IPA-Zambia seeks a motivated field research coordinator to work with UC Berkeley, UC Santa Barbara and University of Zambia researchers on a USAID-funded project in Zambia. The appointment is for one year with the possibility of extension. 

Project Description

The project aims to test whether a simple, low-cost planning intervention helps farming households save more of their harvest for the lean season later in the year. Through a randomized controlled trial, households will be selected to participate in the planning intervention and follow-up surveys to measure the intervention’s impact on household consumption levels, child health and development indicators, and farm investment and output. The project is funded by USAID’s Development Innovation Ventures and the UC Davis Feed the Future Innovation Lab Markets, Risk and Resilience Program. It has received prior funding from the International Growth Center, National Science Foundation and the Weiss Family Foundation.

The Research Coordinator will oversee and coordinate the field research activities in Eastern Province, Zambia. In coordination with the project team, this person will manage a team of local survey enumerators and project staff; support project roll-out, survey administration and data collection as well as the adaptation and scaling up of the intervention to other parts of Zambia. The Research Coordinator will be supported by a Research Assistant who will assist with day-to-day coordination of project activities. They will interact with local policy partners within Zambian government ministries, agricultural extension training organizations, local NGOs providing services to farming households, the USAID Mission in Zambia, and beyond. This position is based in Lusaka, Zambia with frequent travel to Eastern Province project sites.

This is a challenging opportunity for an early-career professional who is passionate about global development and social science research; has a strong desire to expand and deepen skills in project planning and policy partnership development; and can effectively support project scale-up in a dynamic context.

  • Hire, train, and manage a team of local survey enumerators and other project staff, including at least one Research Assistant;
  • Interact with policy partners including the Zambian government, NGOs, other parties involved in service provision for farming households, USAID Mission in Zambia;
  • Support adapting and scaling the intervention in different settings effectively;
  • Manage project workflows and timelines;
  • Manage all aspects of project implementation in Zambia;
  • Work closely with PIs and partners to track project progress and troubleshoot challenges that arise;
  • Liaise closely with partners to ensure smooth program roll-out;
  • Support the development of sampling plans and a field management plan for conducting surveys;
  • Ensure quality control for data collection and data management activities;
  • Conduct  data analysis and contribute to written project material.
  • Bachelor’s in Economics, Public Policy, Development Studies or related program;
  • Experience with research fieldwork;
  • Experience with project management;
  • Experience with data analysis using Stata or R;
  • Ability to work independently and manage complex and competing priorities;
  • Strong written and oral communication skills;
  • Must be willing to reside in Zambia;
  • Familiarity with randomized controlled trials preferred;
  • Experience living and working in developing countries preferred.
Application Instructions 

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Research job category, then select “Research Coordinator, Hungry Seasons”. Most applications require you to include two letters of recommendation, statement of purpose (cover letter), CV, and transcripts. 

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.