Disclaimer: I was a little drunk on power (calculations) when I wrote this, but it’s me figuring out that econometrics is something I might want to specialize in!
I think I just figured out what I want to do with the rest of my career.
I want to contribute to how people actually practice data analysis in the development sector from the technical side.
I want to write about study design and the technical issues that go into running a really good evaluation, and I want to produce open source resources to help people understand and implement the best technical practices.
This is always something that makes me really excited. I don’t think I have a natural/intuitive understanding of some of the technical work, but I really enjoy figuring it out.
And I love writing about/explaining technical topics when I feel like I really “get” a concept.
This is the part of my current job that I’m most in love with. Right now, for example, I’m working on a technical resource to help IDinsight do power calculations better. And I can’t wait to go to work tomorrow and get back into it.
I’ve also been into meta-analysis papers that bring multiple studies together. In general, the meta-practices, including ethical considerations, of development economics are what I want to spend my time working on.
I’ve had this thought before, but I haven’t really had a concept of making that my actual career until now. But I guess I’ve gotten enough context now that it seems plausible.
I definitely geek out the most about these technical questions, and I really admire people who are putting out resources so that other people can geek out and actually run better studies.
I can explore the topics I’m interested in, talk to people who are doing cool work, create practical tools, and link these things that excite me intellectually to having a positive impact in people’s lives.
My mind is already racing with cool things to do in this field. Ultimately, a website that is essentially an encyclopedia of development economics best practices would be so cool. A way to link all open source tools and datasets and papers, etc.
But top of my list for now is doing a good job with and enjoy this power calculations project at work. If it’s as much fun as it was today, I will be in job heaven.