Vacancy for Senior Research Associate, Socio-Emotional Skills in Women’s Business Development

IPA is undertaking a research study with the World Bank Gender Innovation Lab (GIL) to assess the returns to socio-emotional skills training for people working in the agri-business sector. IPA and GIL will work with the Nigerian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development to carry out a randomized control trail across six states to increase the understanding of how to effectively deliver these skills and in turn impact individuals earnings, employment, and entrepreneurship. This study will contribute to a larger research program studying the impacts socio-emotional skills in a range of populations and contexts.

The Senior Research Associate will work closely with leading researchers and other field staff to perform a variety of tasks including, but not limited to: coordinating research plans with project partners, piloting survey questionnaires, conducting qualitative research, refining study design and surveying instruments, managing survey teams, negotiating contracts with survey firms, cleaning and analyzing data, assisting in the writing of project reports and policy memos, and coordinating with local partners running the programs being evaluated.


Throughout the life of the project, the Senior Research Associate will be expected to carry out the following activities;

  • Developing and piloting the survey instruments and managing the translation of the survey into local languages
  • Creating and implementing protocols and monitoring mechanisms for a smooth roll out of the intervention
  • Hiring, training, and managing field teams and/or survey firm who will conduct the interviews and implement the intervention monitoring
  • Working closely with partners running the intervention and liaising between all stakeholders to ensure all interests are aligned and accounted for
  • Managing all field logistics, procuring equipment, and ensuring the study and the intervention have approvals from local authorities
  • Ensuring all data quality protocols are followed including auditing enumerators and performing daily checks of the incoming data; correcting the errors of staff iteratively to ensure the data is of the highest quality
  • Managing the data from collection at the household to delivery of a final, cleaned dataset
  • Managing the budget, including tracking all expenses to ensure costs are within project funds
  • Writing regular progress reports and leading project meetings to ensure deadlines are met
  • Organizing and providing training in impact evaluation for project team(s) and partners as needed
  • Cleaning and merging datasets, providing support to researchers on initial analysis tasks
  • Other task as required
  • A degree (Master’s preferred) in economics, public policy, international development, health, or related fields
  • Excellent project management skills and attention to detail, with a quality-focused mindset
  • Experience interacting with partners, government officials and other key stakeholders in a developing country context
  • Cultural sensitivity and demonstrated ability to work successfully with diverse constituencies
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English
  • Ability to work independently, problem-solve, and enlist support when needed
  • Strong quantitative skills and very good knowledge of Stata
  • Must be able to work under pressure and meet deadlines
  • Experience working or living in developing countries


Additional desired qualifications:

  • Experience working in Nigeria or the West African context
  • Experience supervising data collection and teams of field workers
  • Knowledge of randomized controlled trials and econometrics
  • Knowledge of measurement and instrument development
  • Experience working on sensitive issues related to gender and social norms
  • Knowledge of qualitative data collection methods
Application Instructions

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Research job category, then select “Senior Research Associate, Socio-Emotional Skills in Women’s Business Development”.  Most applications for research positions require you to include at minimum two letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose (cover letter), CV, and transcripts.

Note that you are able to submit your application before your references complete their recommendation letters; however, you must include their contact information before submitting your application.

Given the volume of applications received, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview.

About IPA

Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is a research and policy nonprofit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. 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. In recent decades, trillions of dollars have been spent on programs designed to reduce global poverty, but clear evidence on which programs succeed is rare, and when evidence does exist, decision-makers often do not know about it. IPA exists to bring together leading researchers and these decision-makers to ensure that the evidence we create leads to tangible impact on the world. Since its founding in 2002, IPA has worked with over 575 leading academics to conduct over 650 evaluations in 51 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide.


Innovations for Poverty Action is an EO Employer-MF/Veteran/Disability. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other protected class. IPA will endeavor to make a reasonable accommodation to a qualified applicant with a disability unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the operation of our business. If you believe you require such assistance to complete this form or to participate in an interview, please contact us at or via phone at 1-203-772-2216. Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of the work to be performed by the specified position. The statements are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all possible duties, tasks, and responsibilities. Management reserves the right to amend and change responsibilities to meet organizational needs as necessary. Please note that IPA will never request any form of payment from an applicant. Applicants are encouraged to confirm the information listed above with IPA prior to releasing any extensive personal information to the organization. Please direct questions to

** Please note that only qualified applicants will be contacted by the hiring manager.


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