Summer Fellowships

Graduate students from across Harvard are competitively selected for the opportunity to spend the summer embedded in local government, where they will meaningfully contribute to improving government services and present their deliverables and recommendations to the mayor, senior leaders, and other key stakeholders in the city. A multi-disciplinary cohort of fellows will learn how to apply the tools of data-driven decision making, human-centered design techniques, and cross-sector collaboration to help city leaders drive government performance and address pressing social problems.

View scopes of work in 2023 fellowship cities, below, or read Frequently Asked Questions.

View the information session presentation: 2023 Summer Fellowship Overview & Offerings (PDF).

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Applications are due on Monday, January 30 by 9 a.m. ET.

Climate Action

Net Zero by 2040: Using Data to Craft a Compelling Vision for a Sustainable Transition
Coming soon
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Engaging the Private Rented Sector in Retrofitting
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Unlocking Environmental Action: Using Engagement Insight to Shape Action
Coming soon
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Advancing Glasgow's GreenPrint for Investment and Green New Deal
Coming soon
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Equity in Climate Action: Establishing a Frontline Communities Advisory Panel on Climate Resilience and Mitigation
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Civic Engagement

Supporting and Further Strengthening Civic Engagement Efforts in Riverside
Coming soon
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Community-centered Justice

Establishing and Developing a Municipal Community Court
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Equitable Development

Accelerating Equitable Commercial & Residential Development
Please contact cityleadership@harvard.edu for more information.
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Equitable Economic Development

Implementing an Equitable Economic Development Plan in Wyandotte County/Kansas City, KS
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Equitable City Contracting: Increasing Participation of Minority and Women Underutilized Business Enterprises
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Government and Technology

Government Digitalization: Establishing the Data Foundations for Monterrey’s Smart City Agenda
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Technology & Civil Liberties: Implementing San Diego’s Newly Adopted Privacy Ordinance
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Crafting a Resident-Focused Smart City Strategy and Action Plan for Toledo
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Healthy Food Access

Let’s All Eat: Improving Access to Healthy Foods and Reducing Health Disparities
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Homelessness

Preventing People from Becoming Homeless in Sacramento
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Inclusive Governance

Improving Local Area Planning Processes to be more Inclusive and Replicable
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City of Spanglish Speakers: Solidifying Language Access in Allentown
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Neighborhood Reinvestment

Creating Generational Wealth through Program Development for State Forfeiture Parcels
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Student Fellows Stories

Nneka Edwards-Jackson

Nneka Edwards-Jackson,

MPK 2022

As a COVID-19 Response and Recovery fellow, Dr. Edwards-Jackson, Harvard Chan MPH 2020, who is a pediatrician by training, is developing community-based solutions at the intersection of public safety and mental health. Her analysis of peer city approaches and policy recommendations will inform the overall strategy of the new community-based public safety task force, formed in the wake of the Black Lives Matter and Indigenous Lives Matter movements. Edwards-Jackson’s project is a continuation of the city’s work within the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative’s Collaboration Track on community-driven mental health and addiction strategy.

A crowd gathers for peaceful protest held in Oklahoma City

Andrew Loh,

MPP 2022, MBA 2022

Andrew Loh, HKS MPP 2022 and Stanford Graduate School of Business MBA 2022, worked with the Oklahoma City Mayor’s Office to analyze the impacts of COVID-19 in the city and strengthen civilian oversight of the police force. Joining a special task force to address these connected issues, Andrew conducted a comparative analysis of responses from other US cities in order to support employing a mask mandate. Andrew’s team also examined a variety of police oversight systems, and he presented to Mayor David Holt the legal and policy reforms that would be necessary to make civilian oversight of the police department more effective. His proposal serves as a key resource as policymakers take up police reform in Oklahoma City.

Mockups of a waste management app

Oluwatosin Alliyu,

MDE 2021

Oluwatosin Alliyu, HGSD MDE 2021, spent the summer working with the public and private sector stakeholders of Accra’s waste management system in order to develop a data strategy to make Accra the cleanest city in Africa. Oluwatosin conducted research on data strategy and waste management, as well as the intricacies of public-private partnership in Accra, mapping the relevant stakeholders in order to uncover areas for improvement. Oluwatosin developed three prototypes and an implementation guide in order to address issues with cross-sector collaboration, data collection, and service delivery to remote citizens. On her Harvard faculty and client support system, Oluwatosin said, “The support of my two Harvard faculty advisers and feedback from stakeholders in Accra were instrumental in the development of both the prototypes and implementation guide. While the keen guidance from my Harvard faculty advisers provided much needed insights and encouragement when I felt stuck, the feedback and continued engagement with those in Accra kept me grounded.”

