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Senior Research Specialist

Salary rangeConfidential | Contract type: Permanent

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Job Summary

The Senior Research Specialist will be the face of the project within Uganda, and oversee the day-to-day activities of conducting participatory action research with refugee women and older adolescent girls (Year 1, results reports online here) to better understand the ways in which distribution of material resources in emergencies may create or reinforce opportunities for sexual exploitation and abuse of women and girls. Preference will be given to candidates who have experience with program monitoring and evaluation, as the third year will focus on continuing to test ways to make distributions safer, as well as develop a toolkit based on findings and continue dissemination and research uptake at national, regional and global levels. S/he will be responsible for maintaining good working relationships with a wide variety of stakeholders, including government, civil society, I/NGOs, UN, academia, and others.

The Senior Research Specialist will be based in Yumbe to support participatory action research activities, with some travel to Kampala for research dissemination, uptake, coordination and management activities. The position will support GWI’s Empowered Aid project in the Bidibidi refugee settlement in Yumbe District. This links to GWI’s existing GBV research capacity-sharing in Uganda and beyond, as well as IRC’s “Listen Up!” project on preventing sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA).
Education & training:
University degree in Social Sciences, Social Work, Gender/Women Studies, Public Health or related field with women-led participatory action research and program evaluation experience in women & girls’ protection and empowerment programming within emergencies. Preference for those with a Master’s degrees.
Job Requirements:
  • Experience with women-led monitoring, evaluation and/or research methods that are participatory (such as focus groups, key informant interviews, community/body mapping, safety audits, and/or ethnographic research techniques) and related to GBV or gender issues, and preferably in humanitarian settings;
  • Demonstrated ability to work well with collaborative, participatory and creative processes, where ideas and plans may change, while ensuring timeline, budget & reporting requirements are met;
  • Oriented toward learning, open to independent study to improve skills necessary for successful completion of project;
  • Experience working with refugee communities, preferably in Uganda within the last 5 years;
  • Proven experience in design and developing materials such as GBV research protocols and tools, service referral materials, ethical guidelines and training of staff, research briefs, curricula, guidance documents, and project reports;
  • Experience designing and implementing evaluations and/or M&E systems related to GBV in humanitarian settings;
  • Experience directly providing GBV response services or managing women and girls protection and empowerment programs in Uganda is a plus;
  • Existing professional networks among humanitarian stakeholders and GBV networks in Uganda is a plus.
IT / Software / Skills:
  • Familiarity with MS Office software, including Excel. Knowledge of qualitative or quantitative data collection and analysis tools is a plus.

Responsibilities

Act as the Project Lead for Empowered Aid in Uganda and ensure project activities move forward with the agreed timeline and principles.
Supervise the Empowered Aid Officer, also based in Yumbe, who undertakes field activities in close coordination with the other implementing partner, World Vision.
Provide technical assistance to IRC WPE program team and coordinate with local stakeholders, including UNHCR and other humanitarian actors, throughout the life of the contract.
Participate in qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis through distribution and post-distribution tools (including focus groups, surveys, safety audits) in close collaboration (and with opportunities for learning from) GWI team.
  • Co-design and develop materials for the “Empowered Aid” study, often through collaborative processes, including but not limited to research and monitoring tools, referral materials, research briefs, meeting notes, guidance documents, and project reports.
  • Proactively troubleshoot issues as they arrive, in close communication with GWI Project Lead.
  • Organize and co-facilitate participatory trainings for IRC and/or World Vision team members and other stakeholders supporting Empowered Aid implementation, in close collaboration with GWI.
  • Monitor the implementation of the project utilizing existing systems to collect relevant data and contribute to project reporting requirements.
  • Organize and co-facilitate in-person or virtual (depending on COVID-19 context) meetings of the Uganda Technical Advisory Group (TAG), approximately every 4-6 months, as well as maintain correspondence and email updates with TAG in between meetings.
  • Share research findings and advocate for recommended actions by representing and presenting on Empowered Aid at various fora at field, national, and potentially regional/global level (if COVID-19 allows for travel outside of Uganda).
  • Share learning from Empowered Aid Uganda with Empowered Aid team in Lebanon, as well as support Empowered Aid partnerships in Bangladesh to initiate a similar process there.
  • Support continued development/incorporation of SEA risk mitigation messages into COVID-19 response and awareness-raising campaigns through application of findings from Year 1 and Year 2.
  • Maintain and further strengthen relationships with various stakeholders important to the project, including agencies engaged in distribution of material assistance, the Empowered Aid Technical Advisory Group members, government and UN stakeholders at Kampala and District/settlement levels, humanitarian actors, other researchers, etc.
  • Ensure Empowered Aid’s findings are integrated in IRC’s humanitarian programming in Uganda, as well as its partners’ programming, in close coordination with the Listen Up team.
  • Dependent on COVID-19 restrictions: Ideally, the position will include international travel to exchange and learn from other Empowered Aid teams in Lebanon and Bangladesh, to share Empowered Aid findings at relevant fora, and participate in the Global TAG meeting.
  • Ensure proper documentation, tracking and filing of all project activities in line with research objectives, GWI and donor requirements, and implementation strategy;
  • Deliver on all narrative and quantitative reports as per IRC internal requirement, GWI and donor requirements;
  • Ensure ethical internal communication and data sharing of the project with relevant departments specifically MEAL, grants, communications, and advocacy;
  • Work closely with admin, logistics, procurement, and HR units to ensure the success of the project by initiating relevant planning tools (such as procurement plans) and regular coordination meetings.

Job Requirements

Required education: Post-graduate education
Required relevant work experience: 5 years
Required languages: English (Spoken: fluent | Written: fluent)
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