Resources for the Future (RFF)
Washington, DC, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
University/Academia/Research/Think tank
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.

Fellow (PhD within last 5 years)

Section: Full-Time Nonacademic 
Location: Washington, District of Columbia, United States  
JEL Classifications: 
Q2 Renewable Resources and Conservation  

Q4 Energy 

Q5 Environmental Economics  

H2 Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue 

H4 Publicly Provided Goods 

J2 Demand and Supply of Labor 

L9 Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities 

R4 Transportation Economics

Resources for the Future’s mission is to improve environmental, energy, and natural resource decisions through impartial economic research and policy engagement. RFF’s commitment is to be the most widely trusted source of research insights and policy solutions leading to a healthy environment and a thriving economy.  

RFF invites applications from researchers who received their PhD degree within the past 5 years OR who will receive their PhD in economics or a closely related field by August 2021, to join its research program.   

Our research fellows are central to achieving that goal. Through our intellectual leadership in research and deep familiarity with important policy challenges, RFF seeks to have impact in three major ways: 

  • Transforming the way decisionmakers and the public think about problems, delivering facts, providing new ideas, and expanding the solution set; 
  • Quantifying issues decisionmakers care about, enabling them to understand impacts, identify opportunities, weigh competing options, and resolve tradeoffs; and 
  • Bringing decisionmakers and stakeholders together to learn from one another, take advantage of RFF research insights, develop a shared understanding of issues, and find common ground. 

Successful RFF Fellows conduct high-quality, publishable research; develop and lead new research projects; and actively participate in communication of research results and other forms of policy engagement.  

RFF’s current research and engagement activities focus on (1) the economics of sectoral and economy-wide strategies for reducing GHG and other air emissions; and (2) measurement of the economic impacts of climate change and other environmental effects, and development of strategies for reflecting these risks in adaptation decisions and resilience planning.  Within these broad themes, specific areas of current activity include: 

  • Developing and evaluating carbon pricing, tradeable performance standards, and other approaches to reduce emissions from the electric power, transport, industrial (including fuel production), building, forestry, agricultural, and other sectors.  
  • Measuring climate change impacts on settlements and infrastructure, human health, food and water systems, species, and ecosystems, and developing approaches for reflecting these risks in public and private decisions.  
  • Analyzing the transition to new energy sources and technologies in the power sector, as well as the implications of transitions in power market organization and regulation. 
  • Addressing land use challenges, including “monetizing” the value of recreational areas to provide revenue to improve care for protected lands, and managing wildfire risks. 

RFF offers a competitive salary and benefits and a stimulating work environment. Expected start dates may vary from February through September 2021. 

All applicants should use RFF’s on-line application process at www.rff.org/jobs to be formally considered for the role.   

We request the following items to be submitted, in addition to a completed application, by November 30, 2020:  

1) A letter detailing interest in the position; 

2) Current resume/curriculum vitae (CV); 

3) Copies of the applicant’s job market paper (1-2 other papers may be submitted as well). 

Applicants should also arrange for 3 letters of reference to be provided by November 30, 2020. Letters of reference should be emailed to fellowhiring@rff.org (please include candidate name in email subject line). I

Initial interviews will be scheduled in accordance with this year’s ASSA COVID job market guidelines.

RFF is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. People are RFF’s greatest asset, and we prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind. We value the unique contributions of each member of our community and foster an environment that empowers everyone at RFF to thrive. Applicants of all kinds, who represent diversity that includes but is not limited to age, race, ethnicity, national origin, color, socioeconomic status, gender, physical ability, cognitive diversity, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation, and personal background, are encouraged to apply. We are unable to sponsor a work-related visa for this position.


  • Recent PhD (within the last 5 years through August 2021)
  • Candidates must have strong applied microeconomic foundations as well as relevant topical knowledge in one or more of the fields listed above.  
  • Technical expertise in general equilibrium analysis, computational simulation modeling, large-data analytics and econometrics, spatial econometrics, or use of geospatial data also is an advantage.