Protest in Chicago in the wake of the murder of George Floyd

Zoe Bulger,

MPP 2021

Zoe Bulger, HKS MPP 2021, started her fellowship in the Chicago Mayor’s Office of Equity and Racial Justice days after protests had erupted across the city in response to the murder of George Floyd and legacy of police brutality, state violence, and racism. “While my work for the summer was focused broadly on racial equity in response to COVID-19, it was clear that Chicago needed a way forward through the trauma caused by systemic racism and the pandemic–it needed to heal,” she said. Working closely with Chicago’s Chief Equity Officer, Zoe engaged a range of stakeholders to explore strategies for healing and identify work already underway in the city. She also examined cases of reconciliation in other cities in the US and abroad. At the end of the fellowship, she submitted a proposal for how Chicago can launch a city-wide healing journey and drive transformation for racial equity.

Mock website of a mayor's dashboard

Lauren Lombardo,

MPP 2021

Lauren Lombardo, HKS MPP 2021, worked closely with the mayor’s office in the city of Lincoln, Nebraska, to improve the city’s use of data and performance evaluation in policymaking. Lauren found that the city’s existing system, LNKStat, was outdated and had been abandoned by the intended users. After 20 interviews with stakeholders, Lauren developed a new metrics toolkit to be used alongside policymaking that will provide a guide for identifying key performance indicators and monitoring metrics during policy development. Her solution ensures a flexible system that can adapt more readily than static metrics. In addition, Lauren scoped and tested a data dashboard for city officials that would make data more accessible to the public and promote data-driven governance. Lauren said of her experience, “During a time of pandemic and social unrest, my summer fellowship with Lincoln came with unexpected challenges and unanticipated rewards. I learned the importance of making data accessible and flexible and saw first-hand how to impact organizational change within governing institutions.”

Allison O’Shea

Allison O’Shea,

MBA 2021

Allison O’Shea, HBS MBA 2021, is working on research on city innovations to advance the status of women and girls. Her work aims to identify promising approaches, common issues of focus across cities, partnership models, and how cities measure success. “I was drawn to this research project because the challenges facing women and girls are extremely complex and intersectional in nature. In other words, the most pressing challenges facing women and girls vary across age, race, class, and geography, and the solutions can rarely be developed and executed by a single department or agency within city hall."

A map of a holistic picture of the affordable housing landscape and needs in Rochester

Andrea Ringer & Adam Staveski,

MPP 2021

Andrea Ringer, HKS MPP 2021, and co-fellow Adam Staveski, HKS MPP 2021, worked to address the affordable housing gap in Rochester, New York–a key priority for Mayor Lovely Warren. Using available data and frameworks published by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, Andrea and Adam created a holistic picture of the affordable housing landscape and needs in Rochester. “Although learning on the job was difficult at first, I was continually supported by the city employees in Rochester and by the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative. Because of them, I was able to complete an incredibly complex data task in just six weeks,” Adam said. He found that the housing supply could be reworked to better accommodate the population in need of affordable housing by increasing the stock of 1-bedroom apartments. Their findings gave city officials valuable insights as they began to rewrite the city’s zoning code, and it was recently cited by Mayor Warren in her State of the City address.

Adam Hawksbee

Adam Hawksbee,

MPP 2019

While pursuing his graduate degree, Adam Hawksbee, HKS MPP 2019, worked closely with the city region of West Midlands on inclusive economic development, first during a summer internship, then during his Policy Analysis Exercise, and finally as a research fellow with the Initiative. Just months after being hired as the Policy Director for the city, he was thrust into supporting its response to COVID-19. “I moved from a strategic, forward-looking role to a day-to-day crisis management and emergency response role,” he said. “As we turn towards recovery and reimagining what the region looks like, I’ve been able to bring in what I learned at Bloomberg Harvard to push us to thinking ambitiously and imaginatively about what comes next.”

Adam Hawksbee

Adam Hawksbee,

MPP 2019

While pursuing his graduate degree, Adam Hawksbee, HKS MPP 2019, worked closely with the city region of West Midlands on inclusive economic development, first during a summer internship, then during his Policy Analysis Exercise, and finally as a research fellow with the Initiative. Just months after being hired as the Policy Director for the city, he was thrust into supporting its response to COVID-19. “I moved from a strategic, forward-looking role to a day-to-day crisis management and emergency response role,” he said. “As we turn towards recovery and reimagining what the region looks like, I’ve been able to bring in what I learned at Bloomberg Harvard to push us to thinking ambitiously and imaginatively about what comes next.”

