Research Support Assistant - Behavioral Economics Lab

Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, India

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

Job Description

We are hiring a Research Support Assistant to work with the Research Associate, overseeing the Household Decision-Making in India project at the Behavioral Economics Lab in Chennai. This role requires both management and research skills, as well as flexibility. The lab is made up of roughly 20 to 30 local staff. The RSA will help the Research Associate in managing the day-to-day operations of the lab, and will be responsible for the administration of the RCT, and communicating with the field staff members. Management responsibilities include hiring and overseeing field staff members, managing surveys and surveyors, and laboratory task administration. They will also help the Research Associate with data systems management.

Developing exploratory work requires the capacity to build strong connections with new potential partners and representing the project and the lab in such a way that forges meaningful and professional partnerships. This requires a deep understanding of the project that we work on, and the ability to speak confidently and comfortably with individuals of a range of authority - from government officials to security guards of a company.

The RSA responsibilities also require an understanding of a variety of research methodologies, as well as management skills. You will assist the Research Associate who will be in constant contact with the Principal Investigators. Project-related decisions often need to be made in a timely and independent manner; the successful RSA will oversee the day-to-day functioning of the project while assisting the Research Associate to move forward with a plan of action.


We focus on research that explores the intersection of behavioral and development economics. This project explores the subtle psychological effects and decision-making of households in India. Primarily focused on couples and households, we are trying to understand the nuances and subtleties of decision-making in India, whilst understanding how information is aggregated amongst couples and how subsequent decisions are made. We are striving to build an extensive research agenda that explores in establishing a potential relationship between living in poverty and decision-making, cognitive function, and productivity.

Roles & Responsibilities:

  • Assist in designing survey questionnaires, conducting qualitative research, refining survey instruments.
  • Manage field-based staff: Recruit, train, and supervise field-based staff.
  • Supervise data-collection and data-entry.
  • Assist with data-cleaning.
  • Support on all administrative tasks associated with data collection and field management.
  • Communicate with partner organizations.
  • Work with the Research Associate on all of the above.


  • A Bachelor’s/Master’s degree in economics or other related social sciences with substantial quantitative work preferred.
  • Knowledge of Stata is preferred.
  • Familiarity with RCTs.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Fluency in English and Tamil are required.


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