Manager, Evaluation and Learning

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The MasterCard Foundation
Apply by 26 September 2013
Mid-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 27 August 2013

Job Description


The MasterCard Foundation is an independent, global foundation based in Toronto, Canada, with over $6 billion in assets. It was established through the generosity of MasterCard Worldwide at the time of the company’s initial public offering in 2006. As an independent entity, The MasterCard Foundation’s policies, operations, and funding decisions are determined by its own Board of Directors and President and CEO.

The Foundation believes that every person has the potential to transform their lives and improve the lives of their families and communities. Through its programs in Financial Inclusion and Youth Learning, and collaboration with partner organizations in 50 countries, mostly in Africa, it is creating opportunities for all people to learn and prosper.

The Foundation is on a growth trajectory. To date, it has committed over $980 million in major initiatives which align with its Financial Inclusion and Youth Learning strategies. This will continue to grow. The Foundation works to broaden economic participation of the poor and to enable young people to realize their potential. Much of this work will be accomplished by building strong institutions in developing countries and investing in robust evaluation and learning agendas.

The Foundation values innovative and fresh thinking as it strives to become a global thought-leader. Its work is achieved by a strategic, nimble and highly entrepreneurial team with a proactive and results-oriented approach to its philanthropic activities. The organization’s culture is shaped by people who are driven and passionate about the Foundation’s mission. As programs expand, the Foundation seeks seasoned and dynamic professionals with expertise in evaluation and learning, financial inclusion and/or youth learning who enjoy a fast-paced and performance-based environment.


Evaluation and learning is a critical function at The MasterCard Foundation, directly informing programming strategies and decisions at all levels. Evaluative inquiry is undertaken in a spirit of learning and continuous improvement for program impact, with strong support from and engagement with the Foundation’s senior leadership. The Foundation’s approach to evaluation is collaborative and highly contextualized to program learning needs and environments. It supports a range of evaluation approaches, seeking to employ the most rigorous and relevant methods as appropriate to specific learning questions and agendas at the project, program and Foundation levels.

Our evaluation approach is guided by three main principles:

  • Involve multiple stakeholders within and outside the Foundation, including our partners and those that we aim to serve (i.e., youth and microfinance clients);
  • Encourage staff ownership and investment in these activities; and,
  • Incorporate lessons learned from evaluation and initiate actions based on our findings.

In line with the Foundation’s growth, the breadth and depth of evaluation and learning activities continue to expand. The Foundation works with a network of world-class research and evaluation experts, and uses evidence both for internal strategy and to contribute to important debates in the fields of Financial Inclusion and Youth Learning. The Foundation is committed to resourcing evaluation and learning robustly within projects and programs, and works closely with evaluation firms and researchers as ongoing learning partners for larger or more significant initiatives.


The Manager, Evaluation and Learning, helps to guide the evaluation and learning function at the Foundation and provides strategic advice and technical assistance to programs. S/he will leverage evaluation and learning expertise as well as sector-specific expertise in the areas of Financial Inclusion and/or Youth Learning (see below).

The Manager, Evaluation and Learning will work closely and collaboratively with the evaluation and learning team to promote and support an organizational culture that values evaluation and learning in a way that is both practical and useful for improving program and Foundation effectiveness. S/he will provide strategic advice to programs and assistance with evaluation planning, design, and implementation for a range of evaluation and learning activities across the Foundation’s program areas. S/he will also promote several learning-oriented initiatives, both internal to the Foundation and externally as the Foundation leverages and strengthens its role as an international thought contributor.

The Manager, Evaluation and Learning will report to the Foundation’s Director, Evaluation and Learning. In addition, s/he will work in partnership with all program staff and Foundation partners.

Specific responsibilities include:

Program Evaluation Design and Implementation:

  • Assess needs and design monitoring and evaluation plans to address the progress of and ensuring rich learning from complex multiyear project proposals, in partnership with program staff.
  • Review monitoring and evaluation proposals, and advise staff and partners on the design and implementation of these plans.
  • Manage quality mid-term, final, developmental and other types of evaluations of projects that support strategic learning.
  • Lead efforts to link program evaluation with ongoing program planning and improvement, including assistance with developing and/or updating logic models, theories of change, identifying appropriate indicators, and analyzing data.

Foundation Level Evaluation and Learning:

  • Manager the analysis and synthesis of key themes, achievements and lessons-learned from the Foundation’s financial inclusion and/or economic opportunities for youth programming.
  • Collaborate with communications, IT and finance staff to improve the Foundation’s knowledge management activities.
  • Collaborate with staff to effectively share the lessons learned by the Foundation’s financial inclusion and/or economic opportunities for youth programming.
  • Help foster a “culture of evaluation” and contribute to the Foundation’s capacity and efforts around organizational learning and knowledge management.
  • Manage specific Foundation-level learning initiatives including learning reports to staff, the Board of Directors and external audiences, as well as facilitating staff trainings and learning retreats.

Other Duties:

  • Manage research partners and oversee research implementation as relevant to programmatic learning agendas.
  • Assist in the creation and mainstreaming of best practice resources on evaluation and learning.
  • Assess current monitoring systems and support enhancements or upgrades.
  • Train and coach program staff in monitoring, evaluation and learning concepts and methods.
  • Handle special evaluation and learning-related projects as assigned.


  • Hands-on, senior-level experience managing and/or conducting evaluations and using a variety of qualitative and quantitative evaluation techniques;
  • Strong sector-based experience and expertise in areas relevant to the Foundation’s areas of work in financial inclusion or youth learning and development. This may include:

­ Financial Inclusion - e.g., scaling access to financial services particularly for disadvantaged populations, youth financial services, rural and agricultural finance and development, savings groups, financial education, and/or microfinance capacity building.

­ Economic Opportunities for Youth – e.g., youth employability and workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, asset-building, and/or connecting youth to jobs.

  • Ability to apply evaluation tools and techniques in diverse situations and scenarios;
  • Experience providing technical advice and assistance;
  • Demonstrated skill in prioritizing and balancing multiple competing tasks, projects, and deadlines;
  • Excellent written, verbal, and presentation communication skills;
  • Demonstrated skill in working collaboratively and effectively, and being flexible;
  • Sense of humor, exhibiting grace under pressure;
  • Seeks out collaboration; comfortable working across teams;
  • Comfort with ambiguity;
  • Facilitation skills desired;
  • Highly proficient in Microsoft Office products (Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) and able to learn and use new databases proficiently;


The successful applicant will have an advanced degree or equivalent experience in evaluation or a related field such as international development, economics, psychology, sociology, behavioral sciences, or public policy. He or she will also have a minimum of 10 years professional experience with at least six years hands-on experience managing and/or conducting evaluation, research, public policy analysis and/or working with a variety of qualitative and quantitative evaluation techniques.


The Foundation offers an excellent benefits package and a salary that is commensurate with experience.


To pursue this exciting opportunity, please contact Eric Lathrop or Andrew Dumont at (613) 749-9909 or To apply online, please submit your resume and related information at

The MasterCard Foundation is an open, collegial organization which honours the principles of equality of opportunity for all.




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