The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) was established in 2003 as a research center at the Economics Department at MIT. Since then, it has grown into a global network of researchers who use randomized evaluations to answer critical policy questions in the fight against poverty. J-PAL is propelled by a first-rate team dedicated to research, policy, training, and other vital work, supporting J-PAL's mission to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence.
J-PAL South Asia, which is based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) in India, analyses and disseminates research results and builds partnerships with policymakers to ensure that policy is driven by evidence, and that programs proven effective are scaled up. We have a growing number of partnerships in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.
- In partnership with Pratham Educational Foundation, J-PAL SA is conducting a randomized evaluation of a ‘Hybrid’ digital program aimed at improving learning outcomes of children in grades 5 to 8 across 276 villages in Rajasthan, India. In addition to measuring impact of the program, this study is unique in that it allows us to understand the impact of creating societal infrastructure to support digital learning.
- Pratham’s Hybrid program ‘PraDigi’ aims to use an enquiry-based and student-centered pedagogy to teach critical academic and social-emotional skills in a community setting. Education Technology through use of educational software and digital content is a key anchor with innovations in pedagogy (such as group learning methods), and community engagement intended to increase student motivation to learn.
- The Math, English and Science content developed are in alignment with the local curriculum standards albeit with a difference in scope and depth. The content is grouped into mini courses of varying levels of difficulty to be completed over the course of a few weeks each. These courses contain appropriate learning resources, assessments and a ‘project’ to be completed.
Research Associate Roles and Responsibilities:
The RA will work closely with academic researchers and other field staff to perform a variety tasks including, but not limited to:
- Designing survey questionnaires, conducting qualitative research, running pilot exercises, refining study design and surveying instruments.
- Managing teams: Recruit, train, and supervise both field-based and data operations teams consisting of project assistants, field managers, field-based surveyors, data entry operators and other field and office staff.
- Overseeing implementation of the evaluation in accordance to the research design, in association with our partner organization.
- Maintaining relationships with partner organizations at both headquarters and field levels
- Supervising data collection and data-entry, and ensuring data quality and productivity.
- Assisting with data cleaning, preliminary data analysis, and preparation of documents and presentations for dissemination
- Reporting to PIs on all of the above mentioned activities.
- Maintain compliance with all J-PAL protocols and policies.
Desired Qualifications and Experience:
- Bachelor's/ Master's degree in economics, social sciences, mathematics/statistics, public policy, or related fields
- Experience-0-2 years
- Experience in developing country
- Excellent management/ organizational skills and able to solve unexpected problems
- Strong quantitative skills
- Working knowledge of Stata (strongly preferred), R, Matlab
- Familiarity with RCTs
- Demonstrated experience managing a team
- Flexible, self-motivating, independent and manages multiple tasks efficiently
- Ability to deal with unstructured and changing environments
- Attention to detail