Qualitative Researcher at Mercy Corps

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Mercy Corps is a global team of humanitariansworking together on the front lines of today’s biggest crises to create a future of possibility, where everyone can prosper. In more than 40 countries around the world,over5,600 team members work side by side with people living through poverty, disaster, violent conflict and the acute impacts of climate change. We’re committed to creating global change through local impact — 85percent of our team members are from the countries where they work.

We bring a comprehensive approach to every challenge, addressing problems from multiple angles. And we go beyond emergency aid, partnering with local governments, forward-thinking corporations, social entrepreneurs and people living in fragile communities to develop bold solutions that make lasting change possible.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: Qualitative Researcher

Location: Yobe,
Employment Type: Contract

Background

  • Mercy Corps Building Resilience in Complex Crisis Program (BRICC) in Nigeria has mobilized 117 savings groups (VSLAs) across two LGAs of Damaturu and Potiskum. These groups consist of both men and women, have received training in household decision-making and have also been recently introduced to digital financial services.
  • Mercy Corps proposes to conduct an exploratory research with women and men from these groups to understand the overall impact of these interventions on their economic and psychosocial wellbeing, as well as barriers that may be applicable in the local context. The overall goal of this research is to document the impact of these interventions as well as use learning from this to improve future program design.

Purpose

  • Mercy Corps is seeking qualified Nigerian researchers to conduct two to three rounds of qualitative interviews with selected women and men participants from these groups.
  • The objective of these discussions is to understand: if/how participation in these savings groups and/or the additional interventions (training, introduction to digital financial services etc.) has led to changes–positive or negative–on their economic and psychosocial wellbeing. (For example, economic wellbeing can include ability to save, borrow, meet household/livelihood financial needs; psychosocial wellbeing can include changes in the number or diversity of social connections, trust, household decision-making, empowerment etc.)
  • Researchers will conduct these discussions in the local language, and also be responsible for providing transcripts of these discussions to Mercy Corps in English. Mercy Corps will provide a preliminary list of questions (interview guide) and training to the researchers on best practices for conducting qualitative discussions.

Researcher activities

  • Participate in initial discussions with the Mercy Corps team and support the development of qualitative interview guides based on researchers’ expertise and knowledge of the context. Help identify the best ways to investigate topics of interest and ask questions.
  • Translate interview guides from English into the local language.
  • Conduct practice interviews on one another; modify questions, or ways to ask these questions, based on the practice interviews.
  • Identify 12 – 18 men and women (majority women) participants based on broad criteria provided by Mercy Corps to conduct these discussions. Obtain participants’ consent to participate in these discussions. Discussions should be audio recorded (only with participant consent) and anonymous to maintain confidentiality.
  • Conduct open-ended discussions with participants based on the interview guide.

Note: Interview questions are “guides” only and discussions are open-ended—that is it is not in the form of a Yes/No survey—hence researchers will be required to use their own judgement to probe more on men and women participants’ responses that the researcher thinks is valuable to follow-up on.

  • Translate the interviews from local language and provide transcripts of the discussion in English. Transcripts should consist of the entire discussions including questions asked by the researchers and participants’ responses.
  • Debrief with the Mercy Corps team on a regular basis to provide learning from these interviews; input into specific questions that participants did not understand, any that were sensitive to the context, and/or better ways of investigating these topics. Conduct follow-up interviews to probe on gaps from these interviews, as necessary.

(Please note: these interviews are not focus group discussions, but interviews with individuals.)

Deliverables:

  • Interview transcripts in English for all interviews;
  • One-two page learning document summarizing researcher’s learning from these discussions and process-related challenges or ways to improve the quality of these types of interviews in the future.

Evaluation criteria
Applicants with the skills / knowledge listed below are encouraged to apply:

  • Experience or skills in conducting good quality one-to-one interviews/discussions with men and women.
  • Knowledge / experience or skills conducting research with savings groups in North East Nigeria (experience in Yobe is an added advantage, but not mandatory.)
  • Knowledge / understanding of how Sharia compliant savings groups function will be an added advantage.

Note: Candidates who may not have previous work experience can also apply but should outline in their cover letter on why they feel they are a suitable candidate for this role. Women are strongly encouraged to apply.

Payment Terms
100% after delivery or Percentage installment payment at achieving different milestones.

How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should send their Application by email to: [email protected]
Or
Paper copies (in a sealed envelope) can be submitted to:
Mercy Corps Damaturu Office,
Plot 75, Behind Government House GRA,
Damaturu – Yobe State.

Documents to include in the application package:

  • One page cover letter highlighting key skills that you bring to this position;
  • Detailed CV with two references and contact information;
  • Tax Identification number;
  • Additional information (not mandatory): Can include additional documents–examples of any relevant previous work done with evidence of contracts, references, and/or appreciation letters and any other documents from other organizations that applicants may have worked for.

Note

  • Email or hard copies should clearly state: Application for short-term Qualitative Researcher, BRICCS.
  • Shortlisted candidates will be contacted within ten-days of the application deadline, for an interview.
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