Description

The Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA), headquartered at the University of California, Berkeley, seeks an outstanding Postdoctoral Scholar (postdoc) to support its Psychology and Economics of Poverty (PEP) Initiative. In collaboration with the PEP Co-Scientific Directors, Drs. Supreet Kaur (Economics) and Mahesh Srinivasan (Psychology), the postdoc will engage in planning and carrying out original interdisciplinary research on the psychology and economics of poverty. To inform this research, the postdoc will conduct and publish an in-depth review of the literature at the intersection of psychology and economics, outlining key findings, knowledge gaps and promising avenues for further research. Both the research projects and review paper will focus on cognitive and behavioral effects of poverty and will serve to hone the research agenda for CEGA’s growing PEP initiative. 

Key Responsibilities

In collaboration with the Co-Scientific Directors, the postdoc will help conceptualize and conduct research focused on how poverty affects cognition, decision-making, health, and early childhood development outcomes. To establish a framework for exploring emerging domains of interest in research on poverty, the postdoc will also undertake and publish a thorough review of relevant economics and psychology literature. Some potential lines of inquiry may include: 1) how poverty impacts cognitive load, decision-making, social cognition, mental health, aspirations, or economic and/or health outcomes; 2) belief formation, the relevance of belief-based utility, affective adaptations to poverty, and the role of the "psychological immune system" 3) the psychological consequences of resource stability or volatility, 4) the influence of cultural context and social norms on outcomes related to the above topics. 

The review paper and related research projects will focus on promising areas for research and on identifying policy levers and insights that can inform social and economic development programming at scale. Other key postdoc responsibilities include facilitating the monthly PEP reading group and presentation sessions, which provides a space for students and faculty to discuss original research in psychology and economics on the causes and consequences of poverty, and helping to organize an annual PEP research convening. These activities focus on conceptual foundations, project design and methodology, and results interpretation of research on the psychology and economics of poverty. Finally, the postdoc will be encouraged to pursue his or her own research agenda with mentorship from Kaur and Srinavasan.   

Required Qualification

  • A PhD (or equivalent) in Economics, Psychology, Public Policy, or a related field.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Solid understanding of behavioral economics and psychology research. Focus on global development a plus. 
  • 1-3 years experience conducting empirical field research (including supervising data collection and cleaning activities at field sites) or lab research 
  • 1-3 years experience and competency with statistical software packages such as R, STATA, SAS, and ability to render accurate statistical analysis
  • Experience designing and implementing data collection instruments;
  • Solid understanding of causal inference in applied micro-econometrics, research design and program evaluation
  • Outstanding written and oral communication skills, with the ability to translate complex scientific findings into accessible, non-technical language (via publications or professional presentations)
  • Ability to work well with teams, and communicate effectively with colleagues and faculty.
  • Ability to interact with individuals at all levels in a fast-paced environment, with a high level of professionalism and confidentiality
  • Experience working with decision-makers in multilateral, developing country government, and research institutions to identify promising academic research opportunities a plus

Application Requirements

This is a one-year full-time position with possibility for extension. Salary range is commensurate with experience. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until April 1, 2020 or until the position is filled. The anticipated start date of the position is September 1, 2020. To apply, include your most recently updated Curriculum Vitae (required), a cover letter (required), and three professional references (required) to the Psychology and Economics of Poverty Postdoc Submittable page.

Dear CEGA Friends & Colleagues, 


About:
We invite you to participate in CEGA's annual Photo Drive! We're constantly searching for high resolution, inspiring photos to use on our materials. Anytime we use a photo entered to our photo drive on our print and digital collateral, we will credit the photo source detailed in the original submission. Link to submit included below.

Prizes:
With your help we can continue to grow our photo library and you can win a prize in the process! After internal review of each entry, photos will be selected to move to a public voting round. The top submissions will be posted on CEGA’s Twitter account (@CEGA_UC) on March 2nd.  Photos with the most likes by March 6th will win prizes. The top 3 highest ranked photo entries will receive $100 Amazon gift cards.

Guidelines:
We're looking for photos taken around the world, particularly from field experiments, that correspond to one of CEGA’s 11 sector areas. Samples of past photos submitted can be found on our Facebook here. Note that by submitting to CEGA’s Photo Drive, you consent to CEGA’s use of your image in our print and online media.

  1. Each person is allowed to submit up to 5 photos.
  2. Each submission must be taken by you, and include your full name, email address, and title/organizational affiliation.
  3. Each submission must include information about where the photo was taken, the date, and a short caption (limit to 100 character with spaces).
  4. Each submission must include your name in the photo file name.
  5. Each submission must be high resolution
  6. You must have consent from the subjects in the photo. Please ensure submissions comply with CEGA’s Photo Policy.
  7. Photos submitted that apply to one of CEGA’s sectors areas will be given extra consideration.  

