Senior Research Associate
Location: Flexible (with strong preference for one of our Global locations)
Accountability Counsel amplifies the voices of communities to protect their human rights and environment. As advocates for people harmed by internationally financed projects, we employ community driven and policy level strategies to access justice. Since our founding in 2009, our team has partnered with communities and advocates from 50 countries to defend their rights, demand justice, and achieve historic victories. We are seeking a talented Researcher who can tell compelling, data-informed stories about the harmful impacts of international finance that push stakeholders to advance justice.
We work toward change through three programmatic approaches. Our Policy Advocacy program advocates for accountability offices that are accessible, transparent, and fair tools for justice; advocates in our Communities program provide grassroots legal support and assist communities to use accountability offices effectively; and our Research team delivers concrete research and tools for the movement for accountability more broadly. Our respect-based approach underlies all that we do: internally, it guides how our team treats one another, and externally, it ensures that marginalized people, particularly Indigenous Peoples, women and girls, are included as full participants in community-led strategies seeking accountability.
Accountability Counsel is seeking a talented researcher for its Research program, reporting to the Research Director. The Senior Research Associate’s primary responsibilities will be:
- Designing and implementing research projects that advance our organizational strategy and, ultimately, accountability for the environmental and social impacts caused by international finance. The Senior Research Associate will help us answer such questions as: “does the current accountability system deliver meaningful remedy for people harmed by internationally-financed projects?” and “what are the root causes of harm and impunity in development finance?” The Senior Research Associate will undertake data collection, research, analysis, and produce compelling and accessible publications drawing on their own original work, as well as substantive collaborations with Accountability Counsel team members and global partners.
- Contributing a qualitative / quantitative analytical lens to all of the Research team’s projects, with an emphasis on advocacy and actionable output. We want our research to have impact: to reach the people who need it, and to compel action for greater justice.
- Contribute to the development, maintenance, and training for the Accountability Console, our repository of all publicly available complaints filed to all Independent Accountability Mechanisms.
- In coordination with the Communities and Policy programs, advocating for case-specific and systemic outcomes flowing from those research projects at international finance institutions, corporations, government agencies, accountability offices, and other relevant authorities.
- Creating and participating in strategic information exchange, network building, and capacity building opportunities to contribute to the development of ‘accountability ecosystems’ globally (networks of civil society advocates for accountability, justice, and remedy for the negative impacts of international financial flows).
- Contributing, in a leadership role, to the development of Accountability Counsel’s strategy and programming in the Asia-Pacific region (and beyond).
- Depending on the candidate’s location and experience, mentoring and supervising team members, fellows, and interns as needed.
WHO YOU ARE
- Personally committed to Accountability Counsel’s mission and values and respect-based approach. You believe in the agency of communities around the world to protect their human rights and environment. You are committed to meaningfully partnering with those communities and disrupting the systems of power, privilege, and injustice that undermine their rights and interests.
- An experienced researcher and communicator on issues of social and/or environmental justice that is committed to centering the voices of communities in those struggles. You have a degree or equivalent professional experience in social science, journalism, communications, or a related field and at least seven (7) years experience reporting on and advocating for justice (e.g. within the fields of development finance, human rights, environmental protection, social justice, international development, international finance, corporate accountability, community organizing). You have knowledge of a variety of research methodologies, while bringing a critical lens to those methodologies.
- A strong communicator who can convey complex issues in an accessible, compelling, way. Ideally, you will have a background in communications or journalism. You can present the results of your research in a variety of formats (such as presentations, data visualizations, infographics, blogs, digital and print reports, etc.) to a range of audiences (ranging from technical experts, to senior political officials, and client-community members).
- Experienced in, or interested in developing, software/coding capabilities, particularly in Python, to help maintain the functionality of our technology stack.
- A critical, strategic thinker who has led cross-functional initiatives. You have excellent written, verbal, research, and analytical skills, including the ability to review and evaluate highly technical information related to international financing and related policies. You can craft and implement advocacy strategies alongside insightful research findings and recommendations.
- A thoughtful relationship builder who develops rapport and trust across lines of difference, both internally and externally. You have a high degree of empathy, patience, and ability to work among diverse coalitions, including across different languages and timezones.
- A self-directed, yet collaborative team member. You are comfortable working independently with remote supervision. You can organize and prioritize your workload. At the same time, you proactively, openly, and actively escalate issues to, and welcome feedback and direction from, the rest of Accountability Counsel’s team. You generously share knowledge and empower peers and partners.
- At home in a lean, fast-paced nonprofit environment working at the cutting edge of international environmental and human rights law, with the ability to stay both focused and nimble in the face of change.
- Fluency or advanced language proficiency in English, ideally with additional language skills relevant to the regions in which we work.
HOURS AND LOCATION
This full-time opportunity will begin July 1, 2023 or as soon as possible thereafter. The position is location flexible, and open to candidates globally, with a preference for candidates located near existing team members or Accountability Counsel’s local partners in Thailand, Kenya, Latin America, Middle East-North Africa, San Francisco, or Washington D.C., to facilitate communication and collaboration. This position will require close communication with Research team members in San Francisco, and regular communication with the rest of our global team. This position will require occasional international travel once it is safe to do so.
COMPENSATION & BENEFITS
Accountability Counsel is committed to competitive, equitable, transparent, and progressive compensation and benefits for staff and consultants. If your current level of work experience isn’t at the Senior level, we still encourage you to apply for this posting. The job title/band placement and corresponding compensation for this position will be considered at the final stage of our recruitment process. The compensation and benefits for this role will be commensurate with experience and location and informed by our Compensation Equity and Transparency Framework (and associated bands and band criteria). Team members are encouraged to take every other Friday off (Wellness Fridays), as part of our commitment to team wellbeing.
If this opportunity calls out to you, please click here to submit: 1) your reason for applying 2) a tailored, authentic cover letter that explains why this mission calls to you and why this particular role is a fit, 3) your resume, and 4) a short writing sample (no more than 5 pages) reflecting your strengths as a compelling communicator, such as a blog or other public-facing piece of writing. Please address your cover letter to Samer Araabi. We will review applications on a rolling basis starting on June 5, 2023. Due to the volume of candidates anticipated and size of our organization, we regret that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted regarding further steps in the application process.
Accountability Counsel is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation or other prohibited category. We strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals, people with disabilities, people from disadvantaged backgrounds, and all qualified persons to apply for this position.