EPoD India at IFMR Fellow (Financial Inclusion & Gender)

Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at Harvard’s Center for International Development is a program that brings together a team of researchers who share a commitment to using analytical tools to answer pressing policy questions and spur real-world change. By explicitly considering the objectives and constraints of policy actors, we aim to gain a fuller understanding of how to effectively achieve desired outcomes. We inform public policy by working alongside policymakers to design and test interventions, and provide applicable insights from economic theory and empirics, that help maximize the impact of public resources and more effectively deliver public services. Current areas of research include education, entrepreneurship, environmental regulation, financial inclusion, health, agriculture, tax administration, and governance.

In India, EPoD is housed at the Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) LEAD, within the broader IFMR ecosystem. EPoD India at IFMR is currently recruiting a Research Fellow to support a portfolio of several research projects in India at the intersection of financial inclusion and gender, with a focus on effective direct benefit transfer delivery. The position will allow the selected candidate an opportunity to gain first-hand experience conducting empirical research at the forefront of economic research and public policy while contributing to an agreed upon project portfolio. Responsibilities within the project portfolio include supporting research design and implementation, overseeing data collection and analysis, and managing grants and project staff. This position requires a self-starting candidate with proven expertise in applied economics research who can effectively navigate India’s institutional landscape and appropriately represent EPoD to outside stakeholders. The position will allow a talented early career researcher the opportunity to work directly with top academics from Harvard to begin building their own research portfolio.

Responsibilities:

•     Manage and supervise technical aspects of select research projects in collaboration with the research team.
•     Conduct econometric analysis under the direction of senior researchers.
•     Manage relationships with funding organizations and partner institutions; work with partner institutions and governments to set strategic priorities as well as coordinate project administration and logistics.
•     Oversee field-based team to manage research project activities, including intervention implementation, and contribute to field-based scoping, survey design, and survey testing.
•     Compile, assess and synthesize research into policy briefs, white papers, and academic articles with guidance and oversight of EPoD-affiliated research faculty.
•     Contribute to EPoD’s overall management and strategic vision by identifying new research projects and partners and applying for additional sources of funding in partnership with research team.
•     Provide appropriate inputs and support for administrative requirements of the project portfolio, upon request, which may include financial management, budgeting, procurement, contract set-up and compliance, grant reporting, deliverable tracking, etc.

Basic Qualifications:

•     PhD in economics, public policy, political science, statistics, econometrics or related field with a strong applied focus
•     Advanced coursework in empirical methods, including econometrics and economics with strong demonstrated academic performance
•     Solid understanding of research project design and experience with data collection and field work
•     Proven analytical skills and proficiency in Stata and/or R; experience in Python a plus
•     Proven ability to manage multiple tasks and propose timely solutions with minimal supervision
•     Excellent attention to detail
•     Capacity to maintain an organized and structured work style in a fast-paced environment
•     Ability to adapt to quickly to changing environments
•     Strong interpersonal skills, and willingness to interact with a wide range of individuals ranging from Research Associates to academics, donors, research institutions, etc.
•     Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and Hindi
•     Ability to work in a multicultural environment
•     Willingness to travel frequently and spend significant time at research project sites, as needed

Preferred Qualifications:

•     Ability to independently drive research projects and produce independent, high-quality original empirical research in mutually agreed upon areas
•     3 to 5 years of field research or field research management experience in international development or related field
•     Experience with research grants management, budgeting, and project management
•     Demonstrated interest in public policy and South Asia

This position will be based in Patna, Bihar, India, with frequent travel throughout the country expected. The fellowship is a one year position with the possibility of a one year extension upon mutual agreement.

How to Apply: If you are interested in this position, please email epod.harvard.india@gmail.com with the subject line “EPoD India Fellow” followed by your first and last name (e.g., “XXX – Jane Doe), and attach your CV, academic transcript, a writing sample, and a statement of interest. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.