Assistant Policy Researcher

Center for Strategic Development
Location Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Application deadline 1 September 2017
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The Center for Strategic Development is an independent institution established by decree of the Council of Ministers. The vision of the CSD is to be Saudi Arabia’s premier economic think tank. As such, the institution is envisioned to oversee the following nine strands of work:

  1. Economic modelling
  2. Housing and maintaining the Decision Support Dashboard: converting data into useful information for decision makers and practitioners
  3. Policy research, analysis, design, and recommendation
  4. Housing and running the Knowledge Center
  5. Providing consulting services to Ministry of Economy and Planning, other government institutions, and external clients
  6. Forging partnerships with national, regional, and international policy think tanks and institutions as necessary to realize its mission
  7. Building and spinning off topic-specific think tanks as necessary to realize the center’s mission
  8. Building and housing the Behavioral Insights Unit “Nudge Unit”
  9. Developing and maintaining Saudi Arabia’s implementation road-map for realizing the economic growth objectives of Vision 2030

This role produces research outputs as part of a research team. The role holder conducts research, analyze proposed policies, evaluate the effects of existing policies issues or policy, and then report their findings to the Head of Research. The role holder is expected to demonstrate technical expertise and subject matter knowledge whilst building the foundations of a research career. The role holder should work to develop competencies in related areas such as project management or specific subject matter knowledge.

Key roles and responsibilities

Conduct CSD research projects

  • Conduct one or more areas of CSD research projects and ensure reports, models and other outputs are produced to quality levels and timescales required by team leader
  • Conduct analysis on policy topics and develop economic models or components of models
  • Monitor and review academic and private sector thought-leadership and other relevant activity in designated policy areas
  • Produce summary reports for leadership, technical experts and other readers as designated by team leader from time to time

Support in preparing for and executing CSD events

  • Support in preparing for and executing CSD events, including workshops, conferences, and significant meetings.
  • Participate actively in international policy and research networks and deliver presentations on relevant topics at conferences and meetings.
  • Contribute to the management of research clusters, in areas such as project management, partner management, research infrastructure management, as directed by team leader.
  • As required, support in facilitating projects involving external service providers/partners(including partner selection, project scoping, quality assurance, and liaison throughout implementation).
  • Build and maintain relationships with key CSD stakeholders including government officials and staff, civil society bodies, and research agencies.
  • Engage stakeholders in the identification of priority issues and scoping of projects.
  • Actively identify and support in the scoping and development of initiatives to improve the effectiveness and impact of CSD.

Background & experience

  • Bachelor’s in a relevant field (e.g. Economics, Political Science, International Relations).
  • Master’s degree in a relevant field is a plus.
  • 2-4 years of professional research experience or research experience in a relevant discipline gained within an academic or think tank environment.
  • Proficiency in English required. Arabic preferred.
  • Contributions to published research paper or relevant strategic, economic modelling or policy formulation project.
  • Experience working as part of a research team involving other subject matter experts, preferably as part of a multi-disciplinary team.
  • Experience of working with a mixture of private and public sector colleagues preferred.
  • Understanding of project planning methods and software, including evidence of ability to integrate work into larger pieces of work in accordance with the project plan, and ability to contribute to project coordination preferred.
  • Experience producing output for a range of academic and non-academic audiences.
  • Ability to describe multiple different quantitative and qualitative sampling and analysis techniques, and to recommend the use of different techniques for different purposes.
  • Practical knowledge of economic growth models, scenario forecasting, and/or international development.
  • Practical knowledge of international best practices regarding economic policy formulation and implementation, economic modelling, and analysis of market dynamics.
  • General knowledge of environmental policies; population dynamics, macroeconomic principles, and economic growth-related work conducted by international groups and multinationals, as well as familiarity with underlying policies and principles used to structure such projects.
  • Ability to structure and produce reports, including statistical charts and informative diagrams, and the use of an accepted referencing standard.
  • Ability to contribute individual work to the benefit of the team, including production of research work to required quality and timescales.

Competencies and Skills

  • Strong Critical thinking and problem solving
  • Research and data management
  • Qualitative & Quantitative analytics
  • Communication
  • Project management

Type of contract:

Full Time