RTI is currently seeking qualified candidates for a Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) Advisor to join RTI’s Food Security and Agriculture (FS&Ag) MERLA (monitoring, evaluation, research, learning, and adaptation) team. The candidate will be largely focused on supporting RTI’s work to strengthen the strategic decision-making capacities of a large international foundation by improving their internal MEL approaches and grounding these in systems change. This four-year activity is designed to support the foundation’s team as they refine their approach to measuring the progress and impact of their agricultural development investments in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.
The candidate will play a pivotal role in working with foundation’s programmatic teams as they establish measurement plans, performance indicators, and gather evidence for use in management decision making and adaptive management. This role will work closely with other MEL experts and agriculture experts and will report to the program lead. The MEL specialist will be responsible for leading a workstream and the team of specialists supporting this work in developing guidance materials and ensuring successful implementation among client teams, as well as for managing relationship with other technical leads and partners. The position will be based in Seattle, Washington, Washington, DC, or Research Triangle Park, NC and with both domestic US and international travel.
- Lead a team of specialists to complete tasks within the workstream;
- Manage monitoring, evaluation and learning processes for the activity;
- Work closely and collaboratively with project leadership/team members and client to achieve workstream goals;
- Create tools, templates, and guidance documents to support consistent implementation of MEL best practices for the foundation’s team;
- Support the development of portfolio measurement plans, including learning agendas and performance indicators, all of which take gender and cross-cutting issues into account;
- Develop indicators, and associated documentation, to measure the impacts, results, and outcomes of foundation portfolio teams;
- Identify opportunities and needs for programmatic evaluations and work with foundation portfolio teams to develop evaluation scopes of work;
- Identify the needs for, design, and facilitate learning activities to encourage evidence-based decision-making and adaptive management; and
- Support systems and processes for continual learning and adaptation within the activity, and provide recommendations to changes in approaches, interventions, performance monitoring, and/or work plans as necessary.
- Master’s degree in international development, economics, social sciences or rural development or another relevant field is required.
- At least 6 years of relevant work experience with a research institution, donor, contractor or NGO responsible for monitoring, evaluation and learning.
- Demonstrated experience facilitating working sessions with clients to develop or refine logic models and associated performance indicators, as well as extracting and operationalizing lessons learned through adaptive management.
- Excellent quantitative and qualitative research skills, particularly in areas related to indicator tracking and development, etc. Strong analytical skills and understanding of research methods for participatory learning methods.
- Strong leadership, interpersonal, and training skills, and the ability to work across teams and with partners to build capacity for reporting against project indicators.
- Demonstrated ability to flexibly work in a fast-paced collaborative environment with team members and clients spread across numerous geographic zones.
- At least 3 years of experience working in management consultant capacity for international development-oriented clients.
- Experience in an agricultural research environment or with agricultural programs is a plus.
- Excellent oral and written communication in English.
- Must be eligible to work in the United States.