Predoctoral Research Fellow - Harvard Kennedy School

United States
Other advanced degree
Language Requirement 
Length of Commitment 
Two years
Start Date 
June 01, 2020–August 01, 2020

Professors Will Dobbie (Harvard Kennedy School) and Crystal Yang (Harvard Law School) are recruiting one full-time predoctoral research fellow to start in summer 2020. The fellow will support and collaborate on a series of applied microeconomics projects related to race and the criminal justice system, consumer finance, and social welfare policy.

The successful applicant will receive mentoring from faculty within a tight-knit research community at the Wiener Center and access to a broad range of activities at Harvard. Additionally, there may be opportunities to travel to project locations to support field research activities. Prior Fellows have gone on to attend top-tier PhD programs in Economics and Public Policy.

This position is based in Cambridge, MA at the Harvard Kennedy School. Appointment terms for Fellows are for one year with the strong potential for a second year renewal. Preference will be given to applicants who have availability to work for two years. 

About the Wiener Center

The Malcolm Wiener Center is a vibrant intellectual community of faculty, master’s and PhD students, researchers and administrative staff whose mission is to address pressing public policy questions through academic research, teaching and policy outreach. The work of the Center covers the domains of health care, human services, criminal justice, labor markets, education and political and economic inequality. The Wiener Center addresses pressing questions in these areas by carrying out research on important public policy issues, educating the next generation of academics and policy scholars, and ensuring that research and education are closely tied to and draw from policy and practice. 


  • Clean and manage large datasets 
  • Conduct statistical analyses of data using Stata, R and Python 
  • Prepare literature reviews, background research, and other content for grant proposals and academic papers 
  • Draft project reports, research protocols, and other project documents 
  • Oversee and coordinate field research activities 
  • Travel to the field as needed 



  • Bachelors or Masters Degree in Economics, Public Policy, Statistics, or related field requiring substantial quantitative coursework
  • Proficiency programming in Stata
  • Strong academic record 
  • Strong interest in public policy and economics research 
  • Excellent command of Microsoft Office suite (Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills 


  • Graduate-level coursework in Economics and Econometrics 
  • Prior experience as a research assistant or fellow in the fields of Public Policy or Economics 
  • Proficiency programming in R and Python 
  • Proficiency in LaTeX 

How to Apply

Send an email to [email protected] following these instructions:  

  • In the subject line, put “Fellow Application – followed by your first and last name” (e.g., “Fellow Application – Jane Doe”).
  • Attach the following documents as a single PDF:
    • CV
    • Cover letter
    • Official or unofficial transcripts for all degrees earned
    • An excerpt from a single-authored academic writing sample, no more than 5 pages in length 
    • Brief coding sample in Stata 
    • Contact information for three academic or professional references

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and will not be considered complete until all elements are received. Applicants chosen to move forward in the hiring process may be required to complete a technical exercise and participate in multiple interviews.