Senior Program Manager

About EPoD

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 applied microeconomics, 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. Working closely with the Senior Policy Research Manager, the Senior Program Manager will lead the management of all programmatic and administrative components of large-scale research engagements, liaising with key policy stakeholders including ministries in Saudi Arabia and world-class researchers from Harvard and other leading academic institutions. The candidate will manage a multi-million dollar RFP mechanism, ensure fulfillment 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 international staffing needs across the portfolio. The Senior Program Manager will also maintain strong relationships with relevant administrative offices and research programs across Harvard. This position is based in the U.S. but also requires travel to field locations, particularly Saudi Arabia. 

Portfolio Operations and 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. Accountable for pre award and post award compliance (including financial policies, technical quality and IRB compliance) for sponsored grants and other funding.
  • Drive forward assigned project and initiative objectives for successful completion, drawing in and synthesizing inputs from a range of team members, collaborators and partners, as needed.
  • Forecast revenues and expenses for the program; make assessments and recommendations to allocate resources from one area of the budget to another with support from the grants and finance team, and in collaboration with other units at Harvard or externally.
  • Provide direction, oversight for implementation and support on web site content and communications development to more effectively present research funding opportunities and priorities to an outside audience, including current and potential funders and funding recipients.
  • Oversee and delegate responsibility for the RFP application and review process in collaboration with faculty and the administrative teams at EPoD, and coordinating with counterparts within other units or institutions.
  • Collaboratively develop research and policy proposals (e.g. develop, edit, and proofread presentations, reports, grant proposals, and supporting documents for EPoD research and initiatives).
  • Oversee and delegate responsibility for planning and executing events (seminars, workshops, symposia) in close coordination with Senior Policy Research Manager and other EPoD staff and fellows.
  • Collaboratively identify opportunities to develop or expand research projects, training engagements and other collaborations.

Staff and Resources Management

  • Administer all international hiring, vendor agreements, Memorandum of Understandings (MOUs), and other international operations for portfolio.
  • Provide management oversight to assigned project staff, who support the administration of this portfolio.
  • Collaboratively manage recruitment, including recommendations for hiring and on-boarding processes for new project staff and research fellows.
  • Travel to the field as needed to ensure robust management of program activities, representing EPoD faculty interests.
  • Negotiate and problem solve with external vendors and collaborators.

Stakeholder Engagement and Relationship Development

  • Design, implement and direct marketing strategy for overall portfolio with outcome of increased researcher engagement and program awareness.
  • Manage and expand partnerships between EPoD and other Harvard research centers on topics related economic development in the MENA region, high quality 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.

Basic Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree plus at least five years of progressive program management experience, including experience with field research. 

Additional Qualifications

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 grant 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 balance budgets for projects 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 manage multiple assignments simultaneously. The position requires strong interpersonal skills, the ability to interact well with faculty, staff, students, and research partners. Experience in private sector will be evaluated favorably

Additional Information

Will be required to travel to and spend extended time in Saudi Arabia and other field sites, estimated at about 10%.

To apply, please go here and search for position 42400BR. Please upload your cover letter and resume as one document.
Harvard University requires pre-employment reference and background checks.

This position is a fully benefits eligible term appointment ending one year after date of hire with the strong possibility of renewal.

Harvard University is committed to supporting a healthy, sustainable learning and working environment.

Pre-Employment Screening: Education, Identity

EEO Statement:  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, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law.

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