Director for Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, Learning and Adapting (MERLA), upcoming USAID-funded health opportunity in Senegal

  • Mid-level
  • Posted on 10 June 2020

Job Description

RTI International is an independent non-profit research firm in the United States. We help developing countries and communities address complex problems in education, health, food security, governance, and economic development. Our programs emphasize sustainability, bringing partners in government together with foundations, donor organizations, the private sector, and academic institutions.

Project Summary:
RTI International’s Global Health Division is currently accepting applications for a MERLA Director for an anticipated USAID-funded health systems project in Senegal. RTI anticipates the opportunity will focus on achieving sustainable improvement and effective utilization of the Senegalese healthcare system by addressing key causes of maternal and child morbidity and mortality, protecting communities from infectious diseases, and strengthening health systems.

Job Summary:
The MERLA Director will have primary responsibility for the design, management, and implementation of systems to ensure quality monitoring and reporting of the project’s Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Plan. They will be responsible for the development and oversight of the project’s learning agenda and research undertaken by the project. They will provide primary support to the team for timely, complete, and quality reporting of all monitoring, evaluation, and research data from project activities. The MERLA Director will be based in Dakar and local travel will be required. Position is contingent upon award and funding.


  • Provides oversight of MERLA efforts and ensures they are informed by and feed into program decisions.
  • Leads the development, implementation, refinement, and harmonization of project’s MERLA system; develops and operationalizes indicators, set targets, and monitors progress.
  • Oversees all project activities to capture data on indicators and to identify best practices and lessons learned as required by USAID.
  • Works with technical staff to oversee tools for data collection, storage, and analysis, train staff and partners on MERLA system operations, collection methods, and tools.
  • Designs needs-based operations research studies and protocols to generate evidence for which innovations work, which do not work, and why.
  • Ensures methodological rigor of research undertaken.

  • A Master’s degree in political science, sociology, statistics, international development, or in a relevant field and 10 years or a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field with 12 years’ experience.
  • Minimum of 7 years of experience with M&E systems, of which at least 3 years must be relevant to health sector in Senegal.
  • Solid experience and familiarity with impact evaluations, quantitative and qualitative research methods, surveillance surveys, research methodologies, data analysis, sampling techniques and establishing M&E systems preferably with donor-funded development programs.
  • Demonstrated experience with computer and/or web-based performance data recording and reporting systems and other technologies that improve the quality of monitoring system integrity and data collection/analysis/reporting/visualization.
  • Demonstrated experience conducting social science research.
  • Experience and in-depth knowledge and familiarity with USAID development sector priorities and reporting requirements; experience with programs focused on health impact considered highly desirable.
  • Ability to work effectively, responsively, and collaboratively with government counterparts such as government ministries, development and private sector partners, civil society organizations, private sector, and academic/research institutions.
  • Computer literacy, with ability to analyse and interpret data using Excel, online reporting tools, or statistical packages such as SAS, SPSS, or STATA.
  • Excellent management, communication, and organizational skills (attention to detail is required); flexibility and capacity to multi-task.
  • Possesses the required oral, written communication, presentations skills in French (equivalent to R4/S4) and English (equivalent to R2/S2).
  • Work experience in Senegal is strongly preferred.
  • Senegalese citizens/nationals are strongly encouraged to apply.
Apply online via RTI’s Global Opportunities Careers Page. Applications will be reviewed and shortlisted for interview on an ongoing basis. The position will fill quickly, therefore candidates are urged to apply as soon as possible. Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted. #LI-LB1

About the Organization

IDG Global Health

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