Research Associate – Thanjavur, EPoD India at IFMR LEAD

Research Associate – Thanjavur, EPoD India at IFMR LEAD
Location: Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu (tentative)
Start date: Immediate

Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) has partnered with India’s IFMR LEAD, based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research, to evaluate pressing policy questions in collaboration with several government partners. Both IFMR LEAD and EPoD are dedicated to using rigorous evidence to address challenging questions at the intersection of economic development and public policy. Our cutting-edge research examines questions related to governance, financial inclusion, skills training, gender, and sustainable development, and it draws from a network of expert academics with expertise in India and around the world.

EPoD India at IFMR is currently seeking a Research Associate to support a new, two-phase, field-based research project which aims to understand barriers to, and impacts of, women’s cell phone adoption and usage in India. Additionally, the Research Associate will contribute to ongoing project work on a randomized control trial (RCT) examining women’s bank account ownership and economic empowerment, as required.

The Research Associate will play an active role in leading and managing all field activities of the project, as well as provide data-analytic and field support from Thanjavur (Tamil Nadu), with occasional travel to other parts of the country. The position will entail close collaboration and assistance with the design and analysis of projects and implementation. The position requires a self-starting candidate who can conduct scoping activities with local partners, manage field activities and coordinate field staff for the execution of surveys and RCTs, and support with high quality cleaning and rigorous analysis of both primary and secondary data.

The selected candidate will have the opportunity to join a team of leading economists and public policy experts at Harvard and other reputed universities, as well as EPoD India at IFMR LEAD, to work on cutting-edge development research and gain first-hand experience working with policy partners, implementing surveys and field experiments, and conducting rigorous data analysis.


•     In collaboration with the research and senior project teams, identify potential project partners, seek out and collect existing mobile phone ownership and usage data, review and report on existing academic literature related to mobile phone adoption in India and other countries, and contribute to in-depth interviews and focus groups with relevant experts/stakeholders
•     Manage day-to-day relationships with partners (academics, policy organizations, NGOs, etc.) as requested
•     Conduct data cleaning, manipulation, and analysis using multiple primary and secondary data sources
•     Oversee the day-to-day implementation of field-based research (scoping, surveying, project implementation) – including the management of field personnel, procurement, budgets, and reporting for the project
•     Assist in the design and field-testing of survey instruments and develop and implement appropriate structures and systems for a larger randomized intervention, including the procurement of supplies; development and oversight of field and quality control protocols; recruitment, training, and leading of field staff; and coordination with local partners
•     Provide appropriate inputs for project management (budgets, reports, etc.) for EPoD and IFMR in India and for program monitoring and reporting to the management hub at Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at Harvard
•     Others, as required

Basic Qualifications:

Bachelor’s candidates with at least 2 years of experience with data-based research, preferably in economics or a related field. Field experience is a plus. Strong interest in public policy and economic development in low-income countries. Excellent oral and written English, Tamil and Hindi communication skills and proficiency in Stata and the Microsoft Office suite. Mature, self-directed individual with ability to balance multiple tasks and prioritize effectively to meet deadlines in a fast-paced working environment.

Preferred Qualifications:

Master’s degree in economics or related field and experience in Stata is highly desired. Proficiency in Tamil preferred. Candidate should have strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to engage with partners at various levels.

How to Apply:

If you are interested in this position, please email . In the subject line, put “Research Associate – Mobile access, Thanjavur” followed by your first and last name (e.g., “XXX – Jane Doe) and attach the following documents:
• Cover letter (one page max)
• CV
• Academic transcripts from all degrees received