Job Opportunity for Research Associate – Soil Carbon at Poverty Action Lab

  • Anywhere

Website Poverty Action Lab

Country: India
Education: Bachelor’s, Master’s
Start Date (Earliest): 1 March 2022
Language Requirement: Oriya
Length of Commitment: One year

J-PAL South Asia at the Institute for Financial Management and Research seeks qualified applicants for the position of Research Associate to lead impact evaluations in India. The position offers an opportunity to gain first-hand field management experience in an organization undertaking cutting-edge development research. The Research Associate will join a team of world class researchers from leading universities in the world and will gain first-hand experience implementing randomized control trials in an organization undertaking cutting-edge development research Read more about our work and projects here. 

Project Specific Details

Agricultural practices have the potential to increase soil capacity to bind and absorb carbon, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In this pilot project, Aprajit Mahajan (UC Berkeley), Sayantan Mitra (UC Berkeley), and Shuo Yu (UC Berkeley), in partnership with the CrossLinks Foundation, study the impacts of incentives to smallholder farmers in rural Odisha to adopt agricultural practices that improve carbon soil sequestration. The project lays the groundwork for a larger-scale randomized evaluation that will link rural farmers to firms providing carbon credit. Research Associates work closely with Research Managers & Principal Investigators who guide and supervise them in their various tasks. 

Key Responsibilities 

Research Associates 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 survey 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 
  • Supervising data collection and data entry to ensure good data quality during both these phases 
  • Co-ordinating with the Administrative and Finance team on a variety of tasks related to field staff contracting and payments
  • Overseeing the implementation of the evaluation in accordance to the research design in association with our partner organization
  • Ensuring that the project complies with IRB and JPAL data collection and security protocols with the help of the Research Manager 
  • Maintaining relationship with partner organizations at both headquarters and field levels 
  • Assisting with data cleaning and preliminary data analysis 
  • Assisting in preparation of documents and presentations for donor reporting as well as dissemination activities 
  • Reporting to PIs on all of the above mentioned activities 
  • Any other task as assigned by the Research Manager, AD Research or ED

Desired Qualifications 

  • A Bachelor’s/Master’s degree in economics, social sciences, public policy, education or related fields 
  • Experience living in a developing country is a strong plus 
  • Previous experience in development research preferred 
  • Excellent management and organizational skills along with strong quantitative skills 
  • Fluency and excellent communication skills in English and Oriya.
  • Flexible, self-motivating, able to manage multiple tasks efficiently, and team player 
  • Demonstrated ability to manage high-level relationships with partner organizations 
  • Knowledge of Stata (strongly preferred) or other data analysis software is preferred 
  • Familiarity with randomized controlled trials/clinical trials/quasi-experiments preferred 
  • Ability to deal with unstructured and changing environments 
  • Ability to work independently and in rural field locations

How to Apply

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Research job category, then select “Research Associate, Soil Carbon, J-PAL South Asia” and include a resume, cover letter, transcripts, and two recommendation letters. Note that applications with incomplete submissions will not be considered.

You are able to submit your application before your references complete their recommendation letters; however, you must include their contact information before submitting your application. Given the volume of applications received, only short-listed candidates will be contacted for an interview.

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