EPIC Fellowships offer the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the research process through positions with EPIC faculty mentors or to gather “real-world” insights through external summer internships.

While research will be the focus of the fellowship, students may also gain experience with grant and proposal writing, communications, and program coordination on an as-needed basis within the Institute. Fellows are invited to participate in seminars and weekly workshops and to attend EPIC-sponsored conferences and events for which they may be asked to draft summary reports.

About the Fellowship:

Many countries have expressed support for placing 30% of land and marine areas under protection by 2030. There is a large open question regarding the benefits and economic impacts of area-based conservation approaches. In this project, the fellow will take part in studying the impacts of conservation and land protection. This project will focus on protected habitats in the European Union as part of the Natura 2000 framework. The first part of the project will use bird populations as a proxy for ecosystem health and biodiversity. The second part of the project will use local GDP and employment data to study how those land protections affected, if at all, economic activity.


  • The fellow will lead the data preparation and analysis. The analysis will rely on comparisons of administrative areas with and without protected habitats. We will use staggered and stacked difference-in-differences methods. The fellow will code and implement these research designs, and summarize the results in figures and tables.


  • Coding in R and/or Stata is required.
  • Familiarity with using spatial data (e.g. working with shapefiles using the simple features library in R) is a big advantage.