The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) and the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS) are excited to invite applications for full-time research assistants (RAs) for the academic year 2020-2021.

These positions will be hosted by the EPIC-UCAS Joint Research Center for Energy and Environmental Policy in China. The Joint Center was established in 2019 as a ground-breaking effort to produce cost-effective solutions to some of China’s most important energy and environmental policy issues. The Joint Center produces data-driven, tested research insights in partnership with local, regional, and national governments to ensure that the right questions are being asked, solutions are tested on the ground and rigorously measured, and results can be scaled up into successful policies.

The RAs will report to Finona Burlig, Michael Greenstone (University of Chicago), Guojun He (HKUST), Shaoda Wang (University of Chicago), and Zifa Wang (UCAS). The RAs will get involved in multiple China-related research projects that focus on assessing the benefits and costs of environmental policies. Typical research projects utilize quasi-experimental and experimental methods with an emphasis on identifying policy-relevant parameters. Responsibilities of the RAs span all stages of research, including managing projects, collecting and analysing data, creating slides, drafting working papers, and generating policy briefs. In addition to assisting the PIs’ research, the RAs will have the opportunity to use Joint Center datasets and collaborate with the PIs on new research projects.

The program is intended to serve as a bridge between college and graduate school for students interested in economics research. Priorities will be given to students who will apply for PhD programs in world-leading institutions upon completion.

Recruiting Criteria

  1. Applicants must have completed a bachelor or master degree by June 2020 and are interested in applying for graduate schools in world-leading institutions.
  2. Applicants should have research interests in causal inference, randomized control trials, environmental economics, and development economics; applicants should have relevant econometrics knowledge.
  3. Applicants must be familiar with Stata (or similar statistical software) and understand how to collect, manage, and analyse data. Priorities will be given to those who also have Python and ArcGIS experience.
  4. Applicants should be able to speak and write fluent English; applicants should be able to comprehend research articles in leading economics journals.
  5. The contract is 1 year and can be extended to 2 years with satisfactory performance.
  6. Part-time applicants will also be considered and the applicants must have relevant research experience.

What You Can Expect:

  1. Competitive salary (comparable to PhD fellowships in the U.S.)
  2. Solid research training and advising
  3. Opportunities to work with leading scholars in the world
  4. The job is based in Beijing (with possible field work in other Chinese cities)

To Apply:

To apply, please fill in the following form:

The deadline for applying is Jan 15, 2020. We will review the application materials on a rotating basis. Candidates who pass the initial screening will be invited to complete a data task. Final results will be announced on Feb 01, 2020.

If you have any questions, please email Guojun He at

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