The MERLA Director will have primary responsibility for the design, management, and implementation of systems to ensure quality monitoring and reporting of the project’s Activity Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Plan (AMELP). S/he will be responsible for the development and oversight of operations research the project’s learning agenda. The MERLA Director will provide primary support to the team for timely, complete, and quality reporting of all monitoring, evaluation, and research data from project activities. S/he will also plan for and supervise intermittent performance evaluations, collect, and disseminate lessons learned, and share successes during project implementation. The position will be based in Kampala, Uganda.
- Lead the development, implementation, refinement, and harmonization of the project’s MERLA system and AMELP including develop and operationalize indicators; oversee the collection of baseline data and target setting; and monitor progress.
- Provide oversight of MERLA efforts and work closely with COP and technical staff to ensure they support and inform activity planning, budgeting, and project decisions.
- Provide expertise in use of surveillance data and other health information in evidence-based decision making for malaria programming
- Design and implement the project’s learning agenda and Collaborating, Learning, and Adapting (CLA) activities, including providing leadership for project review meetings and ‘pause and reflect’ sessions. Provide valuable learning leadership to project staff and other stakeholders.
- Work with technical staff to oversee tools for data collection, storage, and analysis; and train staff and partners on MERLA system operations, collection methods, and tools.
- Ensure data quality and integrity through field visits and spot checks to verify data.
- Integrate MERLA into a routine project evaluation and performance improvement process that uses MERLA findings to adjust project activities.
- Design needs-based operations research studies and protocols to generate evidence for which innovations work, which do not work, and why.
- Ensure methodological rigor of research undertaken.
- Lead the development of monthly, quarterly, and annual progress reports on the status of project implementation; contribute to other project reports such as annual work plans.
- Supervise and mentor MERLA staff.
- A Master’s degree in public health, demography, sociology, statistics, international development, or in a relevant field and 10 years or a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field with 12 years’ experience.
- Minimum of 8 years of professional experience in a M&E position in the health field in Uganda; experience with USAID, PMI and/or other development partner projects preferable.
- Solid experience in establishing M&E systems and tools; designing and implementing project evaluations, quantitative and qualitative research, surveillance surveys, data analysis; and familiarity with research methodologies and sampling techniques.
- Demonstrated experience with computer and/or web-based performance data recording and reporting systems and other technologies that improve the quality of monitoring system integrity and data collection/analysis/reporting/visualization; familiarity with DHIS2 and OpenMRS in Uganda preferable.
- Demonstrated capacity to use conduct analysis and use data for decision-making and experience training others to do so.
- Demonstrated experience conducting social science research.
- Experience and in-depth knowledge and familiarity with USAID development sector priorities and reporting requirements; experience with programs focused on health impact considered highly desirable.
- Ability to work effectively, responsively, and collaboratively with government counterparts such as government ministries, development and private sector partners, civil society organizations, private sector, and academic/research institutions.
- Computer literacy, with ability to analyze and interpret data using Excel, online reporting tools, or statistical packages such as SAS, SPSS, or STATA.
- Excellent management, communication, and organizational skills, as well as flexibility and capacity to multi-task.
- Demonstrated experience leading and building the capacity of MERLA staff in a decentralized setting.
- Demonstrated track record in disseminating programmatic and research outcomes and findings at national and international conferences, as well as in the published literature.
- Excellent proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite applications as well as data management and mapping platforms (including DHIS2, STATA/SPSS/R).
- Excellent English language ability and strong interpersonal, written, and oral presentation communication skills.
This position is contingent upon award and funding; the anticipated award date is August 2021. To apply, please upload your resume to our careers portal by clicking on the apply button on this posting. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. RTI is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.