We’re hiring: Research and Learning Lead: HCD+ASRH

Jul 8, 2022

Title: Research and Learning Lead: Reproductive Health and Human-Centered Design
Type of contract: Full time 
Location: Anywhere in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia (Preference is Nairobi, Kenya) 
Expected Start Date: Immediately 
Salary: Commensurate with experience
Desired start date: As soon as possible

About HCDExchange

The HCDExchange is a community of implementers, funders, designers, evaluators, and youth committed to advancing learning and practice related to the integration of human-centered design (HCD) and adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health (AYSRH) in low-resource settings, with a particular focus on countries in Sub Saharan Africa and South Asia. The HCDExchange aims, through our learning community, to accelerate the field of HCD+ASRH and thereby elevate young people’s agency and improve sexual and reproductive health outcomes for youth and adolescents.

The first phase of this work built a more cohesive, globally accessible and representative body of practitioners and policymakers, expanded HCD+AYSRH skills and capacity of practitioners and institutions in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia; and began to generate a well-curated and researched body of evidence and learning that is accessible to the entire global health community in one location, and tailored to different audiences. In the next phase, the HCDExchange will transition from building a broad-based learning community to accelerating access to knowledge and evidence on HCD+AYSRH for a focused set of actors, particularly among professional and institutional stakeholders and specific geographies. 

The HCDExchange Secretariat and the Advisory Committee are preparing the Community of Practice (CoP) for its next stage of development. We established this startup CoP for improving networks and advancing global learning about HCD+AYSRH during the COVID 19 pandemic, which required considerable time and resources. We are now working with a vibrant CoP and wish to maintain and accelerate the momentum of HCDExchange, moving toward a model of sustainability and local ownership, if possible.

Learn more about the HCDExchange »

Purpose of the Role

The Research and Learning Lead will work with the HCDExchange team to support the advancement of learning related to the emergent field of practice at the intersection of Sexual and Reproductive Health and HCD by providing technical leadership and managerial/coordination and support. The focus of the position is the workstream focused on experiential and research-based learning for the HCDExchange community, shaping and executing a learning agenda and supporting the coordination of all research and community learning activities. S/he will manage subcontractors and consultants, when needed, and  coordinate two existing working groups around HCD+AYSRH (the Quality and Standards working group and the Measurement and Evaluation working group) . Specifically, the ASRH Research and Learning Lead will be the activity manager for certain team members to execute their work in a supportive, collaborative and collegial manner, providing mentoring and quality assurance. S/he will be responsible for the content and quality of all of the learning products. This person will work under the direction and supervision of the HCDExchange Director and will collaborate with the broader HCDExchange team including staff, consultants, the Youth Leadership Hub Associates, and the Advisory Committee members.

Roles & responsibilities


  • Revise and implement the current research and learning agenda to ensure that learning and results are fully documented, shared, and used to drive adaptive management processes.
  • Support team members to develop and implement the learning work plans to achieve the learning agenda workstream objectives and support and mentor teams to produce quality, timely deliverables as per the work plan. 
  • Collaborate with the HCDExchange internal team, partners, and other stakeholders to analyze HCD+ASRH learning gaps and make recommendations for future research and learning. 
  • Work closely with the team to extend and enrich the Community of Practice (CoP) by providing learning and networking opportunities for SRH/AYSRH and design practitioners, designing and developing tools and guidelines to guide and advance HCD+SRH/AYSRH practice, and generating and communicating evidence related to the integration of HCD and SRH/AYSRH to the community and the wider global health and design fields. 
  • Lead the work on the application and validation of tools, frameworks, and methods that emerged from the landscape analyses related to the four HCDExchange learning topics (Youth Integration; Adolescent Insights, Measurement and Evaluation of HCD+ASRH, and Quality and Standards in HCD+ASRH) to guide the implementation of quality HCD+ASRH.  
  • Conduct analysis and synthesis of existing data and products from the HCDExchange community to identify key interests, needs, and learning gaps within the community
  • Collaborate with the Senior Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation Advisor and Senior Advisor from JSI to ensure strategic alignment and leverage their expertise to advance the HCDExchange’s thought leadership in the CoP. 
  • Generate interest and opportunities for CoP members to integrate HCD into SRH/ASRH practice.
  • Support the HCDExchange in coordinating partnerships and mobilizing support for the CoP.
  • Work with the MEL Lead to curate and maintain an HCD+RH/ASRH resource library and track/document the CoP’s work in applying learning about HCD+SRH/ASRH.
  • Work with the Secretariat team to ensure that learning themes and findings are integrated into the work of the HCDExchange Secretariat, in a deliberate and concerted manner.
  • Manage consultants hired to support the research and learning agenda, shaping their scopes of work and overseeing their project deliverables and performance. 
  • Re-convene the HCDExchange working groups on HCD+ASRH Quality and Standard and on HCD+SRH/ASRH Measurement and Evaluation.


