Senior Policy Associate - Girls’ Education, West Africa - J-PAL Africa

J-PAL Africa
  • Bachelor's
  • Master's
  • Honours
Start Date (Earliest):
Language Requirement:
  • French
Length of Commitment:
More than two years

J-PAL Africa is seeking a Senior Policy Associate to support policy outreach activities to boost girls’ enrolment and empowerment in Francophone West Africa. The Senior Policy Associate will work to implement evidence-based interventions and generate opportunities for policy-relevant research. The Senior Policy Associate will receive guidance from the J-PAL Africa Policy Manager and Associate Director as well as other Policy Associates and the global education and gender teams.

We are looking for candidates who are currently based or open to relocating to West-Africa, ideally in countries aligned to strategic priorities. Please specify your location preference in your application. 

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) consists of a global network of academics who specialise in conducting randomised evaluations of social policies/programmes to generate scientific evidence about what works in the fight against poverty. J-PAL’s policy group analyses and disseminates research results and builds partnerships with policymakers to ensure that policy is informed by evidence, and effective programmes are scaled up.


  • Project development: Scope potential opportunities and partnerships for evidence use and evidence generation, through desk research, events attendance, targeted outreach, and scoping trips or discussions. Cultivate and support existing relationships with key partners in Francophone West Africa and regularly engage with them to identify needs and opportunities for collaboration. Where relevant, support matchmaking between government officials and researchers in our network to measure the impact of innovations using randomised evaluations.
  • Project Implementation: Plan and coordinate, and eventually directly manage policy projects and processes. Provide technical assistance to governments, in partnership with affiliated researchers where necessary, to support the development of evidence-informed policies and programmes in the relevant sector of expertise. This will involve codifying evidence, supporting local adaptation through the design and implementation of data collection exercises and co-designing interventions with government. A critical element will also be convening and coordinating stakeholders, including policy makers, affiliates, implementing partners, external contractors and team members for successful project implementation.
  • Topic expertise: Maintain expertise on evidence and policy priorities in relevant subject areas and critically engage with existing evidence to identify replicable interventions and policy-relevant research questions. Codify and disseminate evidence on interventions that might address the challenges around girls’ education and assess applicability to new contexts using the generalisability framework.
  • Events and communications: Support content generation on girls’ education evidence and policy activities in both French and English for various media (social media, blogposts, third party publications etc) and support with drafting of donor reports. Prepare presentations and workshops for internal and external events and trainings, working with the Operations team to coordinate the logistics and planning
  • Perform other related duties as assigned by the manager.


  • Bachelor’s Degree (NQF8) in relevant field such as economics, development studies, international relations, public administration or public policy required.
  • Experience and interest in education policy and programming, particularly with a focus on gender equality and girls’ enrolment preferred.
  • Minimum two years working in Africa, preferably working with governments and/or with experience in economics or social science research.
  • Demonstrated ability to read and analyse rigorous quantitative research, including randomized evaluations.
  • Writing and oral fluency in English and French, with a strong ability to present and communicate technical research to policymakers in a non-technical manner.
  • Proven ability to manage multiple diverse assignments at one time, coordinate several contributors, successfully complete assigned tasks and meet deadlines while conducting high-quality work with minimal oversight
  • Ability to create and cultivate relationships with external stakeholders, such as researchers or policymakers. Experience working with or within government departments with experience of policy advisory or policy design services valued.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and ability to self-motivate and learn, as well as to work effectively with colleagues across time zones.
  • Strong skills in Excel, Word and PowerPoint
  • Ability and willingness to travel internationally frequently and flexibly to support policy outreach, scoping research and training events. Most travel will be in West Africa and to South Africa.
  • West African nationals preferred.

How to Apply

Please use the following link to apply: