Mastercard Foundation is Looking for a Consultant – Lead, Research Strengthening (8 months Contract) -Remote/Hybrid

Mastercard Foundation is Looking for a Consultant – Lead, Research Strengthening (8 months Contract) -Remote/Hybrid


The Mastercard Foundation seeks a world where everyone has the opportunity to learn and prosper. Through its Young Africa Works strategy and Canadian EleV program, the Foundation works with partners to ensure that millions of young people, especially young women, access quality education, financial services, and dignified work. Mastercard Foundation was established in 2006 through the generosity of Mastercard when it became a public company. The Foundation is independent with its own Board of Directors and CEO.


We are currently in an exciting period at the Mastercard Foundation as we intensify the implementation of the Young Africa Works strategy, aiming to empower 30 million young people throughout Africa to access dignified and fulfilling employment.

To ensure the Foundation’s accessibility to our partners and program participants, we have established offices in Rwanda, Kenya, Ghana, Senegal, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Uganda. These offices provide strong in-country support for the implementation of Young Africa Works. We collaborate with governments, the private sector, educators, and other funders to enhance the quality of education and vocational training, equip young individuals with the necessary skills for the workforce, expand access to financial services for entrepreneurs and small businesses, and facilitate connections between job seekers and meaningful employment opportunities.

Our values serve as our guiding principles, transcending and surpassing all other considerations. We wholeheartedly encourage you to bring your bold ideas, curiosity, and expertise to your work.

 If you are an experienced Research Professional looking to increase your impact, read on!

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Reporting to the Director, Research Strengthening and Knowledge Mobilization, the Consultant will lead knowledge development and research strengthening enterprise-wide to further Young Africa Works and other Foundation’s program objectives. S/he will contribute to and lead the delivery of the five-year research and knowledge development agenda as it applies to strengthening young researchers in Africa and among indigenous communities in Canada and developing partnerships to advance institutional strengthening of research organizations and networks in Africa. The role will also respond to immediate research questions, providing quality assurance for diagnostic, R&D and other research to enable programming across programs.


  • Lead the design of strengthening research systems/processes/protocols across programs to ensure high-quality research design, implementation, and analysis.
  • Collaborate with programs teams to identify and address research questions to enhance effectiveness of programs and partnerships that emphasize inclusion of young researchers and youth-led organizations in alignment with the Young Africa Works strategy.
  • Working with the team, s/he will contribute to building a culture that encourages inclusivity in evidence-informed decision making.
  • Contribute to conducting, collating, commissioning and synthesizing research and initiatives on institutional strengthening of both nationally mandated and other knowledge institutions s to support knowledge building and program co-design & review processes.
  • Collaborate across programs to co-develop research partnerships aligned with needs and knowledge development strategy.
  • Develop and ensure quality control of internal & externally commissioned institution-strengthening initiatives and provide knowledge support.
  • Contribute to developing the Research Strategy & build research strengthening agenda and knowledge expertise to address long-term strategic questions on global development and youth empowerment.
  • Lead the engagement with local stakeholders and foundation’s programs teams to determine priority research and intervention needs.
  • Provide access to best-in-class external research and knowledge for research capacity building/accompaniment and research institutional strengthening initiatives.
  • Commission research projects and other knowledge products for Foundation’s thought leadership and also to enhance the international development field.
  • Write and publish learnings on the Foundations programs to influence best practice internally and externally.
  • Disseminate relevant learnings and insights to internal and external audiences.
  • Develop strong global and in-region relationships with external research partners.
  • Lead research partnerships with the programs team on proposal development and review to provide technical input on institutional strengthening in proposals.
  • Build and strengthen the capacity of others to deliver high quality research, analysis, publications, and documentation.
  • Under the guidance of the Research Heads, act with team members as subject matter experts for the Foundation regional research work.

For more opportunities such as this please follow us on Facebook, Instagram, What’s App, TwitterLinkedIn and Telegram


  • P.H.D./Master’s/MBA in global development, the social sciences, education, public policy or another related field is an asset.
  • Leadership experience in education, the social sciences and humanities, development and/or public policy within non-profit organizations, international NGO’s and/or learning institutions.
  • Expertise in research strengthening in development, social science and policy research across Africa and indigenous communities in Canada.
  • Understanding of the ecosystem of research strengthening and capacity building in Africa and current trends in methodologies and approaches, especially in economic transformation/growth and development policy.
  • Experience in effectively engaging with technical experts and institutions to build communities of practice.
  • Ability to plan for and prioritize multiple enterprise-wide initiatives with varying timelines.
  • Some success in building and managing high performing teams with proven success.
  • Strong research strengthening and capacity building skills (including non-conventional and emerging inclusive approaches) with the ability to translate knowledge to technical and non-technical teams.
  • Fluency in other languages relevant to the work; French would be desirable.
  • Curious and enthusiastic about pursuing new avenues of strengthening research. Open to the ideas of others and shares knowledge and insight from a place of humility.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with and relate to a broad range of internal stakeholders including Foundation leadership.
  • Service mindset, and commitment to the value of co-creation, employing deep listening and authentically inclusive approach.
  • Energetic, independent, and self-motivated individual with a solution-based approach while demonstrating innovation, integrity, quality, creativity, flexibility, and resilience.
  • Flexible, adaptable and able to execute a range of job duties and changing priorities.
  • Possess excellent verbal, written and presentation skills with the ability to articulate information to a variety of constituents across cultures.
  • Possess professional maturity, sensitivity with different cultures, and impeccable integrity that exemplify the Foundation’s values.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to Mastercard Foundation’s values and vision.

Deadline for Applications is February 29, 2024.

Mastercard Foundation (the “Foundation”) values and respects your privacy. By submitting an application for this opportunity, you hereby agree to the Foundation’s collection, use and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with its Privacy Policy (available at Please note that the Foundation may share your personal information with third-party agencies that support the Foundation’s recruitment activities, and such third-party agencies may contact you directly regarding this opportunity. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Foundation’s Privacy Officer at the address indicated in its Privacy Policy.

The Mastercard Foundation values the unique skills and experiences each individual brings to the organization and we are committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive and accessible environment for everyone.

Completion of satisfactory business references and background checks are essential conditions of employment.

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