Information for Affiliates

This page contains internal resources for J-PAL affiliates. Not an affiliate? Visit our public Research Resources.  

Most of the resources linked on this page are accessible via Google Drive. Affiliates can request access using a Google account. 

Questions? Email Sarah Kopper. 

Quick links

Affiliate directory
Affiliate criteria
Calendar of funding opportunities
J-PAL offices
J-PAL sectors
J-PAL initiatives
New affiliate webinar slides
Who should I contact?

Important policies 

J-PAL has policies to help assure high quality, ethical, and transparent research practices in projects implemented or funded by J-PAL. Staff can help affiliates implement these requirements. We also offer data publication and trial registration assistance.

  • J-PAL Research Protocols: Our Research Protocols describe "minimum must dos" and best practices to ensure the ethical conduct of research, data security, and data quality. Please review these protocols carefully. All projects funded or carried out by J-PAL must adhere to these guidelines.
  • IPA Research Protocols: Our partner organization Innovations for Poverty Action has a similar set of Research Protocols in place. They give a comprehensive overview on the steps to implement a high-quality field project.
  • RCT registration: All projects funded or implemented by J-PAL must be registered with the AEA RCT Registry. Affiliates are encouraged to register all their RCTs, not just those that are J-PAL-funded or run through a J-PAL office.
  • Data publication guidelines: All data collected for J-PAL-funded projects must be published in de-identified form as IRB protocols allow. Affiliates are additionally encouraged to publish data from all of their RCTs. Many funders have also begun to require publication of data that was collected as part of funded projects.

Services for affiliates

J-PAL provides services and resources to affiliates at every stage of the project life cycle. Some of these services are listed below; details and a more comprehensive list can be found in the slides from the webinar for new affiliates.

AEA RCT Registry 

In 2012, the American Economic Association, in cooperation with J-PAL, implemented the AEA RCT Registry. All projects funded or implemented by J-PAL must be registered. Affiliates are encouraged to register all of their RCTs. (Note that some journals or funders also require trial registration in a public registry.)

J-PAL’s research team can provide affiliates assistance in registering their projects on the AEA RCT Registry, such as creating drafts based off of information in a research proposal, an application to your Institutional Review Board (IRB), narrative reports, etc. For help requests or questions, contact Keesler Welch (Trial Registry Administrator, J-PAL). The registry is only as meaningful as it is comprehensive; we appreciate your support in this effort.

Staff recruitment

J-PAL has a centralized system for helping affiliates hire research associates and project managers. J-PAL hosts an annual recruitment drive November-January each year, though affiliates may post jobs to the system any time and can browse our applicant database. In addition, J-PAL's regional offices support the recruitment of local RAs and research staff throughout the year. 

Research staff training

Updated August 25, 2020

J-PAL and IPA host joint trainings for affiliates' RAs and other research staff three times per year. Due to COVID-19, J-PAL’s Research Staff Training will be delivered online this fall. Though participants will miss out on in-person interactions and activities, we have made every effort to replicate key elements of the in-person staff training experience, such as senior staff mentoring and cohort bonding, and will deliver all core content. 

Dates: 

The trainings will be delivered over the course of four to six weeks, with approximately two hours of lecture, breakout, and lab activities three days per week. Both trainings will cover much of the same content; the primary difference is the time zone in which the content will be delivered.

The objective of our research staff training is to provide new staff with the theoretical and technical foundations to design and coordinate high-quality research studies in the field. The training covers the basics of randomized evaluations in the social sciences, research ethics, and research transparency, as well as practical skills involved in managing a research project, designing effective questionnaires, ensuring data quality and security, collaborating with partner organizations, field team management, and data management and analysis.  

Course coverage:

Please see the North America and South Asia course websites for draft agendas, training content, and FAQs. As a preview, both courses cover theoretical and technical topics: 

  • The theoretical topics include lectures on: Research ethics; Research design (theory of change, measurement, etc.); Randomization theory; Power calculation theory
  • The technical topics include lectures and labs on: Questionnaire design; Quality control in the field for digital and paper surveys; Field team management; Data management; Programming an electronic survey in SurveyCTO; Stata programming, from beginner to advanced; Power calculations in Optimal Design; Data security.

Training fees

  Low- or middle-income country High-income country
J-PAL/IPA affiliated network and partner organizations $800 $1,100
External organizations $1,000 $1,300

The fee per participant depends on employment status, country of origin, and date of registration. Fees cover the cost of conducting an online training, such as staff time and costs of hardware and software. 

Registration:

Interested in sending your staff to a J-PAL Research Staff Training? 

  • RST South Asia: The link to register is here, and the registration deadline is September 4, 2020. Please find the cancellation policy here
  • RST North America: The link to register is here, and the registration deadline is September 16, 2020 (note: We are offering an early sign up discount of $100 for registration before September 1st.). Please find the cancellation policy here

For information about the North America staff training, contact Toby Chaiken, Senior Policy and Training Manager, J-PAL North America, or Saurabh Bhajibhakare, Senior Research Manager, J-PAL South Asia, for information about the South Asia staff training. 

Data publication

J-PAL's research team can work with you to clean, label, and document datasets collected as part of a randomized evaluation before publishing them in the J-PAL Dataverse or another data repository of your choice. Email [email protected].

Research resources

Research manuals

Our public Research Resources are designed around the life cycle of a project, from grant proposals to disseminating results, and contain links to templates, manuals, checklists, and more. In addition to these resources, J-PAL maintains a Google Drive folder that contains some internal research resources to which all our affiliates and staff have access (please click on "request access" if you cannot see the folder). 

Human subjects

In addition to our public resources on writing IRB proposals and ethical conduct of RCTs, the IRB folder in the J-PAL shared Google Drive contains resources relating to human subjects and IRB, such as template consent forms and confidentiality agreements. These resources are internal to J-PAL staff and affiliates; please click on "request access" if you cannot see the folder. J-PAL also requires that all staff maintain current Human Subjects certifications through CITI or the NIH:

  • CITI (MIT Staff)
  • CITI (J-PAL, non-MIT staff)
  • NIH (IPA and others)

Budgets and grant writing

J-PAL's publicly available Research Resources include guides to writing grant proposals and grant management. In addition, J-PAL maintains a Google Drive folder with internal research resources to which all our affiliates and staff have access (please click on "request access" if you cannot see the folder). The Grant proposals section of the Google Drive folder contains budget templates and more. 

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