Predoctoral Research Analyst -- Environment/Development Economics
Advertiser: Arthur van Benthem, University of Pennsylvania
Field(s) of specialization: Development; Growth - Environmental; Ag. Econ.
Position type(s): Research Assistant (Pre-Doc)
Location of job: Vance Hall, 3733 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, United States
Degree required: Bachelors
Job start date: 2024-07-01
Job duration: 2 years
Letters of reference required: 2
Current search status: Position filled
Posting end date: 16 Nov 2023
Interviews: Interviews will be conducted remotely by video
Ad text:


The successful candidate will support research by Professors Arthur van Benthem, Susanna Berkouwer, and Shing-Yi Wang in economics of energy and the environment and/or development economics. There are several open positions. Examples of recent projects include: efficiency losses from imperfect environmental policies, energy efficiency adoption, personnel economics, fuel economy standards, infrastructure construction, migrant labor markets, pass-through and market power in the context of solar subsidies, hurricane insurance, and housing market issues.

You will join Wharton’s Department of Business Economics and Public Policy (BEPP) and become part of a cohort of predoctoral research fellows. BEPP offers many opportunities for personal and professional development through learning new technical skills, attending seminars, and taking courses. In some instances, predoc RAs have become co-authors of academic papers.


Job responsibilities include performing a variety of statistical and econometric analyses, cleaning and analyzing data, writing research reports, conducting background research and literature reviews, identifying and obtaining secondary data, coding survey questionnaires, and managing field activities. Independent thinking, a thorough understanding of economics or related disciplines, an ability to manage work flows on multiple projects, and self-motivation are highly valued in performing these functions.

This is a challenging opportunity for an early-career professional who is passionate about social science research and has a strong desire to expand and deepen skills in economic research and quantitative data analysis. You will work closely with Professors van Benthem, Berkouwer and Wang, who will provide supervision on research and offer mentorship on academic development more broadly. You will also be encouraged to be an active part of the research community, within the BEPP department and in relevant Wharton research centers. We anticipate that the successful candidate would work in this position for 1 or 2 years, before going on to graduate programs or careers in Economics, Public Policy, or another quantitative social science.


● BA/BS in Economics, Statistics, or a related quantitative discipline;
● Previous experience as a research analyst or conducting independent research using statistical software such as STATA or R is preferred;
● Ability to analyze data and write reports;
● Self-directed, intrinsically motivated; capacity to manage work independently and organize workflows across multiple projects.


This is a full-time position based in Philadelphia, starting on July 1, 2024. This position is eligible for full Penn vacation and sick leave accrual. Annual salary is commensurate with experience within the range of $55,000 – $60,000 plus benefits. For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University visit: Remote work may be possible for a temporary period.


Please apply on-line at

Search for reference number: JR00062485.

For the application to be considered complete, please submit a brief cover letter, explaining your interest in the position, a cv, and all your academic transcripts. We will review applications on a rolling basis; the deadline to apply is December 1, 2023.

Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination based on race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class. The University of Pennsylvania values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty, and staff from diverse backgrounds. Women, minority candidates, veterans, and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

We will also consider applicants who are not yet authorized to work in the United States.


Wharton’s Business Economics and Public Policy Department is an applied microeconomics department that has been an innovative force in research, teaching, and public service. Areas of faculty expertise include energy and environmental economics, development economics, industrial organization, experimental and behavioral economics, public and urban economics, and gender and discrimination. Our faculty have held presidential appointments on federal regulatory commissions, held research appointments and fellowships in government and not-for-profit think tanks, and serve on the boards of many corporations.

The Wharton Climate Center supports cutting edge research, provides thought leadership, and brings together stakeholders from academia, government, and the private sector to design smart public and private sector policies related to topics such as climate change, renewable energy, air and water pollution, waste disposal, biodiversity, and deforestation. See

Penn Development Research Initiative (PDRI) projects focus on various aspects of international development including education, health, governance, environment, gender, urbanization and migration, labor markets, poverty, and economic growth. Through regular seminars, conferences, collaborative research projects, and dissemination activities, PDRI makes it possible for faculty and graduate students at Penn to expand their efforts to conduct research that advances science and contributes to the improvement of well-being in developing countries. See

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