Innovations for Poverty Action’s Right-Fit Evidence Unit is seeking a passionate, driven and skilled (Senior) Associate to join our team advising partners on the effective use of data and evidence.

The (Senior) Associate will initially work as a learning partner for a Community of Practice focused on improving early childhood care and education (ECCE) services with play in East and Southern Africa. The (Senior) Associate will work alongside a Right-Fit Evidence Unit team, policy team members and IPA’s Education Director to support three ECD providers in the region as they engage in build-test-learn cycles to strengthen center-based ECCE services and to facilitate the sharing of learnings across the Community of Practice and beyond.

The preferred location for the position would be the IPA office in Kampala, Uganda with frequent travel to other countries in East and Southern Africa where the Community of Practice operates. However, basing the position in the IPA offices in Kigali, Rwanda or Lusaka, Zambia could be considered for the right candidate.

The (Senior) Associate will join a fantastic Right-Fit Evidence unit team in the Kampala office who are working on similar projects focused on promoting evidence-based learning through play and improving MEL systems within ECD settings. The (Senior) Associate will be working with the M&E Engagement Manager in New York and M&E Coordinator in Kampala, with additional oversight from the IPA’s Uganda country office management.

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.

Complementing this core business, the Right-Fit Evidence Unit at IPA is a new effort aimed at helping organizations build strong and tailored Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) practices, which balance the need for information on impact with operational data to support management decisions. In close collaboration with IPA’s sector programs and country office teams worldwide, the unit provides consulting and direct services to implementers, donors, and governments, with the goal of helping them figure out what reliable data and evidence to gather, how to do it in a cost- effective way, and how to make the promise of data-informed programmatic decisions a reality.


Specifically, with oversight from the M&E Engagement Manager or M&E Coordinator, depending on the position taken, the (Senior) Associate will:

  • Facilitate partners within the Community of Practice with diagnostics and needs assessment and formulate and test hypotheses about the gaps and needs within their current models
  • Facilitate partners to develop and/or strengthen develop theories of change (ToCs), identify and prioritize learning questions and develop detailed plans for Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) through workshops and working sessions
  • Train partner team members in how to collect, analyze and use high-quality M&E data.
  • Provide ongoing technical advice on the design of data collection methods, survey instruments, data management, analysis, and on how to integrate evidence use into management decisions and organizational routines.
  • Support the planning and oversight of independent data collection conducted by IPA to answer key cross-cutting questions within the CoP learning agenda not addressed by individual MEL activities
  • Facilitate quarterly learning workshops with the CoP, including supporting presenting partners with preparation, chairing the workshops and creating an open, inclusive and fun learning environment.
  • Work with IPA’s policy and comms teams to prepare learning materials to share with policy audiences and the wider sector
  • Bachelor’s degree in economics, public policy, social science, or a related field
  • 0-4 years of relevant work experience, including experience in MEL (public sector) or organizational performance (private sector) – at least 2 years for Senior Associate
  • Superior analytical, quantitative and conceptual thinking skills
  • Strong client facing and presentation skills, and ability to build relationships of trust with stakeholders at various levels.
  • Ability to present information in a structured and insightful way, both in writing and orally
  • Self-starter, entrepreneurial mindset, versatility and willingness to learn.
  • Experience working in developing countries
  • Strong proficiency in Excel for data management and analysis
  • Passion for making data-driven decision making a reality in the development sector.
  • Ability to use Stata, R or similar statistical software
  • Fluency in English

Preferred additional qualifications

  • Master’s degree in economics, public policy, social science, or a related field
  • Experience in management consulting or other professional services
  • Demonstrated ability to coach and train others in statistics, data analysis or MEL methodologies
  • Background in development programs relating to Early Childhood Development
  • Familiarity with the concepts surrounding the Theory of Change and the core tools of MEL (both quantitative and qualitative research methods)
  • Familiarity with SurveyCTO, Open Data Kit or similar survey software, SMS or Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology
Application Instructions 

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

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 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

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