Research Associate (pre-doctoral) in Harvard Business School Harvard Business School United States

Research Associate (pre-doctoral)
Harvard Business School




Job CodeRS0055 Researcher I Humanities

Duties & Responsibilities


Opportunity to work with faculty members from the Finance unit exploring the important questions that are impacting our financial market today. Research topics include corporate finance, financial innovation, public finance, financial institutions, and asset pricing. This is a terrific opportunity for a candidate who is seeking academic research experience in preparation for pursuing a PhD in 2-3 years.

The Research Associate (RA) position reports directly to faculty supervisors and administrative manager in the Research Staff Services office. Ideal RA candidates will be comfortable in an environment that requires a high level of independence, intellectual curiosity, and the ability to use discretionary judgment. Under the general direction of faculty member(s), RAs will develop, design and conduct research projects; synthesize, analyze, and produce statistical models; contribute to scholarly research products including but not limited to journal articles, working papers, and presentations.

Primary duties:


  • Collect, synthesize, and provide analysis of data exhibits for academic journal articles, HBS cases and HBS teaching notes. Provide statistical analysis and design for reports and presentations. Independently manage all timelines and deliverables.
  • Develop and maintain expertise in new research methodologies and techniques. Manage and manipulate data using requested packages; STATA, MATLAB, or R.
  • Balance project requests from multiple faculty members, using strong communication and prioritization skills. 
  • Exercise independent decision making with regard to progression of research project and methodologies. When confronted with research data, be able to make deductions, add insight and draw conclusions to share with faculty. Collaborate in development of new techniques and instruments. Use knowledge of quantitative methods to analyze and interpret experimental results. Work independently with research methodologies to identify gaps in research data and methods. Produce innovative academic materials to supplement faculty research and teaching. Make recommendations to faculty based on statistical interpretation and independent research. Analyze, interpret, and evaluate the quality of results.
  • Under general direction of faculty member, must be able to take complex research ideas, concepts, and methodologies and apply them to new projects and situations. Must be able to structure assignments and keep faculty members informed as necessary, using own judgment.


Basic Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree in economics, mathematics, quantitative sciences, or business related field required.

Statistical/programming experience and/or applied experience Stata, Matlab, or R.


Additional Qualifications


Evidence of outstanding academic achievement. Strong mathematics background. Indication of training and good habits in data management and analysis. Evidence of prior high-quality data manipulation and analysis required. Proven ability to work independently and creatively. This position requires an individual capable of consistent use of discretion, judgment and initiative. Background in analysis and interpretation of relevant data and research is necessary. All candidates will be expected to submit sample coding to be reviewed by and discussed with an HBS statistician. Diplomatic skills, comfort in interacting with prominent individuals, and grace under pressure are essential. Strong skills related to the Microsoft Office Suite are expected.

The candidate must have extremely high standards in terms of quality of work, attention to detail, strong organization skills, and absolute commitment to task completion. He or she must be able to balance multiple tasks and shifting priorities under tight deadlines at an accelerated pace when necessary. It is helpful if the candidate is familiar with navigating a complex organization, such as Harvard Business School. Preference for candidate who plans to seek an advanced degree.

Additional Information

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, a cover letter and resume are required for full consideration. Upon the review of application materials, applicants may be asked to submit a quantitative code sample, writing sample, and transcript(s). All positions will be given a writing exam.


HBS is not able to provide visa sponsorship for this position.


Job FunctionResearch




USA - MA - Boston


Division of Research & Faculty Development


Time Status



00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary


Salary Grade


Appointment End Date



Pre-Employment Screening

Education, Identity

EEO Statement

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 or any other characteristic protected by law.

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