Temporary Research Associate, Financial Behavior Change

Innovations for Poverty Action - Lusaka, Lusaka

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Temporary Research Associate, Financial Behavior Change
Innovations for Poverty Action seeks a qualified Temporary Research Associate to manage a follow up data collection for a phone-administered survey on financial behavior change in Zambia. The study will be funded by the World Bank and its objective is to assess the financial capabilities of a nationally representative sample, in order to establish the effectiveness of a particular financial capability intervention in the Zambian context. This broader goal of this research is to provide evidence that informs financial inclusion - enhancing the low levels of financial capabilities in Zambia, enabling increased access to finance and ultimately encouraging financial sector growth.

This particular component of the study will be a follow up survey, administered over the phone to a sample of respondents. The Research Associate will work closely with the principal investigators, staff from the World Bank, and IPA country office staff to oversee implementation and conduct constant monitoring and evaluation of the study. The position offers an opportunity to gain first-hand field management experience in an organization undertaking cutting-edge development research with leading researchers. The Research Associate will manage all follow up data collection activities. This position will be based in Lusaka.

We are looking for a commitment period of 3-4 months, beginning from June 2019.


The Temporary Research Associate will perform a variety of tasks including, but not limited to:
  • Refine and pilot the survey instruments, including programming questions for digital data collection.
  • Train and manage a strong survey team to conduct data collection using a phone survey.
  • Ensure strict data quality protocols are followed, including auditing enumerators, performing daily checks of the incoming data, implementing controls to minimize errors, coordinating back checks and correcting errors to ensure collected data is of the highest quality, accuracy and integrity.
  • Assist the field team to ensure maximum response and minimal non-response in phone surveys.
  • Produce weekly reports on the progress of data collection.
  • Manage data, from collection to delivery of a final, cleaned dataset.
  • Prepare an end-of-project report including descriptive statistics, design information, protocol and discussion of results.
  • Manage the budget, including tracking all expenses to ensure costs are within project funds.
  • Coordinate with relevant stakeholders to ensure interests are aligned and accounted for, and participate in and present the study at meetings with key stakeholders where necessary.
  • Report issues arising in the field to the researchers, partner and line manager.
  • Ensure compliance with regulations of local research ethics boards and other regulatory bodies


  • A Bachelor's or Master’s degree in economics, international development, public policy or related fields; Master's Degree preferred.
  • Excellent project management and organizational skills; meticulous attention to detail.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English; including ability to communicate effectively with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Prior work experience with running phone-administered surveys (desired).
  • Ability to work independently and to carry out assignments to completion within parameters of instructions given, prescribed routines, and standard accepted practices.
  • A strong understanding of research methods and prior training/experience in conducting quantitative research in economics, public health, statistics or related disciplines
  • Strong quantitative skills and very good knowledge of Stata required; programming and other technical knowledge a strong plus.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead staff efficiently to achieve project goals.
  • Creativity and intellectual curiosity in experimental methods, ability to find quick and effective solutions to unforeseen circumstances
  • Flexible, independent, self-motivating, ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and work under pressure
  • Experience working or living in Sub-Saharan Africa preferred.
  • Familiarity with quantitative research methods, particularly randomized controlled trials preferred.

Application Instructions

Complete the J-PAL/IPA common application. After completing a brief registration, choose the Research job category, then select “Temporary Research Associate, Financial Behavior Change”. 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.


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