Development Economist

Palo Alto /
Engineering – Engineering /
Atlas AI monitors the drivers of economic development across the emerging markets so that financial capital can advance societal well-being. Spun out of Stanford and founded in partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation, we are a well-funded AI start-up focused on transforming the quality of information that corporate, non-profit and government decision makers have access to in service of sustainable development. This is a rare opportunity to have a significant impact on the evolution of the company. You will be part of a big mission and a small team making significant advances at the intersection of AI and economic intelligence.

As a Development Economist at Atlas AI, you will inform the definition of analytical products designed to support development practitioners to target their programs more effectively and to monitor the impact of those programs over time.  You will also help to engage potential partners and customers in proofs of concept in support of validating product hypotheses and informing the definition of our product roadmap.  The Development Economist position sits in our Product organization and reports directly to our Head of Product.  You will be part of a cross-functional team working in conjunction with machine learning engineers and across our product, innovation and impact functions.


    • Develop and test product hypotheses with potential customers in collaboration with Sales and Business Development colleagues
    • Inform the definition of our product roadmap by determining approaches to using our technology to solve end user problems
    • Provide expertise related to development economics, or other areas of knowledge, to support work happening across the company
    • Run experiments and execute specific proofs of concept related to validating product, partnership or customer opportunities
    • Oversee collaborations with development and academic partners related to the joint development of new products or joint go-to-market activities for Atlas AI products and services
    • Work with early users of our socioeconomic insight products to identify learnings and to incorporate those learnings into feature requests and future product priorities
    • You have an applied research mindset, and are pragmatic in seeking information to test hypotheses and design solutions
    • You like to get hands on with data, and seek out empirical proof through the design and execution of experiments.
    • You are intellectually curious and can identify the generalized learning from any specific project situation
    • You are effective at project planning and can prioritize across projects competing for limited resources
    • You work best in collaborative settings with team members of diverse backgrounds and skill sets
    • You are empathetic to a less technical audience when explaining a complicated problem so we can all make a better decision

Ideal Skills:

    • Advanced experience with data science, statistical analysis, and data visualization (particularly in the geospatial domain)
    • 5+ years of relevant experience implementing and/or evaluating development programs in the emerging markets
    • Advanced degree with a focus on Development Economics or related fields
    • Exceptional interpersonal and communication (written and oral) skills
    • Comfort working independently and in an entrepreneurial, start-up environment


    • Product management experience with a software technology company
    • Coding experience in Python and relevant libraries (pandas, scikit-learn, TF, seaborn, etc.)
    • Experience executing projects utilizing AI / ML techniques

What you can expect from the Hiring Manager:

    • They will do their best to provide structure and clear goals, including mentorship on the disciplines of product definition and product management, but a lot of day-to-day efforts at Atlas will require autonomy
    • They will ensure that you’ll be able to have conversations with users/partners/customers to accomplish your duties
    • They will support your intention to grow as a professional and as a person
    • They will be empathetic and considerate of personal/family situations that affect your work schedule
Our office is in downtown Palo Alto in the heart of Silicon Valley, right in the middle of our ecosystem, however we are open to this role operating remotely so long as there is the ability to travel as needed to Palo Alto for team meetings and to client sites for key meetings. We offer a casual and inclusive working environment, competitive compensation and great benefits. We are a “people first” company and it shows.