Intern, Breakthrough Project (Gender) - J-PAL South Asia

Language Requirement 
Length of Commitment 
Less than one year
Start Date 

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) J-PAL was established in 2003 as a research center at the Economics Department at MIT. Since then, it has grown into a global network of researchers who use randomized evaluations to answer critical policy questions in the fight against poverty. J-PAL is propelled by a first-rate team dedicated to research, policy, training, and other vital work, supporting J-PAL's mission to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence.

J-PAL South Asia, which is based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) in India, analyses and disseminates research results and builds partnerships with policymakers to ensure that policy is driven by evidence, and that programs proven effective are scaled up. We have a growing number of partnerships in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

Project Description:

Despite two decades of rapid economic growth and social transformation, outcomes for women in India are considerably worse than those for men. Especially in North India, gender discrimination is rampant. The state of Haryana has some of the most skewed sex ratios in the country: 830 girls per 1000 boys. Girls attend school for fewer years, marry young and have children quickly, while adult women face persistent barriers to labor force participation, decision making and mobility outside home.

Attitudes associated with gender potentially have a large role in addressing discrimination. Breakthrough, a human rights organization, developed a comprehensive and innovative gender attitude change program targeting adolescent female and male students. Breakthrough implemented the two-and-a-half-year pilot program between 2014 and 2016 for students from grades 7-10 in 150 government schools across four districts of Haryana. Through teacher training, interactive classroom sessions, youth clubs, school activities and a media and communications campaign, the program aimed to create awareness of gender discrimination, change dominant gendered perceptions and promote gender equitable attitudes, with the goal to positively influence a wide range of short and longer term behaviors related to girls’ education, mobility, work, marriage, fertility and family planning.

In order to assess the impact of this intervention, J-PAL South Asia is conducting a randomized evaluation in 314 schools across Sonepat, Panipat, Rohtak and Jhajjar districts in Haryana (150 schools in which Breakthrough ran the program and 164 schools where it did not). The first endline for the study was completed in 2016, which showed encouraging results. The second endline is ongoing, and is designed to assess whether the positive results persist over time and translate into changes in objective behaviour. We are seeking an intern to support the Research Associates in the implementation of the large-scale endline survey.

Intern Roles and Responsibilities:

The intern will perform a variety of tasks on the project including, but not limited to:

  • Managing survey teams in the field: work together with the RA to resolve issues arising from the field, conducting monitoring visits and quality checks, careful and clear documentation on any changes in the instrument or protocols
  • Ensuring the project follows the agreed timeline and meets key milestones
  • Coordinating with the Admin/Finance team on contracts/payments
  • Cleaning the data being collected for quality-checks, and reporting any issues to the team

The position is an excellent opportunity for those interested in both impact evaluation fieldwork and academic work in gender and education.

How to Apply

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Intern job category, then select "Intern, Breakthrough Project (Gender) - J-PAL South Asia” and include two letters of recommendation, cover letter and CV. Note that applications with incomplete submissions will not be considered.

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted for a written exam and interview(s).