OES Annual Fellowship Overview
OES accepts applications annually for one-year fellowships beginning in the fall. Based at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), OES is a team of interdisciplinary experts that works across government to help agencies build and use evidence.
Team members work alongside agency collaborators to apply behavioral insights, make concrete recommendations on how to improve government, and evaluate impact using administrative data. OES is uniquely situated at the center of government to share leading practices, develop resources and build skills in the Federal workforce on evidence and evaluation. To date, OES has completed many randomized evaluations with dozens of agency partners. OES follows the best practices in social science research to build evidence in order to be a leader in transparency and accountability. OES forms innovative partnerships to tackle some of the most pressing challenges in the United States and abroad, such as opioid prescribing, access to healthcare for Veterans, reducing energy use and costs, and improving government efficiency.
Fellows and Associate Fellows join OES on-loan from academic, nonprofit, or government offices on either a reimbursable or non-reimbursable basis. Fellows have come from a variety of universities, non-profits, and Federal departments. There is additional flexibility for Federal employees applying for a rotational detail. You can learn more about the position and what we look for by viewing the 2023 Fellowship Solicitation.
Frequently Asked Questions
No, you do not need to relocate to Washington, D.C. All fellowship positions will be remote and location flexible within the United States. Fellows will serve at least a one year term, with interest and availability to serve additional years preferred.
We are holding to a firm deadline at this time as we need to evaluate candidates for the first and second round interviews on the same timeline. We do sometimes have need for off cycle support, if you would like to share your CV and a cover letter - we are happy to review it.
- Fellows have substantial expertise in a social and behavioral sciences field. Typically they are researchers with a PhD and publication record in a social or behavioral science field (e.g., economics, psychology, political science, statistics, sociology, public policy, business, etc.).
- Associate Fellows typically have recently completed a PhD or postdoc, or have a Master’s Degree plus two or more years of relevant experience.
- Please note that it’s the same application process, just with different qualifications.
We understand academic timelines are locked well in advance and some candidates have already made commitments for this fall. We do encourage you to apply in this round for a 2023 calendar-year Fellowship, and are open to having a conversation regarding timeline with qualified individuals. In general we will prioritize individuals that are available in the Fall, but are open to year long Fellowships which start a bit later in some cases.
We do encourage those that have authorization for employment or course-of-study-related work in the United States to apply. You can find more information on the OPM website here. The Intergovernmental Personnel Agreement (IPA), requires a sponsoring organization (such as a University or registered non-profit) to finance and provide a team members’ salary/stipend, benefits (such as health / dental / vision coverage), and visa. This mechanism allows for the onboarding of non-residents / non-citizens.
To see our past work, please visit our evaluations page and portfolio page.
OES is not currently seeking summer interns, as we believe the value derived from supporting our work lends itself to a longer timeline. The work of opportunity identification, experiment design, implementation, and analysis often takes longer than 2-3 months.
Yes, OES Fellowships are funded. The intention of the Fellowship is to reimburse your institution for some or all of your direct costs during your rotation. Via the IPA mechanism we enter into cost-sharing agreements with your home institution.
An ideal writing sample would demonstrate three things:
- ability to conduct rigorous research
- knowledge of the relevant subject matter area
- precision, conciseness, and clarity in writing.
An academic paper (working or published) that you personally wrote is most helpful, as are any shorter pieces you might have written for broader audience (such as a memo or blog).
Short answer is -- if you have an active grant, are you aware of any potential conflicts of interest? From a time perspective: we do expect Fellows to contribute in a full-time capacity, so it would be helpful to confirm you can contribute to OES in a full-time capacity; there is flexibility in work hours.
The mechanism we use to bring on fellows for this position is via an Intergovernmental Personnel Act agreement (IPA) and requires a sponsoring organization (such as a University or registered non-profit) to finance and provide a team members’ salary/stipend, benefits (such as health / dental / vision coverage), and visa. This agreement allows for up to a 4-year term with an agency. If you are still verifying what organization you will be affiliated with next year, you can still apply to the fellowship. We plan to discuss potential candidates intended IPA mechanisms at the point of final round interviews, around February or March.
We typically hire between 2-6 fellows each year, but final numbers will depend on agency priorities and funding availability.