J-PAL Africa

  • Accra
  • J-PAL Africa
Job Description:

  • J-PAL Africa is seeking a Senior Policy Associate to support its mission of promoting evidence-based policymaking. The Senior Policy Associate will support efforts to implement evidence-based interventions and generate opportunities for policy-relevant research around girls education and empowerment. We are looking for entrepreneurial thinkers with an eye for opportunity, a dedication to quality, an interest in girls education and empowerment policy and research, and a passion for helping people.

    The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) is a global network of academics who specializes in conducting randomized evaluations of social policies/programmes to generate scientific evidence about what works in the fight against poverty. J-PAL’s policy group analyses and disseminates research results and builds partnerships with policymakers to ensure that policy is informed by scientific evidence, and effective programmes are scaled up.

    The J-PAL Africa team provides supportive management structures and offers flexibility for accelerated growth by supporting proactivity and encouraging top performers to expand and develop their portfolio.

    Responsibilities include:

    • Project development: Scope potential opportunities and partnerships for evidence use and evidence generation, through desk research, event attendance, targeted outreach, and scoping trips. Cultivate and support existing relationships with key partners and regularly engage with them to identify needs and opportunities for collaboration. Where relevant, support matchmaking between government officials and researchers in our network to measure the impact of innovations using randomized evaluations.
    • Project Implementation: Plan and coordinate, and eventually directly manage policy projects and processes. Provide technical assistance to governments, in partnership with affiliated researchers where necessary, to support the development of evidence-informed policies and programmes in the relevant sector of expertise. This will involve codifying evidence, supporting local adaptation through the design and implementation of data collection exercises and co-designing interventions with the government. A critical element will also be convening and coordinating stakeholders, including policy makers, affiliates, implementing partners, external contractors and team members for successful project implementation.
    • Topic expertise: Maintain expertise on evidence and policy priorities in relevant subject areas and critically engage with existing evidence to identify replicable interventions and policy-relevant research questions. Codify and disseminate evidence on interventions that might address the challenges around girls’ education and assess applicability to new contexts.
    • Events and communications: Support content generation on girls’ education evidence and policy activities in both French and English for various media platforms (social media, blog posts, third party publications etc) and support with drafting of donor reports. Prepare presentations and workshops for internal and external events and trainings, working with the Operations team to coordinate the logistics and planning.

    Requirements:

    • A Master’s Degree in Public Policy, Economics, or another similar social science including courses in econometrics/statistics, microeconomics, and development economics.
    • A minimum of two years of relevant work experience.
    • Ability to create and cultivate relationships with external stakeholders, such as researchers or policymakers.
    • Proven experience managing and influencing complex decision-making processes.
    • An entrepreneurial mindset and demonstrated ability to identify new, high-value opportunities and mobilize teams to collaborate on new project creation.
    • Advanced writing and oral presentation skills in English and French, particularly the ability to communicate technical research to policymakers in a non-technical manner.
    • Demonstrated ability to build cross-organizational partnerships and/or identify and develop new projects.
    • Strong skills in Excel, Word, and Powerpoint.

    Highly advantageous:

    • Demonstrated interest and/or experience in girls education and empowerment policy or programming, particularly on issues related to school access, early marriage or pregnancy, female labor transition and gender-based violence.
    • Demonstrated ability to read and analyse rigorous quantitative research, including randomized evaluations, as well as interpreting and sharing policy lessons from randomized evaluations.
    • Experience working within a government-embedded policy team/unit, or in policy advisory and design.
    • Experience working in Africa.
  • Aptitude Tests

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