Research Associate: Economics

London (Greater) (GB)
£38, 304 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
May 26, 2021
End of advertisement period
Jun 30, 2021
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Research Associate: Economics

Job ID: 023728

Salary: £38, 304 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance

Posted: 26-May-2021

Closing date: 30-Jun-2021

Business unit: Social Science & Public Policy

Department: India Institute

Contact details: Dr Sunil Kumar,

Strand Campus   Research    

Job description
The King’s India Institute at King’s College London invites applications for a postdoctoral research associate (PDRA) in economics and business. The  post will be based in the research team of Dr Sunil Mitra Kumar (King’s India Institute) and Dr Kamini Gupta (King’s Business School) at KCL’s Strand Campus in central London. Key project collaborators also include India-based Primary Investigator Dr Prateek Gupta (IIM, Bangalore) and Dr Param Shah (FICCI, UK).   

The position will be funded by a 3-year Economic and Social Research Council and Indian Council of Social Science Research grant on Enablers and Obstacles for UK-India Trade: Banks and Diasporas (UKIT- Enob). UKIT-Enob aims to understand key enablers and obstacles to UK-India trade from the perspective of small export-oriented firms in India.  

The project includes two sub-themes. The first focuses on understanding small manufacturing firms’ access to bank and other forms of credit, and how such access influences their export activities. The second sub-theme focuses on the role of social networks for such firms and their supply chains, and will map these for a cluster of firms to understand the pathways through which small firms discover and exploit trade opportunities. 

The postholder will manage the project on a day-to-day basis under the guidance of Drs Kumar and Gupta. They will collaborate with various stakeholders to oversee survey questionnaire design and data collection on small export-oriented firms in India, assist in analysing data, and co-author publications that emerge from the project. They will also lead on coordinating activities with the India-based project counterpart the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, besides planning and convening outreach events, online seminars, and reporting to funders.  
The post will require collaboration with a range of stakeholders including industrial bodies in India and the UK and advisory board members, creation and management of primary datasets, creative analysis of these and other relevant data to understand the role of small firms in UK-India trade, and communicating key findings through blogposts and publications.  
The King’s India Institute is committed to   equality, diversity and inclusion, and has a vibrant, friendly and international research culture focused on contributing to a public understanding of contemporary India through empirical research, events and outreach activities, and partnerships with academic and non-academic partners in India and internationally. As part of the School of Global Affairs, the Institute includes a vibrant PhD community of around 20 students and anchors the   MSc Global Affairs which has approximately 70 students, a core group of faculty, and associate members of faculty across the social sciences, arts and humanities, and law at King’s.  
The King’s Business School  (KBS) is a diverse community committed to high quality research and teaching. Guided by its four research values: rigour, relevance, inclusion and innovation; members of faculty conduct research that combines rigorous scholarly insight with practical and relevant impact around the biggest problems being faced by organizations today. KBS runs highly successful undergraduate and post-graduate programs in management attracting students from across 80 different countries, including an active PhD community.  
The PDRA will be part of an active group of academics in the department, and will have many opportunities for professional development including funding to attend meetings and workshops, and opportunities to co-mentor students and collaborate on projects more widely.
The post will be responsible to Sunil Kumar. The position begins in September 2021, though a slightly later start date will be considered if required. For questions or further information, please email
This post will be offered on an fixed-term contract for 24 months.
This is advertised as a full-time post (100% full time equivalent), but flexible and  part-time working arrangements will be considered.

Key responsibilities

  • Liaise with project partners  FICCI UK and Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIM-B) and coordinate day-to-day running of the project
  • Develop the survey and questionnaires in collaboration with project investigators, and liaise with organisations involved in the data collection.
  • Manage and analyse these data in Stata or R, and prepare data for sharing via the  UK Data Service. 
  • Analyse survey data as well as other relevant datasets (e.g. World Bank Enterprise Survey for India) using econometric modelling tools such as regression, propensity score matching, and network models.
  • Coordinate dissemination events online, in the UK, and in India (in collaboration with IIM-B).
  • Oversee development of the project’s website.
  • Coauthor and publish peer-reviewed journal publications
  • Attend and present research at national and international conferences
  • Contribute positively to an inclusive, diverse and collegial working environment.

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.
Skills, knowledge and experience 
Essential criteria 

  1. PhD in economics or related area of social sciences
  2. Evidence of ability to publish peer-reviewed papers in internationally recognised journals
  3. Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  4. Proficient with and experienced in quantitative methods
  5. Experience with, or the necessary computing skills to learn, some of the following types of analyses: regression modelling, propensity score matching, network analysis 
  6. Ability to handle and merge survey datasets, and conduct, interpret and communicate statistical summaries and patterns in Stata or R
  7. Commitment to working collaboratively and respectfully with colleagues at all levels of experience, and willingness to be an active participant in project management, data analysis, written communication to non-specialist audiences via blogs and opinion pieces, and peer-reviewed journal articles. 
  8. Effective oral and written communication skills 
  9. Ability to co-ordinate and work across two different project sub-themes. 

Desirable criteria 

  1. Knowledge of one or more of small business economics, trade economics, supply chains, small business credit, social networks, network analysis
  2. Experience in questionnaire design and survey data collection 

Please note that this is a PhD level role but candidates who have submitted their thesis and are awaiting award of their PhDs will be considered. In these circumstances the appointment will be made at Grade 5, spine point 30 with the title of Research Assistant. Upon confirmation of the award of the PhD, the job title will become Research Associate and the salary will increase to Grade 6.
Further information

  • Please include a letter of motivation (up to two A4 pages), a CV including a complete list of your publications, and the contact details of two referees in your application.
  • Interviews will be conducted virtually in July 2021.