Technical Advisor, Economic Evaluation

International Rescue Committee
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Oct 01

Position description

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) is one of the largest humanitarian agencies in the world, providing relief, rehabilitation and post-conflict reconstruction support to victims of oppression and violent conflict. IRC has worked for over seven decades and today is involved in over 40 countries affected by conflict. We address both the immediate, life -saving needs of conflict-affected people in an emergency and the reconstruction needs in post-conflict societies. 

IRC’s Research, Evaluation and Learning (REL) Unit helps the IRC serve people with the most effective and cost-effective programs suited to the particular country or state context. The REL unit supports the IRC to use already-existing research to inform strategic plans  and to develop high-quality intervention models that are based on programs that have been proven to be effective. We also build capacity of staff to interpret and apply existing research and to conduct evaluations.

Job Overview/Summary:

To improve accountability, humanitarian actors must be transparent about how funds are being used to deliver aid in a cost-efficient and cost-effective manner. Humanitarian actors are motivated to find cost-effective ways to deliver assistance, but a critical gap exists: methods used to estimate VfM aren’t consistent across agencies or programs. The Systematic Cost Analysis (SCAN) Tool is an IRC-developed software that pulls grant expense data from organizations’ finance systems, and walks users through a process of identifying which costs were necessary to deliver one specific intervention. SCAN provides consistent, rigorous estimates of the cost-efficiency of humanitarian programs, both allowing for better decision-making about individual programs as well as faster learning about key levers to improve efficiency across programs. To date, SCAN has been used across more than 15 IRC countries. 

This position will lead the cross-NGO “SCAN Consortium”, to develop a second-generation version of the SCAN tool in collaboration with other humanitarian INGOs, and coordinating among humanitarian actors to promote sector-wide adoption of SCAN as a learning tool across sectors. Specifically, this TA will be the action officer for a Consortium of leaders from participating NGOs, managing the day-to-day activities of the Consortium in partnership with multiple departments in each agency. They will directly oversee the software developers implementing this new tool, and be responsible for ensuring that the final product meets the requirements and specifications of Consortium members. The TA will coordinate a process of piloting this new tool across 5 NGOs, including direct implementation of pilots at the IRC and 2 other partners. They will also manage communications about the value of systematic cost analysis, in partnership with technical and advocacy colleagues at the IRC. 

* The Technical Advisor sits within the Best Use of Resources team of Research, Evaluation, and Learning (REL) Team at IRC Headquarters in New York City. 

* They will provide coordination and support services to IRC teams, as well as other member-NGOs of the SCAN Consortium. As such, this position entails up to 25% travel. 


Major Responsibilities:


  • Lead the effort to institutionalize rapid, rigorous cost analysis capacity at humanitarian NGOs by managing the development and piloting of the Systematic Cost Analysis tool across multiple agencies. 


  • Manage a Consortium of 5 INGOs collaborating to develop, pilot, and roll out systematic cost analysis within their organizations. 
  • Develop specifications for multi-agency cost analysis tool through initial tests using existing IRC version. Develop detailed requirements for tool’s user functionality and data security, determine priorities based on consultation with partners, and ensure buy-in for final specifications. 
  • Oversee development of multi-agency SCAN tool through IT vendor, act as link between vendor and business owners in the Consortium. Provide guidance on user needs and technical requirements for vendor, and manage input from Consortium members to ensure that final tool meets their needs. 
  • Direct piloting of SCAN 2.0 at country offices within the IRC and two other NGOs. Gather feedback on user acceptability, identify improvements, prioritize and work with developer to implement these changes.
  • Support Consortium partners as they seek to institutionalize cost analysis around their organizations, providing insights from IRC’s own experience and technical support or input wherever necessary.
  • Communicate the value of systematic cost analysis to stakeholders across the sector, with a particular emphasis on donors and sectoral coordination groups, to create demand for adoption of SCAN in the future. 

Key Working Relationships: 

Position Reports to: Technical Advisor, REL Unit


  • Master’s degree in statistics, economics, public finance, or related field preferred.   
  • 6-8 years work experience
  • Knowledge of cost analysis methodology, applications, and the cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis literature in developing countries.
  • Experience managing large projects with stakeholders from multiple agencies, including technical coordination and sub-grant management. 
  • Familiarity with organizational finance and data systems, and related business processes for M&E, financial tracking, and knowledge management. Experience with data systems reform at large agencies, including technical issues of data management and coordination of cross-departmental stakeholders. 
  • Prior experience managing website creation or software development through IT vendors strongly preferred. 
  • Ability to be work as part of a remote team across many time zones.
  • Excellent communication skills, cultural sensitivity, flexibility, ability to improvise, team player.
  • Fluency in spoken and written English required; proficiency and/or fluency in French or Arabic preferred.

Application instructions

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