Program Officer: ASIA

National Democratic Institute (NDI)
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Sep 04

Position description

The National Democratic Institute (NDI) seeks a Program Officer to join its Asia team and contribute to the planning, design and evaluation of democratic development projects in collaboration with regional and field staff by performing the duties listed below.

  • Drafts board memos, briefing memos, reports and other materials with some editing, direction and substance guidance; drafts entire or significant portions of quarterly reports, sections of work plans and larger proposals; edits work of Program Assistants and Senior Program Assistants
  • Develops program concepts for proposals in collaboration with functional team; develops program objectives that reflect broader institutional strategies and approaches in tandem with Senior Program Officer, Program Manager, and/or Director
  • Leads work plan discussions; manages process for work plan drafting and submission
  • Manages overall strategy, vision and many aspects of fairly complex programs; anticipates programmatic administrative needs and with some guidance, takes appropriate actions; maintains interaction with field offices and monitors and measures program performance, timing and results; prepares for assessments
  • Serves as POC for field; meets with funding agency reps to describe program progress and to articulate new funding proposals and concepts; maintains frequent contact with NDI partners overseas and briefs specific country political, civic and business leaders, donor organizations and members of the international community about NDI activities; represents NDI at appropriate events
  • Acts as liaison with members of NGO, funding and Washington policymaking communities; formulates funding ideas and pursues funding sources
  • Monitors budgets, grants and expenditures for larger or complex programs with multiple field offices and/or reconciliations; creates proposal budgets with supporting notes for large programs; applies allowable costs according to restrictions, structures and mechanisms; ensures that they stay within budget limits; anticipates and successfully addresses costs and overages, and implements solutions to budget variances; implements and manages all aspects of subgrants
  • Travels to region to organize and conduct political assessments, assess new opportunities, develop assistance programs, and implement training activities; substantively contributes to assessments
  • Provides support for local and regional program conferences, workshops and meetings; organizes major cross-functional workshops; organizes delegations abroad
  • Briefs international trainers, volunteers and field representatives; develops a network and suggests utilization
  • Manages Program and Senior Program Assistants on basic and more advanced NDI procedures and programmatic tasks; mentors new staff; conducts basic, structured internal trainings
  • Maintains collaborative relationships with international democratic development organizations, civic organizations and NDI's network of volunteer trainers and experts; acts as back-up to team members not present


  • Bachelor’s degree, preferably in international relations or related field; Additional years of relevant work experience may be substituted for educational requirement on a one-for-one basis
  • The Program Officer requires a minimum of four (4) years of relevant work experience, both in international development, community organizing, political campaigns, organizational development or legislative affairs 
  • Demonstrated knowledge and/or competency in one or more areas of NDI's functional programs and the assigned region's political environment
  • High level of interpersonal skills and cultural sensitivity to effectively interact with all levels of staff, U.S. and foreign government personnel, members of donor organizations, funders and policy makers
  • Excellent oral communications skills to effectively present information, respond to questions
  • Exceptional writing skills to effectively create clear and concise proposals and reports
  • Basic managerial skills; good negotiating skills; able to introduce new concepts
  • Capacity to work both independently and as a member of a team
  • Ability to take initiative, inspire and motivate staff
  • Ability to analyze political work, define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions, and the ability to think innovatively
  • Working knowledge of PC-based word processing and spreadsheet applications
  • Working knowledge of basic budget and accounting procedures
  • Working experience outside the U.S. preferred
  • Foreign language ability applicable to the region, preferred
  • Ability and willingness to travel to regional locations, which are often remote and difficult to reach
  • Experience with Google Apps (Gmail, Calendar, Google Drive, G+, etc.) strongly desired.

Application instructions

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