International Rescue Committee Senior Research Specialist Jobs in Uganda

International Rescue Committee Senior Research Specialist Jobs in Uganda

About the Global Women’s Institute (GWI)

The Global Women’s Institute at the George Washington University (GWU) is a university-wide initiative dedicated to improving gender equality and supporting the rights of women and girls worldwide.

The Institute’s action-oriented research spans from prevalence studies that generate rigorous evidence on the magnitude of gender-based violence (GBV) to evaluations that measure the effectiveness of interventions preventing and responding to this violence.

With a particular expertise in conducting research on GBV during conflict and post conflict periods, GWI documents experiences of women and girls during times of crises and generate evidence on what works to reduce the violence they experience.

Senior Research Specialist Roles and Responsibilities

  • The Senior Research Specialist will be based in Kampala with frequent travel to the field to support participatory action research activities.
  • The position will support GWI’s Empowered Aid project in refugee-hosting areas of Uganda. This links to GWI’s existing work, “Building GBV Research Capacity in Refugee Settings”, also in Uganda as well as IRC’s “Listen Up!” project on preventing sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA).
  • The Senior Research Specialist will be the face of the project within Uganda, and oversee the day-to-day activities of conducting participatory action research with refugee women and older adolescent girls (Year 1) to better understand the ways in which distribution of material resources in emergencies may create or reinforce opportunities for sexual exploitation and abuse of women and girls.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who have experience with program monitoring and evaluation, as the second year will focus on testing ways to make distributions safer.
  • S/he will be responsible for developing and maintaining good working relationships with a wide variety of stakeholders, including government, civil society, I/NGOs, UN, academia, and others.

    Primary responsibilities will include the following:

    Education & training

  • Master’s degree in Social Sciences, Social Work, Gender/Women Studies, Public Health or related field with women-led participatory action research and program evaluation experience in women & girls’ protection and empowerment programming within emergencies.

    Job Requirements:
  • Experience with women-led qualitative or participatory methods (such as focus groups, key informant interviews, community/body mapping, safety audits, and/or ethnographic research techniques) related to GBV or gender issues and preferably in humanitarian settings;
  • Demonstrated ability to work well with collaborative, participatory and creative processes, where ideas and plans may change, while ensuring timeline, budget & reporting requirements are met;
  • Oriented toward learning, open to independent study to improve skills necessary for successful completion of project;
  • Experience working with refugee communities, preferably in Uganda within the last 5 years;
  • Proven experience in design and developing materials such as GBV research protocols and tools, service referral materials, ethical guidelines and training of staff, research briefs, curricula, guidance documents, and project reports;
  • Experience designing and implementing evaluations and/or M&E systems related to GBV in humanitarian settings;
  • Experience directly providing GBV response services or managing women and girls protection and empowerment programs in Uganda is a plus;
  • Existing professional networks among humanitarian stakeholders and GBV networks in Uganda is a plus.

    IT / Software / Skills:
  • Familiarity with MS Office software, including Excel.
  • Knowledge of qualitative data collection and analysis tools such as Open Code is a plus.

    Language Skills:
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English required.
  • Proficiency in the language spoken by members of the refugee community (Juba Arabic) preferred.

    Detailed Responsibilities & Tasks
  • Act as the Research Manager for Empowered Aid in Uganda and ensure project activities move forward with the agreed timeline and principles.
  • Provide technical assistance to IRC WPE program team and coordinate with local stakeholders, including UNHCR and other humanitarian actors, throughout the life of the contract.
  • Design and develop materials for the “Empowered Aid” study, often through collaborative processes, including but not limited to research protocols and tools, referral materials, research briefs, meeting notes, guidance documents, and project reports.
  • Proactively troubleshoot issues as they arrive, in close communication with GWI Project Lead.
  • Organize and co-facilitate a participatory action research training for WPE team members supporting Empowered Aid implementation, with support from GWI Research Scientists and IRC WPE Technical Advisors.
    This will be developed and delivered in coordination with Project Lead and with support of other GWI staff and IRC WPE Technical Advisors.
  • Organize and co-facilitate 2 participatory action research workshops (1 in Bidibidi and 1 in Imvepi) with the women and older adolescent girls who will implement the research activities in close coordination with GWI Project lead and with support of GWI staff and IRC WPE Technical Advisors.
  • During 3 months of data collection, be on-site (i.e. in the settlements where the study is being undertaken) at least 50% of the time to oversee WPE team research activities.
  • Monitor the implementation of the project by setting up a system to collect relevant data and contribute to project reporting requirements.
  • Organize and co-facilitate in-person meeting of the Uganda Technical Advisory Group (TAG) including periodic virtual check-ins (phone or Skype) 2-3 times.
  • Deliver on all narrative and quantitative reports as per IRC internal requirement, GWI and donor requirements;
  • Ensure ethical internal communication and data sharing of the project with relevant departments specifically MEAL, grants, communications, and advocacy;
  • Work closely with admin, logistics, procurement, and HR units to ensure the success of the project by initiating relevant planning tools (such as procurement plans) and regular coordination meetings.

    Expected outputs/Deliverables
  • The Consultant will be supervised by the IRC WPE Coordinator, with a dotted line of technical oversight by the GWI Project Lead, who provides overall leadership and coordination of Empowered Aid activities in both Uganda and Lebanon as well as with a Global Technical Advisory Group (TAG).
  • The project is by its nature iterative and participatory, therefore the activities detailed here may change in line with what is agreed among the research team including with the women and girls involved.


  • Selection of research locations – co-locate with Listen Up! and/or Girl Shine and EMAP locations
  • co-develop curriculum for participatory action research workshops (PAR), including identification of & invitation to relevant co-facilitators
  • Co-develop research tools and ensure adequate ethical review

    February – March

  • Selection of women and girl research teams: introduce project to women and girls and recruit the research team; participatory selection may align with existing programming like EMAP, SASA!, & Girl Shine
  • Organize invites and logistics for PAR workshops
  • Organize half-day TAG meeting in Kampala for same week as PAR workshop and send ‘Save the Date’ to prospective participants
  • Co-facilitate PAR workshops with Research team (staff, women and girls) involving members of TAG as relevant co-facilitators.
  • This includes training on data collection and tools development (adaptation).


  • Adapt tools and protocol as needed following PAR workshop and any IRB feedback
  • Establish system for data collection and project M&E (i.e. research management system for fieldwork)


  • Undertake field-based data collection (ethnographic fieldwork) with refugee women and girl research teams
  • Ongoing data synthesis and analysis


  • Data analysis and synthesis in preparation for Action Analysis
  • complete a final report on the review, findings and recommendations
  • Adapt Scope of Work (SoW) and prepare contract documents ( if extending into Year 2 ) The IRC and IRC workers, including consultants, must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way - Standards for Professional Conduct.
  • These are Integrity, Service, and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti Workplace Harassment, Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.

    How to Apply
  • Please submit by email to by 25 December including your CV, a cover letter explaining your relevant experience, daily rate and start date availability.
  • Please note your daily rate should cover your travel to Yumbe, accommodation, per diem etc.
  • You will be required to use your own laptop and internet.

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