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How to Apply

Applicants must submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, a job market paper, and a statement of current and future research plans.  Also, please arrange for at least three letters of recommendation to be sent directly to the email address below. All documents should be in PDF format and contain the applicant's last name in the file name.

Review of applications will begin immediately, but are due by December 4, 2020 at the latest. Applications are not considered complete until recommendation letters are received.

All application materials should be sent to: Interviews will be conducted remotely.

Job Summary

The Population Studies Center (PSC) in the Institute for Social Research (ISR) at the University of Michigan invites applications for a full-time position of Post-Doctoral Fellow. The Post-Doctoral Fellow will help build the Criminal Justice Administrative Records System (CJARS) and launch a number of planned research projects that leverage this new data resource.  CJARS is a next-generation criminal justice data infrastructure initiative to support evidence-based criminal justice policy making and administration, and is being developed through a partnership between the University of Michigan and the U.S. Census Bureau.


Under the direction of the project’s principal investigators (PIs), the Post-Doctoral Fellow will contribute to both the data management as well as scientific aims of CJARS, including but not limited to:

  • Working with research assistants to develop and implement algorithmic harmonization strategies to bring local jurisdictional data into the common national CJARS format;
  • Executing probabilistic matching models to perform entity resolution in the collected records and generate episode sequences that group related arrests, charges and sanctions for the same individual;
  • Performing analysis of the CJARS repository, including summarizing study data and writing up reports of the findings;
  • Conducting analysis of CJARS data linked with other federal data resources in the Federal Statistical Research Data Center network environment in support of the scientific aims of CJARS;
  • Assisting with the management of data production and ensuring a timely delivery of data extracts to the U.S. Census Bureau;
  • Contributing to data quality and code validation checks;
  • Reviewing literature and contributing to new grant proposals as required;
  • Developing new research projects in coordination with the PIs;
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Strong project management skills with exceptional attention to detail required.
  • Proven ability to work with and analyze criminal justice administrative data.
  • Outstanding interpersonal skills and ability to maintain positive relationships with various stakeholders required.
  • Strong time management skills with a proven ability to multitask and to prioritize to successfully complete projects on tight deadlines with little supervision.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with the ability to present data in a simple and straightforward way for non-technical audiences required.
  • Demonstrated ability to exercise sound judgment required.
  • Knowledge and understanding of data science, probabilistic matching methods or U.S. criminal justice research literature strongly preferred.

Required Qualifications*

A Ph.D. in Economics, Public Policy or equivalent field with a focus on the economics of crime.

Required Qualifications*

The ideal candidate will join CJARS in the Summer of 2021 with a deferred position to start as an Assistant Professor of Economics or Public Policy at a later date after the completion of his or her postdoctoral position with CJARS.

Additional Information

The Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to serve the diverse people of Michigan, to maintain the excellence of the university, and to ground our research in varied disciplines, perspectives, and ways of knowing and learning.

This can be a one or two-year position.   

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.