Job Listings

Research Associate

Harvard University
Job Location:
Boston, Massachusetts
Laboratory and Research
Harvard Business School


Job-Specific Responsibilities
A Harvard Business School faculty member is seeking a highly motivated individual to serve as a half-time Research Associate for one year or more (start date flexible). The Research Associate (RA) will assist with the daily operations of research projects in the areas of machine learning, information systems and management, public policy, data science, social sciences (e.g., economics, public policy, and management) both through the application of machine learning methods to social science problems and through the integration of machine learning and econometric methodologies.

Under the general direction of faculty member, RAs will develop, design, and conduct research projects; synthesize, analyze, and produce original statistical models; conduct background research for scholarly research products; use advanced knowledge of quantitative research methodologies to further research findings; design new databases, surveys and experiments. The RA will report directly to the faculty supervisor and an administrative manager in the Research Staff Services office. Ideal RA candidates will be comfortable in an environment that requires a high level of independence, intellectual curiosity, and the ability to use discretionary judgment.

Primary duties:
Partner with HBS faculty on topics central to HBS research agenda. Provide advanced subject-area expertise, analysis and interpretation to faculty member. Provide sound statistical advice and collaborate with faculty to develop computationally efficient algorithms for large-scale statistical machine learning and "big data" analytics.

Develop, design, conduct, analyze, and implement research using advanced knowledge and learning for subject areas focused in statistical machine learning, anomalous pattern detection, causal inference, model validation and bias, scan statistics, and hypothesis generation & testing.

Develop, synthesize, and provide analysis of data exhibits for academic journal articles, HBS cases and HBS teaching notes. Provide statistical analysis and design for reports and presentations. Independently manage all timelines and deliverables.

Develop and maintain expertise in new research methodologies and techniques. Manage and manipulate data using requested packages; including STATA, SPSS, MATLAB, SAS, R, Mathematica, etc.

Create original, thought-provoking, innovative data presentations for domestic and international audiences.

Exercise independent decision making with regard to progression of research project and methodologies. When confronted with research data, be able to make deductions, add insight and draw conclusions to share with faculty. Collaborate in development of new techniques and instruments. Use knowledge of quantitative methods to analyze and interpret experimental results. Work independently with research methodologies to identify gaps in research data and methods. Produce original and innovative academic materials to supplement faculty research and teaching. Make recommendations to faculty based on statistical interpretation and independent research. Analyze, interpret, and evaluate the quality of results. Represent HBS to outside entities: interacting with prominent individuals (grace under pressure is essential) when collecting company data.

Ensure compliance with department, University and federal regulations. Complete work with only general direction. Be aware of department, School, University policies and potential outside research policies.

In collaboration with faculty member must be able to take complex research ideas, concepts, and methodologies and apply them to new projects and situations. Must be able to structure assignments and keep faculty member informed as necessary, using own judgment. Will need to be able to identify and articulate valid statistical arguments to researchers/faculty with varying technical level of expertise.

Basic Qualifications
Advanced degree in quantitative field required. 2-4 years of relevant work experience. Evidence of outstanding academic achievement. Strong mathematics background. May also ask for knowledge/experience of specific industry or subject i.e.: economics, psychology, finance, accounting, marketing. Statistical/programming expertise and/or applied experience in requested statistical packages(STATA, MATLAB, SAS, R, Mathematica). Experience, training and good habits in data management and analysis. Proven ability with data-based problem solving, and innovation. Experience with high-quality data manipulation and analysis required. Expertise with at least one statistical software package necessary (knowledge of multiple a plus). Proven ability to work independently and creatively. This position requires an individual capable of consistent use of discretion, judgment, and initiative. Background in analysis and interpretation of relevant data and references for statistical calculations and research, necessary. All candidates will be expected to submit sample coding to be reviewed by and discussed with an HBS statistician. Diplomatic skills, comfort in interacting with prominent individuals, and grace under pressure are essential. Strong skills related to the Microsoft Office Suite are expected.

Additional Qualifications and Skills
The candidate must have extremely high standards in terms of quality of work, attention to detail, strong organization skills, and absolute commitment to task completion. He or she must be able to balance multiple tasks and shifting priorities under tight deadlines at an accelerated pace when necessary. It is helpful if the candidate is familiar with navigating a complex organization, such as Harvard Business School.

Additional Information
This is a half-time term appointment starting this summer (start date flexible) through June 30, 2022, with likely reappointment through June 30, 2023. All Research Associate roles at HBS are structured as term appointments. Preference for candidates willing to commit to two or more years.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, a cover letter and resume are required for full consideration. Upon the review of application materials, applicants may be asked to submit a writing sample, and transcript(s).

All candidates will be expected to submit sample coding to be reviewed by an HBS statistician, and/or given a comparable exercise. All positions also include a writing exam.

Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University's COVID vaccination requirement and exceptions may be found at the University's "COVID-19 Vaccine Information" webpage:

Culture of Inclusion: The work and well-being of HBS are strengthened profoundly by the diversity of our network and our differences in background, culture, experience, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, and much more. Explore HBS Work Culture.

Harvard Business School will not offer visa sponsorship for this opportunity.

Job Function

USA - MA - Boston

Job Code
RS0055 Researcher I Humanities


Division of Research and Faculty Development

Time Status

Salary Grade

00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Appointment End Date

Pre-Employment Screening
Education, Identity

EEO Statement
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.
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