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ECD Senior Research, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Manager

Amman (Jordan)

  • Organization: IRC - International Rescue Committee
  • Location: Amman (Jordan)
  • Grade: Mid level - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Monitoring and Evaluation
    • Scientist and Researcher
    • Education, Learning and Training
    • Managerial positions
    • Children's rights (health and protection)
  • Closing Date:

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Requisition ID: req8167

Job Title: ECD Senior Research, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Manager

Sector: Research & Development

Employment Category: Regular

Employment Type: Full-Time

Open to Expatriates: No

Location: Amman, Jordan

Job Description

Background

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC works with people forced to flee from war, conflict and disaster and the host communities that support them, as well as with those who remain within their homes and communities. At-work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. IRC reaches over a million children annually with education and child protection programs in 25 countries around the world.

In response to the influx of Syrian refugees to Jordan in mid-2012, IRC opened a country office and launched humanitarian assistance programming. IRC operates throughout Jordan, with the main office in Amman and a field office in Mafraq. IRC’s programs assist Syrian refugees and vulnerable Jordanians in host communities across multiple sectors: education, livelihoods, protection, women's protection and empowerment and child protection in close coordination with the Jordanian Government and broader Humanitarian Community.

High-quality Early Childhood Development (ECD) programs provide the foundation for children’s future academic success, health, prosperity and wellbeing. A large body of scientific evidence emphasizes the need for increased investment in early childhood, particularly for children experiencing conflict, crisis and displacement; these children are extremely vulnerable to the long-lasting effects that prolonged stress has on the developing brain.

In December 2017, Sesame Workshop and the IRC were awarded the MacArthur Foundation’s inaugural 100&Change grant to make real progress toward solving a critical problem of our time through the Ahlan Simsim project. With the extraordinary investment of $100 million, our partnership will transform the language, early reading, math, and social-emotional skills of a generation of children ages 0-8 affected by the Syrian war. Focusing on children in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria over the next five years, the inclusive plan combiNWS the depth of in-person services, reaching 1.5 million children, with the breadth of mass media, reaching 9.4 million children. For more information, please visit: http://refugee.sesameinternational.org/.

The ECD Senior Research, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (RMEL) Manager will support the Jordan ECD team and the Regional Ahlan Simsim project team with implementation and oversight of the Ahlan Simsim Research, M&E, and Learning. Key responsibilities include:

Monitor the Ahlan Simsim/ECD activities in Jordan in accordance with Ahlan Simsim regional M&E plan and standards, design and manage systems for M&E data collection and data quality checks, track progress against targets, work with ECD team to identify where course correction is needed and formulate action plans;

Manage data collection in the field, contribute to data cleaning, analysis and reporting of results for two, randomized impact evaluations of interventions designed to support early childhood development. Collaborate closely with external researchers from New York University on all aspects of these impact evaluations;

The ideal candidate must be highly organized, detail-oriented, flexible, and proactive, with demonstrated experienced in creating written work plans for M&E and research data collection and reporting, successfully implementing plans to produce high quality data, and revising plans as needed to adjust to a dynamic context. The ideal candidate must also have excellent communication and collaboration skills as ECD activities are integrated into IRC’s activities in other sectors such as Health, Women’s Protection and Empowerment (WPE), and Child Protection (CP). Therefore coordinating M&E planning, data collection, and sharing of M&E data with the Health, WPE, CP, and other relevant IRC teams is an essential part of the ECD RMEL Manager’s job. Also, this position must lead remote communication and collaboration with NYU researchers based in the US.

Major Responsibilities:

