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Inequality in America Initiative 2022-23 Postdoctoral Fellowship
Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Date Posted 09/11/2021
Admin-Other Administrative Positions
Employment Type
Application Deadline Open until filled

Title Inequality in America Initiative 2022-23 Postdoctoral Fellowship
School Faculty of Arts and Sciences
Department/Area Division of Social Science
Position Description
Social and economic inequality are urgent problems for our society, with implications for a range of outcomes from economic growth and political stability to crime, public health, family wellbeing, and social trust. The Inequality in America Initiative seeks applications from recent doctoral (or equivalent) degree recipients interested in joining an interdisciplinary network of Harvard researchers who are working to address the multiple challenges of inequality in the United States.
This postdoctoral training program is intended to seed new research directions; facilitate collaboration and mentorship across disciplines; develop new leaders in the study of inequality who can publish at the highest level, reach the widest audience, and impact policy.
Expectations and Conditions 
  • Each fellow is expected to pursue original research and, in particular, to make substantial progress on new work that is significantly distinct from the dissertation. Fellows are expected to complete a working paper that represents a new line of research by the end of the second year. Each fellow will have an opportunity during the fellowship period to convene a manuscript workshop inviting 2-4 outside scholars to review and comment on their research in progress. 
  • Fellows are expected to be in residence* at Harvard for the duration of the fellowship, with the exception of the summer months. Fellows who need to be off-site for longer than two weeks during regular term time must seek approval from the program director. 
  • The fellows will co-organize a research workshop that will convene IAI affiliates on a monthly basis for the purpose of presenting and discussing work in progress. Each fellow will present in the workshop at least once per year. 
  • Fellows are expected to participate in the activities of the Inequality in America Initiative, including but not limited to the research workshop. 
  • Fellows may be able to extend the postdoctoral fellowship to a non-stipendiary third year, subject to approval of the program director and conditional on the fellow securing funding, potentially through teaching at Harvard. 

The Award
The fellowship is a two-year postdoctoral training program, with an optional third year conditional on program director approval and independent funding. The salary is $71,000/year plus fringe benefits, including health insurance eligibility.
The award will include office space* and up to $17,500 for research expenses across the two years, including computer equipment and travel*. We also provide $3000 toward relocation expenses for anyone moving from out of state (total includes withheld taxes, per US law; net will be included with second paycheck) and $3000 toward a manuscript workshop in the second year. 
The program director will pair each fellow with two Harvard faculty mentors, including one from outside the fellow’s primary discipline. Over fifty Harvard faculty are affiliated with the initiative, participating in one or more of five major research clusters: 
  • Mobility and Migration 
  • Science, Technology, Education, and Health 
  • Work, Family, and Opportunity 
  • Governance, Citizenship, and Social Justice 
  • America Inequality, Globally 

See more at 
Applicants should indicate on their applications the research cluster that seems most relevant to their work, as this will aid us in identifying appropriate mentors. (Applicants do not need to identify mentors themselves.) Fellows will have ample opportunity and encouragement to make connections with faculty from across the initiative. 
*As of the fall of 2021, Harvard has resumed much of its on-campus activity, and most business travel is permitted (subject to some restrictions). Campus access requires compliance with the University’s health and safety guidelines and protocols, including COVID19 vaccination and regular testing. Should the pandemic situation worsen, it is possible that remote work requirements will be instituted and that travel will be more highly restricted.
Basic Qualifications
Applicants to the 2022-23 program must have received a doctorate or terminal degree in April 2019 or later; those applicants without a doctorate or terminal degree must demonstrate that they will receive such a degree no later than August 2022.
If you have not completed your graduate program, please still make sure to include your doctorate and anticipated degree date in the Educational Background section.
Additional Qualifications
Internal (Harvard-affiliated) candidates please note: Those who received terminal degrees from Harvard, and postdocs currently on a one-year term at Harvard, are eligible for the fellowship but must propose projects that take them in new directions that are significantly distinct from their current research and are intended to forge new connections within the University. Harvard candidates should not propose to continue to work with the same professors or research groups with whom they are currently associated. No candidate should propose to work extensively with his or her thesis advisor.
Special Instructions
- ———————————————————————————
Applications, excluding letters of recommendation, must be submitted by 11:59 PM EST, Friday, November 12, 2021.
The application must include the following in order to be reviewed:
  • A CV.
  • A 1-page summary of your proposed research in non-technical language, suitable for a broad audience outside of your discipline. Upload this to the “other statement” section.
  • A 2- to 3-page (<1500 words) research statement that includes a brief description of your dissertation research and a more detailed proposal for the project(s) you will pursue during the fellowship, including an explanation of the broader impacts of the research and how it connects with the goals of the program and your own long-term plans.
  • One chapter- or article-length writing sample, no more than 25 pages. The writing sample may be published or unpublished, but should relate to your proposed topic and be clearly identified (i.e., please note co-authors, if it’s an excerpt from a longer work, and so forth).
  • Three letters of recommendation.

    Letters of recommendation must be received no later than 11:59 PM EST, Tuesday, November 30, 2021.
    Please make sure you have supplied current and accurate email addresses for your references, and please monitor your application to make sure the letters have been submitted. Due to the volume of applications we receive, we simply do not have time to track down missing letters, and incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
    You may use Interfolio. Interfolio provides you with a unique email address for each letter of recommendation. You need to obtain that address from Interfolio and enter it in the section of your application that requests your reference provider’s email address. (Once again, please double-check this email address for accuracy.) Complete instructions are available at the Interfolio Help Center ( ).

    Contact Information
    Jennifer Shephard 
    FAS Social Science Division 
    University Hall 3 South 
    Harvard University 
    Cambridge MA 02138
    Contact Email
    Equal Opportunity Employer
    We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy related conditions, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, age, veteran status, disability unrelated to job requirements, genetic information, military service, or other protected status. Minorities and women are especially encouraged to apply.
    Minimum Number of References Required 3
    Maximum Number of References Allowed 3

    *Please mention to employers when applying for this job*

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