Research and Product Manager

J-PAL, India

Skill Required:, Project/ Programme ManagementResearch and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
1 to 3 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
30th September, 2019

Job Description

Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD) at the Center for International Development at Harvard University has partnered with India's IFMR LEAD, based at the Institute for Financial Management and Research, to evaluate pressing policy questions in collaboration with several government partners. Both IFMR LEAD and EPoD are dedicated to using rigorous evidence to address challenging questions at the intersection of economic development and public policy. Our cutting-edge research examines questions related to governance, financial inclusion, skills training, gender, and sustainable development, and it draws from a network of expert academics with expertise in India and around the world.

EPoD India, in partnership with its host institution, IFMR, has an exciting opportunity for a manager-level candidate to oversee a web- and mobile-based monitoring and productivity tool currently being evaluated through an at-scale randomized control trial. The Research and Product Manager will be responsible for directing design and technical improvements of one or more technical products as well as leading the in-country monitoring and evaluation of these products. In addition, the position will entail articulating and implementing the long-term sustainability and scaling plan for the product.

The selected candidate will have the opportunity to join a team of leading economists and public policy experts from Harvard University and EPoD India at IFMR LEAD to work on cutting-edge development research and gain first-hand experience working with leading economists and policy partners.


  • Oversee team of developers charged with supporting maintenance, updates, and new product development.
  • Oversee roll-out of web and Android applications in a randomized control trial across multiple states in India; manage customization of products for additional states and programs.
  • Identify appropriate technical and design improvements, with input from research team; guide development improvements, testing, and roll-out, including leading extensive in-field testing of products and design adjustments.
  • Work directly with government policy and technical collaborators to implement product maintenance and improvements; engage with policy stakeholders to build and maintain support for evidence-informed data, analytical, and research strategies in our engagement.
  • Assist with the development of training and capacity building activities related to technical product; oversee long-term strategy to ensure users are effectively and professionally supported.
  • In consultation with EPoD India and research team, develop sustainable financing and go-to-market strategy for horizontal and vertical scaling of technical tools. Advise leadership on appropriate legal, financial, organizational and market approaches to ensure long-term platform viability.
  • Oversee documentation of processes and workflows and promote best practices in agile development/process management.
  • Provide appropriate inputs into financing proposals, reports, partner memos, product and research documentation, etc.
  • Provide day-to-day input, management, and oversight of budgets and grants within relevant portfolio
  • Lead partnership management with public and private sector stakeholders. Build new partnerships important to product roll-out and long-term strategy.
  • Liaise with cross-sectoral teams to identify new opportunities and improve our work in other projects, portfolios, and business processes.
  • Serve as a representative of our work to external partners; effectively convey EPoD India’s approach to policy-research and communicate how technical tools fit into our work.
  • Provide day-to-day oversight of research staff working in portfolio.

Basic Qualifications

  • Experience overseeing development of software projects applications.
  • Understanding of design best practices
  • Familiarity with agile methodologies
  • Strong understanding of research design, basic econometrics, and primary data collection
  • Entrepreneurial mindset with ability to develop and implement strategy with broad-based buy-in for product sustainability
  • Proven experience managing and building consensus among cross-functional and cross-sectoral stakeholders
  • Clear, concise oral and written English communication skills
  • Strong attention to detail, organizational skills
  • Ability to manage portfolio and product budgets
  • Demonstrated success prioritizing competing priorities in a high-demand work environment
  • Bachelor’s degree in related field, 5+ years’ experience in related fields, with product management experience preferred

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience managing technical testing and large research studies, either market or academic
  • Experience developing and implementing product roadmap from inception to full launch/roll-out
  • Experience working with Indian government partners
  • Strong team player with passion to improve public policy and leadership potential
  • Hindi and/or other Indian language competency


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