Research Assistant: Energy and Environment

The role requires contribution to ongoing research in the Energy, Environment, and Sustainability vertical at Brookings India. The research is cross disciplinary involving quantitative and qualitative analysis and includes substantial depth (requires application and attention to detail).

Focus area: Coal and its future in India, including value chain

Within broader Energy and Environment studies at Brookings India, the major work stream for this position is research on the coal value chain including but not limited to:

  1. Coal usage and applications – End use industry analysis, prime focus on thermal power generation sector. Analysis includes regulations, policy, costs and tariffs etc.
  2. Coal mining – attributes, costs, taxes, allocation modes and regulatory (and policy analysis) and market structure etc.
  3. Coal logistics and supply chain – attributes; costs, modes, tariffs and efficiency and productivity etc
  4. Coal costs – identifying externalities and associated social costs and ameliorating factors etc.
  5. Coal and energy policies


NOTE: The above work streams are indicative in nature. All work at the Institute is “impact focussed” on the policy & regulatory environment of the country.

Responsibilities and Requirements

Following are the key skill requirements with a successful candidate. In addition to guided and independent research and policy analysis on topics relating to energy and sustainability, he/she must have:

  1. Ability to write: Command over business writing (English), and ability to write in different formats like: sections of large reports, short reports, articles, blogs, event notes, meeting notes and minutes etc. background policy and researches summary notes and reports, occasional media summaries, and briefing memos, reports on forums, symposia, and conferences; compiles abstracts, summaries, and analyses of journals, abstracts, books, and news articles.
  2. Ability to work with data: Research, collect, organize, compile and, maintain (sometimes large) data for analysis; additionally develop conceptual models. Topics for analysis may include (are not exhaustive) calculating lifecycle and other costs of energy; regulations/policies and their impact; technology assessment; environmental impacts; risks and uncertainties; multi-stakeholder viewpoints and incentives (producers, consumers, etc.). Financial/strategic/economic), methodologies, analysis and indices/frameworks on such topics. Knowledge of R and/or Stata would be a big plus.
  3. Presentation skills: Prepares/assists in the preparation of presentations, blog posts and working papers, including through preparation of preliminary drafts; background material prior to event, coordinates invitations and communications with panellists, and writes reports after the event.
  4. External engagement: Aides in/organises meetings and events; assists with outreach activities related to the scholar’s work; also, collects and analyses empirical and analytical information; monitors and analyses relevant material from conferences and seminars, academic journals, and reports from a wide variety of sources, including industry and development organisations and NGOs. And, as needed, provides administrative assistance too, attends conferences and seminars as needed and prepares summaries.
  5. Other duties as assigned. This includes administrative and logistical support, especially towards events by the energy group, and maintaining database, etc.

Educational Requirements:

Engineering degree with a specialisation in power system engineering, electrical engineering, mining/environmental engineering etc., or/and Bachelors/Master’s (desirable but not essential) in public policy with focus on energy/resources/sustainability etc., or/and energy and resource economics from leading Indian and global Universities.

MBAs with specialization in public systems, finance and economics, wanting to work in Not-Profit Research can also apply. However, demonstrable interest (experience) in energy and resources research will be viewed favourably.

Graduates with deferred PhD offers, willing to commit to at least 1.5 years are also encouraged to apply.

Experience Requirements:

Work experience in quantitative policy analysis in the energy space, whether in academia or industry (both for profit and not for profit) would be viewed favourably, however motivated candidates with complementary skills but without work experience are also encouraged to apply.

Soft skill Requirements:

  1. A high degree of motivation and interest in working in the not for profit area with emerging ideas (impact) for development sector.
  2. Excellent verbal, written, and communication skills.
  3. Ability to think on his/her feet with a knack for numbers and order of magnitude analysis/back of the envelop analysis/sanity checks to test a hypothesis or a line of argument.
  4. Ability to meet multiple deadlines in a fast-paced work environment.
  5. Professional demeanour and high level of comfort working with high-profile individuals from government/international organizations.
  6. Ability to work well under pressure with minimal supervision, discretion and mature judgment.
  7. Strong proficiency in Microsoft Office required (spreadsheets/presentation/writing); strong computer skills and experience required.

Application Process:

Applicants should submit a full resume, a list of publications, a writing sample (preferably in the energy domain), and a one-page description of research interests and their relevance to policy

Please send in your applications to with the subject line: “Research Assistant, Energy and Environment”.


Last day of submission is 31 January 2017. Only those shortlisted will be contacted.
Salary will depend on the candidate’s qualifications and experience.

For questions on this position please contact

The Brookings India Center in New Delhi is an affiliate of the Washington, D.C.-based Brookings Institution, the Number One ranked research institution in the world. Established in 2013, Brookings India serves as an important platform for developing and disseminating policy recommendations for Indian policymakers. The center’s research activity helps civil society, the private sector, media, and the wider public in India to better understand existing issues and effective solutions.