IPA Sierra Leone is seeking a Policy Coordinator to help lead its provision of technical assistance for the scale up of the social incentives for child immunization (SICI) program in Sierra Leone. In addition, the Policy Coordinator may support capacity building efforts with the Ministry of Education and policy engagements connected to other research studies. This is an exciting opportunity to drive effective health and education policy in Sierra Leone, through evidence-based support to local and national policymakers. The Policy Coordinator central focus will be to work collaboratively across IPA and its external partners to drive the success of the immunization project’s path-to-scale, though they may also help to scope for possible embedded labs, and support proper governmental coordination on other IPA projects. The Policy Coordinator will lead the relationship with government partners and other key local stakeholders, coordinate activities led by other IPA teams, and help manage project scope, delivery, and finances. Given the dynamic nature of working with government stakeholders from national to community-levels, the Policy Coordinator will be highly skilled in adaptive management and negotiation, revising project activities and timelines to best support the immunization program scale-up. The Policy Coordinator will report to the IPA Sierra Leone Country Director with dotted line oversight from the Global Policy Team.

  • Manage IPA’s technical assistance for the SICI scale-up in Sierra Leone, which includes policy, monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL), activities;
  • Drive these multiple streams of work forward towards a common goal of evidence-based education policy in Sierra Leone, ensuring work streams are well-coordinated and timely, and that IPA delivers on our strategies, activities, and outputs;
  • Directly supervise a highly functioning team to conduct this technical assistance, paying particular attention to their professional growth;
  • Cultivate relationships with key local top-level decision-makers in the health sectors related to the SICI scale-up, and ensure the project has their buy-in;
  • Work together with the global policy and communications team to lead and/or participate in strategic events for policy purposes, including but not limited to summits, conferences, workshops, technical working groups, and round tables.
  • Support researchers and country management to participate; In collaboration with researchers and in support of the country director, represent IPA locally in policy conversations and at events;
  • Supporting project financial management in conjunction with the project’s budget holder and research team to ensure that the activities are carried out according to the agreed work plan and IPA’s financial protocols;
  • Support donor report writing
  • Master’s degree in economics, development, international relations, public administration, public policy or a closely related field and 4 or more years of relevant experience, including at least 3 years of experience working closely with large NGOs and national government officials in Sierra Leone; or a Bachelor’s degree in economics, development, international relations, public administration, public policy or a closely related field and 6 or more years of relevant experience. Exceptions may be made for excellent candidates who do not meet this criterion;
  • Expertise in public health (education a plus), preferably in policy or implementation of large programs; Knowledge of government policy making processes, systems for nationwide program implementation or development financing;
  • Ability to create concise and well-formed written policy communications as well as translating research design and output for non-experts, policymakers, and practitioners;
  • Experience organizing events, such as conferences, workshops or round table discussions;
  • Proven ability to multitask and successfully complete projects on tight deadlines with little supervision; Willingness to work hard, be self-motivated, and learn will be essential for doing well in this position;
  • Ability to supervise staff and manage projects independently.


  • A roll-up-your-sleeves and ‘get it done’ attitude: maintains focus, measures progress and outcomes, and ensures accountability
  • Great communicator: clearly and succinctly conveys information and ideas in a variety of situations, communicating in a focused and compelling way that drives others’ thoughts and actions
  • Entrepreneurial spirit: takes calculated risks, offers fresh ideas and approaches to create greater value, impact and differentiation
  • Positive approach: demonstrates a poised, credible, and confident demeanor that reassures others, commands respect, and conveys an image that is consistent with IPA’s core values even when faced with difficult situations
  • Quality orientation: accomplishes work by considering all areas involved, no matter how detailed, shows concern for all aspects of the job, accurately checks processes and tasks, and ensures high quality outputs
  • Data-driven leadership: is committed to the generation and use of data to inform policy design and tactical decision-making
  • Strategic influence: Creates and executes strategies that gain commitment to their own ideas and persuades key stakeholders to take actions that will advance shared interest and the achievement of IPA’s program goals
  • Cultivating networks and partnerships: initiates and maintains strategic relationships with stakeholders and potential partners inside and outside the organization who are willing and able to provide the information, ideas, expertise and/or influence needed to achieve program progress and success
  • Team collaboration: can work together with a diverse team to drive a central goal while also being able to handle individual work streams independently
Application Instructions 

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the APPROPRIATE CATEGORY job category, then select “Policy Coordinator”. Applications require you to include a statement of purpose (cover letter) and CV.

Given the volume of applications received, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview.

About IPA 

Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is a research and policy nonprofit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. IPA brings together researchers and decision-makers to design, rigorously evaluate, and refine these solutions and their applications, ensuring that the evidence created is used to improve the lives of the world’s poor. In recent decades, trillions of dollars have been spent on programs designed to reduce global poverty, but clear evidence on which programs succeed is rare, and when evidence does exist, decision-makers often do not know about it. IPA exists to bring together leading researchers and these decision-makers to ensure that the evidence we create leads to tangible impact on the world. Since its founding in 2002, IPA has worked with over 600 leading academics to conduct over 900 evaluations in 52 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide. 

IPA's Commitment to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) 

As an organization, IPA is dedicated to improving the lives of the world's most vulnerable populations through evidence and policy. We also recognize how important it is for our staff to reflect the diversity of the places where we work and the communities we work with. As such, IPA is committed to hiring from a diverse pool of candidates, from a range of backgrounds, beliefs, experiences, and perspectives. We know that this makes our work stronger and more responsive to the challenges faced by those we work with and for and we encourage people from historically underrepresented groups to apply. Click here to learn more about IPA’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Innovations for Poverty Action is an affirmative action equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other protected class. IPA will endeavor to make a reasonable accommodation to a qualified applicant with a disability unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the operation of our business. If you believe you require such assistance to complete this form or to participate in an interview, please contact us at jobs@poverty-action.org or via phone at 1-202-386-6200. The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of the work to be performed by the specified position. The statements are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all possible duties, tasks, and responsibilities. Management reserves the right to amend and change responsibilities to meet organizational needs as necessary. Please note that IPA will never request any form of payment from an applicant. Applicants are encouraged to confirm the information listed above with IPA prior to releasing any extensive personal information to the organization. Please direct questions to jobs@poverty-action.org.

** Please note that only qualified applicants will be contacted by the hiring manager.