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Senior Research Associate,

at Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL)
Location Kampala, Uganda
Date Posted November 7, 2019
Category Science & Engineering
Currency UGX


Senior Research Associate, Uganda - IPA
Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA)

One of the biggest challenges in supplying education services to poor populations is low personnel morale, low engagement, and high absenteeism. This problem is particularly severe in Uganda, where teacher absenteeism rates are estimated at 27 percent. However, Uganda’s district-centralized teacher deployment system, where teachers are transferred every five years and can be placed in any school in a given district, offers a unique opportunity for low-cost motivation of teachers. In partnership with a rural district in Eastern Uganda, researchers are conducting a randomized evaluation to study whether rewarding top-performing teachers with a future posting of their choice incentivizes teachers to improve their attendance and the quality of their teaching. We seek a Research Associate to support this impact evaluation in the field.

The Senior Research Associate will work closely with academic researchers and other field staff to perform a variety of tasks including, but not limited to: refining study design and surveying instruments, managing survey teams, checking and analyzing data, cleaning data and assisting in preliminary analysis, assisting in the writing of project reports and policy memos, and coordinating with government partners running the programs being evaluated.


Implement Computer Assisted Interviewing (CAI) for surveys;
Oversee complex data collection operations involving multiple surveys and tests running simultaneously;
Ensure adherence to data quality protocols, including auditing enumerators, monitoring data collection, and conducting data quality audits;
Manage data entry and assist in data cleaning and analysis;
Maintain critical high-level relationships with local governmental partners and monitor intervention implementation;
Participate in meetings with key stakeholders and present research findings;
Write reports detailing research findings and proposed interventions;
Oversee funding and human subjects approval applications and reporting, and ensure that all necessary approvals are in place;
Perform related duties as assigned by supervisor; and
Maintain compliance with all company policies and procedures.


Excellent management and organizational skills along with strong quantitative skills;
Experience living in a developing country is a strong plus;
Fluency in English with strong communication skills;
Knowledge of Stata (strongly preferred) or other data analysis software is preferred;
Familiarity with randomized controlled trials preferred;
Demonstrated ability to manage enumerator teams and survey operations at different levels (programming and data flow, financial budgeting and reporting, human resources and team building);
Flexible, self-motivating, able to manage multiple tasks efficiently, and team player; and
Demonstrated ability to manage high-level relationships with partner organizations.

Experience Requirements

One to two years of research experience;

Education Requirements

A bachelor's degree in economics, social sciences, public policy, or related fields. A master's degree is a plus;