Program Manager – Partnership for Economic Inclusion

The World Bank, Washington DC, United States

Skill Required:, Finance and Accounts
Preferred Experience: 
Above 10 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
31st January, 2019

Job Description

Established in 1944, the WBG is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. In fiscal year 2018, the WBG committed $67 billion in loans, grants, equity investments and guarantees to its members and private businesses, of which $24 billion was concessional finance to its poorest members. It is governed by 188-member countries and delivers services out of 120 offices with nearly 15,000 staff located globally.

The WBG consists of five specialized institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). The World Bank is organized into six client-facing Regional Vice-Presidencies, several corporate functions and thirteen Global Practices to bring best-in-class knowledge and solutions to regional and country clients.

The WBG Social Protection and Jobs (SPJ) Global Practice seeks to strengthen social protection systems to reach the goal of universal social protection by 2030 and to promote better earnings opportunities for the poorest households. These challenges are intimately related. The 2013 Jobs World Development Report (WDR) showed that jobs are at the heart of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) “twin goals” of eliminating extreme poverty and expanding the livelihoods of the bottom 40%. The WDR 2019 on The Changing Nature of Work focuses on the challenges linked to the shifting patterns of technology, including the need to reform and strengthen social protection systems to facilitate universal coverage.

The WBG’s Jobs Group, housed in the Social Protection and Jobs (SPJ) Global Practice, has a mandate to promote the jobs agenda and ensure the technical quality of jobs-related work programs across the WBG. It supports innovation and multi-sectoral collaboration, working both within the SPJ Global Practice and through other Global Practices with programs relevant to the jobs agenda. It works to promote the integration of macroeconomic, labor supply and labor demand components into coherent operational jobs strategies. It analyses the binding constraints to better jobs outcomes and develops viable responses to the market failures which underlie them. High priority is given to leveraging private investments that can generate jobs to raise the productivity and earnings of poor workers and households.

The Jobs Group also houses specialized partnerships, which bring together the WBG, donors and private or not-for-profit actors to address jobs challenges. These include: Solutions for Youth Employment (S4YE); Knowledge for Migration and Development (KNOMAD); and the Partnership for Economic Inclusion (PEI), which focuses on the economic inclusion of the poorest households.

The Partnership for Economic Inclusion

The Partnership for Economic Inclusion (PEI) originated within the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP). PEI was established when CGAP partners identified a need directly to promote income growth for poor households. Since then, interest in and support for the economic inclusion agenda has grown strongly, generating a rich literature of rigorous evaluation studies of programs implemented by international NGOs and by governments. In 2017, PEI was re-housed in the Jobs Group of the SPJ Global Practice with the goal of accelerating progress towards large-scale economic inclusion of the poorest and most vulnerable who are targeted by programs funded by the WBG, governments and other development organizations.

PEI brings together stakeholders – including governments, multi-lateral organizations, NGOs, researchers, funders and the private sector – to support innovative interventions that boost earnings, assets and opportunities for sustained upward mobility of the target populations. This dynamic field covers multiple themes including self-employment and livelihoods, labor market access, agriculture, linkages to social protection systems and social services, resilience, financial inclusion, and gender. The approach can also be tailored to serve refugees and forcibly displaced persons, youth, indigenous people and the disabled, in challenging contexts such as conflict and fragility.

PEI aims to deliver global public goods, test new solutions and magnify the impact of targeted economic inclusion investments of governments, development agencies and other development stakeholders. This posits new challenges around the shift from “test of concept” to implementation at scale, including the importance of finding the cost-effective approaches; and of identifying designs which are robust in the context of implementation by public agencies and other actors in developing countries.

PEI is supported by a Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF). The MDTF has a governance structure including donor and non-donor members. The non-donor partners of the PEI Community of Practice (CoP) include a wide range of NGOs and research organizations with specialist knowledge in the design, implementation and evaluation of relevant programs. The MDTF’s priority strategic goals are: to support government and development agencies to integrate economic inclusion activities as a central element of pro-poor development programs; to support innovation and learning; to facilitate knowledge management; and to mobilize increased support for this family of interventions.

Program Manager

The PEI Program Manager is a senior member of the Jobs Group staff with specific responsibility for leading the work of PEI. The Program Manager reports to the Manager of the Jobs Group. He/she is accountable for the overall strategy, development, delivery and implementation of the program's activities and mandates. He/she will be supported initially by at least one dedicated technical World Bank staff member; a group of highly experienced consultants who have been working on the economic inclusion agenda for several years; and by specialized trust fund management, fiduciary and procurement staff, as needed. It is expected that the PEI team will expand in line with funding for the PEI MDTF.

Duties and Accountabilities

The Program Manager is responsible for:

  • Strategic Leadership: Implementing and further developing a Strategy and Business Plan for FY19-22, as agreed with donors and partners. The Strategy focuses on developing a programmatic approach, building partnerships and scaling-up delivery for PEI interventions, with a view to documenting and maximizing PEI’s impact;
  • Team Leadership: lead the PEI team of staff and consultants with a strategic vision and strong operational focus;
  • Planning: Developing annual work plans to operationalize the Strategy and Business plan;
  • Program implementation: Leading PEI activities to deliver the agreed work program through cost-effective use of resources (human and budget) within the agreed parameters and in compliance with internal controls and policies, with timely delivery and overall quality of the program’s outputs, including:
  • Supporting the management of the grant-making process and the administration of the portfolio of grant-funded activities to ensure alignment with strategic goals and oversight of fiduciary, social and reputational matters;
  • Managing technical assistance activities with a strong emphasis on orientation towards clients and development outcomes;
  • Leading the development of knowledge and advisory products in the field of economic inclusion;
  • Resource mobilization and donor support: Liaising with existing and potential MDTF donors to mobilize additional resources for PEI’s strategies; and overseeing and managing the provision of technical and administrative support to the MDTF Donor Council, and including preparation of all related reports and meetings;
  • Representation: Effectively communicating and representing PEI to various audiences, including key stakeholders, clients, beneficiaries, public, internal and external partners.

