The Program Manager is responsible for growing and strengthening the existing body of evidence on SME development and entrepreneurship, and increasing the policy impact of the Program. The role combines project development, fundraising, policy outreach, and communications, with a special focus on the SME sector. It reports directly to the Program Director and works collaboratively with researchers, country offices, and other teams across IPA. 

  • Manage the SME Program’s replications and scale up agenda, including all aspects related to the Path to Scale Award for High Potential Innovations in SME Development (review process, communications with applicants, grant agreements and contracts, and tracking project progress and finances).
  • Lead new project development efforts and partner engagement, in collaboration with Principal Investigators, the Program Director, and IPA’s Country Offices
  • Support the Program’s fundraising efforts, identifying funding opportunities, writing grants, budgeting, and cultivating donor relationships;
  • Manage external communications and policy outreach efforts, including conceptualizing and developing policy briefs and evidence reviews, planning and carrying out dissemination events, presenting results to practitioners and policymakers, and collaborating with other IPA staff to maintain the Program's online presence.
  • Coordinate research network engagement and working group meetings.
  • Manage donor reporting, writing narrative reports and coordinating with the Grants team on the development of financial reports
  • Support IPA Country Offices on project development, fundraising and policy outreach for SME projects
  • Review financial transactions and support budget review and financial oversight of the Program.
  • Organize and maintain up to date project and contact records on Salesforce.
  • Contribute to building systems that improve the efficiency and internal management of the Program
  • Ensure that the Program’s procedures are aligned with IPA’s general guidelines and policies by regularly communicating with the relevant departments and teams
  • Assist with the administration of SME Program projects as needed.
  • Master’s degree in economics, public policy, international development or related field
  • 5+ years relevant work experience in international development, with a focus on private sector development and SMEs
  • Training in microeconomics, development economics, econometrics and statistics
  • This position requires strong technical, management and communication skills.
  • Demonstrated project management skills, including budgeting, planning, and attention to operational detail.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage high-level relationships with partner organizations, donors and government officials
  • Demonstrated interest in the use of rigorous evidence for international development policy
  • Excellent writing and presentation skills (clear, precise, creative) for effectively communicating policy lessons from academic research papers to a broad audience of decisionmakers
  • Cultural sensitivity and demonstrated ability to work successfully with diverse constituencies
  • Experience in the design and management of randomized controlled trials and other program evaluation methods preferred. Experience conducting field work in developing countries is a plus
  • Strong attention to detail and ability to prioritize and manage multiple assignments simultaneously with minimal supervision
  • Flexibility, self-motivation, and ability to work independently and as part of a team in a fast-paced, dynamic environment.
  • Proficiency in English required. Fluency in Spanish is a plus.
  • Strong analytical skills, knowledge of STATA is a plus
  • Experience with IPA and/or partner organizations is a plus
  • Willingness to travel internationally up to 20% of time required
Application Instructions 

To apply click here.

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 575 leading academics to conduct over 650 evaluations in 51 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide. 


Innovations for Poverty Action is an EO Employer-MF/Veteran/Disability. 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 or via phone at 1-203-772-2216. Disclaimer: 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

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