Position Description

Sr. Research and Evaluation Specialist - Washington DC
Location United States
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Position Title:            Senior Research and Evaluation Specialist

Status:                        Regular, Full Time

Location:                    Washington D.C.

Classification:           Exempt (Not Eligible for Overtime Pay)

Job Summary: The Senior Research and Evaluation Specialist (Senior Specialist) is an experienced professional who (a) will provide technical support to our global advocacy efforts; (b) will do technical advocacy on land rights; (c) will lead or support global, regional, national and local-level efforts to gather, analyze or disseminate sex-disaggregated primary data on land rights; and, (d) will lead or support the design and implementation of gender-sensitive and nuanced research, monitoring and evaluation activities to expand knowledge and test innovative approaches for strengthening the land rights of people who are in vulnerable positions.      

Reporting and relationships: The Senior Specialist reports to the Senior Director of Research and Evaluation.

Availability: The Senior Specialist will be expected to work a standard workweek of 40 hours plus additional hours as necessary to get the job done. This position requires substantial international travel, between 40 and 100 days per year. Evenings and weekends will be required at times.

Essential Job Functions: The Senior Specialist will be responsible for supporting Landesa’s mission, strategic objectives, its advocacy, and its programs by carrying out a wide range of technical and policy advocacy, research, monitoring and evaluation activities such as:

  • Providing technical support to our incipient global advocacy program;

  • Working closely with Landesa staff as well as partners at universities, research institutions, development agencies, government offices, NGOs and international initiatives who create or use land-related evidence for advocacy, policy or program design;

  • Providing technical and strategic support to global, regional, national or local initiatives to generate and disseminate primary, sex-disaggregated data on land rights;

  • Producing clear, compelling, and methodologically robust reports, journal articles, policy briefs, slide presentations, and other ways of making research, monitoring, and evaluation results available and accessible to Landesa audiences;

  • Presenting research, monitoring and evaluation findings and recommendations to key target audiences, including policy makers, rural communities, civil society, researchers, and funders;

  • Representing Landesa at conferences and policy, advocacy, and research workshops;

  • Supporting efforts to build Landesa’s and its partners’ capacity to create and use land-related, gender-sensitive evidence;

  • Helping identify knowledge gaps and ways to address them;

  • Designing and carrying out gender-responsive formative field-research using techniques such as participatory rural appraisal, field assessments, community mappings, key informant interviews, focus group exercises, and stakeholder analysis;

  • Designing and implementing land-related, gender-responsive research, monitoring, and evaluation strategies that combine rigorous quantitative and qualitative approaches;

  • Designing, testing and implementing land-related, gender-sensitive research, monitoring, and evaluation tools;

  • Writing and reviewing research, monitoring or evaluation proposals;

  • Leading and managing research, monitoring or evaluation project work;

  • Preparing terms of reference, supporting, and supervising research, monitoring, or evaluation partners;

  • Training data gatherers and supervising fieldwork activities; and.

  • Designing databases, supervising data entry and data cleaning activities, analyzing data using software such as Stata and NVivo.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Passion for work that seeks to alleviate poverty and foster social justice;
  • Strong conceptual and analytical skills;
  • Ability and commitment to apply a gender-sensitive approach in his or her work;
  • Experience designing and implementing gender-responsive rigorous research with a focus on vulnerable populations in developing countries;
  • A strong foundation in statistical methods and analysis of quantitative data as well as experience with quantitative software packages (Stata preferred);
  • A foundation in qualitative research methods and analysis;
  • Experience using evidence for advocacy;
  • Superior ability to communicate well in writing, orally, and non-verbally. This includes an ability to discern the appropriate type, frequency, tenor, and level of communication required for any given objective, circumstances, and audience.
  • Ability to collaborate and support a range of stakeholders from different cultures and positions, including Landesa staff from all its offices, donors, government officials, civil society organizations, researchers, contractors, vendors and services suppliers;
  • Ability to work effectively as both a team member and a team leader and move easily between the two roles;
  • Self-motivated and able to set and meet goals;
  • Ability and flexibility to work simultaneously on multiple projects; and,
  • Working knowledge of budgets and financials.

Education and Professional Experience:

  • Graduate degree in the social sciences: Economics, Political Science, Sociology, Geography, Anthropology, Development Studies, or closely related field; and,
  • At least 10 years of progressively responsible experience in performing most or all of the duties described above.

Work Environment and Working Conditions for Travelers to Developing Countries: While performing the duties of this job, the employee may be exposed to working conditions and hazards which are prevalent for the location and/or country of assignment. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.  Work is primarily performed indoors with some potential for exposure to safety and health hazards related to electronics work. The employee may be required to travel overseas and domestically. When traveling in a developing country, the employee may be exposed to: Physical Hazards (illnesses, noise, extreme temperatures, wet or humid climates, etc.), Road Hazards (unfinished/dirt roads, potholes, traffic-related accidents, etc.), and Atmospheric Conditions (odors, dust, fumes, smog, etc.).

Additional Comments:  The above job description is not intended as, nor should it be construed as, exhaustive of all responsibilities, skills, efforts, or working conditions associated with this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made in appropriate circumstances to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this job.