Dexis Consulting Group is recruiting for a Senior Research Advisor that will be embedded within USAID’s Office of Education (ED) within the Bureau for Education, Environment, and Economic Growth (E3). The position will sit on the Office’s Education in Crisis and Conflict (EiCC) team and be supervised by the Education in Crisis and Conflict Team Lead and work collaboratively with the Senior Monitoring and Evaluation advisors on the Evidence Team. S/He will provide leadership, technical guidance and support for EiCC evaluation and knowledge activities, support USAID Missions with technical assistance for monitoring and internal evaluation activities, provide inputs and technical guidance on external evaluations overseen by the evidence team, and engage with USAID partners, including implementing and donor partners, to advance the quality of evaluation and knowledge activities in USAID EiCC activities and programs.
The USAID Office of Education is responsible for advancing the goals of the USAID Education Strategy; Improved reading skills for 100 million children in primary grades; Improved ability of tertiary and workforce development programs to generate workforce skills relevant to a country’s development goals; and Increased equitable access to education in crisis and conflict environments for 15 million learners.
The Senior Advisor will be a member of the EiCC team, responsible for providing technical assistance and support to EiCC programs’ research, complexity aware monitoring and risk assessments related to education in crisis and conflict. The Senior Advisor will develop and roll-out strategies, guidance and tools for conflict-sensitive and complexity-aware research, monitoring, and assessments of USAID EiCC activities and the USAID EiCC portfolio globally. The Senior Advisor will lead the EiCC Team’s oversight of activity and portfolio performance monitoring plans; support the analysis of proposed indicators and the development of new ones. The Senior Advisor will further existing approaches to monitoring, such as Developmental Evaluation, and Rapid Feedback, develop innovative approaches for USAID activity monitoring progress and contribute to the advancement of USAID’s EiCC research and learning agenda. The Senior Advisor will also work closely with representatives from the Evidence Team to assist with the technical review of research design and evaluation methodology to ensure that work aligns with Agency Guidance and Office of Education Global Initiatives.
A key aspect of this role will include systematically integrating conflict sensitivity into USAID activities, and building partnerships to leverage technical expertise and evidence for improved results. The Senior Advisor will act as Activity Manager for assessments, research, monitoring and evaluation under the ECCN contract, providing technical leadership, project management, and quality control. In addition, the Senior Advisor will coordinate with the Evidence team within the USAID Office of Education, USAID Mission teams, and USAID Bureau teams to leverage and create synergies between the research activities implemented through various other contracts managed out of the Education Office or other USAID offices.
Technical Support to Programs, Projects, and Activities
- Contribute to the development of content for and delivery of demand-based professional development opportunities to USAID staff and/or implementing partners through in-person training courses, webinars, and online short courses, with a particular focus on conflict assessment, risk assessment, and conflict sensitivity.
- Assist in programmatic design as needed from the technical EiCC team.
- Provide technical expertise through training, tool development and technical assistance to USAID education programs on conflict sensitivity, risk-informed programming, complexity-aware monitoring and promoting peace through education.
- Provide significant technical support (i.e. backstop) to missions through the Regional Bureaus on EiCC-related research, complexity-aware monitoring and risk assessments.
- Lead and contribute to the design, management and technical oversight of conflict and situational analyses, needs assessments, education and risk assessments and research with USAID’s education in crisis and conflict portfolio.
Education Policy, Portfolio Management, and Reporting
- Develop approaches to increase the use of research and evidence to strengthen the programmatic impact of USAID EiCC activities; including collaboration with Knowledge Management (KM).
- Serve as activity manager for specific Education in Crisis and Conflict Network (ECCN) work streams related to situational analyses, needs assessments and research.
- Contribute to the EiCC team’s policy work, including conducting background research on policy issues, drafting recommendations for internal and external audiences and representation.
- Ensure program implementation is carried out following agency guidelines and review project documents.
- Develop innovative and effective approaches to assessment, monitoring, and research in crisis and conflict settings.
- Oversee and participate in a range of desk/literature reviews, in-country assessments and project/activity evaluations for USAID solicitations.
- Collaborate with the E3/ED Evidence Team to collect and analyze data from USAID education activities in crisis and conflict.
- In consultation with others, especially the Evidence team, develop and help execute USAID’s learning agenda for effective approaches to crisis and conflict education programming.
Knowledge Management, Communication, and External Engagement
- Work together with EiCC Team colleagues, the Evidence Team, Office KM Specialist, implementing partners and other partners to develop, compile and promote knowledge products related to EiCC programs, particularly tools and resources related to the measurement of conflict-sensitive programming, conflict/risk assessment, and complexity-aware monitoring.
- Establish and foster networks of partners dedicated to sharing evidence and collaborating on cross-sector project development, both for collaboration and peer learning.
- Coordinate internally and externally to advance strategic research and learning partnerships in EiCC with a range of relevant humanitarian institutions, academic institutions, the USG Interagency, bilateral and multilateral development agencies, foundations, the private sector, researchers and implementing partners.
- Represent USAID at international conferences and deliver public presentations on a variety of topics related to access to education for learners living in crisis and conflict-affected environments.
- Collaborate closely with the E3/ED Engagement Team on matters pertaining to external partnerships.
- Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit;
Contribute to the efficient functioning and management of the Education in Crisis and Conflict
- Ph.D. preferred; minimum Master’s degree in International Education, Education Policy, Conflict Studies or other related field required.
Minimum of 8 years of professional experience required, predominantly in crisis- and conflict-affected environments. Minimum of 5 years of experience designing and conducting evaluations, assessments, and research in the international education sector required, with a strong preference for experience with quantitative, qualitative and applied research methods, preferably in crisis- and conflict-affected environments.
- Knowledge of statistics (with an emphasis on sample design, power calculations, and data analysis), statistical software packages and experience with systematic review methodologies highly preferred
- Demonstrated skills and experience in complex program monitoring
- Demonstrated commitment to producing outstanding work as a member of a growing, fast moving and hard-working team
- Ability to work independently, resourcefully and to take initiative, with flexibility to changing priorities and an eagerness to learn under pressure; ability to prioritize tasks
- Robust organizational, analytical and troubleshooting skills; detail-oriented
- Demonstrated commitment to USAID’s mission
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills; able to successfully and effectively liaise with people within and across departments in a diverse and inclusive environment; confident communicator with proven negotiation skills; exceptional writing and editing skill
- Advanced skills in MS Word, Excel, Google Apps and other products and applications
Interested applicants may send applications and or inquiries directly to the Program Manager, Katy Hewitt at firstname.lastname@example.org.