Senior Associate / Evaluation and Research Specialist - International Development Division

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 3 July 2019

Job Description


Abt Associates seeks a Senior Associate / Evaluation and Research Specialist to lead evaluations with the International Development Division. The Senior Associate provides technical and managerial leadership for impact and/or performance evaluations across technical areas, with a primary focus on agriculture and food security. The Senior Associate will also support business development efforts including proposal development and client relationship development. Clients may include USAID, the Gates Foundation, the Millennium Challenge Corporation, and the UK Department for International Development. Position is full-time and will be based in our Rockville, MD office with some travel (approximately 10%).

Position is contingent upon contract award to Abt Associates.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

  • Leads the design and implementation of evaluations, with responsibility for the application of rigorous methods and techniques;
  • Conducts quantitative and/or qualitative data collection and analysis and develops high-quality evaluation reports, presentations, and other evaluation products;
  • Ensures quality and rigor in all data and evaluation products;
  • Manages evaluations with responsibility for budget management, project deliverables, client relations, and staff supervision. Sets priorities to ensure the completion of projects in an accurate, timely and cost efficient manner;
  • Serves as the primary client contact for methodological and technical expertise, builds buy-in at all evaluation stages, and translates client needs and/or objectives into specific deliverables in a timely and cost efficient manner;
  • Assumes leadership role in business development by providing technical expertise and supporting client development and proposals;
  • Maintains an industry presence as a subject-matter resource by publishing regularly in peer reviewed journals and/or by presenting at annual conferences and meetings;
  • Travels as needed to implement evaluations, consult with key stakeholders, disseminate results and lessons learned, and participate in events promoting Abt’s work.

Preferred Skills / Prerequisites

  • PhD in economics, agricultural economics, statistics, public policy or a related field with a minimum of 8 years of experience, OR a Masters degree with a minimum of 13 years of experience;
  • Demonstrated experience designing and implementing experimental and/or quasi-experimental impact evaluations, including data collection and analysis, and conducting quantitative and/or qualitative research;
  • Significant experience evaluating agriculture, food security and/or livestock programs highly desirable;
  • Significant field experience in developing country contexts, especially with implementing evaluations, managing survey firms, and data collection;
  • Experience leading and managing evaluations, including contract management, project planning, compilation of high-quality deliverables, and managing client relationships;
  • Excellent data analysis skills and advanced proficiency in statistical software packages such as Stata, SAS, R, etc (Stata preferred);
  • Excellent writing abilities;
  • Familiarity with programs for data collection/analysis a plus (e.g. ODK or SurveyCTO, Atlast.ti, Tableau, ArcGIS, etc.);
  • Fluency or professional proficiency in French a plus.

Minimum Qualifications

  • MA/MBA with 13-15 years OR PhD with 8-10 years of experience OR the equivalent combination of education and experience

About the Organization

Abt Associates is a mission-driven, global leader in research and program implementation in the fields of health, social and environmental policy, and international development. Founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1965, Abt Associates was built on the concept that sound information and empirical analysis are the best foundations for effective decision making. The firm blends the subject matter expertise of our staff with technical capabilities in applied research, program implementation, and data collection to shape policy, strengthen systems, measure performance, and deliver other solutions to our public and private sector clients. Examples of Abt Associates’ work include nationally recognized research, evaluation, and technical assistance to improve the efficiency of healthcare systems, the effectiveness of government housing programs, the production of food, and the measurement of public opinion. Abt’s staff of more than 2000 includes national and international experts who are known for their understanding of communities and governments worldwide, innovative research techniques, and insightful—and often groundbreaking—analyses and recommendations. Approximately 51 percent of our staff has graduate degrees; one in six has a doctorate. Our staff’s educational and professional disciplines include economics, engineering, environmental analysis, epidemiology, food security, health, housing, international development, psychology, social science, statistics, and survey methodology. Abt’s research staff is experienced with prominent statistical software packages, including SPSS, SAS, and STATA, along with qualitative software such as NVIVO and Atlas. In 2011, Abt Associates was ranked among the top 20 global research firms and one of the top 40 development innovators. Abt has offices in Atlanta, Ga.; Rockville, Md.; Cambridge, Mass.; Chicago, Ill.; Durham, N.C.; and New York City and program offices in nearly 40 countries in Africa, Central and Southeast Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Middle East and North Africa.

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