Data Manager: IDEA Lab, J-PAL South Asia

J-PAL South Asia
  • India
  • Bachelor's
  • Master's
  • Other advanced degree
Start Date (Earliest):
Length of Commitment:
Two years

J-PAL South Asia, based at the Institute of Financial Research and Management in India, seeks a data analyst under its new initiative Innovations in Data and Experiments for Action (IDEA) Lab. We are looking for a high-calibre individual who can leverage their knowledge, experience and passion for data to execute a high-impact project leveraging administrative data on health insurance. 

J-PAL launched the IDEA initiative in 2018, and subsequently the first IDEA Lab was set up in J-PAL South Asia, with the aim to increase the use of administrative data by governments, non-profits, private firms and researchers for evidence-informed decision making (here). The IDEA Lab engages in long term collaborations to strengthen the use of administrative data by developing data use cases to demonstrate value for decision-making as well as capacity building activities on making data accessible and usable. We are building a new team of analysts and managers to develop a data use case for health insurance across three states in India with the aim to institutionalize the use of data for more effective program implementation and to demonstrate how system-level change can be accomplished. 

The Data Manager will work closely with the Senior Manager/Project Director and supervise a Data Analyst to execute the project in one or more states in India. 

The key responsibilities include:

  • The Data Manager will work with the Senior Manager/principal investigators to understand policy needs of the state and support in developing and executing a scope of work and facilitate data access requests. 
  • Will engage with relevant officials on different aspects of the project (supported by a data analyst), and to facilitate data access in a secure manner according to agreed protocols. 
  • Will support the Data Analyst in managing and executing any field related operations such as hiring and training field teams, designing questionnaires, manage data collection etc for assessing the usability and validity of the data
  • Working closely with the Data Analyst to organize and analyze the data in a meaningful manner and develop presentations/briefs/insights to share with the government partner as per the scope of work.
  • Guide the Data Analyst to develop content which will serve as regular updates to the government partner.
  • Working closely with the Data Analyst to identify capacity building opportunities with the partners and build knowledge products/training materials
  • Will be responsible for overall project management and ensuring project timelines are met in accordance with the scope work
  • Manage all stakeholder engagement including donor reporting. 
  • Building and strengthening relationships with strategic partners and stakeholders on the project
  • Collaborating with IDEA teams working in other states to share and document learnings and challenges in executing the project  

Other responsibilities:

  • People Management: Hire, manage and mentor Data Analysts and/ or Sr. Data Analysts, giving them support to perform better and prioritizing their learning and skill development.

Required qualifications

  • Advanced degree (Master’s or higher) in economics, public policy, mathematics, statistics, data science or related fields. This should include coursework   in statistics/econometrics,
  • Professional work experience in data analytics: minimum 3 years of work experience in data management, data analytics, computation/statistics work with large datasets. Experience working with large public data-sets is highly preferred
  • Excellent programming and data analysis skills in Stata, R, Python and SQL is required 
  • Excellent communication skills and experience working in a collaborative environment is required
  • Experience working with government partners and other stakeholders is required

Preferred qualifications

  • Familiarity working with large public datasets in the social sector 
  • Proficiency with Github and other modern data management, sharing and presentation interfaces 
  • Skills, competencies and behavioural attributes 
  • A passion for and proven ability to work with different types of data to generate meaningful and policy relevant insights.
  • Exceptional communication skills, including writing, conversing and presenting clearly in English. Working proficiency in one or more languages such as Hindi, Tamil or Oriya is highly desirable.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead teams and engage constructively with multiple team members (internally and externally) in a collaborative manner and on short timelines.
  • Proven ability to handle several different projects/tasks at one time, successfully plan, delegate and complete tasks, and meet deadlines while ensuring high quality work 
  • Self-motivated, ability to problem solve and to work with minimal supervision and meet deadlines while conducting high quality work.
  • Attention to detail and precision.  
  • Initiative, resilience and flexibility in adapting to changing contexts.
  • Ability to work closely and constructively with multiple team members in a collaborative manner and on short timelines. 
  • Willingness to travel domestically frequently and flexibly

About the Organization

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) is a global research center working to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence. Anchored by a network of 194 affiliated professors at universities around the world, J-PAL conducts randomized impact evaluations to answer critical questions in the fight against poverty. J-PAL South Asia, based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research in India, leads J-PAL’s work in the South Asia region. J-PAL South Asia conducts randomized evaluations, builds partnerships for evidence-informed policymaking, and helps partners scale up effective programs. Over more than ten years of existence, J-PAL South Asia has conducted 193 ongoing and completed randomized evaluations.

Interested candidates should apply through the portal.

How to Apply

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the RESEARCH job category, then select "Data Manager: IDEA Lab, J-PAL South Asia” and include resume, cover letter, transcripts, and two recommendation letters. Note that applications with incomplete submissions will not be considered.

You are able to submit your application before your references complete their recommendation letters; however, you must include their contact information before submitting your application. Given the volume of applications received, only short-listed candidates will be contacted for an interview.