Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, Opportunity Insights

Massachusetts, United States
19 Sep 2018
End of advertisement period
31 Oct 2018
Contract Type
Full Time

School Faculty of Arts and Sciences


Position Description

We are looking to hire several full-time pre-doctoral fellows for the academic year 2019-20 to work with our research group on the Opportunity Insights (previously the Equality of Opportunity Project). The mission of the project is to develop scalable policy solutions that will empower families throughout the United States to rise out of poverty and achieve better life outcomes. We pursue this mission primarily by conducting rigorous, scientific research that harnesses the power of “big data” using an interdisciplinary approach. Much of the team’s ongoing research uses quasi-experimental methods to identify causal effects and test the predictions of economic and sociological models. Current projects study the long- term impacts of neighborhoods, the role of colleges as a pathway to upward mobility, the determinants of innovation and entrepreneurship, and how social networks may affect poverty. Results from these projects have appeared in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal and have been widely cited in policy discussions, including the President’s State of the Union address.

The positions will be based at Cambridge, MA and Washington, D.C. under the direction of Professors Chetty, Friedman, and Hendren. The fellowship will include a variety of tasks that provide preparation for graduate school, such as analyzing data, developing statistical models, creating presentations, and editing research papers. In addition to working with faculty as research assistants, the pre-doctoral fellows frequently co-author papers with other students or faculty members. Fellows will interact regularly with professors and their collaborators – such as David Deming, Matthew Jackson, and Emmanuel Saez – in a team-oriented lab environment, with weekly lab meetings and other events. The program serves as an ideal bridge between college and graduate school for students interested in empirical economics. Most previous fellows have gone on to top Ph.D. programs. Salary will be competitive.

Basic Qualifications

Applicants should be completing (or have completed) a Bachelors or Master’s degree and have strong quantitative and programming skills. Candidates with research experience are strongly preferred, especially those with programming experience in Stata, SAS, R, Python, and Julia. Candidates need not be Economics majors, though they should have a strong interest in and some experience with Economics. Candidates would ideally begin around July 1, 2019 and work for us for two years before applying to graduate school in Economics or another social science.

Additional Qualifications

We will review applications, conduct interviews, and make offers in two rounds: one in mid-fall and one in late-winter. Applications received by October 31, 2018, will be eligible for the first round. First-round decisions will be announced around November 15, 2018. All applications received before February 28, 2019 will be considered for the second round, and those decisions will be made around March 15, 2019. Questions can be directed to Martin Koenen at chettylab@gmail.com.

Special Instructions

To apply, please:

  1. Submit a formal application through this posting.
  2. Upload your resume, cover letter (optional), transcripts, and a writing sample through our group’s online form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeTYcGQYZEZ_24c5qLUl_juevgQFc3WdtdIyqEEmcJWxxGHPA/viewform

Contact Information

Questions regarding details of the position can be directed to: Martin Koenen at chettylab@gmail.com

Contact Email chettylab@gmail.com

Equal Opportunity Employer

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions or any other characteristic protected by law.

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