Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at Harvard Kennedy School is a young, dynamic research initiative that brings analytical insights, typically from economics, to the design and implementation of public policies and programs around the world. EPoD directly engages with governments and local organizations to identify key questions, design innovative new policies or interventions, and test these using the tools of economics and data analysis, including large field-based experiments. Current research topics at EPoD include governance, education, entrepreneurship, health, agriculture, sustainable development, and access to finance.
EPoD is currently seeking a Cambridge-based Senior Program Manager to oversee a growing portfolio of EPoD research, training and policy activities, primarily focused on Saudi Arabia. The portfolio centers on two large-scale research-policy engagements with the Saudi Ministry of Labor and Social Development and the Ministry of Education, and produces cutting-edge empirical research to improve policy outcomes. Reporting to the Assistant Director of Research, the Senior Program Manager will manage all programmatic and administrative components of large-scale research engagements, liaising with key policy stakeholders including the Ministry of Labor and Social Development and Ministry Education in Saudi Arabia as well as researchers from Harvard and other leading academic institutions. The candidate will manage a multi-million dollar Request-for-Proposals (RFP) mechanism, ensure fulfilment of deliverable requirements by EPoD and EPoD-funded research teams, and oversee a complex set of subcontracts with top universities around the world. He/she will also oversee financial management and staffing needs across the portfolio, working closely with the EPoD grants and finance team. The Senior Program Manager will also maintain strong relationships with relevant research centers and administrative offices across Harvard. This position is based in the U.S. but also requires occasional travel to field locations, particularly Saudi Arabia.
Research and Project Management
Lead programmatic management of a large portfolio of research, policy, and training activities in coordination with faculty, Cambridge-based and field staff, and project stakeholders, with accountability for pre-award and post-award compliance for sponsored grants and other funding.
Design and implement research support systems to ensure research project success, including systems for identifying policy counterparts, making data requests, hiring research fellows, and other key research functions.
Regularly assess the progress of funded research projects and work with research teams to troubleshoot any challenges encountered.
Forecast revenues and expenses, and make assessments and recommendations on budget allocations with support from the grants and finance team, and in collaboration with other units at Harvard or externally.
Oversee and manage the RFP mechanism, including the proposal and review process, in collaboration with faculty and the administrative teams at EPoD, and coordinating with counterparts within other units and institutions.
Ensure compliance with research protocols for human subjects research, and track IRB approvals both at Harvard and other institutions funded through the RFP mechanism.
Serve as the main point of contact for contractual, financial, and administrative issues for research teams funded through the RFP mechanism.
Travel to the field as needed to ensure robust management of program activities, representing EPoD faculty interests.
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International Operations and Human Resources
Develop and manage international employment services agreements, vendor agreements, Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs), and other international agreements for the portfolio.
Liaise with units across the University that have oversight responsibilities for international research, in collaboration with EPoD's grants and finance team.
Provide management oversight to assigned project staff.
Collaboratively manage recruitment, including recommendations for hiring and onboarding processes for new project staff and research fellows.
Negotiate and problem solve with external vendors and collaborators.
Policy Outreach and Communications
Develop communication and research dissemination strategy for overall portfolio, in collaboration with the Assistant Director of Research, with outcome of increased researcher engagement and program awareness.
Collaboratively identify opportunities to develop or expand research projects, training engagements and other collaborations.
Design research seminars, symposia, workshops and other events in close coordination with EPoD faculty and the Assistant Director of Research. Oversee and delegate responsibility for planning and executing events.
Provide direction and management of web content, policy briefs, and other communications to effectively present research opportunities and outcomes to an outside audience, including current and potential funders and funding recipients.
Collaboratively develop funding proposals (e.g. develop, edit, and proofread presentations, reports, grant proposals, and supporting documents for EPoD research and initiatives).
Manage and cultivate partnerships between EPoD and other Harvard research centers on topics related economic development in the MENA region, research management, and RFP management best practices, and effectively represent EPoD and faculty researchers at relevant conferences and meetings.
Develop and maintain other internal and external constituent relationships.
Accomplish other related duties as required.
Will be required to travel to and spend extended time in Saudi Arabia and other field sites, estimated at up to 20%.
Harvard University requires pre-employment reference and background checks. Harvard University is committed to supporting a healthy, sustainable learning and working environment.
This position is a fully benefits-eligible term appointment ending one year from the date of hire with the possibility of renewal.
Salary Grade: 057
Union: 00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary
Bachelor's degree or at least five years of progressive program management experience, including experience with field research.
Master's degree in public policy, international development or related field strongly preferred. Strong interest in public policy and economic development. Excellent English oral and written communication skills. Background in research and project management, including an ability to integrate research and policy into coherent and effective written materials. Strong and demonstrated ability to manage financial resources and project budgets desirable. Experience working in Saudi Arabia or other Gulf countries preferred.
The candidate should be well organized, able to prioritize, have strong attention to detail and be able to manage multiple assignments simultaneously. The position requires strong interpersonal skills, and the ability to interact well with faculty, staff, students, and research partners.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER: We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
Harvard University is devoted to excellence in teaching, learning, and research, and to developing leaders in many disciplines who make a difference globally. The University, which is based in Cambridge and Boston, Massachusetts, has an enrollment of over 20,000 degree candidates, including undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Harvard has more than 360,000 alumni around the world. T...he University has twelve degree-granting Schools in addition to the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, offering a truly global education. Established in 1636, Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States.