Research and M&E Planning and Management

  • Create and regularly update (as needed) written work plans and data flow diagrams for M&E and research data collection, reporting, learning meetings, and data quality assessments;
  • Communicate M&E and research work plans and updates clearly to the Jordan ECD team, IRC partners, the IRC Regional Ahlan Simsim team, and external researchers from NYU;
  • Manage day-to-day tasks, annual goal setting and performance review, and professional development of the ECD Research and MEL team, including direct supervision of the Sr. M&E Officer and Research Manager;
  • Proactively coordinate with program staff from IRC’s ECD, Health, CP, and WPE teams, as well as IRC Jordan partners, to ensure that M&E data collection and reporting are aligned with activity implementation schedules. Adjust research and M&E work plan as needed to align with any changes in activity schedules;
  • Follow existing Ahlan Simsim project research and M&E guidelines while also taking initiative to offer creative ideas for improving processes or use of data as needed;
  • Coordinate with Jordan MEAL team to ensure that the ECD team is contributing to Jordan country office MEAL as needed and that the Jordan MEAL team is able to collect Accountability data (client feedback) adhering to IRC’s requirements;
  • Travel on a frequent basis to Mafraq, Irbid, and Ramtha, Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps for staff research and M&E training, management of research and M&E data collection, data quality assessments, and other tasks as needed; depending on activity schedule, travel frequency may change throughout the year (sometimes weekly, sometimes monthly);
  • Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions;
  • In all M&E activities, follow IRC’s Monitoring for Action standards for data quality, information management, and use of data for programmatic decisionmaking;
  • Adhere to and act in accordance with the IRC Global HR Policies and Procedures.

Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E)

Data Collection

  • Ensure that M&E data collection is accurate, complete, timely, and standardized according to the Ahlan Simsim M&E plan;
  • Train ECD M&E staff and IRC Jordan program staff on M&E data collection tools (using Commcare software) and processes;
  • Provide continuous support to staff as needed during data collection;
  • Oversee regular data quality assessments (or manage other staff to conduct these assessments) according to process agreed upon with Ahlan Simsim Regional Senior MEL Manager. If any mistakes are found in data, report them to the ECD country team and Ahlan Simsim regional teams, correct data and reports, and adjust M&E processes to prevent similar mistakes in future;

Data quality assessments should include checks of the Ahlan Simsim unique ID system and updates to this system if needed to ensure accurate beneficiary lists which are essential in counting beneficiaries and also in sampling for M&E data collection;

  • Notify and follow up with the Jordan ECD Coordinator and Ahlan Simsim Regional Senior MEL Manager regarding any challenges in M&E data collection or feedback from field teams on data collection tools and processes.
  • Information Management
  • In collaboration with the IRC Jordan Information Management (IM) Manager and the IRC Jordan ECD IM and Monitoring Officer, ensure that the IRC Jordan ECD team has a high quality information management system for data collection, secure data storage, analysis, and reporting;
  • Provide ongoing oversight and guidance for maintenance and improvement of the information management system, which is built and maintained by IRC Jordan IM Manager and the IRC Jordan ECD IM and Monitoring Officer.
  • Analysis, Reporting, and Learning
  • Oversee analysis of M&E data by Sr. M&E Officer;
  • Report M&E data and M&E indicators on a monthly basis to the Regional Ahlan Simsim team and the Jordan ECD team, with analysis comparing program achievements and to overall annual targets for Ahlan Simsim M&E indicators;
  • Ensure that all M&E numbers in IRC internal reports, donor reports, and the Ahlan Simsim PowerBI dashboard are accurate and consistent;
  • Create graphs, tables, and other summaries of monitoring data as needed for reports to IRC, donors, or other internal and external stakeholders;
  • Plan for sharing of M&E data with IRC program staff from ECD, Health, WPE, and CP teams, as well as partner teams, through multiple channels (weekly team meetings, learning sessions, PowerBI dashboard, etc.); ensure that IRC and partner program teams can easily access, understand, and use M&E data for program decisionmaking and reporting.

 

Research (Impact Evaluations)

In collaboration with NYU, the Ahlan Simsim project team, including the Jordan ECD team, is conducting two, randomized impact evaluations of two ECD interventions in Jordan, both with baseline data collection taking place in 2020 and sample sizes of over 2000 households. With NYU researchers, Senior RMEL Manager is responsible for leading these two evaluations and managing the IRC Research team. Specific responsibilities include:

