Technical Specialist/ Sr. Technical Specialist – Inclusive Economic Development At Near East Foundation


Near East Foundation

Title: Technical Specialist/ Sr. Technical Specialist – Inclusive Economic Development

Reports to: Vice President of Business Development

Location: Syracuse, New York

Salary: $78,750 – $124,950

Travel: 10%

Relocation Assistance: Yes

The Near East Foundation (NEF) seeks candidates for the position of Technical Specialist – Inclusive Economic Development to be based in its Syracuse, New York headquarters. Since 1915, NEF has supported community-led economic and social development in Middle East, Africa, and Caucasus. As a non-profit international development organization, NEF draws on local teams, experience, and partnerships in these regions to create community-led solutions to reduce poverty, create economic opportunity, increase resilience, and empower conflict, climate- and crisis-affected people to improve their outlook and wellbeing. Our programs span three focal areas: Inclusive Economic Development, Climate Resilient Development, and Peace and Stability.

NEF works through a network of country offices and with local partners, with current or recent operations in Armenia, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Mali, Morocco, Palestine, Sudan, South Sudan, and Syria. Our global headquarters are based in Syracuse, NY, London, UK, and Brussels, Belgium.

Inclusive Economic Development

NEF is committed to supporting communities in conflict-affected and fragile areas through comprehensive assistance in fostering inclusive economic development. Our efforts are focused on empowering individuals to build sustainable livelihoods, promoting early recovery, cultivating self-reliance, and enhancing resilience among communities facing prolonged conflicts and recurrent crises. NEF’s initiatives are designed to bolster community capacities for recovery and poverty alleviation by leveraging business and economic development, delivering employability training, and supporting inclusive value chain development.

Position Overview

We are seeking a dynamic and experienced individual to join our team as a Technical Specialist. This role is critical to NEF’s goals for achieving sustainable growth. This position requires expertise in inclusive economic development, with a strong focus on inclusivity, innovation, impact, value for money, innovative financing, and sustainability. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of developing and implementing innovative solutions to promote economic growth while ensuring that marginalized communities are included and empowered.

The Technical Advisor will sit within the Business Development (BD) team.

Key Responsibilities

  1. Proposal Development: Lead the development of high-quality proposals, from conceptualization to drafting technical narratives, ensuring alignment with donor requirements. Coordinate inputs from HQ and country team members and stakeholders to ensure comprehensive proposals. Coordinate with Cost Specialist, , MEAL, HR, and compliance teams to ensure alignment of technical and financial components in proposals. Contribute to the development of budgets, cost narratives, and financial projections for proposed projects.
  2. Proposal Review and Alignment: Review proposal documents to ensure clarity, coherence, and alignment with donor requirements. Provide feedback and revisions as necessary to enhance proposal quality and competitiveness.
  3. Representation and Networking: Represent NEF at meetings, conferences, and events to showcase expertise in inclusive economic development. Engage with potential partners and donors to strengthen partnerships and attract support for NEF’s initiatives.
  4. Research and Analysis for Business and Program Development: Work with the program and MEAL teams to prioritize, devise, and conduct strategic research and analysis to identify key opportunities and challenges in promoting economic inclusivity in conflict-affected and fragile areas and contribute to business and program development. Utilize insights to inform program design and business development.
  5. Program Design and Technical Advisory: Work with program, MEAL, and other relevant teams to prioritize, conceptualize, and develop inclusive economic development programs and projects tailored to conflict-affected and fragile areas. Provide technical advisory to project teams when needed to ensure the effective incorporation of programmatic best practices into project activities, program strategies, and learning agenda.
  6. Knowledge Integration: Stay informed about emerging trends and innovations in economic development, particularly related to inclusivity in conflict-affected and fragile contexts. Integrate relevant insights into NEF’s program strategies and knowledge products to inform program and business development and contribute to program growth. Co-lead with MEAL and program teams on deep-dive processes at project and program levels. Contribute to the development of learning agendas and the prioritization, conceptualization, and development of knowledge and business development products such as technical innovations, technical briefs and fact sheets, technical capacity statements, and technical presentations. Contribute as technical lead writer on strategically important products.

