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Postdoctoral Fellow in Political Economy with a special focus on topics of trust and cultural norms

HSE University

International Center for the Study of Institutions and Development

Moscow, Russia

The Higher School of Economics International Center for the Study of Institutions and Development (ICSID) in Moscow, Russia, established in cooperation with the Harriman Institute (Columbia University), invites applications for postdoctoral research positions in Political Economy with a special focus on topics of trust and cultural norms.

A significant body of empirical and theoretical research has demonstrated the importance of trust and norms for economic and institutional development. Much less attention has been devoted to identifying the precise mechanisms that generate and change components of social capital and culture and foster their formation. Moreover, mostly developed countries received attention in the literature.

We study trust and social norms with a focus on countries with weak institutions, Russia in particular. Russia offers a fertile ground for research on trust and norms as it has a vibrant history with economic and political shocks, diverse institutions and populations affected by different types of norms – from Soviet and traditional to quite modern ones. Our work is based on unique datasets that allow us to study current trust and norms and link them with the data from archives. Among them are represented at the regional level surveys of individuals in almost all Russian regions, including the recent online survey of more than 23,000 respondents in 61 regions at the end of 2020. We also use other valuable sources of information such as the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (RLMS), World Values Survey, European Values Study, European Social Survey, and Life in Transition Survey.

Projects focus on a variety of topics including trust and preferences for redistribution, connection between trust, social norms and economic development (in particular, role of obedience for economic outcomes), gender inequality and its origins, role of history and geography for trust and norms. We also study the role of trust and norms during the current pandemic. Candidates are welcome to participate in these or other topics that will be of mutual interest. 


The general requirements for the postdoctoral fellowship positions are the following:
●      a Ph.D. In Economics, Sociology, Political Science, Public Policy, or Government (awarded during last 5 years but before the start of the program);
●      a strong interest in the research field of trust and cultural norms;
●      strong quantitative skills, ability to carry out research using Stata/R/Python or similar software to meet standards of academic journals;
●      ability to design lab and/or survey experiments is an asset;
●      peer-reviewed publications, working papers, or a job market paper in the fields of social capital or culture will be a strong advantage;
●      ability to work in a team;
●      ability to understand and communicate in Russian is not a requirement but will be a plus;
●      submission of at least one working paper per year to one of the HSE working papers series
●      full-time research with at least two presentations of results during the year.


The position involves:

 -         working in a research group with Dr. Ekaterina Borisova,Dr. Denis Ivanov, and Dr. Irina Levina;
-         collaboration with the international team of ICSID researchers and taking part in ICSID projects;
-         pursuing independent research for which the candidate could spend up to 50% of the time;
-         publishing papers in peer-reviewed academic journals in economics, political science, regional science, public policy, history or sociology;
-         presenting research results at seminars and conferences;
-         participation in the organization of ICSID events and other contributions to the Lab’s development.



Appointments are normally made for one year (from September 2022). Postdoctoral fellows have an opportunity to renew the contract (no more than two times).

HSE University offers postdoctoral fellows a competitive salary, the standard medical insurance plan, a working space equipped with a computer and free Internet access at the University.

The Center offers access to its unique databases on socio-economic indicators of the Russian regions, political elites and historical roots of institutions in Russia. ICSID also provides all necessary support for research such as up-to-date analytical software, funding for attendance at international conferences and research assistantship. Moreover, the HSE library provides access to a large collection of academic journals.

Application Process

Applications must be submitted online. Please provide a CV, a statement of research interest and a recent research paper submitted via an online application form. At least two letters of recommendation should be sent directly to the International Faculty Recruitment Office at fellowship@hse.ru before the application deadline. Please note that direct applications to thehiring center may not be reviewed.

Read more about the application process here.

The deadline for the applications is January 31, 2022.

Apply now


For more information:


If you have any additional questions, feel free to contact the International Faculty Recruitment Office at fellowship@hse.ru .


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