MEL Specialist

Work Location: Washington, DC - US
Requisition Number: 1118
# of Openings: 1


PD for MEL Specialist (PO/Band 4)


Freedom House, an international democracy and human rights organization, is looking for someone with a passion for applied research to join us in the role of a Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Specialist in our International Programs Division (this is distinct from our Research Division, which produces Freedom in the World, Freedom on the Net, Nations in Transit, etc.) We are specifically interested in someone who has strong training in qualitative methods, a talent for training others in the logic of inquiry, and who can operationalize complex concepts (e.g. increased tolerance for marginalized groups) in simple data collection and analysis designs that can be carried out by untrained activists.

The MEL Specialist will work with Freedom House’s staff and local civil society partners who are implementing more than 40 programs in 35 countries around the world. The MEL specialist will not be conducting systematic cross-national research with these teams but rather helping them plan to monitor and learn from their activities, and to integrate what they are learning during program implementation into broader Freedom House and democracy sector practices.

We are most interested in finding someone who can think creatively about data, who loves teaching others how to collect, analyze, and use data, and who has a passion for improving the priors underlying democracy and human rights programmatic interventions internationally. We will provide training in the fundamentals of monitoring and evaluating U.S. government programs, as well as providing mentoring in the transition from academia to the practitioner world.

We are also interested in someone who can follow instructions and demonstrate a match to the required qualifications for this position, so read on to find out what you need to do to be considered for this position!


Develop MEL Practices

  • Design, test and refine new MEL reporting procedures through the database of FH programmatic activities. Work with program staff on closeout of projects to ensure that lessons learned and success stories are captured in the database.
  • Work with the SDL Senior Director to coordinate across pillars in developing organization-wide metrics and rubrics for “telling our story.”
  • Assist SDL staff in preparing summary learning findings for annual reports and other reports and presentations of executive staff on an ad-hoc basis.
  • Maintain a MEL community of practice within Freedom House’s international programs division

MEL Processes in Programs

  • Provide input on the program logic and learning in the proposal design process. Work with program teams to develop MEL plans in final proposals and during start-up. When necessary, provide technical assistance to program and field staff in designing data collection.
  • Conduct trainings with new and junior staff on MEL

Support to USAID programs under the Human Rights Support Mechanism (HRSM) (approximately 50% time)

  • Provide proactive MEL support to all HRSM projects from design through closeout.
  • Maintain HRSM learning communities of practice.
  • Participate with FH program teams in designing HRSM learning activities
  • Support HRSM program managers in designing field-based learning activities for non-FH awards
  • Collect HRSM Leader Award monitoring and learning plan data and synthesize it in the annual report.


  • M.A. in a social science discipline; Ph.D. preferred
  • Graduate level training in methodology and qualitative research methods
  • Research and/or teaching experience on issues related to democracy and human rights
  • Advanced level Excel skills and familiarity with other database and statistical software
  • Experience with qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis
  • Experience as a trainer or teacher of research methods
  • Strong written and verbal English-language skills

Additional desirable attributes include

  • Familiarity with project design in an international development context Experience living/working in a non-democratic country
  • Knowledge of USAID approaches such as complexity-aware M&E, systems thinking, and applied political economy analysis
  • Fluency in a language other than English
  • Area studies research or coursework

Please make sure you address these attributes as well as the specific qualifications for this position in your cover letter. Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.

Disclaimer: This job description is only a summary of the typical functions of the job.  It is not an exhaustive or comprehensive list of all possible job responsibilities, tasks   and duties.  The responsibilities, tasks, and duties of the jobholder may differ from those outlined in the job description and other duties, as assigned, may be part of the job. Freedom House may add, change, or remove essential and other duties at any time.

Qualified and Interested Applicants:

We invite qualified candidates to complete an online application and submit a resume and cover letter addressing the specific qualifications above.

Only candidates who have been selected for an interview will be contacted.

Only candidates authorized to work in the U.S. without any restrictions need apply.



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