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STAR Lab Postdoctoral Fellow

Job Description


Title STAR Lab Postdoctoral Fellow
School Faculty of Arts and Sciences
Department/Area Weatherhead Center for International Affairs
Position Description
The Sustainability, Transparency, and Accountability Research (STAR) Lab at Harvard University invites applications for its postdoctoral fellowships. These fellowships aim to support postdoctoral scholars who have recently completed their PhD in economics, business, psychology, public policy, political science, environmental science, statistics, or related fields, and whose research interests include private sector initiatives aimed at generating positive social and environmental impacts.
We offer two fellowships associated with a set of related research projects to be conducted in partnership with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) to examine applications of insights from behavioral economics to the design of financial products and services aimed at helping customers take action to reduce carbon emissions and make decisions that improve their financial wellbeing. The research would focus on core insights from behavioral science associated with present bias, cognitive capacity, inattention bias, social influence, and trust. It would aim to test interventions based upon these insights that help individuals better align their actions with their intentions to help address the climate crisis and improve their financial outcomes. The projects would be developed and completed in collaboration with CBA. Primary methods would include analysis of large-sample behavioral data, surveys, and lab and field experiments.
The projects will focus on products that incorporate behavioral insights to help customers overcome behavioral challenges to take climate action and to improve their financial wellbeing, and may include: green loans for improving home energy efficiency (e.g., via installation of rooftop solar systems), green mortgages for energy efficient homes, assistance for switching home energy plans to renewable sources, carbon tracking that measures emissions based upon spending, carbon offsetting, help with climate resilience (e.g., for relocation, renovation, preparedness, insurance), emergency savings plans and accounts, support for loan and credit card repayments, support for home buying and mortgage decisions, support for avoiding and recovering from persistent debt, assistance and digital banking features to support financial management and budgeting, assistance for victims of domestic violence, and assistance for indigenous communities and at-risk groups.
The postdoctoral fellows would be expected to work full-time on these projects with Harvard STAR Lab faculty affiliates , coordinating with CBA teams and the Director of Harvard STAR Lab and serving as authors or co-authors of published papers. The fellows would be based at Harvard STAR Lab (with a possibility for working remotely) but may also spend a period of time in Sydney at CBA offices to complete work on projects.

Fellows will receive an annual salary of $82,400 along with standard Harvard employee benefits and funding for research-related travel to Sydney. Fellowships for the 2023-2024 academic year begin in July 2023.
Basic Qualifications
Eligible applicants must have recently completed their PhD in the fields of economics, business, psychology, public policy, political science, environmental science, statistics, or another related field. PhD degree/diploma must be conferred prior to fellowship start date of 7/1/2023. An electronic PDF copy of doctoral degree verification is required for candidates who have received their degree within one year of the effective start date – either a certificate of completion from the degree-granting institution or a letter from the institution’s registrar is acceptable. Such documentation should state that all requirements for the degree have been successfully completed and should verify the date the degree has been or will be conferred. The duration of each fellowship is one academic year, with a possible extension for a second year.
Additional Qualifications
Special Instructions
Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
Contact Information
Catherine H. Nehring
Coordinator, STAR Lab
Weatherhead Center for International Affairs
Harvard University
Contact Email cnehring@wcfia.harvard.edu
Equal Opportunity Employer
Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging
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.
Minimum Number of References Required 2
Maximum Number of References Allowed 2
Corporate responsibility
Behavioral economics
Behavioral insights

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