Reports to: Director of Research (DMI UK)
Responsible for: n/a
Start date: As soon as possible
Term: Full time, permanent
Based in: London (N1), UK with some overseas travel
Salary: £45,000 plus 5% pension contribution and private health insurance
Closing date: 27 January 2018
Development Media International (DMI) delivers media campaigns aimed at changing behaviours, promoting health and saving lives in developing countries. We are the first organisation to scientifically demonstrate that mass media can increase life-saving behaviours. DMI recently published the results of its 5-year, £7m randomised controlled trial in West Africa which showed that 56% more children were taken for treatment for malaria, 73% more for diarrhoea and 39% more for pneumonia following exposure to our campaign. Modelling indicates that over 3000 lives were saved during the campaign and that our approach is one of the most cost-effective ways of saving children’s lives.
DMI has two priorities: first, to continue to generate ground-breaking research (we are conducting another randomised control trial in Burkina Faso, this time to measure our impact on contraceptive uptake), second, to take our proven strategies to scale, saving as many lives as possible. We work across a range of health issues, including child survival, reproductive health, nutrition, hygiene, and early childhood development. DMI works in close partnership with leading experts in health, including WHO, UNICEF and LSHTM and has been funded by some of the world’s most prestigious organisations including the Wellcome Trust, DFID, Comic Relief, the Global Innovation Fund, Unorthodox Philanthropy and the Mulago Foundation.
We are an innovative and rapidly growing organisation, working at the nexus between science and creativity. DMI has demonstrated that knowledge is not only a human right, but is also the key to saving lives in a cost-effective way. Our intellectual rigour, enthusiasm and willingness to learn from both our successes and mistakes, makes us distinct. Our ethos is non-hierarchical: all our staff are intellectually high-powered and we have a “best idea wins” culture. By working at DMI you will have a genuine, measurable impact on improving lives in low-income countries.
DMI has a permanent presence in Burkina Faso, Mozambique and Tanzania and will expand to Ethiopia,Madagascar,Malawi, Uganda and Zambia in 2019. Its regional operations include five more countries in West Africa as well as Burundi. DMI’s headquarters overlooks the Regents Canal in Hoxton, London and provides the strategic direction for the whole organisation.
DMI is ranked as one of the most cost-effective non-profit organisations in the world by GiveWell and was the first organisation to receive the maximum rating from Impact Matters. It is also endorsed by the Centre for Effective Altruism, Giving What We Can and The Life You Can Save.
Research is an essential component of DMI’s work and identity. We are pioneering the integration of creative media campaigns with research that meets the highest scientific standards. Rigorous evaluation is essential if we are to convince funders, policymakers and the scientific community of the value of using media campaigns to shift behaviours on a large scale.
We are looking for an exceptional Research Manager to join our London team. S/he will support our Director of Research and other research staff to design and manage both the quantitative and qualitative research involved in all DMI projects. The successful candidate will collaborate with DMI’s evaluation partners from leading global academic institutions such as LSHTM and J-PAL. S/he will also be responsible for publishing articles on DMI’s past and present research.
This position requires skills in both quantitative and qualitative research. While most candidates will be stronger in one rather than the other, they must have sufficient background to do both to a professional standard.
More specifically, the Research Manager’s role will include the following responsibilities:
- Designing and managing effective and scientifically robust evaluation methods (both quantitative and qualitative) for new DMI projects.
- Advising and supporting research teams in the UK and in DMI national offices to conduct routine research activities (qualitative and quantitative) and other, project-specific research tasks.
- Commissioning and managing external agencies (generally based in the country where we are working) to carry out surveys. This will include the competitive selection of an agency, often using a tendering process. The Research Manager will be responsible for liaison with the selected agency and ensuring that their work in support of DMI is of the highest scientific standards.
- Contributing to writing and publishing reports based on data gathered and methodologies used during DMI projects. This will include articles for peer-reviewed academic journals and wider scientific publications.
- Contributing to project design during the proposal phase, particularly in relation to the design of monitoring and evaluation elements.
- Keeping abreast of the latest research evidence, theories and concepts relevant to DMI’s campaign topics, and communicating trends and new ideas across the organisation.
- Working with, and building the research capacity of, colleagues and sub-contractors in the areas of formative research, monitoring, process evaluation, and impact evaluation, and providing hands-on research expertise to the DMI teams in the UK and internationally.
- Other tasks as required by DMI.
Required knowledge, skills and experience
- Very strong intellectual ability, as evidenced by a research-focussed PhD in epidemiology, public health, health economics, economics, statistics, biomedical sciences or an equivalent field. A relevant postgraduate degree plus a minimum of five years relevant research experience may be acceptable for exceptional candidates.
- Post-qualification experience in a research capacity within the academic, public or private sectors.
- Excellent writing skills (in English), as proven both by an extensive publication record, and by an ability to communicate complex technical ideas to non-specialist audiences, both internally and externally.
- Practical experience with, and good working knowledge of, statistical analysis programmes, such as Stata, SPSS, R or SAS, and strong general IT skills including questionnaire design, database development and working with complex spreadsheets.
- An inquisitive and open-minded approach, evidenced by knowledge and understanding of a broad range of research topics and a willingness to learn about new themes, approaches and techniques when required.
- High capacity for work, shown by the ability to cope with multiple concurrent professional priorities and tight deadlines. This will require strong organisational skills but also the flexibility to understand the pressures, uncertainties and difficulties of working in an international development context.
- Permission to live and work in the UK.
Desirable knowledge, skills and experience
- Language ability in French, Portuguese or other major global language, both written and spoken.
- Practical experience of designing, monitoring, and evaluating programmes, preferably with some experience in developing countries, and a good understanding of the monitoring and evaluation requirements of global funders. Experience of data collection using PDAs/mobile phones/tablets would be very useful.
- Experience of living and/or working in a developing country.