Research Assistant or Research Associate - Federal Fiscal Policy

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) is a high-caliber strategic policy institute that informs and shapes public policies to reduce poverty, promote equity, and build opportunity and engages on how to raise the revenues necessary to support public investments. It has a national reputation for conducting rigorous research and analysis, developing evidence-based policy ideas and strategies, shaping a broad array of policy debates at the federal and state levels, and influencing policy outcomes and program implementation. It focuses its efforts on improving people's lives with low and moderate incomes and examines how policies affect particular groups, including people of color, immigrants, people with disabilities, and LGBTQ+ people. In addition, the Center is known for its unique capacity to blend rigorous, timely analysis with effective communications that enable policymakers and the media to use its work.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is seeking to hire a Research Assistant or Research Associate (RA) to work with a team of highly skilled national policy analysts on a range of spending and tax policies, especially policies that affect people with lower incomes. The RA will be part of the Federal Fiscal team and work on a range of federal tax and budget policies alongside other RAs, supporting all of the team’s senior experts. The ideal candidate is extremely organized, detail oriented, and a self-starter with an interest in honing their analytic skills in a collaborative environment.


  • Analyze data, including using Excel and software packages/programming languages, to assess policy proposals, including their cost and distribution.
  • Help prepare reports and analyses that pertain both to current policy debates and to longer-term challenges facing the U.S. economy.
  • Contribute to written analyses and graphic presentations of findings.
  • Evaluate pending legislative proposals and policy options.
  • Conduct careful reviews of data used in policy analysis reports, often on a time-sensitive basis.
  • Respond to analytical requests about policy proposals from external partners, congressional staff, and media.
  • Collaborate with Federal Fiscal team members to bring an equity lens to all facets of the work, including public products as well as the processes we use to do our work.
  • Provide support for key projects and discussions, such as developing agendas, scheduling, and facilitating meetings.


  • Research Assistant: Bachelor’s degree in economics, public policy, statistics, or any field that requires strong quantitative skills.
  • Research Associate: Advanced degree in economics, public policy, statistics, or any field that requires strong quantitative skills.
  • Strong quantitative and writing skills, and the ability to work on multiple tasks both independently and as part of a highly collaborative team, often on a time-sensitive basis.
  • Familiarity with one or more software packages or programming languages used for data analysis (such as STATA, R, Python) is highly desired.
  • Applicants must demonstrate a commitment to accuracy.
  • Prior experience with fiscal issues or policies affecting people with lower incomes and/or coursework related to these issues preferred but not required.
  • A commitment to the Center’s mission to improve the well-being of people with low and moderate incomes.
  • A commitment to advancing multiple dimensions of equity and inclusion, including racial and gender equity, in policy analysis and advocacy as well as the Center’s internal and external relationships.

The Center is operating on a hybrid work schedule that includes at least two days per week in-person at our D.C. office.

This position reports to the Deputy Director of Federal Tax Policy.

Terms of Employment: Full-time; exempt. This is a 2-year term position. Position starts in June 2023 or sooner.

Bargaining Unit Status: This is a bargaining unit position.


Salary and title commensurate with experience; excellent benefits, including three health insurance options, dental and vision care, life and long-term disability insurance, retirement, and generous vacation leave, sick leave, and holiday schedules.

Career Development

This position is an exceptional foundational role for people seeking to build a career in public policy. The RA will work closely with senior staff and other RAs on our research work. Most of the RA’s work will be highly relevant to current legislative developments, so the role offers a unique insight into federal policymaking processes and an opportunity to help influence major policy decisions. Center analyses and experts are quoted frequently in the press and relied upon heavily by policymakers.

Former Federal Fiscal team RAs have gone on to a wide range of analysis and policy roles. Examples include working at the Council of Economic Advisers, the Office of Management and Budget, the National Economic Council in the White House, the Senate Finance Committee, and nonpartisan national and state research organizations. In addition, RAs have gone from the Center to top graduate programs in economics, law, public policy, and statistics.

Please upload a cover letter, resume, short writing sample, and transcripts. In your cover letter, please include a discussion of what draws you to the mission of the Center.

Please submit your application here.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is an Equal Opportunity Employer that values and welcomes diversity in the workplace and strongly encourages all qualified persons to apply regardless of race, color, age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, credit information, pregnancy or parental status, family responsibilities, personal appearance, creed, military or veteran status, religion, ancestry or national origin, union activities, disability, or other status protected by applicable law.