Head of Behavioral Insight

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 The position will be based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

The Head of Behavioral Economics (Nudge) position is responsible for using data science and behavioral principles to understand environmental insights, influence change and drive decision-making. This role is accountable for maintaining deep familiarity with academic literature in the field and be able to stay up-to-date on new findings and developments in the literature. This role is accountable for understanding of business context, applying behavioral principles in an economic environment to contribute to the policy design. Provide opportunities for innovation and improvement through behavioral research and insight.

Key roles and responsibilities

Managing Business:

  • Develop strategies and formulate execution plan to achieve entities’ goals drawing upon broad functional expertise.
  • Interpret broad goals and objectives into team priorities and activities utilizing effective project planning techniques to break down complex projects into tasks, manage scope of projects, and ensure deadlines are kept.
  • Provide thought leadership on opportunities to deliver on business goals and improve functional performance, leveraging behavioral concepts and methodologies and in-depth knowledge of functional area goals and strategy

Leading research & development:

  • Direct and lead the definition of research needs and development of appropriate methodologies for team.
  • Applying behavioral principles in an economic environment to contribute to the policy design.
  • Leverage existing research to inform recommendations and decisions; identify new areas of research and techniques that can solve economic/business problems.
  • Understand motivation and drivers for human behavior via statistical and econometric analysis methodology.
  • Generate actionable insights related to customer needs and patterns of behaviors.

Consultative responsibilities:

  • Collaborate with business units in order to improve the effectiveness of business decisions through the use of behavioral insights and methodologies.
  • Serve as a behavioral economics subject matter expert and consultant on complex issues for both an internal and external stakeholders.
  • Present business cases and/or research findings and influence senior leaders across the entity to take recommended actions.
  • Influence and/or convert thinking of others or gain acceptance on complex ideas or new methodologies

People management & development:

  • Active involvement in talent development of behavioral economics team so as they will champion the sharing and adoption of these techniques and methodologies in an ever evolving socio-economic environment

Background & Experience

  • PhD. or Master’s degree (including research towards an honors thesis or independent research project) in the economics or psychological or behavioral science such as: Behavioral Economics, Social Psychology, Applied Experimental Psychology, etc.
  • 10 years’ experience in experience building models to address government policies.
  • Experience of working in a research setting.
  • Fluency in English is required and Arabic is preferred

Competencies and Skills

  • In-depth multi-dimensional knowledge of country economics & public policy.
  • Knowledge of experimental design for behavioral research.
  • Ability to provide written and oral interpretation of highly specialized terms and data and to present this data to audiences with various levels of expertise.
  • Demonstrated ability to serve as a consultant in area of expertise.
  • High level of ability in economic analytical methods and modeling.
  • High level of project management skills in order to handle multiple concurrent assignments in a timely manner.

Type of contract

 Full Time