Innovations for Poverty Action Côte d’Ivoire seeks a Senior Policy Associate (SPA) to support the BCPE (Bureau de Coordination des Programmes d’Emploi) which supervises several programs related to youth employment and is embodied in the Ivorian Ministry of “Promotion de la Jeunesse, de l’Emploi des Jeunes et du Service Civique”.  The SPA will work for approximately a year from the BCPE office to provide ongoing capacity building and promote evidence-based decision-making. This position offers an excellent opportunity to have significant responsibility, disseminate cutting-edge development research and undertake policy outreach and training.


The SPA will report to IPA Research Manager/Country Representative based in Côte d’Ivoire and will work closely with the research team (PIs), Pr. Patrick Premand from the World Bank and Pr. Bruno Crepon, JPAL affiliate and ENSAE. The SPA will also receive punctual input from J-PAL Europe and Global.


Youth employment and skills development is a key concern for Côte d’Ivoire in its race to achieve emergence by 2030. Over the last 5 years, the Government of Côte d’Ivoire, the World Bank and independent researchers have maintained a close partnership, aimed at developing innovative programs to tackle youth unemployment, and building rigorous evidence to improve them. Two evaluations have been conducted so far, and a third one launched recently. The challenge is now to ensure the effective translation of this evidence into policy decisions. The government partner has been particularly eager to build the evaluations results into their decision-making process. This project aims at providing technical assistance and capacity-building by fostering the discussion of specific potential policy actions, optimizing the use of the extensive data collected through the evaluations and the government administrative data, and conducting a cost-effectiveness comparison of similar programs implemented in the region. 


The Senior Policy Associate will work closely with the BCPE team and will be responsible for mainly 3 types of activities to build policymakers’ capacity to become more effective producers and consumers of evidence from impact evaluations.

  • Usage of Administrative data: connect and enhance BCPE’s administrative datasets to contribute to the timely collection and reporting of actionable indicators (outputs, outcomes, costs, performance indicators, etc.):
    • Provide ongoing capacity-building to BCPE M&E officersProvide technical assistance for in-house data collection from designing survey to analyzing the data accurately
    • Connect administrative datasets with datasets collected through impact evaluation survey and maximize the usage of data to monitor ongoing programs and take appropriate action
    • Collect and analyze data on program costs
  • Knowledge-sharing across government agencies:
    • Organize workshops to discuss results from monitoring and evaluation studies, and think about practical next steps for their programs
    • Support the delivery of high-quality PowerPoint presentations, policy brief, technical notes and other working documents to facilitate ongoing monitoring and the use of data in decision-making for non-technical policy and practitioner audiences
    • Encourage the organization of meetings to ensure that experience is shared and mutualized with other departments in their ministry as well as counterparts in line ministries
  • Policy outreach: facilitate the use and dissemination of broader evidence than just the studies conducted in Côte d’Ivoire and engage in the broader discussion about how other global evidence informs policy lessons:
    • Use existing international evidence on youth employment programs that is relevant given the labor-market context in Cote d’Ivoire to enrich the interpretation of the studies conducted in CI
    • Provide some benchmarking on program effectiveness and identify other potential programs with potential for Cote d’Ivoire that could be considered in future programming
    • Work with policymakers to think about how the global evidence can be adopted in Côte d’ Ivoire to ensure the programme remains effective as it scales
    • Develop and maintain relationships with targeted stakeholders and policymakers in different department and ministries
    • Build and maintain knowledge on existing program and evidence in youth employment programs in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa and other relevant regions.
  • Master degree with strong academic record in public policy, public management, economics, or a related field.
  • A minimum 3-4 years of relevant experience, with exposure to program evaluations and public institutions; experience working with data and monitoring systems.
  • Demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships with a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Familiarity with academic papers and ability to understand and synthetize existing global evidence in clear, concise, and powerful language, that is relevant to the Ivorian context.
  • Proven ability to deliver high quality end products, and meet deadlines. 
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including demonstrated ability to build the buy-in and capacity of others, particularly in the government.
  • Attention to detail, excellent organizational skills, and strong communication skills.
  • Cultural sensitivity and demonstrated ability to work successfully with diverse constituencies required
  • Language skills: High-level of proficiency (fluent or native) in French and Proficiency in English a plus.
  • Good computer skills, including Microsoft Excel, Word, Stata and email.
  • Experience in Côte d’Ivoire is strongly preferred, and knowledge of youth employment programs would be an asset.
  • Knowledge of Ivorian Ministry of « Promotion de la Jeunesse, de l’Emploi des Jeunes et du Service Civique”” or other government structures is preferred.
Application Instructions 

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. fter completing a brief registration, choose the Policy job category, then select “Senior Policy Associate, Youth Employment”.  Applications require a 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 non-profit 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 400 leading academics to conduct over 600 evaluations in 51 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide. 


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