Returns Research Program Manager

Erbil, Iraq
Apply by 22 July 2018
Mid-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 22 June 2018

Job Description

Job Title: Returns Research Program Manager I

Department: Program Team

Reports To: Ninewa Returns Project Director

Country/Location: Iraq/Erbil

Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.

In partnership and collaboration with Caritas Iraq, CRS Iraq is supporting conflict-affected people to live in dignity through the provision of critical relief items, upgrades to shelter conditions and improved access to water and sanitation facilities, educational and psychosocial (PSS) support for children, and livelihoods support. CRS Iraq has recently established its peacebuilding program, which seeks to build mutual understanding, tolerance and trust among religious and ethnic minority and majority groups in post-conflict Iraq.

Job Summary:

The PM will lead the research component of a two-year USAID project entitled Enabling Durable Solutions for a Cohesive and Diverse Ninewa Plains, implemented by a consortium of CRS, Caritas Iraq, World Council of Churches, YouthBuild International, and Iraqi-Al Amal Association in close collaboration with the Nineveh Reconstruction Committee. The Ninewa Plains project seeks to address two key barriers to return that have proven especially challenging in the region: (1) broken trust among diverse minority and majority groups and (2) lack of meaningful access to livelihoods. Building on CRS’ global expertise and experience, the PM will develop and deploy research methodologies to measure the project impact on social cohesion, youth livelihoods, and durable returns, and inform scalability within and beyond the timeframe, scope, and geographic location of the project. The PM will directly supervise one national Project Officer, support Caritas Iraq national Project Officers, and provide oversight of enumerator field research teams, while also collaborating with partner organizations.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Collaborate with CRS technical advisors and outside consultants to finalize research questions and design and implement mixed-methods approaches to understand the interaction among social cohesion, livelihoods opportunities, and durable return within project locations.
  • Manage and implement all research activities throughout the project cycle - project design, start-up, implementation and close-out - to ensure efficient and effective implementation in line with CRS program quality principles and standards, donor requirements, and good practices. Ensure project team and partner staff use the appropriate systems and tools.
  • Ensure documentation of the research process and prepare reports on research outcomes for external audiences. Support the timely preparation of high quality donor reports, quarterly performance indicator tracking tables, as well as other reports as needed/required by the local government, donors, the region or headquarters.
  • Maintain and strengthen partnerships with local and international partners to engage their support for data collection and analysis; work closely with partners, beneficiaries, and other key stakeholders to ensure high quality implementation of research activities, applying appropriate partnership concepts, tools and approaches.
  • Effectively manage talent and supervise one national staff Project Officer and enumerator field research teams. Manage team dynamics and staff well-being. Provide coaching, strategically tailor individual development plans, contribute to the recruitment process of project staff, and complete performance management for direct reports.
  • Champion learning with project staff and partner teams. Analyze and evaluate project performance data following MEAL policy. Proactively identify issues and concerns and use participatory processes to overcome implementation obstacles.
  • Act as a key resource person in project design and proposal development in respective programming area, gap-filling and taking on growth responsibilities, as needed. Under the guidance of the Ninewa Returns Project Director, identify changes in the operating environment, identify priority unmet needs, and design and write proposals for new funding opportunities.
  • Identify staff capacity and technical assistance needs of partner organizations as well as capacity strengthening and required interventions to support quality project implementation. Provide needed technical assistance and training to staff and partner organizations.
  • Coordinate and monitor financial and material resources relevant to project needs. Through planning and oversight, ensure efficient use of project resources. Ensure the review and timely submission of financial reports.

Typical Background, Experience & Requirements:

Education and Experience

  • Master’s Degree in International Development, International Relations, Social Research Methods, Monitoring and Evaluation, or Peacebuilding required. Additional experience may substitute for some education.
  • Minimum of 2 years of relevant field-based experience in managing light to moderately complex projects required, preferably with an international NGO. Strong understanding of relevant research methods strongly preferred.
  • Experience developing and leading field research teams in complex environments is highly desirable.
  • Experience engaging with partner organizations.
  • Experience contributing to the development of technical proposals preferred.
  • MEAL skills and experience preferred.
  • Experience using MS Windows and MS Office packages (Excel, Word, PowerPoint) required, Web Conferencing Applications, information management systems, statistical research packages preferred.

Personal Skills

  • Strong critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills with ability to make sound judgment.
  • Strong relationship management skills and the ability to work effectively with culturally diverse groups.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills with ability to write reports.
  • Proactive, results-oriented, and service-oriented.

Required/Desired Foreign Language: Fluent English is required; Arabic is a plus.

Travel Required: The position is based in Erbil, with 30% travel to project sites in Iraq,primarily in Ninewa governorate. Regional and international travel for training, as needed.

Key Working Relationships:

Supervisory: 1 national Project Officer; support to Caritas Iraq national Project Officers; oversight of enumerator field research teams.

Internal: Ninewa Returns Project Director; Head of Programming; MEAL Program Manager, Senior Project Officer and Project Officers; Peacebuilding Program Manager; Livelihoods Program Manager; Procurement and Finance staff

External: Caritas Iraq; World Council of Churches; YouthBuild International; Iraqi Al-Amal Association; other operational partners and colleague organizations; local government; UN agencies and relevant sector leads

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS Staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.

  • Trusting Relationships
  • Professional Growth
  • Partnership
  • Accountability

Disclaimer: This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skill, effort, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

NOTE: Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

About the Organization

Catholic Relief Services was founded in 1943 by the Catholic Bishops of the United States. Our mission is to assist the poor and disadvantaged, leveraging the teachings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to alleviate human suffering, promote development of all people, and to foster charity and justice throughout the world. Working through local offices and an extensive network of partners, CRS operates on five continents and in 98 countries. We aid the poor by first providing direct assistance where needed, then encouraging people to help with their own development. Together, these approaches foster secure, productive, just communities that enable people to realize their potential. As the official international relief and development agency of the U.S. Catholic community, CRS is also committed to educating the people of the United States to fulfill their moral responsibilities toward our global brothers and sisters by helping the poor, working to remove the causes of poverty, and promoting social justice.

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