The deadline to submit is 11:59 pm PST February 27th.

East Africa Social Science Translation (EASST) Collaborative : 2020 Request for Proposals
 

  OVERVIEW

In spring 2020, EASST will award grants for the evaluation of innovative interventions in East Africa. A total of $300,000 in research funding will be awarded across all projects. Researchers may request up to $75,000 in funding. The average grant size is expected to be around $40,000 to $50,000.  

Research teams with two lead investigators – one from the CEGA affiliate network (or sponsored graduate students) and one from a research institution in East Africa – are invited to jointly develop a research proposal for consideration by EASST. Research teams may request funding for a new project or supplemental funding for an ongoing project, e.g. for data collection or to add a new treatment arm. Proposals will be peer reviewed by a panel of researchers. Successful proposals will achieve two primary goals: (i) creating new knowledge that will improve the design of development programs in East Africa, and; (ii) enhancing East African researchers’ skills and capacity to lead future evaluations. 

Note that the CEGA partner and the East African researcher are expected to be full partners in the research—from the writing of the proposal, to design of survey modules, to data collection, to data analysis, to writing up results. Priority will be given to projects that are likely to result in at least one co-authored publication. 

COMPETITION DETAILS
 

Funding: EASST anticipates funding a total of $300,000 during this 2020 Call for Proposals, with a maximum of $75,000 per grant. 

Topics: Funding will support impact evaluations (randomized control trials or quasi-experimental studies) that address a topic of critical importance to economic development in East Africa, i.e. agriculture, health, youth empowerment, financial inclusion, etc. It is strongly encouraged that projects incorporate a focus on gender to the extent possible. Applications will be accepted for work in Kenya, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, Burundi, or South Sudan. Please note that approximately 20% of the funds available in this round are earmarked for impact evaluations that use methods from implementation science to examine the socioeconomic dimensions of infectious disease (TB, Malaria, etc.—HIV excepted, unless in cases of co-morbidities with other infectious diseases). This subset of funding is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). 

For applicants who may be interested in understanding the cost-effectiveness of the intervention as a part of the research study, CEGA may provide additional funds of up to 10% of the total budget. Please indicate in your application if you would be interested in this, and provide a short paragraph detailing the costing research question and why this question is relevant.  

Eligibility: Submissions must be made by at least one CEGA affiliated Principal Investigator (affiliate or grad students sponsored by affiliate) and one East African Principal Investigator. While the competition is open to any East African researcher, preference will be given to EASST fellows. 

Period of Performance: The official period of performance is from May 1st 2020—to May 1st 2021, though requests for extension may be considered. 

Co-Authorship: Please see the accompanying “EASST Co-Authorship Statement,” which lays out expectations for collaboration between the CEGA affiliated PI and the East African PI. 

IRB Approval. Applicants are encouraged to submit their proposals for IRB review before submitting to EASST, in order to facilitate expedient processing of the award. UC Berkeley requires proof of IRB approval to process subawards. 

To Apply: Please see Appendix 1, “EASST Proposal Instructions” and apply via the Submittable portal () by April 1st, 2020. 


EVALUATION CRITERIA
Proposals will be judged on their academic significance, innovativeness, methodology and viability. Please see RFP for a detailed layout of this criteria. In addition, reviewers will assess the likelihood that the study will strengthen East African leadership in impact evaluation through effective knowledge transfer. East African researchers must benefit professionally from the collaboration (see the EASST co-authorship statement in the appendix). Please note that CEGA researchers are welcome to work with any East African researcher, but projects co-led by fellows trained through the EASST program will be given preference.  


To apply, compile the following documents:

  1. Cover Sheet 
  2. Research Proposal This proposal narrative must not exceed five (5) pages in length and must address all eight items discussed below in the Proposal Guidelines. The proposal should be written in Times font, Size 11 and may be single-spaced. We strongly advise you to refer to the EASST Proposal and Budget Example when writing your statement, which is included in the proposal package. 
  3. Budget: This document must be completed in its entirety using the accompanying excel sheet “EASST_Budget Template_2020.”  We strongly recommend that you refer to the budget in the EASST Proposal and Budget Example, when completing your excel sheet. 
  4. Save the coversheet and research proposal as a single PDF. The filename should read “Proposal_CEGAPIname_EASSTPIname.” Save the budget as “Budget_CEGAPIname_EASSTPIname.” 
  5. Submit files on Submittable portal here:  

Deadline for submission is: 11:59 PM US Pacific Time on April 1,  2020

Center for Effective Global Action