How can I make money from home this summer?
April 14, 2016 4:48 PM   Subscribe

I am a PhD student in the social sciences. I want to make money from home this summer, ideally doing freelance data analysis work.

I know R very well, have taken a number of PhD stats courses, and have the Ivy League pedigree. I know causal inference, Bayesian statistics, machine learning, etc. I figure there's some demand for these skills. For various reasons, I'm not looking to work a ton of hours over the summer, but would like to make a relatively high hourly rate (at least compared to teaching). I don't have the technical chops of a stat PhD or someone who really knows how to code well (like a computer scientist), but I get the job done.

What's my best bet? I looked at freelance sites like elance but they are full of either junk, high end jobs that above my head, or menial data entry tasks.
posted by MisantropicPainforest to Work & Money (5 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Most folks I know who do this kind of thing get work via connections and word of mouth. Have you asked around your university - your department and related ones - to see if anyone has anything for you? I'd particularly look for researchers who don't have strong quant skills themselves and so will want to outsource.
posted by une_heure_pleine at 5:08 PM on April 14, 2016

Yeah, I would say if you only want to work part time with that skillset, your best bet is finding someone in your university who needs someone to do quant stuff for them; for example, I'm in an economics department and often PhD students here get hired either within the department or in a related department (nursing, education, social work, political science) with maybe less of a quant emphasis.
posted by dismas at 6:13 PM on April 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

What area is your ph.d in? And are you willing to go into an office for part of the day a couple of times a week? And are you in a metro area? Some companies have summer data internships, and can be flexible about work hours. The ease of finding these companies would depend on the answers to the questions above.
posted by Jaclyn at 7:03 PM on April 14, 2016

You might see if the stats department at your university has jobs posting email list. At least at my school, this list was open to everyone at the school, regardless of department. Profs or grad students in other departments who need help with their research send stuff semi-regularly and it's not at all uncommon for them to be looking for a master's student, rather than a PhD student, ie your technical chops could suit them just fine.
posted by matildatakesovertheworld at 9:19 PM on April 14, 2016

Upwork might be up your ally. I've signed up for it but I have yet to use it. Chances are data analysis jobs will be super competitive but you should try anyway.
posted by Young Kullervo at 6:04 AM on April 15, 2016

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