Research Associate, IFMR

Delhi, India
Start date: ASAP

Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at the Center for International Development at Harvard University has partnered with India's IFMR Research, based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research to undertake an exciting research agenda that will directly input into high-profile policy challenges in India. Both IFMR Research and EPoD are dedicated to using rigorous evidence to address challenging questions at the intersection of economic development and public policy. Their cutting-edge research examines questions related to governance, financial inclusion, risk mitigation, entrepreneurship, education, health, agriculture, and sustainable development, and they draw from a network of expert academics with expertise in India and around the world.

Job Description:

IFMR is currently seeking a Research Associate to support the Building Capacity to Use Research Evidence (BCURE) program in India. The BCURE initiative works closely with policymakers in India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan to build technical and institutional capacity to integrate data and research into policy decisions. Within India, BCURE will include a wide range of research and policy activities, including providing support for a comprehensive assessment of the individual and organizational constraints on policymakers' use of evidence; training for individual capacity building to help policymakers more effectively incorporate data and evidence into decision making; financial and technical support for pilot projects that demonstrate the value of incorporating data in decision-making; and leading consensus-building policy dialogues that are expected to advance evidence-driven debates on issues of pressing policy importance in India.

The program requires a self-starting candidate who can effectively navigate India's institutional landscape and appropriately represent BCURE, IFMR and EPoD to outside stakeholders, as well as provide crucial support for program operations and a randomized control trial tied to BCURE in India. This Research Associate position requires a candidate with strong field management and data analysis skills that can effectively support the implementation of a randomized control trial related to India's public works program, MGNREGA.

Responsibilities:

  • Support the implementation of a randomized control trial evaluating the effectiveness of a BCURE-affiliated project, including hiring and supervising field staff, coordinating logistics for surveying and field activities, monitoring and reporting on field activities, etc.
  • Conduct data cleaning and basic analysis for the BCURE-affiliated randomized control trial
  • Manage day-to-day relationships with national, state, and lower-level government officials and other potential partners (academics, policy organizations, NGOs, etc.) as requested
  • Support operations for the proper implementation of initial scoping activities and data collection for BCURE's needs assessment, with the possibility of administering research activities aimed at understanding constraints on policymakers' use of evidence
  • Provide other basic research support as requested, such as completing requested literature reviews
  • Manage logistics for BCURE-related activities (training/capacity building, policy workshops, etc.)
  • Provide appropriate inputs for project management (budgets, reports, etc.)
  • Others, as required

Basic Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's candidates with at least 2 years of experience in research and/or public policy.
  • Strong interest in public policy and economic development in low-income countries.
  • Excellent English oral and written communication skills.
  • Computer literacy (including Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint)
  • Computer research skills
  • Basic STATA and data analysis skills
  • Proven organizational skills

Preferred Qualifications:

Master's degree and fluency in spoken and written Hindi preferred. Self-starting candidate with strong management skills, excellent attention to detail, and experience with field work in a capacity-constrained setting is a plus. Familiarity with randomized control trials is desired.

This position will be based in Delhi, India, with frequent travel throughout the country (particularly Bihar) expected.

How to Apply: If you are interested in this position, please email epod@hks.harvard.edu with the subject line "IFMR Research Associate", your CV, academic transcript, and a statement of interest.