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Research jobs at the Jameel Poverty Action Lab


thewhiterabbit
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  • 2 weeks later...
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Glad that people are applying, it's an amazing experience for learning how to carry out development research! If you have any questions about field-based positions, I know there are a number of current/former JPAL/IPA RAs floating around here, myself included, so feel free to ask. I think that the OP is a US-based RA, so probably could address that side of things?
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I've been around a while - I've spent significant time in the US and in the field (multiple countries).

 

Who would ever want to leave a cozy environment and suffer mosquito bites in the developing countries? ;) Just kidding!

 

I think this is a great opportunity. Sadly, it is too late for me to explore! How is the pay , btw?

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  • 4 weeks later...

I know this topic is about research jobs, but this seems as good a place as any to ask. I'm looking to apply to a different position at J-LAB,* but the job posting in question has a late February application due date. Of course, the main job page (Jobs | The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab) reads, "Complete the J-PAL common application, including submission of transcripts and letters of recommendation, by January 31, 2011." Can anyone at J-LAB or (or someone familiar with J-LAB's application process) please clear up this conflict of information for me? I'm afraid to even ask J-LAB directly as the FAQ states, "phone calls and email inquires cannot be accepted."

 

Thank you!

 

*I'm looking at a Type IV position; HOWEVER, the job posting specifically requests that applicants select Type III on the common application.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interviews depend on which project/team you are interviewing with. The process is decentralized so that professors (or their RAs) browse through the list of applicants after the applicants have been partially sorted, and you may get interview requests from multiple projects if you are a strong candidate. The teams don't really coordinate (unless things have changed lately), so they won't know who else you have interviewed with, and of course some do interviews sooner than others, so it's hard to set an exact date. However, you definitely won't get contacted until at least sometime after February 15th, since it takes some time to sort the applications. I think that most professors do interviews in multiple rounds, so even if you don't get one in the first wave, you might in later ones (i.e. don't stress if you haven't heard back by March 1). I know of multiple people who didn't do theirs until April or so.

 

I can't say too much about how the interviews go generally, since I only ended up doing one interview (the profs I wanted to work for were the one that contacted me first). This interview was in mid-February (maybe 20th-ish?) over the phone with two professors and lasted about half an hour, with them focusing questions on what experiences I have that might relate to my ability to do field or data work, including, but not limited to, leadership/management experiences, abilities in Stata and statistics, and hm, some other stuff that I don't remember. They sent me a formal offer the next day over email, which was nice since I thought it might get drawn out, and then we talked a few more times over the phone. If you have more specific questions, I'd be happy to talk more about the limited amount I haven't forgotten, but PM might be better to avoid too much personally identifying stuff. Good luck!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Word on the street is that first round interview requests have been sent out for a few positions, but the vast majority are yet to come. It sounds like some of the India positions will have the first round of requests sent in a few days, with a bunch coming out over the next two weeks; haven't heard anything about the rest. So hang in there! It really just depends on the team and how quick they are to turn things around, but don't take silence as a death sentence yet: it pretty much means nothing.

 

Ok, need to not check TM anymore today.... unlikely.

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A friend of mine got in without interview. It was me who recommended this to her (based on this thread), and neither me nor her had any idea this was possible. But her situation was quite favourable: she had a MSc in Development Economics and spoke the native language of the country she was sent to (which I guess is not a very common language for applicants to this program).

 

Edit: Actually, I talked with her today and it happens that this information is incorrect. She was interviewed. What happened was that they needed someone for that position with extreme urgency, so they did not even wait for the letters of recommendation!

Edited by kipfilet
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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all,

 

I recently had two consecutive interviews for a j-pal south asia field position in India. The first one was with one of the exec directors of j-pal south asia and the second one was with one of the principal investigators of the project I am interviewing for. Its been a week and a half since the last interview and I haven't received a decision from them yet; although, I was told that it will take them about 2 weeks. Should I be worried? Any info on the hiring process of j-pal south asia would be appreciated.

 

Also, I thought the interview went well - in fact my second interviewer e-mailed me a paper they thought I might find interesting (although nothing was said about the hiring decision). This was about a week ago. The paper was written by the principle investigators but was not directly related to the project I was interviewed for. I responded by thanking them, mentioning a couple of things about the paper I thought were interesting and nothing more (my response was very brief). Should I have given a more detailed and critical commentary of the paper?

 

Also, I will be interviewing with the Center for Micro Finance (close affiliate of J-Pal) this week. Anyone has any experience interviewing with them? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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I've interviewed for one J-Pal position and two IPA ones. I haven't heard from IPA but heard from J-Pal within a week of the interview. I don't think it's a bad sign not to have heard from them. One guy I spoke to at IPA said he was doing all of the hiring for his country, so it sounds like he has a lot on his plate. If you have deadlines you need to respond to, I'd send a polite note to your interviewer. I've found them to be quite responsive and helpful. Good luck!
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I've interviewed for several domestic and international positions. I actually just emailed one of the people who interviewed me over 2 weeks ago, and it turned out that they had decided not to offer me the position (not sure if they were planning on getting back to me eventually or not). However, some of the other people explicitly told me not to worry if I didn't hear from them for a couple weeks. Either way, I think it's probably OK to send a follow up email if it has been a while since you last heard from them. I'm trying not to sweat it, but there is that sneaking fear of being unemployed.
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