Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is a global research and policy nonprofit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. As its core business, 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. IPA has conducted hundreds of randomized evaluations across sectors, learning both whether programs work, and how they can work better.

The IPA Francophone West Africa (FWA) Country Team seeks a highly motivated Research and Policy Coordinator with outstanding project, data, and people management skills to support embedded evidence lab structures and research initiatives with a primary focus on Guinea-Bissau. The workstream priorities are:

  • Financial inclusion strategies and the role of national regulators
  • Socio-economic recovery efforts related to the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Impact evaluation and monitoring and evaluation learning exchanges with State bodies

IPA is collaborating with a Bissau-Guinean financial sector regulator, as well as other national government bodies and a development partner in country. Responding to demand, IPA is developing embedded evidence labs, putting a strong focus on equipping our partners to regularly use evidence to improve their decision-making, policies, and programs. The Lab will follow the methodologies developed by IPA’s Embedded Labs program, adapted to the local context and research needs. This position will coordinate these activities, as well as IPA’s broader evidence initiatives in Guinea-Bissau. The position holder will report directly to the IPA Francophone West Africa Country Director.

Responsibilities 

The Coordinator will perform a variety of tasks related to leveraging existing data and developing new research projects to drive greater use of evidence. For example, the Coordinator may conduct activities including but not limited to:

  • Mapping the data needs of specific departments against the existing data available, complemented with an assessment of its quality and use
  • Assessing existing datasets and indicators according to criteria of relevance, objectivity, and reliability
  • Overseeing national consultants that will be embedded in two national entities
  • Identifying opportunities to run low cost “pilots” of new approaches to data collection and analysis to generate actionable information and analysis
  • Developing and executing “learning-by-doing” capacity building projects with relevant government staff
  • Developing opportunities to leverage administrative data to inform programs and decisions as well as data for research; connecting local and international researchers to pursue these openings
  • Producing policy briefs based on key insights generated from lab activities
  • Developing a policy-driven research agenda for the labs and facilitating the development of research projects to respond to the agenda
  • Facilitating events to disseminate lessons learned from implementation of lab activities
  • Working with the partners to apply analysis and learnings from the labs’ data and evidence to its decisions, policies, programs, and interventions, ensuring that the partners are using evidence in policymaking in a complete feedback loop

Broader Policy and Research Support

  • Support the country office team to prepare and deliver presentations, briefings and other content to current and potential future partners
  • Coordinate the research project development process across all phases: Project design, partnership agreements, budgeting and procurement, implementation, and dissemination
  • Monitor project implementation to ensure quality control, compliance, and adherence to the research specifications agreed upon, including supervision of teams
  • Support project relationships with local stakeholders, including government authorities, multilateral and bilateral partners, and private sector firms to facilitate the successful implementation of the research projects
  • Contribute to the delivery of high-quality policy and research outputs and activities, including internal and external communications on the progress and outcomes of the research projects
  • Ensure project deliverables, such as reports and financial statements, are submitted on time
  • Promote inter-project best practices and take a lead in sharing best practices with projects through formal and informal training opportunities at IPA FWA
  • Perform related duties as assigned by supervisor
Qualifications 
  • Master’s degree in Economics, social sciences, or a related field.
  • 4 – 7 years of work experience in research or relevant private or public sector roles
  • Experience interacting with partners, government officials and other key stakeholders
  • Excellent quantitative skills and ability to manage large data analysis projects
  • Excellent time management and organizations skills
  • Prior knowledge of financial inclusion and socio-economic recovery is a plus
  • Experience in the design and management of randomized controlled trials or microeconomic research is a plus
  • Experience working in the sub-region preferred
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English and Portuguese; French desirable

Must be able to work under pressure and meet deadlines, while maintaining a positive attitude and providing exemplary assistance to internal/external stakeholders

Application Instructions 

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Policy job category, then select “Research and Policy Coordinator, FWA”. Most applications require at minimum a statement of purpose (cover letter), CV and transcripts.

Note that you are able to submit your application before your references complete their recommendation letters; however, you must include their contact information before submitting your application. 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 830 evaluations in 52 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide. 

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.