Program Officer - Sub-Saharan Africa

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Published 17 days ago

Job Details



Job Summary:

 Every employee of IRI is responsible for carrying out the Mission of IRI and demonstrating the Core Values in their day to day operations. The Core Values, which are IRI’s foundational building blocks include: 


Excellence- We believe in quality results delivered by investing in people. Freedom- We believe in exploration and experimentation to be agile and responsive. Respect- We believe in trust, empathy and empowering people. Teamwork- We believe in diversity, inclusion and the power of global collaboration. Transparency- We believe in open communication and clear decision-making. Accountability- We believe in personal responsibility as the foundation of success.


The Program Officer (PO) is responsible for designing and implementing a strategy for assigned IRI programs in Sub-Saharan Africa, most likely working on the East or Southern Africa teams. S/he closely monitors and analyzes political and economic developments in assigned countries and the surrounding region, develops program ideas, and drafts proposals on a range of democracy and assistance programs. S/he also identifies program partners and develops and maintains close relationships with them and with funders. The PO is also involved in new business development efforts for assigned portfolio. Countries of focus may include but are not limited to Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania and Mozambique.

  Position Requirements:   

  •  Undergraduate degree in political science, international relations or related field.
  • Three to five years’ professional experience in democratic governance and politics, preferably working directly with civil society organizations/NGOs, women, youth or persons with disabilities, political parties, legislative bodies or equivalent combination. Experience with the following topics strongly desired: transitional politics, conflict/post-conflict contexts, elections, coalition building, advocacy, civic/voter education, citizen engagement and/or public opinion research.
  • Working knowledge of the politics, economics, history and culture of the region, particularly East or Southern Africa.
  • Strong written and oral communication and presentation skills. 
  • Demonstrated experience working with US Government funded projects and familiarity with USG regulations and processes, especially USAID.
  • Experience with program management, implementation and basic accounting necessary to draft and oversee a budget. 
  • Demonstrated management experience including ability to motivate and manage staff. 
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively direct or participate in complex negotiations with bilateral and/or multilateral government agencies, other funders or relevant audiences. 
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a team to coordinate and lead the efforts of other professionals to effectively meet program goals. 
  • Ability to travel to new and challenging environments. 


 Primary Functions & Responsibilities:

  •   Monitors, analyzes and reports on political and related developments in assigned countries to provide regional and country analysis and information.
  •  Anticipates and troubleshoots project problems and offers solutions and actively takes part to lead resolution of them with creative and immediate solutions.
  • Oversees implementation of specific grant(s) and associated grant activities.
  • Maintains an understanding of IRI policies and procedures related to grant compliance and oversight as well as assigned grants’ specific substantive, financial and compliance requirements per its respective funder.
  • Supports efforts to ensure that grants are in compliance with grant agreements and completed on time.
  • Monitors and ensures proper tracking of budget estimates and program expenditures to ensure that IRI projects remain within budget allocations; leads regular team budget analysis discussions.
  • Oversees and participates in all monitoring and evaluation efforts for grants assigned.
  • Leads efforts to evaluate and uses information related to the approved grant work plan.
  • In collaboration with the field team, drafts, reviews and edits information to ensure high quality quarterly, semi-annual, final and other relevant reports for funders.
  • Contributes to the substantive design of new programs and contributes to the development of new program ideas.
  • Assists with assessing new funding opportunities and serve as lead writer or proposal manager (as assigned) for new bid opportunities.
  • Establishes, maintains, and develops strong working relationships with relevant stakeholders in DC and abroad.
  • Actively supports IRI’s communication strategy including IRI’s branding and outreach plans, including drafts and updates program summaries and other outreach materials, drafts web stories, tweets, etc.
  • Represents IRI at external events and oversees IRI-led working group(s) on assigned countries.
  • Travels as needed for program oversight and implementation; if an immediate need arises deploys on short-to long-term service in a program in the field to maintain continuity of the program.
  • Assists Program Manager in overseeing Program Associate(s), and is consulted in hiring and evaluation process. Contributes ongoing performance feedback in coordination with Program Manager.
  • Participates in cross functional teams and initiatives (optional).
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Job Details



Job Summary:

 Every employee of IRI is responsible for carrying out the Mission of IRI and demonstrating the Core Values in their day to day operations. The Core Values, which are IRI’s foundational building blocks…

Details at a Glance

  • Time Commitment
    Full Time Schedule
  • Start Date
    June 1, 2021
  • Application Deadline
    May 27, 2021
  • Education
    4-Year Degree Required
  • Professional Level


Temporarily Remote
Work may be performed anywhere in the world
Associated Location
1225 I Street NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20005, United States

How to Apply

Successful candidate should submit a resume and cover letter.

Successful candidate should submit a resume and cover letter.

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