Research Fellow - Prof. Rema Hanna – Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at the Harvard Kennedy School
- United States of America
Housed within the Center for International Development (CID), Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) is a dynamic research initiative that brings analytical insights, typically from economics, to the design and implementation of public policies and programs around the world. EPoD directly engages with governments and local organizations to identify key questions, design innovative new policies or interventions, and test these using the tools of applied microeconomics, including large field-based experiments. Current research topics at EPoD include governance, social protection, education, entrepreneurship, health, skills, state capacity, sustainable development, and access to finance. Recent and ongoing research locations include Brazil, China, Colombia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and Zambia. For more information on EPoD, visit our website.
About the Fellowship
EPoD research fellows work closely with faculty on specific research projects. Current projects include randomized evaluations of Indonesian social programs including jobs training, food assistance, electricity subsidies, community-targeted cash transfers, and insurance, as well as a study on the optimization of Jakarta’s bus system. We use massive datasets of deidentified administrative data and financial transactions to better understand unemployment, insurance, and industrial policy in Thailand, and we are conducting a randomized experiment on public employment services in Morocco. Our team is also using a suite of experimental and quasi-experimental studies in tax administration and tax assessments to better understand how countries can increase the efficiency of their tax collection and ultimately raise more revenue to support public programs.
Fellows come from diverse backgrounds and bring highly valued technical skillsets and cultural perspectives to our research teams. Fellows receive mentoring from faculty, work with cutting-edge topics and research methods, and participate in a broad range of activities at the Harvard Kennedy School. They are welcomed as members of the Harvard community and receive salary, benefits, and access to an array of university resources. Fellows are among the best and the brightest of future researchers and practitioners in Economics, Public Policy, and related fields, and many go on to top PhD programs or pursue careers outside of academia, supporting and implementing evidence-based policy from a variety of organizations.
This specific fellowship be will under the direction of Professor Rema Hanna and focus on projects in Indonesia, Thailand, India, and Morocco, with opportunities to interface with other researchers and support additional projects. We are seeking a full-time research fellow for one year, with the strong possibility of second-year renewal, starting in June-September 2023. The position will be based in Cambridge, MA, with the possibility of hybrid in-office/remote scheduling in accordance with university flexwork policies.
- Clean and manage large datasets
- Conduct statistical analyses in Stata
- Develop survey instruments and data request documents for data collection
- Create technical documentation for internal and external audiences
- Conduct background research and literature reviews
- Draft content for reports to policymakers, academic papers, grant proposals, research protocols, and other project documents
- Coordinate with a variety of research team members at EPoD and partner organizations, including those based internationally
- Travel to the field as needed
- Bachelors or Masters degree in Economics, Public Policy, International Development, or related field requiring substantial coursework in math and economics
- Demonstrated academic excellence
- Proficiency in Stata, working with large, complex datasets
- Thorough understanding of randomized control trials and econometric methods
- Strong English oral and written communication skills
- Excellent command of Microsoft Office suite (Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint)
- Strong motivation, self-direction, and organizational skills
- Enthusiasm for collaborating with a diverse team, including international colleagues
- Willingness to travel internationally
- Graduate-level coursework in Economics and Econometrics
- Proficiency in R, Python, and/or Julia
- Experience with survey design and implementation using Qualtrics
- Experience using GitHub
- Experience with remote computing servers
- Relevant research experience, including complex data processing and causal effects estimation
- Familiarity with or interest in the academic literature on social protections, active labor market programs, financial inclusion, taxation, and related topics in development
How to Apply
Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the [Research] job category, then select "[ Research Fellow - Prof. Rema Hanna – Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at the Harvard Kennedy School]” and include the following materials. Note that applications with incomplete submissions will not be considered. Please ensure that your application includes:
- Cover letter (one page max)
- Coding sample(s) demonstrating data analysis skills in Stata (preferred), R, or Python.
- Please submit no more than one coding sample per language.
- Redact your name from anywhere it appears in the file (including versions of your name in referenced file paths).
- Two letters of recommendation from academic (preferred) or professional references (can be submitted later in the review process)
You are able to submit your application before your references complete their recommendation letters; however, you must include their contact information before submitting your application. Given the volume of applications received, only short-listed candidates will be contacted for an interview.
Applicants chosen to move forward in the hiring process will be required to take a Stata exam, participate in multiple interviews, and provide additional materials as requested. Please contact [email protected] with any questions.