Research Design & Approvals

  • Provide support for obtaining required approvals – IRC IRB, NYU IRB, and any local IRB or government approvals needed;
  • Review and provide inputs for detailed research design protocols for two impact evaluations;
  • As needed, provide M&E data to the Jordan ECD Research Manager and external research partners from New York University to inform the study design and sampling for impact evaluations conducted in Jordan;
  • Oversee data collection in the field
  • Oversee process of hiring approximately 120 enumerators for two impact evaluations;
  • Design and update clear, written work plans for field data collection and data quality checks for impact evaluations;
  • Oversee implementation of these work plans by the IRC Research team, ensuring that field data collection is accurate, standardized, complete, and timely according to the Ahlan Simsim project research process and standards;
  • Design and manage data quality check and back checking processes in collaboration with NYU, oversee implementation of data quality checks and back check by IRC research team;
  • Oversee and, as needed, contribute to In collaboration with NYU, Research Manager, and Data and Research Officer, manage and contribute to data cleaning process to correct any issues found in data;
  • During field data collection, report on data collection progress and challenges encountered to NYU and the Regional Research, Monitoring and Learning Lead on a weekly basis;
  • Collaborate with NYU and the Regional Research, Monitoring, and Learning Lead to resolve challenges and produce high quality data for impact evaluations;
  • Analysis, Reporting, and Learning
  • Collaborate with NYU on analysis and reporting of results from impact evaluations, using Stata software;
  • Translate research results into user friendly-briefs, reports, Powerpoint presentations, and other products, for dissemination to non-research audiences, mainly IRC program staff and policymakers in Jordan;
  • Communicate research results to a variety of audiences, including IRC program staff and policymakers, and contribute to the process of using research results to inform and improve ECD interventions and policies in Jordan and globally.

Key Working Relationships:

Position Reports to: IRC Jordan ECD Coordinator
Position directly supervises:
ECD Research Manager, ECD Senior M&E Officer
Other Internal and/or external contacts:

Internal: ECD Research & Data Officer, ECD Research & Monitoring Assistants, Jordan MEAL team, Ahlan Simsim Regional Research, Monitoring, and Learning Lead; Ahlan Simsim Senior Manager for Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning; other IRC Jordan programs and support departments

External:New York University researchers, partner NGOs, partner Ministries


Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in International Development, Computer Science, Statistics, Social Sciences, Industrial Engineering, Business administration or related field;
  • At least 4-5 years of experience in designing and implementing research and/or M&E systems;
  • Minimum of 4-5 years of people management experience, proactively collaborating across teams and sectors;
  • Demonstrated experience in developing quantitative and qualitative data collection tools for research and M&E (e.g. surveys, structured observations, focus group discussions);
  • Demonstrated experience in leading a team to ensure high quality data collection, analysis, and reporting for research and M&E;
  • Demonstrated experience managing large scale quantitative, household data collection in the field;
  • Demonstrated experience and knowledge in cleaning and analysis of quantitative data (using Excel, SPSS, Stata, or similar software);
  • Demonstrated experience communicating complex research results to non-research audiences, including program teams and policymakers, and facilitating their use of
  • Demonstrated experience in facilitating use of research and/or M&E data for programmatic decisionmaking and learning, including developing dashboards or other reporting and visualization tools so that program staff can easily access, understand, and use data;
  • Strong computer literacy, including proficiency in Microsoft Office (Excel, Outlook, Word, PowerPoint)
  • Demonstrated experience managing and conducting electronic data collection, using ODK or ODK-based softwares (ONA, KOBO), Commcare, CSPro, or other similar tools;
  • Strong ability to work independently, organize work, meet deadlines, maintain composure, prioritize work under pressure, proactively coordinate multiple tasks, and maintain attention to detail;
  • Excellent interpersonal communication and problem-solving skills, creativity and flexibility;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills;
  • Fluency in Arabic and English, written and oral.
  • Personal qualities: works well in and promotes teamwork and collaboration, comfortable in a multi-cultural environment, detail-oriented, flexible, sense of humor, proactive, ability to work across various teams and stakeholders, able to handle pressure well, and deliver results under tight timelines.

Preferred:

  • Experience using Commcare for data collection;
  • Experience with use of Stata for data analysis;
  • Experience conducting randomized impact evaluations (or randomized controlled trials) of development or humanitarian interventions;
  • Experience in designing fun and easy to use data visualizations;
  • Experience and knowledge in analysis of qualitative data (using thematic analysis, preferably in NVivo, Atlas.ti, or similar software);
  • Experience collecting data from children;
  • Experience in M&E related to education and/or early childhood development (including collecting data from young children);
  • Experience in Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI).

Working Environment:

The position is based in Amman, with frequent travel to Mafraq, Irbid, and Ramtha, as well as Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps.

WOMEN OF ALL BACKGROUNDS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO APPLY


 

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