Research Economist

J-PAL, United States

Skill Required:, Research and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
3 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
20th December, 2019

Job Description

Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) seeks a highly motivated and qualified candidate to serve as a Research Economist, advancing our Consolidation Research initiative. This initiative has an ambitious research agenda to amass the evidence needed to scale the most effective programs and policies to meaningfully reduce global poverty. This includes field replications and extensions of impact evaluations, verification and reanalysis studies, evidence reviews and syntheses, and qualitative scoping and follow-up research. The initiative works across a variety of sectors including, health and nutrition, small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurship, social protection, and intimate partner violence. The work spans diverse geographies in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

This is a great opportunity for an economist to see his/her work directly addressing global poverty problems.

The ideal candidate will be passionate about transparent, reproducible research and evidence-based policy-making. The position will provide the candidate the opportunity to collaborate with IPA sector and country program staff and external partners to develop research projects and proposals, shape specific consolidation research agenda, conduct rigorous impact evaluations and other policy-relevant research, and publish and share results. The candidate will be expected to apply rigorous impact evaluation methods, especially RCTs. The IPA Research Scientist will collaborate and jointly publish with academic researchers from top universities.

The position reports to the lead researcher directing the Consolidation Research Initiative and will be based in New York City, Washington, DC, or New Haven, CT with international travel estimated at 20-25 percent.


  • Collaborate in developing new research projects and funding proposals based on the Consolidation Research Initiative priorities
  • Design and implement research projects as a principal investigator (PI), collaborating with academic PIs in IPA’s extensive researcher network
  • Conduct evidence reviews and assist with identifying promising evidence-based interventions to prioritize for replication and additional research
  • Lead publication of reports, peer-reviewed journal articles, policy briefcases, and bulletins resulting from research projects
  • Present research study designs and results to partners and at conferences
  • Supervise, manage and mentor IPA staff, external partners, and implementing partners on research projects
  • Oversee financial management of portfolio of projects, with support from project managers
  • Develop and manage external relationships with donors and researchers on behalf of the Consolidation Research Initiative
  • Provide technical advice to other research teams as needed, and contribute to the advancement of IPA’s research protocols, data quality standards and capacity building of research staff


  • PhD or equivalent in economics and 3-5 years of experience conducting independent research
  • Experience conducting field research in developing countries; experience with RCTs preferred
  • Experience managing large-scale research projects and research staff
  • Strong knowledge of quantitative research design and methodology
  • Fluency in quantitative data management and analysis; experience using STATA or other data analysis software
  • Experience living and working internationally preferred
  • Demonstrated success winning research grants
  • History of publications in peer-reviewed journals, white papers, reports
  • Experience leading design and implementation of research (RCTs preferred)
  • Experience working with donors, government agencies, policymakers, and researchers
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including ability to effectively communicate with internal and external stakeholders and with staff at differing levels and internationally
  • Twenty to twenty-five percent of international travel required on an annual basis. Length of trips vary based on project responsibilities.


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