policy.
  • Demonstrated interest and understanding of international health issues, particularly maternal health, mental health, universal health coverage or drug pricing policy needed
  • Commitment to racial, gender, and disability justice and economic equity, including the intersectionality of these issues
  • Ability to reliably meet deadlines, effectively communicate updates, and spot potential challenges to raise with the Vice President, International Health Policy and Practice Innovations and Senior Researcher
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated ability to synthesize complex ideas and findings in oral and written communication and bring succinct, accessible ideas to nonexperts
  • Collaborative team player with a willingness and the curiosity to delve deeply into various International health topics
  • Familiar with statistical software such as STATA, SPSS, SAS, R, or similar programs to conduct responsible data analysis. Experience in survey design and methodology is preferred.  
  • Creativity and an ability to generate multiple solutions to problems
  • Self-directed self-starter with a willingness to own high-priority tasks
  • Well organized with concern for details, accuracy and ability to multitask in a fast-paced, team-oriented environment under the pressure of deadlines
  • Responsive to feedback with the capacity to learn quickly and continuously
  • Commitment to the Commonwealth Fund’s mission and goals

LOCATION

Position may be based out of our NY or DC locations. As of January 2022, the Commonwealth Fund Staff will be working in a hybrid environment, with the expectation of at least two days a week working in the office.

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with subject line: “Research Associate (International) – [Your Name]” to: [email protected]

 

Employment at the Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


 


RESEARCHER

HEALTH CARE COVERAGE AND ACCESS

 

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON HEALTH CARE COVERAGE AND ACCESS

The Affordable Care Act brought sweeping change to the U.S health system, expanding comprehensive health insurance to millions of Americans and making it possible for anyone with health problems to get coverage by banning insurers from denying coverage or charging more because of pre-existing conditions.  As a result, the number of uninsured people has fallen by nearly half since the ACA became law.  The large body of research on the ACA shows that the law’s overall impact on people’s ability to afford insurance and get health care has been positive.   However, three distinct, yet interrelated, problems remain: 29.7 million people remain uninsured, 44 million people with insurance have plans that are leaving them underinsured, and health care costs are growing faster than median income in most states.

In order to help meet these challenges, the coverage program and the tracking initiative on health system performance conduct research on the extent and quality of insurance, health care access and financial problems stemming from inadequate coverage, and health system performance at the national, state, and local levels, including examining and developing policy options aimed at improving performance.

PROGRAM GOALS

The Commonwealth Fund’s Health Care Coverage and Access program will furnish policymakers and key stakeholders with timely analysis of the effects of the Affordable Care Act and subsequent reforms to expand and improve coverage, access and affordability across the population. Activities will include:

  • Providing timely information about the effects of the Affordable Care Act and subsequent reforms to expand and improve coverage, access and affordability. 
  • Tracking enrollment and people’s experiences with insurance.
  • Evaluating the effects of insurance reforms and state and federal innovation on the extent and quality of health coverage, access to health care, changes in employer-based coverage, affordability of premiums and out-of-pocket costs, health plan competition, and innovation in insurance products and markets.
  • Analyzing and developing national and state short-term policy solutions to expand health insurance, improve access, and reduce consumer and health system costs.
  • Identifying gaps in the insurance system that leave people of color, those with low-incomes, and those with high spending without coverage or adequate protection from costs.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

Reporting to the Vice President, Health Care Coverage and Access, the Researcher is an important part of a five-member team responsible for the Fund’s Program on Health Care Coverage and Access and the Tracking Health System Performance research initiative. The primary responsibility of the Researcher is to provide research and analytic support for the Health Care Coverage and Access program, with specific responsibility in the area of the program’s extensive survey research agenda. With guidance from the Vice President, the Researcher is responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of the program’s surveys including organizing and providing input to questionnaire development, insuring data integrity, communicating with the survey research firms, using statistical software to analyze data, and displaying data in tables and charts.  The Researcher will participate as part of cross-program Fund staff research teams in writing reports, issue briefs, blogs, and journal articles based on survey findings as well as maintaining data integrity.   In particular, the Researcher will collaborate with the Vice President for Medicare on surveys focusing on coverage and access of 65 and older adults.  As experience deepens, responsibilities will include making presentations at public and professional meetings.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

Specific responsibilities for the Researcher include:

  • Managing the day-to-day activities of the Health Care Coverage and Access program’s surveys including organizing and providing input to questionnaire development, insuring data integrity, communicating with the survey research firms, and responding to external requests for data.
  • Conducting statistical analysis of the program’s and other program surveys, displaying data in tables and charts.
  • Developing and implementing procedures for insuring data integrity in survey data sets and program publications.
  • Collaborating with other members of the research team, the Medicare program and other Fund programs to write reports, issue briefs, journal articles, and blogs based on survey findings.
  • Maintain and build knowledge-base on the provisions of the Affordable Care Act and Medicare and Medicaid programs, to both inform questionnaire development, data analysis and presentation, and focus of publications. 
  • Maintain and build knowledge-base on the literature, policy environment, and industry trends related to public and private health insurance coverage and access issues. Conduct background research on current health coverage and access issues, including literature reviews and Internet searches. Monitor journals, working papers, legislative developments, survey reports, and other information related to the program area.
  • Prepare charts and tables for public presentations and presenting findings to professional and policy audiences. May also be asked to prepare presentations for the Medicare program, other program leads, and senior management.
  •  As needed, assist in the development of policy relevant and methodologically sound Board-level and intermediate grant projects for the Health Care Coverage and Access and Medicare programs.  Conduct background research and literature reviews; review proposals for design and methodology; prepare summaries for review and approval by the Board of Directors.
  • As needed, support the Program Assistant in managing grants; maintain knowledge of work related to grants, including publications.
  • Assure high quality, policy relevant Fund publications based on grantee and staff work. Critique grantee and staff papers submitted for Fund publication; participate in the final review; prepare executive summaries and issue briefs based on grantee work.
  • Participate in cross-program Fund supported health policy work.
  • The Researcher may also support the Vice President with additional responsibility for coordinating all activities within this program, developing and maintaining the work plan for the program, convening program team meetings and representing the program internally to the executive management team.
  • The Program Assistant and the Researcher will back each other up in the other’s absence, so each is expected to cross-train and ultimately know the other’s responsibilities at a level that provides for reasonable back-up.

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the institution. This may include taking on responsibility for other program areas or departments if the need arises.

QUALIFICATIONS

The ideal candidate for this policy focused position will have a masters degree (MS, MPH, MPA) in a field related to health economics, health services research or health policy. The position requires a strong background in statistical data analysis using STATA, SAS or other statistical software.  Candidates must also have a working knowledge of the insurance coverage provisions of the Affordable Care Act and a background in health insurance coverage and insurance markets, and Medicare and Medicaid.  Experience in survey design and methodology is preferable.   

Applicants should demonstrate strong research analytical skills, including competence in the use of quantitative data. Excellent oral and written communication skills will include the ability to write about and discuss complex issues. Will have coordination and project management skills, be well organized with concern for details, accuracy and deadlines and have the ability to set priorities and work with a minimum of supervision. Will have digital skills including experience with statistical software, spreadsheets, graphical and mapping software.  Excellent interpersonal skills: capable of being a team member as well as a team leader and a willingness to participate in general workflow of office.

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgment, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

LOCATION

Position is based in our NYC location. As of January 2022, the Commonwealth Fund Staff will be working in a hybrid environment, with the expectation of at least two days a week working in the office.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line: “Researcher – [Your Name]” to: [email protected].

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package.

Employment at The Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.