Allison O’Shea

Allison O’Shea,

MBA 2021

Allison O’Shea, HBS MBA 2021, is working on research on city innovations to advance the status of women and girls. Her work aims to identify promising approaches, common issues of focus across cities, partnership models, and how cities measure success. “I was drawn to this research project because the challenges facing women and girls are extremely complex and intersectional in nature. In other words, the most pressing challenges facing women and girls vary across age, race, class, and geography, and the solutions can rarely be developed and executed by a single department or agency within city hall."

A map of a holistic picture of the affordable housing landscape and needs in Rochester

Andrea Ringer & Adam Staveski,

MPP 2021

Andrea Ringer, HKS MPP 2021, and co-fellow Adam Staveski, HKS MPP 2021, worked to address the affordable housing gap in Rochester, New York–a key priority for Mayor Lovely Warren. Using available data and frameworks published by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, Andrea and Adam created a holistic picture of the affordable housing landscape and needs in Rochester. “Although learning on the job was difficult at first, I was continually supported by the city employees in Rochester and by the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative. Because of them, I was able to complete an incredibly complex data task in just six weeks,” Adam said. He found that the housing supply could be reworked to better accommodate the population in need of affordable housing by increasing the stock of 1-bedroom apartments. Their findings gave city officials valuable insights as they began to rewrite the city’s zoning code, and it was recently cited by Mayor Warren in her State of the City address.

A crowd gathers for peaceful protest held in Oklahoma City

Andrew Loh,

MPP 2022, MBA 2022

Andrew Loh, HKS MPP 2022 and Stanford Graduate School of Business MBA 2022, worked with the Oklahoma City Mayor’s Office to analyze the impacts of COVID-19 in the city and strengthen civilian oversight of the police force. Joining a special task force to address these connected issues, Andrew conducted a comparative analysis of responses from other US cities in order to support employing a mask mandate. Andrew’s team also examined a variety of police oversight systems, and he presented to Mayor David Holt the legal and policy reforms that would be necessary to make civilian oversight of the police department more effective. His proposal serves as a key resource as policymakers take up police reform in Oklahoma City.

Mock website of a mayor's dashboard

Lauren Lombardo,

MPP 2021

Lauren Lombardo, HKS MPP 2021, worked closely with the mayor’s office in the city of Lincoln, Nebraska, to improve the city’s use of data and performance evaluation in policymaking. Lauren found that the city’s existing system, LNKStat, was outdated and had been abandoned by the intended users. After 20 interviews with stakeholders, Lauren developed a new metrics toolkit to be used alongside policymaking that will provide a guide for identifying key performance indicators and monitoring metrics during policy development. Her solution ensures a flexible system that can adapt more readily than static metrics. In addition, Lauren scoped and tested a data dashboard for city officials that would make data more accessible to the public and promote data-driven governance. Lauren said of her experience, “During a time of pandemic and social unrest, my summer fellowship with Lincoln came with unexpected challenges and unanticipated rewards. I learned the importance of making data accessible and flexible and saw first-hand how to impact organizational change within governing institutions.”

Nneka Edwards-Jackson

Nneka Edwards-Jackson,

MPK 2022

As a COVID-19 Response and Recovery fellow, Dr. Edwards-Jackson, Harvard Chan MPH 2020, who is a pediatrician by training, is developing community-based solutions at the intersection of public safety and mental health. Her analysis of peer city approaches and policy recommendations will inform the overall strategy of the new community-based public safety task force, formed in the wake of the Black Lives Matter and Indigenous Lives Matter movements. Edwards-Jackson’s project is a continuation of the city’s work within the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative’s Collaboration Track on community-driven mental health and addiction strategy.

Mockups of a waste management app

Oluwatosin Alliyu,

MDE 2021

Oluwatosin Alliyu, HGSD MDE 2021, spent the summer working with the public and private sector stakeholders of Accra’s waste management system in order to develop a data strategy to make Accra the cleanest city in Africa. Oluwatosin conducted research on data strategy and waste management, as well as the intricacies of public-private partnership in Accra, mapping the relevant stakeholders in order to uncover areas for improvement. Oluwatosin developed three prototypes and an implementation guide in order to address issues with cross-sector collaboration, data collection, and service delivery to remote citizens. On her Harvard faculty and client support system, Oluwatosin said, “The support of my two Harvard faculty advisers and feedback from stakeholders in Accra were instrumental in the development of both the prototypes and implementation guide. While the keen guidance from my Harvard faculty advisers provided much needed insights and encouragement when I felt stuck, the feedback and continued engagement with those in Accra kept me grounded.”

