Predoctoral Research Specialist

Requisition # 2021-12427
Date Posted 2 months ago(2/22/2021 12:20 PM)
Schl of Public & Int'l Affairs
Research and Laboratory
Job Type



The Empirical Studies of Conflict Project (ESOC) is seeking applicants for its Pre-Doctoral Fellowship for Data-Driven Research.  Participants are hired as predoctoral research specialists on a full-time, benefits-eligible basis for 12-24 months. This program provides an opportunity for recent undergraduates from historically underrepresented groups to gain real-world experience that will prepare them for careers in public service and PhD study in Public Affairs, with a focus on security-related issues.


FDR Fellows will begin with a ten-week analytics boot camp, drawing from online courses for core data processing and visualization skills, research training materials from partnering organizations such as IPA/J-PAL, and Professor Jacob Shapiro’s short course Leading Evidence-Based Decisions for curriculum on how to maximize quantitative evidence. Fellows will then have the opportunity to learn on the job by supporting faculty research projects within SPIA and associated departments.  This is a one-year position. Extension may be possible. Applications must be submitted by April 30, 2021.  For full consideration, please upload the following documents directly to the Princeton University on-line application portal "Upload Other Documents"

  • Resume or CV
  • Candidates should be prepared to submit a writing sample, code sample, or Github link upon request.
  • Transcripts (official or unofficial)
  • Recommendation letters from academic references (minimum of 1, maximum of 3), which should be sent directly from the letter writer to Kristen DeCaires Gall at with the subject “recommendation letter for [Applicant Name].
  • Cover letter that addresses the applicant's research interests as they relate to his or her short and long-term goals




Specific components and benefits of the program are as follows:

  • 12-month employment as a full-time research specialist employed by Princeton University. Fellows can apply to extend for a second year.
  • Opportunity to be matched for mentorship and advising with senior scholars based on applicants’ personal statements, academic backgrounds, and regional focus from a pool of engaged faculty. The experience can be virtual if needed pending COVID-related travel restrictions.
  • Semi-customized two-month data science training pipeline in curriculum developed by ESOC researchers with input from other faculty.
  • Regular networking with other research specialists at Princeton in related fields.
  • Multiple presentation opportunities for project feedback.
  • Advising on careers in policy research and graduate school applications.



  • BA or more advanced degree, preferably in computer science, mathematics, a social science, or statistics, or equivalent work experience/skills for humanities majors
  • Ability to rapidly learn Python, R, or STATA, and ArcGIS software or equivalent
  • Evidence of ability to solve practical research problems
  • Ability to work independently and to adjust to rapidly changing needs of researchers


Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. EEO IS THE LAW

Standard Weekly Hours


Eligible for Overtime


Benefits Eligible


Essential Services Personnel (see policy for detail)


Physical Capacity Exam Required


Valid Driver's License Required




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