Crosscutting:

Uphold NEF’s core values of localization, respect, inclusion, and integrity by helping to build an environment of accountability and learning, keeping work commitments and respecting colleagues’ time, listening to diverse colleagues, and participating in regular feedback and performance reviews.

Other duties as assigned.

Basic Requirements

We encourage all individuals who believe they have the skills necessary to succeed within this position and thrive at NEF to apply for this role, even if you do not meet 100% of the qualifications.

Commitment to NEF mission, curiosity, a strong willingness to learn and understand NEF’s programs and the communities and stakeholders who are our partners in development, and a capacity for passionate advocacy for locally led and impactful work.

  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in economics, international development, public policy, or a related field.
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience working in the field of economic development, with a focus on inclusive growth and poverty reduction.
  • Strong understanding of economic theory and proven ability to apply it to practical development challenges.
  • Experience designing and implementing economic development projects in diverse cultural and socio-economic contexts.
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills, with the ability to think critically and develop innovative solutions.
  • Demonstrated ability to write clear, concise, and compelling proposals for funding from a variety of donors, including bilateral and multilateral agencies, foundations, and private sector partners.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to build relationships and collaborate effectively with diverse stakeholders.
  • Fluency in English required, proficiency in additional languages preferred.
  • Willingness to travel domestically and internationally as needed.
  • Proficiency in Salesforce, Microsoft Word and Teams, familiarity with Excel.

Required Qualification

Candidates must be legally authorized to live and work in the United States without company sponsorship now and in the future.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience using participatory approaches to design programs and develop proposals, including applying principles of co-creation.
  • Experience engaging relevant communities of practice.
  • Experience engaging and coordinating with international colleagues and programs.
  • Knowledge and understanding of themes and cross-cutting requirements in international development, such as gender mainstreaming, market-based approaches, locally-led programming, resilience, innovative finance, technology and innovation.
  • Proficiency in French and/or Arabic

How to apply

NEF will accept a rolling application until the position is filled. Review of application will begin on April 15, 2024. Interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

To apply:

Please apply by submitting the following documents in the English language to the Near East Foundation careers page at https://neareast.bamboohr.com/careers/363?source=aWQ9OA%3D%3D :

  1. Cover letter outlining all relevant experience, how you meet the essential criteria.
  2. Curriculum Vitae.
  3. List of three references (including one from current, or most recent, employer). You will be given further notice prior to us contacting references.

Please note only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Woman candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Near East Foundation by visiting the NEF website at www.neareast.org

The Near East Foundation promotes Equal Employment Opportunities for all applicants seeking employment and NEF employees.

Pre-employment Checks

Any Employment with the Near East Foundation will be subject to the following checks prior to start date:

  • A satisfactory Restricted Party Screening.
  • Receipt of satisfactory references.
  • Workplace Verification Check.

Benefits

NEF offers a comprehensive benefits package which includes: 20 vacation days plus 12 Company Holidays; flexible sick-time policy, generous medical, dental and, vision coverage; HRA and FSA benefits; employer paid short and long-term disability; employer paid life insurance; TIAA-CREF retirement plan with 8% employer contribution, paid family leave, Employee Assistance Program (EAP), and more!

NEF’s strength is its people. Our team is our fuel to achieving the innovation, quality programming, community focus, mutual trust, sustainability, and learning needed to realize our mission. To help our team thrive, we support a working structure that prioritizes flexibility, personal commitments, and staff well-being while promoting a work culture of teamwork, collaboration, respect, integrity, and excellence.

As an international organization, we value a truly diverse workforce and prioritize a culture of inclusivity and belonging. We strive to create a high-achieving work environment informed by different cultures, perspectives, and experiences. With a commitment to diversity, equality, equity, and inclusion in all we do, our aim is to ensure that people feel heard, protected, and empowered to contribute to NEF’s mission from day one.

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