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Local Trade Specialist at Management Systems International

MSI is the lead implementer of the E3 Analytics and Evaluation Project with USAID’s Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and the Environment (E3), providing analytic and evaluation support to USAID. Under this Project, a team led by MSI is designing a performance evaluation of the West Africa Trade and Investment Hub and African Partners Network Activity (WATH), which aims to improve access to finance, staple food supply chain strengthening, addressing non-tariff trade/transport barriers, African Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA) facilitation, grants management, and capacity development for regional organizations. The project provides these activities through partnerships with local associations, regional alliances government actors, and private firms. The African Partners Network includes the Global Shea Alliance (GSA), Africa Cashew Alliance (ACA), and the Borderless Alliance, which were set up under the previous Trade Hub contract that ended in 2013.

As part of the impact evaluation, MSI will conduct field-based interviews with stakeholders and beneficiaries. The field work will be overseen by an Activity Coordinator from MSI. The final dates for field work are still being determined, but it will likely take place in two phases: for two weeks at the end of January (Phase I) and for two weeks in early March (Phase II). Answers from Phase I may inform the approach and interviews conducted as part of Phase II.


Position Summary:
The Local Trade Specialist will provide trade-specific subject matter expertise, with a focus on regional agricultural, transport, and value-chain sectors in West Africa; knowledge or experience with ECOWAS or other regional organizations is also welcome. This individual will be primarily responsible for providing support for interviews, including conducting or facilitating interviews, providing input on survey instruments, and assisting with communications and logistics for interviews. This person may also assist with the development of discussion guides, training materials for facilitators, and quality assurance, as needed.




  • Master’s Degree in a relevant social science, business, or agriculture-related field, or a bachelor’s degree and 7 years of experience.



  • Minimum 5 years’ experience in trade- or value chain-related programming, project management, research, or analysis. Journalists who have covered WATH-related sectors may also be considered.
  • Experience in the agriculture, transportation, or the trade sector in a government or regional organization.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Experience working in survey research, conducting interviews, and preparing results.
  • Demonstrated attention to detail, flexibility, resourcefulness, and creative problem-solving skills.
  • Ability to work independently as well as with all levels of management and staff.
  • Reliable and trustworthy.
  • Advanced computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, and Outlook.



Key Responsibilities:

  • Conduct preliminary directed research on activities and opportunities, such as changes in the local context (e.g. political transitions) related to field work.
  • Inform and advise the MSI team on potential challenges surrounding interviews.
  • Provide data collection (i.e. interview), translation, and communications support to the evaluation team during one or both Phases of field work, as needed.
  • Accompany evaluation team members on site visits in Lagos, Nigeria and participate in any necessary data collection activities including overseeing interviews.
  • Provide follow-up research and/or data collection where requested by MSI.
  • Provide input on design and survey documentation, instruments, and protocol deliverables to ensure a high-level of rigor and gender sensitivity are applied and implemented.
  • Provide follow-up research where requested by MSI.


  • Assist in scheduling and confirming interviews.
  • Provide updates to MSI via email before and after the field work on a regular basis.
  • Participate in planning conversations with members of the evaluation team via telephone/Skype and e-mail.
  • Assist with field work coordination, including interviewing and meeting with stakeholders and representatives of the WATH implementation team.
  • Provide translation assistance for documentation, survey instruments, and conversations/interviews.

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