Selection Criteria

  • Advanced (Graduate) university degree in Economics, Finance, Social Policy or other relevant discipline, plus at least ten years of direct relevant experience (see below) ;
  • Recognized experience in the development, design and/or implementation of economic inclusion programs focused on extreme poor and vulnerable households and communities, or other development programs effectively targeted on the extreme poor;
  • Extensive experience working in developing countries is a requirement; and experience living in a developing country would be a plus;
  • Proven record of management and ability to effectively lead and manage teams and to manage programs with a strategic vision and strong operational focus;
  • Must be a results-driven, strategic planner and implementer, adept at building consensus to move projects from concept to implementation;
  • A strong, persuasive, and clear communicator, with excellent English language writing and oral skills;
  • Good understanding of World Bank policies, processes and procedures related to trust funds and financing operations is an asset;
  • Good knowledge of the PEI Community of Practice is an asset.
  • Good knowledge of the donor community and excellent networking capabilities;
  • Good knowledge of public policy implementation in development countries
  • High ethical standards and deep sense of fairness;
  • Excellent organizational skills and demonstrated ability to lead a wide range of tasks.


In addition to the above, the successful candidate is expected to demonstrate the following competencies:

  • General Knowledge and Analytical Skills: Stays current on trends and literature in their area of expertise. Possesses cross-country knowledge and demonstrates ability to address issues at a broader level, as well as in depth. Demonstrates ability to link the macro, the institutional, and the micro-level behaviors and can identify the relevant sectoral analysis. Able to support findings/policy recommendations with credible analysis and tools. Proven ability to conceptualize, design, and implement major tasks, including through leading and participating in task teams of lending and non-lending operations.
  • Knowledge and Experience in Development Arena: Has ability to translate technical and cross-country knowledge into practical applications and contributions to country and sector strategies. Interacts with clients at the policy level and organizes and manages policy development initiatives in collaboration with other development agencies and donors. Ensures consistency and conformity to Bank standards.
  • Policy Dialogue Skills: Possesses political judgment, diplomatic acumen, and negotiating skills. Applies cross-country development knowledge to discussions with clients and development partners. Can anticipate needs and requests in the field and develop/offer relevant tools to clients. Can conduct independent policy discussions with representatives of the government and non-government partners on selected policy issues. Can lead task teams, participate in formal negotiations, and assist government in establishing priorities.
  • Economic inclusion: Advanced understanding of approaches to economic inclusion for poor and vulnerable households and communities. Can conceptualize issues and help clients develop flexible and creative approaches to economic inclusion strategies. Can contribute to regional and sectoral strategies, products and tasks, and understands the principles of evaluation and the interpretation of their results. Knowledge and expertise in agriculture, entrepreneurship and MSME development is an asset. However candidates from outside the field of economic inclusion who can demonstrate relevant experience, expertise and commitment to the economic inclusion field may be considered.
  • Integrative Skills: Can link relevant cross-sectoral areas to their own work and understands how they are interrelated. Draws on diverse, cross-sectoral teams to enhance the rigor of advice on cross-cutting and sectoral issues. For operations roles, demonstrates ability to undertake cross-sectoral work, in lending and non-lending operations.
  • Lead and Innovate: Encourages and works with others to identify, incubate and implement relevant solutions. Identifies opportunities in changing circumstances and energizes others to continuously improve, using intentional strategies to boost morale, team spirit, and productivity in context of WBG's values and mission. Helps others to understand problems, client needs and the underlying context.
  • Deliver Results for Clients: Develops and implements solutions that show understanding of how clients and/or own work achieves results that are financially, environmentally and socially sustainable. Shares new insights based on in-depth understanding of the client and recommends solutions for current and future needs of clients. Holds self and team accountable for risk management and outcomes.
  • Collaborate within Teams and Across Boundaries: Collaborates across organizational boundaries, internally and externally with a sense of mutuality and respect. Understands how to work with multi-sectoral partnerships. Consistently engages others in open dialogue, brings out any conflicting viewpoints and incorporates viewpoints into solutions, giving credit where credit is due. Leverages expertise of all team members to ensure successful outcomes. Makes choices and sets priorities with a WBG corporate perspective in mind.
  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge: Ensures systematic sharing of good practice and learning from lessons from across WBG, clients, and PEI partners. Is known in their subject area and is sought out by WBG colleagues and PEI partners to advise, peer review, or contribute to knowledge products of others. Seeks mentoring opportunities with more experienced staff to deepen or strengthen their professional knowledge and mentors junior staff. Builds networks across the WBG and as part of external professional groups/networks.
  • Make Smart Decisions: Applies critical thinking and seeks inputs and experience from others to recommend a course of action consistent with the WBG's strategy. Evaluates risk and anticipates the short and long-term implications of decisions. Commits to a decision and acts once a decision has been reached.


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