  • Work with the communications workstream to identify and consolidate evidence and resources related to the application and effect of HCD+ASRH. 
  • In collaboration with the communications and community engagement workstreams, lead the efforts for the generation of new evidence in HCD+ASRH. This will include the production of case studies on the use of HCD+ASRH, and conducting learning and reflection sessions with practitioners to uncover new learning. 
  • Contribute to the production of the HCDExchange technical content for internal and external publications, conference abstracts, and papers, authoring where appropriate and feasible.
  • Represent HCDExchange in external fora, including technical working groups and regional/global conferences.
  • Work with the MEL Lead to generate annual technical reports and other syntheses for internal team meetings and externally with partners. 

Funder Relations

  • Be responsive to the requests from donors – whether direct from the donors or relayed by the HCDExchange Director – and produce quality deliverables in a timely manner.
  • Support new business development as appropriate.

About You

You are a passionate and innovative thinker committed to advancing access to quality reproductive health services for youth and ensuring the youth’s voice in ASRH programming. You have experience working with designers and HCD and see its potential in the field of reproductive health and youth programming. You are knowledgeable and have extensive experience working in AYSRH programming.  You are a connector of people and organizations and are prepared to support these actors in learning and testing new ways of working.  You are a strong writer who can lead the production of high quality learning products.  You enjoy a fast paced work environment and will contribute to the collegial atmosphere of the team.

Qualification, skills, and experience


  • Master’s degree in public health or a related field
  • 10+ years of experience in research and learning in global health and sexual and reproductive health
  • Experience working in a developing country is required. 
  • Proven track record in production of high quality research and learning products

Required skills and experience

  • Comprehensive knowledge of current trends and best practices/standards in sexual and reproductive health and adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health in low resource settings. 
  • Expertise in quantitative and qualitative research methods, and synthesis of research, experience and learning.
  • Experience and and understanding of HCD and its application to global public health programming. 
  • Experience working on and executing research or learning agendas
  • Experience in writing technical publications and peer-reviewed journal articles. 
  • Demonstrated experience in developing and executing AYSRH capacity building and quality improvement initiatives. 
  • Demonstrated experience working and collaborating with young people, and other experts from the public, private, NGO, and government sectors is desirable. 
  • Ability to travel up to 15%
  • Ability to self-manage, work with diverse teams, and handle competing priorities between teams.
  • Proficiency in research/analysis software programs such as NVivo / Atlas.ti and Dedoose among others.
  • English fluency required; second language proficiency desirable (French preferred).

Application process

To apply, please fill the form below, submit your CV and a 1-page cover letter outlining why you’re an excellent candidate for this role. JSI is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and we are committed to creating an inclusive environment based on mutual respect for all employees. We do not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, disability status, religion, ethnic origin, color, race, marital status, or other protected characteristics.

Note that this is a “local hire” — candidates must be nationals of a country located in South Asia or sub-Saharan Africa. Preference will be for the candidate to be based in Nairobi, Kenya. The application deadline is 5 pm on 25 July 2022 (EAT time). Please note that:

  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
  • We do not solicit for any fee payment at any stage of recruitment.