Website Poverty Action Lab
The Policy team at J-PAL South Asia (J-PAL SA) at the Institute of Financial Management and Research (IFMR) disseminates findings of J-PAL’s research; develops relationships with government, civil society, and academic stakeholders; catalyses scale-ups and replications of effective projects; and assists in conceptualizing new research projects. In line with its mission to create a long-lasting culture of evidence-informed decision-making, over the past decade, J-PAL SA has continuously developed and refined a model of engaging with state governments in India which ensures that we continue to build on evidence generation through rigorous research, and most importantly, enable the translation of research into action.
As J-PAL South Asia expands its engagements across states, we seek a Policy Manager to contribute to its mission of promoting evidence-informed policy to support its increasing engagement with the Government of Andhra Pradesh. The role will focus on leveraging resources to gain government buy-in for relevant research, policy advisory, administrative data use, capacity building, and scale-up of tested programmes.
The key responsibilities and other requirements for the role are as detailed below:
1. Support J-PAL’s Policy Team in its mission of promoting evidence-informed policy: This will entail understanding, summarizing and supporting the dissemination of J-PAL evidence; and working with government, civil society partners, and donors to promote the production and use of rigorous evidence:
- Support policy-research dialogues with State Departments: Lead networking and follow-up with government officials in Andhra Pradesh to understand their policy priorities and promote the use and production of rigorous evidence. Catalyse new randomized evaluation research by matching innovative projects in the region with J-PAL affiliated professors.
- Evidence Synthesis and Dissemination: Draft internal reference materials and policy outreach materials summarizing evidence from J-PAL evaluations (e.g, summaries, briefs, concept notes, letters, presentations). Write about J-PAL’s evaluations in relevant documents with clear, accurate, and non-technical language. Represent J-PAL SA at policy-relevant events and in meetings with relevant stakeholders, to share and present evidence from the different J-PAL thematic sectors.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Build and maintain relationships with key partners in governments, NGOs, foundations, and multilateral aid agencies in the region.
2. Institutionalising an evidence-based approach to policy: This will entail working closely on strategic engagement with the Government of Andhra Pradesh with the aim of institutionalising a data and evidence-informed approach to policy decisions. This would include:
- Identifying New Areas for Collaboration: Work closely with nodal departments in Andhra Pradesh, including the Finance department, the Planning Department, Chief Secretary’s office, and senior officials of line departments to gauge policy windows for collaboration.
- Furthering new policy research dialogues: Frequent in-person interface with line departments, which would fast-track the policy-research discussions we plan to have with multiple departments in the coming year
- Supporting Partnership Management: Working closely with senior members of the Policy team to support with troubleshooting on ongoing projects, help coordinate the Steering Committee meetings and hold regular update meetings with the State. This will also include presenting to senior bureaucrats and politicians of the state, as required.
- Supporting evidence based scale-ups: Supporting the J-PAL SA team in exploring opportunities for scaling up tested programmes in collaboration with relevant State departments.
- People Management: Manage and mentor Policy Associates and/or Sr. Policy Associates, giving them support to perform better and prioritizing their learning and skill development.
- Cross-vertical collaboration: Participate in cross-vertical collaboration opportunities such as providing systematic support to an ongoing research project, capacity building of internal staff, etc.
- Education: Master’s degree (preferably in public policy, international development or economics). A basic understanding of economics and/or evaluation methods is necessary to ensure that J-PAL SA’s findings are translated into general policy conclusions in a way that is both simple to follow but also accurate and undistorted.
- Experience: This position requires three or more years of relevant experience in addition to a relevant Master’s degree – previous managerial experience will be an added advantage. Candidates who have experience collaborating with central and state government agencies as essential for the role. Candidates with similar experience in Andhra Pradesh/Telangana will be strongly preferred.
- Keen interest in engaging with Randomized Evaluations: Demonstrate a keen understanding of the value of randomized evaluations and their usefulness for policy decisions.
Skills and Competencies
- Communication: Excellent writing and presentation skills for communicating policy lessons from academic papers to a non-technical audience. This requires clear, precise, non-technical writing, and creativity in presentation:
- Proven ability to handle several different projects/tasks at one time, successfully complete tasks assigned, and meet deadlines;
- High level of attention to detail;
- Strong interest in international development policy, South Asia development, and/or programme evaluation as demonstrated by coursework and professional experience:
- Ability to work closely with multiple team members simultaneously and in a collaborative manner;
- Language: Fluency in English (written and oral), Telugu (strongly preferred)
How to Apply
1. Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. On the ‘Submit Application’ page, select the “Policy Manager Government of Andhra Pradesh – J-PAL South Asia” position.
2. On the documents page, please upload PDF files for cover letter, CV, transcripts for Policy Manager position with the filename “Policy Manager SA_Last Name_First Name”, and click submit.
3. In addition, we require two letters of recommendation. If you think your references will not be submitted before the application deadline, please submit your application without the recommendation letters. However, please be advised that we will be requiring them should you be invited for an interview.
Short-listed applicants will be asked to complete a written test and may subsequently be called in for an interview.
To apply for this job please visit www.povertyactionlab.org.