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The Guinier Project Postdoctoral Fellowship, a postdoctoral fellowship hosted by the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice at Harvard Law School, is specifically designed to identify, cultivate, and promote promising early-career scholars with primary scholarly interests in racial representation, democracy, voting rights, and electoral reform. The Guinier Project, of which this fellowship is part, is named after the late Prof. Lani Guinier, and the work of the Project seeks to carefully consider the actual and potential impacts of voting system reform on racial/ethnic communities and democratic, multiracial representation. The Guinier Project is particularly focused on the effect of moving from the current winner-take-all system to semi-proportional and proportional systems of representation and the potential effects of such a shift on racial representation.

The postdoctoral fellowship is open to recent graduates of PhD programs in applied, math, statistics, computer science, political science, government, politics, sociology, and like disciplines (candidates must have completed their PhDs prior to starting the fellowship). We are also open to graduates from JD programs or equivalent terminal degrees in law if the candidate has additional research-related experience in the above fields and/or prior experience with voting systems reform. We are particularly interested in candidates with a background in quantitative analysis of electoral systems, field research on political participation, and/or the study of race and politics.

Desirable skills for successful candidates may include:

• Ability to run statistical and/or mathematical models and code in R or Python;
• Ability to synthesize relevant literature and familiarity with race and politics scholarship and/or electoral reform scholarship;
• Collection and curation of data sets and particularly familiarity with demographic data (such as Decennial Census data);
• Ability to design, implement and oversee collection of data in the field;
• Prior experience working with good government and civil rights organizations.

FELLOWSHIP ACTIVITIES: Postdoctoral fellows are expected to make significant contributions to the Guinier Project and will also devote time to scholarly activities to further their personal research agendas. Fellows may mentor graduate and law student research assistants working on Guinier Project research and collaborate with them for their personal work. Fellows are also expected to help plan and execute Guinier Project events during their fellowship. Fellows may also be asked to present their research in various forums, including academic seminars, speaker panels, or conferences. Through helping with Project convenings and programming, Fellows will have the opportunity to interact with a broad range of leading scholars and advocates working in the fields of democracy, voting rights, and electoral reform.

SALARY & BENEFITS: The postdoctoral fellow will receive an annual stipend of $60,000 – $75,000 (based on experience/background) and the standard Harvard University postdoctoral employee benefits package. In addition, Fellows may access a wide range of resources offered by Harvard, including library access and access to the vast array of activities that are part of the vibrant intellectual life of the law school and university, whether in person or remotely. Both
hybrid (part-time on campus) and remote appointments will be considered based on the needs of the candidate and the Institute. Fellows must reside in a Harvard University payroll-approved state (CA, CT, GA, IL, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, RI, VT, VA, WA).

APPLICATION & APPOINTMENT TIMELINE: Applicants are reviewed on a rolling basis, and the start date is flexible. However, typical start dates will occur in the summer (June 1 – Sept 1), and appointments run for an academic year. The initial term of a fellowship will run one year from the start date. A fellowship appointment is renewable for no more than two additional years, dependent on funding and departmental needs.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS: Each interested applicant should submit the following to the Houston Institute at

1. a comprehensive résumé or CV,
2. a detailed statement of interest,
3. law and/or graduate program transcripts (unofficial transcripts accepted),
4. writing sample, and
5. at least two letters of reference addressing the applicant’s potential for success as a scholar.*

*Reference letters may be sent by either the applicant or directly to the Houston Institute by the recommender. If recommenders send their letters directly, please advise them to use the following subject line: Postdoc Letter of Recommendation for [Applicant Name].

We may also conduct zoom or phone interviews with applicants after reviewing written materials.

Please direct all materials and any questions to the Houston Institute Managing Director at Please include “Postdoc Application for [Applicant Name]” in the subject line when submitting materials.