Measurement, Implementation Research, and Learning (MIRL) Director

Arlington, Virginia, United States
Apply by 12 May 2018
Senior-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 1 February 2018

Job Description

R4D is seeking a Measurement, Implementation Research, and Learning (MIRL) Director for an anticipated USAID centrally funded Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Activity (MSNA). The MIRL Director will be instrumental in helping make MSNA a global leader in driving change in multi-sectoral nutrition programs with relevant, timely and sound evidence on MSNA measurement, evaluation, research and learning.

Learning Strategy Lead: The MIRL Director will design and direct the project-wide strategy and serve as the focal point for strategy development, learning, evaluation and research in support of MSNA efforts to provide quality nutrition services, increase country commitment and capacity in nutrition programming, and generate evidence, innovation and learning for multi-sectoral nutrition programs globally. Working with the Senior Management Team, the MIRL Director maintains a big picture view of the global landscape around multi-sectoral nutrition programming and identifies MSNA relevance in these landscapes, engendering a culture of rigorous questioning and analysis to guide MSNA strategies and interventions.

Portfolio Management: The MIRL Director will manage the MIRL portfolio, ensuring overall technical quality of evidence-related activities, and will champion data use for adaptive management while coordinating and collaborating with project partners including Ministries, technical assistance organizations, academic institutions and other development agencies. They will work with the Director of Knowledge Management (KM) to ensure innovative and robust KM systems are used to capture and share emerging evidence generated through new approaches and research.

Technical Lead for Learning: The MIRL Director will play a central role in forging strong working relationships among policy makers and technical and research professionals to advance the MSNA agenda for improving nutritional and health status across targeted countries. The MIRL Director will work with a team consisting of a blend of collaborative and adaptive learning, research, program M&E, data visualization, and data use experience, and must be passionate about evidence-driven program improvement and learning.

This position is based in Arlington, VA and will report to R4Dā€™s Managing Director for Nutrition. Pending solicitation and award by USAID, the anticipated award date is Spring 2018.

Other illustrative responsibilities will include:

  • Develop and oversee the implementation of a Collaborating, Learning and Adapting (CLA) plan, which outlines key activities around stakeholder engagement, identifying and addressing knowledge gaps, fostering adaptive management, and sharing and applying new evidence and innovative learning methods, embedded in iterative adaptive and collaborative approaches;
  • Work with technical and program leads and MNSA partners and collaborators to define program strategies, theories of change, embedded and stand-alone research activities in support of MSNA programming;
  • Develop and apply standards and mechanisms to ensure overall technical quality of evidence-related activities including: strategic planning, project planning, performance monitoring plans (PMPs), performance monitoring, assessments, research, and evaluation around multi-sectoral nutrition-related data especially including nutrition-sensitive agriculture and food systems;
  • With the Knowledge Management Director, support the design and implementation of knowledge management systems that enable effective data capture, organization and sharing amongst stakeholders to inform decisions on multi-sectoral nutrition policies, programs and systems as well as contribute to a broader evidence base around multi-sectoral nutrition interventions;
  • With senior colleagues, lead the translation of learning from research and evaluation into global, national, and local policies and programs, representing MSNA at global and country fora; and,
  • Ensure that all data collection adheres to international and host-country ethical standards.

The ideal candidate will be a strong and collaborative team player, have an approachable management style focused on helping teams and projects succeed; have a combination of academic and program experience positions to facilitate the cross pollination of learnings; have exceptional writing and editing skills and experience leading the production and timely delivery of high quality technical work products and deliverables. Prior people and project management experience required, including coaching, mentoring and capacity building.

Additional skills required for this position include the ability to prioritize and balance multiple activities/work streams, and excellent organization and time management skills with the ability to communicate and delegate tasks clearly and effectively.

Qualifications & Requirements:

  • MA or PhD (or other relevant advanced degree) in nutrition, public health or fields related to multi-sectoral nutrition with a focus on the collection and use of information and evidence to improve nutrition, health, or related outcomes;
  • 15 years of experience in design and implementation of MIRL activities with a proven record of generating actionable evidence to shape programs, and policies. Particular emphasis is on:
    • Design and implementation of learning networks or adaptive program learning activities
    • Design and implementation of M&E systems to support project, country and global decisions (USAID experience preferred)
  • Established reputation for excellence and creativity in the design and application of research and evaluation in topics related to multi-sectoral nutrition with a related history of academic or professional publications;
  • Knowledge of advanced principles, theories, techniques, and methods of learning, research, monitoring and evaluation including qualitative and quantitative research methodologies and nutrition surveillance;
  • Demonstrated leadership working with other technical experts in M&E and research, including strategy development and execution for large-scale, complex global programs;
  • Proven ability to articulate technical information in English to technical and non-technical audiences through written and verbal communication, and generate interest in the use of M&E data/results for programmatic improvements;
  • Extensive experience managing large research and practitioner teams, including both U.S.-based and international staff;
  • Fluent in spoken and written English. Knowledge of another language, French preferred;
  • Willingness to travel 30% of the time.

How to Apply:

  • To apply, please submit an application and upload your cover letter and resume by clicking here.

No telephone or email inquiries please.

About the Organization

Results for Development (R4D) is a leading non-profit global development partner. We collaborate with change agents around the world ā€” government officials, civil society leaders and social innovators ā€” to create strong systems that support healthy, educated people. We help our partners move from knowing their goal to knowing how to reach it. We combine global expertise in health, education and nutrition with analytic rigor, practical support for decision-making and implementation and access to peer problem-solving networks. Together with our partners, we build self-sustaining systems that serve everyone and deliver lasting results. Then we share what we learn so others can achieve results for development, too.

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