Protest in Chicago in the wake of the murder of George Floyd

Zoe Bulger,

MPP 2021

Zoe Bulger, HKS MPP 2021, started her fellowship in the Chicago Mayor’s Office of Equity and Racial Justice days after protests had erupted across the city in response to the murder of George Floyd and legacy of police brutality, state violence, and racism. “While my work for the summer was focused broadly on racial equity in response to COVID-19, it was clear that Chicago needed a way forward through the trauma caused by systemic racism and the pandemic–it needed to heal,” she said. Working closely with Chicago’s Chief Equity Officer, Zoe engaged a range of stakeholders to explore strategies for healing and identify work already underway in the city. She also examined cases of reconciliation in other cities in the US and abroad. At the end of the fellowship, she submitted a proposal for how Chicago can launch a city-wide healing journey and drive transformation for racial equity.

Students in the News

Student Fellowship FAQs

Participating Cities and Projects

Q: Where can I see the list of participating cities and projects?

A: https://www.cityleadership.harvard.edu/summer-fellowships

Q: How are participating cities selected?

A: We select from cities that are part of our current cohort or alumni cohorts.

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Application Key Dates and Eligibility

Q: When is the application period and deadline?  

A: The application will go live on January 16th and close on January 30th.

Q: Is the fellowship open to students graduating in May 2023?

A: Yes. The fellowship is open to graduate and professional school students including those in the class of 2023.

Q: May international students apply?

A: Most international students can apply, but you may need to check with the International Office here to discuss your specific visa requirements. Note: Harvard University, not the city, will be your employer and Harvard will pay you for the fellowship.

Q: May undergraduates apply?

A: The summer fellowship is only open to graduate students.  Bloomberg Harvard Undergraduate student opportunities are available in partnership with the Institute of Politics Directors Internship. Additionally, please check our Student Opportunities page for undergraduate engagement options.

Q: What schools do successful applicants commonly attend at Harvard?

A: We love to see a diversity in programs and schools represented. Cities are often looking for a different perspective. Given the nature of the projects to date, most of our applicants are from HKS, HSPH, HBS, HGSE, and GSD.

Q: Have any past fellows been selected without prior government experience?

A: Yes! We accept fellows with all types of backgrounds - public, private, and non-profit.

Selection and Placement Process

Q: What is the matching process for the fellowship? 

A: After the application window has closed, we will review all candidate applications and select the top candidates for first-round interviews in early February through mid-February. Once we have determined the top candidates for each city, the cities will conduct round two interviews with finalists and provide their feedback to us. We will then compare the cities’ priority candidates against the students’ ranking. In instances where there is not an immediate match, we will revert to the candidate pool and conduct the search and match procedure until all positions are filled.

Q: How does city placement/choice work?

A: In the application, you will be asked to rank your top three choices and make a case for projects associated with your rankings. The interview and review team will evaluate your application and, when possible, do our best to match you to one of your top three choices.

Integration with Host City Team

Q: What is the format and structure of the fellowship?

A:  The fellowship is designed to be a fully immersive, in-person experience. Fellowships will be in-person, in the fellowship city for summer 2023.

Q: How integrated are fellows with their government teams and operations?

A: We ask cities to integrate fellows with their teams as much as possible. City supervisors are asked to include the fellow in all operations connected to the project.

Q: Will I need any special hardware or software for the work?

A: No special hardware or software is needed to complete a fellowship. However, each fellowship city may have unique security and confidentiality requirements which would be addressed when onboarding the fellow. 

Fellowship Support

Q: Is there a stipend?  

A: Yes, Bloomberg Harvard provides a stipend of $8500 for the 10-week fellowship and pays for one, single-purchase, round-trip ticket to the fellowship city.

Q: If selected, will housing be provided in the fellowship city?

A: The fellow is responsible for securing their own housing.  Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative does not provide funds in excess of the $8500 stipend and single purchase round-trip ticket. In previous years, some cities have provided guidance to help fellows secure housing during their 10-week placement. 

Q: What support do fellows receive?

A: Bloomberg Harvard fellows are required to attend a pre-fellowship orientation and ongoing professional development workshops designed and scheduled prior to departing to their city and throughout the 10-week fellowship. The workshops sharpen skillsets, fill knowledge gaps, and provide guidance connected to executing final deliverables. Examples of previous professional development workshops include sessions such as “Stakeholder Engagement”, “Survey Design” and “Communications Strategies” with faculty and Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative staff.

Q: Do I choose my own faculty advisor?  

A: We will assign you a faculty advisor as well as an Initiative staff “champion” to serve as your advocate within our program.