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Harvard University Pre-Doctoral Fellowship--Opportunity Insights in Cambridge, Massachusetts


Title Pre-Doctoral Fellowship--Opportunity Insights

School Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Department/Area Opportunity Insights

Position Description

We are hiring several full-time pre-doctoral fellows to start in Summer 2023 to work with our research group, Opportunity Insights ( . Our team’s mission 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 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, how social ( networks may affect poverty, and the impacts of historical place-based policies on residents. Results from these projects have appeared in major media outlets ( , such as the New York Times ( , The Economist, the 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 Harvard University under the direction of Professors Chetty 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. Fellows will interact regularly with professors and their collaborators including John Friedman, David Deming, Matthew Jackson, Larry Katz, Theresa Kuchler, and Johannes Stroebel – in a team-oriented lab environment, with regular lab meetings, seminars, and other events. Fellows are also invited to participate in broader activities at Harvard, including seminars and courses. 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 and benefits are competitive.

Basic Qualifications

As an organization focused on economic mobility, we value having a diverse research staff and particularly encourage applications from groups traditionally under-represented in Economics. Applicants should be completing (or have completed) a Bachelors or Master’s degree, have strong quantitative skills and experience with empirical research methods. Candidates with research experience are strongly preferred, especially those with programming experience in Stata, SAS , R, and/or Python. Candidates need not be Economics majors, though they should have a strong interest in and some experience with Economics. Successful candidates have come from a variety of backgrounds (including from undergraduate and graduate programs, industry jobs, and other research assistant positions), and have a range of skill levels and experience with coding.

Candidates would ideally begin around July 1, 2023 and typically work for OI for two years before starting graduate school or pursuing other related career paths.

Additional Qualifications

We will review applications, conduct interviews, and anticipate making offers in mid November. Our interview process includes a coding exercise, a first-round interview, and a final round interview. Applications are due on October 5, 2022 at 11:59PM ET.

Questions should be directed to Answers to FAQs can be found here ( .

Special Instructions

To apply, please:

1) Submit a Harvard application through this posting.

2) Fill out the OI online application form ( .

Please note that we require both Harvard and OI’s online form to be filled out in order to be considered.

Supporting Documents:

To submit the application, you will need the following documents through the OI online application form ( :

(1) A Resume

(2) Unofficial Transcript(s)

(3) A Writing Sample

The writing sample can be any length and should demonstrate your analytical and writing abilities (preferably, but not necessarily, in economics). It should preferably be individual work (if not, it should come with a description of your specific contribution).

When uploading files, please make sure the name you provide matches the name you’ve specified in this form. Please start all file names with NameLast_ (e.g. RajChetty_CV, etc.).


Please submit information (name, role, institution, and email) for three references as required in the OI online application form ( ONLY . You are not required to enter reference information in the Harvard system (Note: in the Harvard system you can click Save & Continue without entering any references, and you will be able to continue with (and submit) your application).

Contact Information

Questions regarding details of the position can be directed to:

Contact Email

Equal Opportunity Employer

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

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.

Minimum Number of References Required

Maximum Number of References Allowed


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