Head of Policy & Right-Fit Evidence Unit, Francophone West Africa - IPA

  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Master's
Start Date (Earliest):
Language Requirement:
  • French
Length of Commitment:
More than two years

Innovations for Poverty Action is seeking a qualified team member to lead its Right-Fit Evidence advisory and policy work in Francophone West Africa.

Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is a global research and policy nonprofit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. As its core business, IPA brings together researchers and decision-makers to design, rigorously evaluate, and refine these solutions and their applications, ensuring that the evidence created is used to improve the lives of the world’s poor. Complementing this work, the Right-Fit Evidence Unit at IPA is an advisory team focused on helping organizations effectively and efficiently use data and evidence to learn and adapt their programs to increase effectiveness. Its clients include NGOs, funders, social businesses and governments.You will report primarily to IPA’s Country Director for Francophone West Africa. In addition, you will get support and oversight from other IPA leaders, including the Director and Associate Director of the Right-Fit Evidence Unit within the context of RFE advisory engagements.


  • Lead Right-Fit Evidence engagementsAs the primary senior point of contact for a wide range of clients (foundations, government agencies, NGOs, private companies, etc.), lead a team of RFE unit staff working closely with them to develop tailor-made solutions for their MEL needs, and support their implementation.Design and facilitate various kinds of external MEL related workshops
  • With support from other RFE team members, lead the design, implementation, write-up and presentation of various types of engagements, studies and analysis, keeping an eye on quality, budgets and timelines at the same time as impactLead the development of new potential RFE engagements, both self-initiated and assigned, including through the cultivation of fundraising opportunities
  • Oversee a team of approximately 5-6 Associates, Senior Associates and Coordinators working on various engagements, with an eye on their professional development 
  • Lead IPA’s Policy Strategy in Francophone West Africa, in coordination with the Country Director
  • Cultivate relationships with key local top-level decision-makers in multiple sectors (starting with emphasis in the education, early childhood development sectors, and possibly the employment sector in Côte d’Ivoire), particularly those with decision-making authority over identified evidence-to-impact opportunities
  • In support of the country director and in collaboration with IPA researchers, represent IPA locally in policy conversations and at events, and train and coach other country office staff on their own policy outreach
  • Develop IPA’s embedded lab program in Francophone West Africa, which aims at supporting selected government ministries to collect and use data more effectively for decision making
  • Launch high impact policy opportunities, including scale-up technical assistance, and either manage engagements personally with global policy staff support, or collaborate with the country director and regional/global teams to raise funds to hire additional in-country policy staff to realize these opportunities.When joining, the successful candidate will start by overseeing a large portfolio-engagement involving the provision of technical assistance and independent evaluation to a wide range of government, NGO and philanthropic partners in the Education and Early Childhood sectors in Côte d’Ivoire, with the overarching goal of helping players in those sectors make better use of data and evidence.


We are seeing four typical profiles that could fit this position particularly well (and if you don’t fall in any of these categories but feel like you meet the qualifications below, please do apply as well!)

  • Management consultants with international development experience who would be excited in a career shift to an entrepreneurial and impact-focused environment leveraging their skillset.M&E practitioners who are interested in broadening their scope and impact on the field by advising multiple organizations on state-of-the-art MEL and research practices.
  • Researchers and research management professionals in international development who enjoy working closely with practitioners and are interested in broadening their scope to all the types of data and evidence that can inform policy and practice, and ensure evidence leads to large-scale impact
  • Public sector partners, consultants, or experts who have had extensive experience working closely with governments in Africa and can also demonstrate a strong technical understanding of MEL and research.
  • Required qualificationsMaster’s degree in international development, economics, public policy, public health, education policy, social sciences, or a related field, including coursework in quantitative methods.
  • MBAs also welcome.6-15 years of experience, including significant experience in the development and/or humanitarian sectors and experience in the design and management of Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning systems (or some equivalent in the private sector)Superior analytical, quantitative and conceptual thinking skillsDemonstrated ability to coach and train others on technical matters
  • Strong client facing and presentation skills.
  • Ability to present information in a structured and insightful way, both in writing and orally, to a variety of audiences
  • Experience working with government stakeholders, and understanding of government policy making processes, systems for nation-wide program implementation and development financingExperience working in developing countries, and preferably in Francophone Africa. Applicants coming from the region are particularly encouraged to apply, even though the position is open to all applicants.
  • Self-starter approach, growth mindset, versatility and strong multi-tasking skills.Complete fluency in both French and EnglishPassion for making evidence-informed policy-making a reality Preferred additional qualificationsExperience working on policy outreach, research or MEL on programs relating to Early Childhood Development and/or Basic Education
  • Experience in management consulting or other professional services
  • Familiarity with tools and debates around M&E and the use of evidence.
  • Understanding of causal inference and RCTsExperience supervising quantitative and qualitative data collection
  • Exposure with common M&E and statistical software