Spring 2018 Undergraduate Policy Intern, Poverty Action Lab – Cambridge, MA

Country: United States
Education: Bachelor’s
Language Requirement: English
Length of Commitment: Less than one year
Start Date January 22, 2018
Undergraduate Policy Intern (Spring 2018)

J-PAL is recruiting an Undergraduate Policy Intern to contribute to its mission of promoting evidence-based policy through the Global office. The internship is based at MIT in Cambridge, MA. This is a paid, part-time position (10-20 hours per week) during the 2018 spring semester. As most applicants will be full-time students, we can be flexible in setting exact work hours (e.g. two full days per week or five half days per week).

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) was established in 2003 as a research center at the Economics Department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 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’s mission is to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is based on scientific evidence, and research is translated into action. We do this through three main activities:

Conducting Rigorous Impact Evaluations:
J-PAL researchers conduct randomized evaluations to test and improve the effectiveness of programs and policies aimed at reducing poverty.
Policy Outreach: J-PAL’s policy group analyzes and disseminates research results and builds partnerships with policymakers to ensure that policy is driven by evidence, and effective programs are scaled up.
Capacity Building: J-PAL equips practitioners with the expertise to carry out their own rigorous evaluations through training courses and joint research projects.
The Undergraduate Policy Intern supports the efforts of the Policy Group at J-PAL Global to translate research into action.

Assisting with the maintenance of J-PAL’s website
Database Management: Tracking changes to J-PAL’s research network and projects using internal information systems like Salesforce
Policy Writing: Helping maintain J-PAL’s evaluation summaries database, including writing, updating, and fact-checking summaries
Sector-Specific Work: Completing small research and writing tasks that involve working with policy staff for J-PAL’s eight sectors (Agriculture; Crime, Violence & Conflict; Education; Environment & Energy; Finance; Governance; Health; and Labor)
Miscellaneous: Any other tasks as needed

Your strong communication and organizational skills, as well as your background in economics/public policy and your interest in poverty alleviation, make you an ideal candidate for the Undergraduate Policy Intern.

You are a junior or senior with high grades in economics coursework, including econometrics/statistics.
Experience and Interest: You have demonstrated strong interest in international development or public policy through coursework, study abroad, and/or previous internship experience.
Communication: Your strong communication skills help you write clear and concise documents.
Organization: Your robust organizational capacity and ability to pay attention to detail enable you to handle several projects at once and meet deadlines.
Attitude: You are willing to work hard, excited to learn, and enthusiastic about taking on a broad range of assignments.


To apply, please attach the following documents in a single PDF with the filename “Lastname_Firstname_Global Policy Intern” and email them to policyintern@povertyactionlab.org with the subject line: Global Policy Spring Intern_Lastname:

  • One-page cover letter addressed to Lucia Diaz-Martin describing your qualifications for the Undergraduate Policy Intern position and availability
  • CV/Resume
  • University transcript (can be unofficial)

The application deadline is January 3, 2018. Early submission is encouraged, as we will begin reviewing applications on a rolling basis prior to the deadline. Short-listed applicants will be asked to complete a writing exercise and may subsequently be contacted for a phone or in-person interview.

To find out more, visit the position post online: here

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