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Senior Researcher, Evaluation and Strategic Learning (International Health)

Job ID 762-5

Position Description:

Established in 1968, Mathematica is a non-partisan research firm that brings evidence to bear on the world’s most pressing policy questions and social challenges. Working across all sectors and regions, we help our partners to develop, measure, evaluate, and scale policies and programs to maximize impact and improve the lives of millions across the globe. Our social mission and commitment to quality and innovation drives us to develop highly tailored approaches that draw on the best available methods, tools, and technology to meet our partners’ learning and decision-making needs. Today, our 1,200 employees are helping government agencies, donors, foundations, and a range of non-governmental and private sector organizations make a difference in more than 50 countries.

Mathematica is seeking a senior researcher to join its rapidly growing global philanthropy practice area within the international development research division. In particular, we are looking for an expert in the international health field, with a focus on reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health (RMNCH) and experience working in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and/or Southeast Asia. This individual will lead international health-related evaluation, data analytics, and strategic learning efforts for foundations, donor collaboratives, corporate social responsibility initiatives, and public-private ventures. He/she will also have the opportunity to help shape and grow Mathematica’s international health portfolio and strategic philanthropy practice. The ideal candidate will have a strong research and evaluation background, and interest in using research to inform and support philanthropic efforts.

We seek a dynamic leader for this role, who is passionate about international health research and committed to using data and evidence to drive change. We are looking for a candidate with an entrepreneurial mindset, who will thrive in a fast-paced environment with evolving client needs and frequently emerging opportunities to contribute to strategic decision-making and effect change. Shifting client priorities and project circumstances also require creativity and adaptability, two critical assets for this position. The ideal candidate will have substantial experience and deep expertise in international health and applying qualitative and/or quantitative research methods, and be able to act as a trusted advisor to philanthropic entities seeking to achieve impact and advance this field.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Direct evaluation and strategic learning engagements. Work closely with clients to develop learning agendas, build monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) frameworks and plans, and lead multi-level project teams in the development and execution of customized evaluation designs and approaches.

  • Design and facilitate learning processes to ensure that evidence is used to inform decision-making and action. Facilitate meetings, workshops, and other events with foundation clients and grantees to refine theories of change, develop learning agendas, draw out implications of evaluation results, and generate ideas for strategy and program refinement. Act as a hands-on learning and thought partner to our foundation clients, offering expert advice/strategic inputs as needed to inform strategy modifications, grant-making approaches, and shifts in learning agendas.

  • Advance knowledge in the field. Participate in and represent Mathematica at high-level policy and research events (including conferences, presentations to policymakers and other global- and country-level stakeholders, and meetings with key players in the sector); present and discuss evaluation results with diverse audiences.

  • Contribute to business development in international health.Work with leaders in the global philanthropy practice area and international development research division to help shape and execute a strategy to grow our portfolio of international health work with philanthropic organizations; build and maintain strong relationships with existing clients.

  • Mentor staff. Support the professional development of researchers, research analysts, and research assistants in the international development research division; strengthen their design, analysis, writing, and project and client management capabilities.

  • Provide technical assistance. Provide trainings, workshops, and ongoing technical support on monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) to implementation partners and local research partners.

Position Requirements:

  • PhD or Master’s degree in economics, public policy, public health, or a related discipline; with a minimum of 10 years of professional experience in international health research and leading evaluation and learning efforts for philanthropic organizations.

  • Training and expertise in quantitative and/or qualitative methods and evaluation design, ideally with a high level of comfort with mixed-methods approaches

  • Experience addressing wide-ranging evaluation needs, including rigorous impact and process evaluations; formative and summative evaluations of program, advocacy, and systems change initiatives; strategy reviews; and portfolio-level assessments

  • Established research record (contributions to peer-reviewed journals and gray literature publications, and presentations at conferences and other expert forums)

  • Experience designing and facilitating participatory learning activities with funders and practitioners highly desired

  • Stellar written and verbal communication skills, and the ability to (1) convey complex technical issues to non-expert audiences, and (2) present and share research results in a way that resonates with foundation clients, practitioners, and policymakers

  • Field research and data collection experience in developing countries, and ability to liaise with diverse stakeholders, including program implementers, government officials, and local research and data collection partners

  • Experience managing global teams composed of internal staff and external partners

  • Passion for bringing rigorous evidence to bear on policy and programmatic decision-making

  • Self-motivation, adaptability, and ability to operate in ambiguity; interest in being part of a growing and diverse practice area with a start-up atmosphere

  • Ability to travel internationally

  • Foreign language skills preferred

    Available Locations:  Princeton, NJ; Washington, DC; Cambridge, MA; Oakland, CA; Chicago, IL; Ann Arbor, MI; Seattle, WA

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

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