Research Design & Data Unit Manager in Geneva, Switzerland (HQ)

NGO Jobs / UN Jobs Vacancy

Country: Switzerland
Organization: IMPACT Initiatives
Closing date: 11 Dec 2020


IMPACT Initiatives is a humanitarian think tank, based in Geneva, Switzerland. The organisation manages several initiatives, including the REACH Initiative, which was created in 2010 to facilitate the development of information tools and products that enhance the capacity of aid actors to make evidence-based decisions in emergency, recovery and development contexts. The IMPACT team comprises of specialists in research design; data collection, management and analysis; GIS and remote-sensing. For more information visit: and

We are currently looking for a Research Design & Data Unit Manager to join our HQ team in Geneva.

Position: Research Design & Data (RDD) Unit Manager

Department: Research

Supervisor: Head of Research

Duration: Open ended

Start date: Early 2021

Location: Geneva, Switzerland


The RDD Unit Manager is part of the IMPACT Research department, under the supervision of the Head of Research and supervising the HQ RDD Unit.

The overall objective of the RDD Unit is to ensure all IMPACT research cycles are meeting / exceeding IMPACT’s internal standards, wider academic research standards and overall research ethics in the research methods, data processing and analysis practices being used within IMPACT.

To achieve this objective, the RDD Unit:

  • Provides day-to-day support and advice (including review and validation of all relevant outputs) to IMPACT country teams on all aspects of research design, data processing, data management, and analysis;
  • Develops tools and guidelines and engages in internal and external engagement to strengthen and standardise research design, data processing & analysis practices within IMPACT;
  • Contributes to IMPACT’s capacity building efforts vis-à-vis research design and data;
  • Consistently strengthens quality of research within IMPACT through the capitalisation of best practices and implementation of lessons learned and M&E processes.

Within this setup, the RDD Unit Manager will be responsible for (1) supervising the day-to-day workflow of the HQ RDD Unit (2) overseeing the process and outputs related to the research design & data processing/ analysis stages of all IMPACT Research Cycles globally, and (3) directing the resources in his/ her sphere of accountability to achieve IMPACT’s strategic goals in the above-mentioned aspects.


  • Day-to-day management of the HQ RDD Unit, including:

o Coordinating Unit workflow and delegating responsibilities to team members to ensure all key priorities are dealt with in an efficient and timely manner

o Creating and maintaining shared team values, and monitoring individual and team performance/ progression to ensure goal achievement (and take action when required)

o As advised by the Head of Research, organizing Unit resources to achieve overall goals of the IMPACT Research Department

o Sharing relevant information and ensuring efficient, productive links are maintained with other Units/ departments

  • Ensuring all of IMPACT’s research cycles are meeting internal quality standards as well as wider academic standards in the data collection methodologies and analysis approaches/ tools being used, specifically by:

o Leading and coordinating the development of tools and guidance materials related to research design, data processing and data analysis

o Supporting the Head of Research with the roll-out of IMPACT’s internal capacity building strategy vis-à-vis research design and data processing/ analysis, including the coordination of relevant induction sessions for new, incoming field staff

o Ensuring methodologically sound as well as pragmatic, context relevant advice is being provided by the RDD Unit to IMPACT country teams, and providing additional technical backstopping support and advice for effective implementation of research cycles when needed

o Supporting RDD Officer with the review and validation of key research cycle outputs including (but not limited to) Research Terms of Reference, Data Analysis Plans, Data collection tools, etc.

o Ensuring sufficient tracking and proper filing of research documents, outputs and tools across countries, including close coordination with IMPACT field teams

o Identifying and flagging potential risks (along with possible recommended actions) to the Head of Research in a timely manner

  • Capitalizing best practices/ lessons learned for increased research quality within IMPACT through the implementation of internal lessons learned and monitoring & evaluation (M&E) processes

o Ensuring M&E processes are implemented as per IMPACT’s Research Cycle guidelines

o Leading the development and revision of M&E tools as advised by the Head of Research

o When relevant, providing briefing to other HQ units and departments and/ or IMPACT country teams regarding key lessons learned, points of improvements or best practices


  • Contribute towards external engagement efforts (trainings, technical working groups and taskforces, academic partnerships, technical peer reviews, etc.) related to research design, data processing & analysis practices.

  • In coordination with the HQ Global Initiatives department, contribute towards:

o Development of standardised methodological tools and guidance for REACH 2.0 workstreams

o Roll-out and maintenance of internal Communities of Practices related to research

  • Support with reviewing and validating data processing and analysis outputs (quantitative and/ or qualitative) for specific IMPACT research cycles as and when needed

  • Provide other support for the implementation of IMPACT Research Cycles as directed, including in-country or remote surge to IMPACT country teams if necessary (up to 25%)



  • Qualifications & Experience

o Good academic qualifications, including a Master’s degree or higher in relevant discipline (e.g. Social Science, International Development, Economics, Statistics, etc.)

o At least 2-3 years of relevant work experience in designing, managing and implementing primary research projects in humanitarian / international development contexts (e.g. needs assessments, monitoring and evaluation, etc.)

o At least 2-3 years of experience with team management in an international working environment

o Good understanding of research methods within the field of social sciences and at least some prior experience with processing and analysing both quantitative and qualitative data

  • Soft skills

o Attention to detail and commitment to producing high quality work

o Openness to feedback and willingness to learn

o Ability to manage time effectively and thrive in a fast paced, results-oriented working environment

o Ability to work independently, with initiative, while taking a proactive, solutions-oriented approach

o Ability to communicate clearly and effectively, including in remote work settings


  • Intermediate to advanced knowledge of statistics and statistical analysis
  • Working knowledge of at least one software package/ language for statistical analysis (R, SPSS, Stata, etc.).
  • Working knowledge of French and/ or Spanish

How to apply:

Kindly submit to the following link:

In case you encounter challenges using the application form, please contact us via

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