IPA Côte d’Ivoire  is seeking a Senior Advisor in the Right-Fit Evidence Unit (Sr. Advisor, RFE) to collaborate closely with the Ministry of National Education (MENA) in Côte d’Ivoire to strengthen its capacity to use evidence to improve its programs and policies. IPA is working with MENA to set up an “Ed Lab” to enable government partners at both the national and district levels to use data and rigorous research to design, test, and scale evidence-based programs and policies to improve learning for students.

The Sr. Advisor will be embedded within the hosting unit and will lead all MEL related support for the Ed Lab, from co-creating MEL frameworks with key stakeholders, designing and conducting capacity building activities for MoE personnel through various formats (i.e. in-person, virtual engagements), to managing research activities (e.g. RCTs, pilots, and nimble experiments). 

We particularly encourage Ivorian nationals to apply, although the role is open to international applicants. We also encourage those with the following profiles to apply as these skills and interests are a particularly strong fit:

  • Management consultants with some international development experience who would be excited in a career shift to an entrepreneurial and impact-focused environment leveraging their skillset
  • M&E practitioners who are interested in broadening their scope and impact on the field by advising organizations on state-of-the-art M&E practices
  • Research professionals in international development who enjoy working closely with practitioners and are interested in broadening their scope to all the types of data and evidence that can inform decisions
  • Irrespective of their background, RFE staff tend to learn through their work, and this position is a great fit for anyone with a growth-oriented mindset.
Responsibilities 

Provide strategic and technical advisory expertise: target credible, actionable, and cost-effective advice on MEL systems to build a culture of evidence-based decision-making within MENA, including but not limited to the following examples: 

  • Map the data needs of various directorates within the Ministry against the existing data available, complemented with an assessment of its quality
  • Assess existing datasets and indicators according to criteria of relevance, objectivity, and reliability
  • Design prototyping and pilot exercises to answer key learning questions 
  • Identify opportunities to test low cost “nudges” to improve service delivery
  • Develop and execute opportunities to leverage administrative data for analysis to inform key MENA programs and decisions
  • Develop and execute “learning-by-doing” capacity building projects with MENA counterparts
  • Advise MENA directorates on developing and maintaining MEL plans
  • Provide guidance to MENA directorates’ ongoing monitoring activities, including by recommending implementation quality indicators and data sources

Project management: Support work planning and project management for the MEL technical assistance to ensure effective and timely implementation of our work

Stakeholder communication: Maintain strong communication and partnership with key stakeholders, including direct stakeholder management with leadership staff from partner organizations and MENA

Workshop design and implementation: Design and facilitate various kinds of external MEL- and research-related workshops, improving the capacity and ownership of government around long-term MEL and research practices

Professional deliverables: Own the preparation and presentation of various types of advisory and analytical deliverables, maintaining the highest standards of communication efficiency

Qualifications 
  • A Bachelor’s or Master´s degree in economics, public policy, international development, or related fields and; PhDs are also welcome.
  • 2-5 years of relevant work experience, including experience in M&E (public sector), organizational performance/R&D/operational research (private sector), or experience in management consulting/other professional services. Exceptions may be made for excellent candidates who do not meet this criterion. 
  • Superior analytical and conceptual thinking skills
  • Strong client-facing and presentation skills. Ability to present information in a structured and insightful way, both in writing and orally.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage relationships with partner organizations;
  • Self-starter, entrepreneurial mindset, versatility, and ability to learn at a fast pace.
  • Excellent project management and organizational skills; attention to detail;
  • Familiarity with statistics and data analysis (including strong command of Excel)
  • Willingness to travel within Côte d’Ivoire;
  • Capability to manage multiple tasks efficiently;
  • Full fluency in French and professional proficiency in English
  • Passion for making data-driven decisions a reality in the international development sector

Preferred Additional Qualifications 

  • Master’s degree or PhD in economics, public policy, social science, or a related field
  • Familiarity with the Education Sector
  • Experience working with government
  • Experience living and working in developing countries, particularly Côte d’Ivoire
  • Familiarity with the concepts surrounding the Theory of Change and the core tools of M&E (both quantitative and qualitative research methods)
  • Familiarity with Kobo, Open Data Kit, SurveyCTO, or similar survey software
  • Ability to use Stata, R or similar statistical software
  • Familiarity with randomized controlled trials
Application Instructions 

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Research job category, then select “Senior Advisor, Right-Fit Evidence Unit, Côte d’Ivoire”. Applications require you to include two letters of recommendation, statement of purpose (cover letter), CV, and transcripts. Note that you are able to submit your application without the recommendation letters. However, please be advised that we will be requiring them should you be invited for an interview.

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.