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ODI - Programme Manager

Sorry, this vacancy is now closed

Type of contract
Research and Policy in Development Programme
£33,420 - £39,896
Closing date
14 Jan 2018



Programme Manager – Research and Policy in Development Programme (RAPID)

Contract: Fixed Term Maternity Cover until 3rd May 2019

Salary: £33,420 - £39,896 per annum

Location: London

Ref: RAPID/01/18



The UK’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues.


About us


ODI (www.odi.org.uk) aims to inspire and inform policy and practice to reduce poverty by locking together high-quality applied research and practical policy advice.


We are looking for a Programme Manager to oversee the day-to-day development and management of the RAPID Programme.


RAPID aims to promote greater use of research-based development policy and practice through a deep understanding of the relationship between research and policy and development of appropriate tools and approaches for the different actors that take into account the complexity of the relationship.


Programme work includes:

  • High quality research and publications on the political economy of research and evaluation based evidence uptake, strategies of think tanks in developing countries and their relationships with other political actors, policy research networks, complexity, knowledge management, communications and monitoring and evaluation of policy change for learning focused development agencies.
  • Capacity development for ODI and donor staff and ODI’s northern and southern partners including the development training materials and support services, workshops seminars and training courses.
  • Technical assistance through consultancy for DFID, other Development Agencies, research programmes, think tanks and networks.
  • The establishment and support of a community of practice including a pool of experts and an on-line resource-base including case-studies and practical tools (www.ebpdn.org or the www.outcomemapping.ca) through, in part, our collaboration with global, regional and national initiatives such as the TTI, relevant RPC, Results for Development’s Transparency and Accountability Programme (TAP), The Governance and Transparency Fund, and 3ie, etc.
  • Communication and direct engagement with the broad think tank community (including funders, think tanks and researchers) and Civil Society and Public Policy academic programmes to facilitate the uptake of lessons from RAPID’s work.


The programme is particularly keen to develop work in the following areas:

  • Analysis of the interface between knowledge, policy and power especially the incentives and other institutional barriers to the use of research-based evidence in developing and emerging countries.
  • Understanding the constituents of a robust evidence base for policy including how policymakers can be supported to actively manage the evidence they need to inform their decision processes and deliver their policy and strategy goals;
  • Assessing the impact of research on policy and practice including developing a finer-grained understanding of the routes through which robust research evidence is able to have a substantive and sustainable impact on policymaking processes


The Programme Manager will be responsible for the day-to-day management of the programme, and will play a key role in delivering arrangements for programme implementation. They will ensure the smooth management of work plans, budgets, reporting and external partnerships. This will include maintaining and developing management tools for tracking project objectives and supporting the Head of Programme and associated team in the delivery of project outputs and outcomes.


Other key responsibilities include:

  • Financial management and reporting: tracking and coordinating financial information flows; managing quarterly expenditure tracking and invoicing to tight donor deadlines, and ensuring compliance with the donor’s Financial Principles, value for money and key performance indicators.
  • Governance: designing and managing the reporting process; responsibility for ensuring regular reporting on performance and compliance to the funder is delivered according to an agreed timetable.
  • Planning and performance support: providing guidance and support to project teams within ODI for planning, delivery and reporting; co-ordinating with key internal support teams; maintaining an overview of output delivery and flagging any risks to the Head of Programme.
  • Manage all business development processes: identification of new opportunities/donors; securing additional funding; leading the process of the preparation of bids and proposals; developing budgets and tailoring technical documentation.
  • Strategic communications and knowledge management: coordinating the development and functioning of internal and external communications systems, networks, intranet, website, etc. to ensure strong internal and external relationships for the project; managing activities and supporting teams to promote project output dissemination and uptake, with input from colleagues in the Communications team.
  • Partnerships and external relations: working with the team on formalising key partnerships and relationships for project implementation; facilitating external relations with relevant stakeholders; convening high-level project and stakeholder meetings as required.

About you

  • Significant programme management experience and proven ability to manage multiple project-level inputs within a high-level programme framework.Extensive budget administration and reporting experience, ideally including devolved budgets.Excellent time management skills and proven ability to organise inputs from other individuals and teams in order to meet key project or programme deadlines.Proven ability to influence and negotiate with staff and stakeholders in relation to project and programme management and delivery, often without direct authority.Ability to manage and develop financial information systems to support timely donor reporting and business planning.Ability to maintain a high-level overview of programme performance and progress, and provide more hands-on support to project teams if necessary.
  • Excellent attention to detail, especially in ensuring consistency across multiple reports and project documents.
  • Ability to work on own initiative with minimum supervision.
  • Ability to anticipate and manage risk and take active steps to mitigate them, and act quickly to deal with emerging challenges.
  • Demonstrable ability to form strong and productive working relationships with external stakeholders and partners for learning and knowledge sharing.
  • Proven track record of effective co-ordination with key internal support functions, in support of project/programme output planning, delivery, reporting and dissemination.
  • A strong track record of reporting on complex donor-funded (e.g. multi-sector or multi-country) projects or programmes, monitoring performance standards through task-management structures, and delivering convincing and quality reports.
  • Advanced IT skills including Excel, Word, Outlook, PowerPoint and databases.
  • Knowledge and understanding of development issues and a personal commitment to international development and poverty reduction would be desirable.
  • Experience working in a developing country or with developing country partner organisations is desirable.



Closing date: 14 January 2018


Interview Date: 24 and 25 January 2018


ODI can only sponsor (research/senior) positions requiring a PhD, or where there is a shortage of applications. For this role, it is our anticipation that we will get sufficient applicants from the resident work force and we are obliged to give priority to those who do not need sponsorship when offering a job.

For more information, please download an application pack from our website at www.odi.org.uk/jobs. If you are experiencing difficulties downloading, please telephone 020 3327 7290 or email humanresources@odi.org.uk.


ODI is an equal opportunities employer                                                                                                        Charity Reg. No.228248

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