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Senior International Researcher - Learning & Strategy

Job ID 1284-7

Position Description:

Mathematica applies expertise at the intersection of data, methods, policy, and practice to address complex social challenges and improve well-being around the world. We create and use evidence to help our public and private sector partners improve programs, refine strategies, and advance knowledge. Over the past two decades, Mathematica has developed a large portfolio of international development work that spans more than 50 countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Europe. Our work provides actionable learning to guide decision-making and improve outcomes in a range of policy areas, including health, agriculture, energy, education, and workforce development.

Mathematica’s International Research Unit seeks a versatile, client-oriented Senior Researcher to lead high-profile learning and strategy engagements with philanthropic organizations. Working with diverse colleagues in small teams, the Senior Researcher will generate and distill evidence to guide our clients’ strategy, grant-making, and program improvement efforts. The ideal candidate will have experience leading user-oriented research, analytic, and consulting engagements; substantial content knowledge and experience in the health, nutrition, or agriculture sectors; and a high level of comfort engaging with philanthropic clients. Individuals who excel in this position have a passion for using data and evidence to drive social change, a talent for conceptual and strategic thinking, and an ability to produce high-quality work in the face of compressed timelines and changing circumstances.

Responsibilities include:

  • Developing monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) frameworks for complex strategies and programs, including theories of change (ToCs), results frameworks, learning agendas, and key performance indicators
  • Designing performance measurement systems and dashboards that are optimized to serve clients’ monitoring and learning needs
  • Leading the design and execution of evaluations and portfolio reviews that require systematic analysis of multiple data sources, including program data and documents, stakeholder interviews, survey data, and other secondary data sources
  • Facilitating group learning and reflection sessions to discuss the results and implications of evaluations and other learning products
  • Offering technical assistance to on-the-ground partners, including support for MEL frameworks, monitoring dashboards, and evaluation designs
  • Assessing and synthesizing a large body of evidence to provide clients with compelling insights and sound recommendations for strategy

Position Requirements:

Knowledge and skills:

  • Excellent qualitative and quantitative analytical skills and a strong understanding of theory-driven, mixed methods research
  • Deep experience and demonstrated expertise in health, nutrition, and/or agriculture
  • Excellent conceptual thinking skills, including an ability to put parameters on nebulous concepts and create insightful conceptual models
  • Superlative written communication skills and an ability to distill and convey complex findings using slide decks, intuitive visuals, and issue briefs
  • Excellent oral communication skills, including an ability to collaborate in a poised and professional manner with diverse stakeholders

Education and experience:

  • A minimum of 8 years of post-graduate professional experience leading complex learning efforts, including research, performance measurement, data analytics, and/or facilitation tasks
  • A demonstrated track record of success meeting the strategy, evidence, and learning needs of foundations, corporate philanthropies, nonprofits, and/or bilateral and multilateral donors
  • PhD or Master’s degree in international development, public policy, economics, public health, or a related discipline
  • Experience in South Asia and/or Sub-Saharan Africa is preferred

Location and compensation:

  • All Mathematica staff are currently working from home, activating flexible work schedules and company supports as necessary. Applicants should identify their preferred location for when we return to the office.
  • Available locations: Princeton, NJ; Washington, DC; Cambridge, MA; Chicago, IL; Ann Arbor, MI; Oakland, CA; Seattle, WA
  • This position offers an anticipated annual base salary range of $120,000 - $180,000. This position may be eligible for a discretionary bonus based on company and individual performance.
  • Mathematica offers our employees competitive salaries and a comprehensive benefits package, as well as the advantages of being 100 percent employee owned. As an employee stock owner, you will experience financial benefits of ESOP holdings that have increased in tandem with the company’s growth and financial strength. You will also be part of an independent, employee-owned firm that is able to define and further our mission, enhance our quality and accountability, and steadily grow our financial strength. Learn more about our benefits here. https://www.mathematica.org/career-opportunities/benefits-at-a-glance

Culture and corporate policies:

  • Mathematica’s culture is highly collegial in a way that permeates all our interactions and products. We take pride in our employees, their professional growth, and their commitment to excellence. We encourage staff to collaborate in developing creative solutions to difficult problems and to share the responsibility and enjoyment of carrying out complex projects. This collegial spirit has helped us earn our reputation for innovative and high-quality work.
  • One of Mathematica’s core values is a deep commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our research is more robust because it is informed by a variety of diverse perspectives, and our mission to improve societal well-being is strengthened by a greater understanding of issues and challenges facing the populations we serve. Mathematica’s ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion is woven into our everyday actions, policies, and practices. We are dedicated to maintaining a work environment in which everyone is treated with respect and dignity. We offer Employee Resources Groups on a variety of topics, local diversity and inclusion activities in each office, and a Diversity council.

How to apply:

  • Applicants must submit: a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and contact information for three references. The ideal writing sample will: (1) be written primarily by the candidate; (2) have strong links to health, nutrition, or agriculture sectors; (3) demonstrate analytical and conceptual thinking; and (4) present decision-makers with recommendations.
  • In addition to the writing sample, applicants are invited to share a slide deck they have created that showcases their ability to present findings, implications, and recommendations in a digestible format.

Various federal agencies with whom we contract require that staff successfully undergo a background investigation or security clearance as a condition of working on a project. If you are assigned to such a project, you will be required to obtain the requisite security clearance.


We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

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