Back Social Protection Specialist - Social Protection



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Western and Central Africa (AFW) Region

We need the best and brightest talent focused on Sub-Saharan African countries in order to harness the potential and innovation happening across the continent. Africa is a continent on the move, with a young population and a growing market of nearly 1.2bn people. We are committed to making the Africa regional teams into leading innovation hubs.

Yet, these vast opportunities are tempered by persistent gaps in education, health, and skills, which have Africa only reaching forty percent of its estimated potential. Moreover, conflict, food insecurity, population growth, and the disruptive forces of climate change threaten to curtail or even reverse the progress that has been made over the past decades.

In West and Central Africa, the World Bank is a leading partner with a growing portfolio of 350 projects totaling more than $38 billion in areas such as agriculture, trade and transport, energy, education, health, water and sanitation- all to support job creation, gender equality, poverty reduction, and better lives. Across the continent, the World Bank’s program has nearly doubled over the last 10 years. By 2030, about 87% of the world’s extreme poor are projected to live in Sub-Saharan Africa, so this is where our mission to end extreme poverty and to promote shared prosperity will be achieved.
Are you ready to make an impact? We are looking for dedicated professionals to join our innovative and diverse team to improve people’s lives and help countries build back better after COVID. 

Western and Central Africa (AFW) Region:

The Social Protection and Jobs (SPJ) Global Practice delivers analytical and operational approaches and evidence-based solutions to help individuals and families manage risk and cope with chronic/transitional poverty. It also undertakes work on labor, migration and remittances. These include: 

• Strategy, analysis, financing and design of programs delivering social safety nets/social assistance in the form of cash transfers, public works programs, and fee waivers.

• Advisory and analytical services on design and delivery of contributory transfers (including old-age pensions, unemployment insurance, disability and survivor benefits), and their fiscal sustainability (including budget support for transitions).

• Analysis, design and delivery of labor market and youth employment programs (with a focus on supply side interventions, as well as policy advice on labor market regulations and interventions.

• Strategy, analysis, financing and design of integrated social protection delivery systems (e.g., payments, identification, registries, systems assessments) as underpinnings of effective social programs that can help cope with climatic shocks or underpin fiscal reforms. 

The Social Protection and Jobs (SPJ) Global Practice has a large and growing portfolio in West and Central Africa, which includes long-standing engagements supporting Governments to strengthen their safety net systems as well as promoting innovations around jobs and, increasingly human capital investments.  In the Sahel region, SPJ projects span engagements in safety nets, including for internally displaced people, refugees and host communities, service delivery for investments in human and productive capital, interventions in humanitarian and disaster-response, and youth skills and employment.

SPJ’s Sahel Adaptive Social Protection Program (SASPP), which covers Senegal, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad, supports countries in strengthening their adaptive social protection (ASP) systems with enhanced support for households to become more resilient to shock, including those related to climate change and forced displacement. They include analytical and financing activities to support the development of shock-responsive safety nets that can address such shocks, as well as programs to support households increase their resilience to such shocks.  

The World Bank’s SPJ program in Mauritania is focused on building a strong adaptive social protection system. The Bank’s Mauritania program currently includes the flagship Social Safety Net Project focused on increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of the nationwide adaptive social safety net system and its coverage of poor and vulnerable households with targeted social transfers, including in refugee and host communities. A Youth Employment Project focuses on and promote job opportunities for disadvantaged youth. The World Bank’s SPJ program in Mauritania also includes a strong programmatic analytical and advisory task which supports Government in developing ASP system, and regular contributions to DPOs to support SPJ reforms.

The World Bank is seeking to recruit a Social Protection Specialist to contribute to the technical and operational aspects of the Social Protection country program in Mauritania, with particular focus on adaptive social protection. The selected candidate will be a member of the West and Central Africa Unit of the Social Protection and Jobs Global Practice and report to the Practice Manager of the unit. The selected candidate will be based in Nouakchott, Mauritania.

Duties and Accountabilities

The successful candidate will support the World Bank’s engagement in the design and implementation of the SPJ program in Mauritania, as a key member of the team, based in Mauritania. The successful candidate would focus on the effective implementation of the ongoing project and analytical and technical assistance work, while working to broaden the engagement with client and development partners in-country.  

Major responsibilities include:

• Support Task Team Leader with implementation support and overall coordination for the operation currently under implementation and with preparation of new projects/additional financings as needed.
• Carry out responsibilities for a variety of operational tasks, e.g. technical analyses, design of technical assistance interventions, participation in loan negotiations, briefings, etc.
• Provide Technical Assistance to Government, including technical inputs and guidance to counterparts, and serve as the day-to-day interface with government counterparts on social protection operations.
• Help shape the high-level policy dialogue on adaptive social protection, with a focus on social protection system building with key sector ministries and development partners.  
• Ensure high quality implementation support to the Government implementation team and oversight of risk management issues working with relevant finance, procurement, safeguards experts.
• Ensure strong coordination and teamwork within the SPJ program and liaise across Human Development and other Global Practices to support joint programming and analytical activities to strengthen program delivery. 
• Maintain and strengthen strong partnerships and coordination with humanitarian counterparts in Mauritania on the adaptive social protection agenda 
• Serve as a core member of the Mauritania Country Team, providing inputs into strategic country work and liaising closely with the CMU.

Selection Criteria

• Minimum of MSc degree in Development, Economics, Social Sciences, Public Policy, or relevant discipline with at least 5 years of relevant work experience in social assistance interventions and programs that promote the income-generating capacity of poor households and their resilience.
• Demonstrated experience with operations and key aspects of program management and with operational implementation of development programs in the field. Experience with large scale, multi-sectoral programming and multiple partners, including within low capacity environments is an asset.
• Strong operational track record in delivering results in challenging and low-capacity contexts, including program monitoring & evaluation. 
• Demonstrated strong understanding of issues related to social protection policy and adaptive social protection, especially related to the ASP building blocks. Understanding of relevant cross-sectoral areas connecting across • Human Development and other sectors and how they are interrelated; ability to undertake issues and assist in building systems and institutional linkages to promote effective delivery.
• Strong analytical skills and proven ability to conduct and oversee policy-relevant research, translate theory into practical applications, and adapt professional knowledge and technical skills to analyze, diagnose and propose solutions to policy issues and challenges. 
• Ability to convey analysis in easily communicable and compelling fashion, and on often short turnaround times. Demonstrated ability to capture knowledge and communicate main messages in knowledge briefs and policy notes, as well as power point presentations for high level audiences.
• Fluency in French and English (written and verbal) is required. 
• Ability to maintain client relationships in the face of conflicting demands or directions and provides evidence-based advice and solutions based on sound diagnosis and knowledge. 
• Evidence of strong interpersonal skills, judgement and with proven ability to work in a team and intercultural environment, with minimal supervision.
• Proven track record of multi-tasking, managing competing demands and effectively time-manage tasks.


• SPJ Sectoral Knowledge and Experience - Analytical and operational expertise in SPJ. Priority will be given to candidates with demonstrated experience in Social Safety Nets and adaptive social protection.
• Data Collection, Processing and Analysis – Demonstrates ability to contribute to the analysis, possess knowledge of the sector strategy, programs and portfolio issues. Capable of i) gathering and compiling data from various non-digitized and digitized sources, ii) organizing and analyzing them using computerized spreadsheets (e.g. MS-Excel), and iii) preparing succinct narratives based on the analysis. 
• Client Orientation - Record of developing strong internal and external client relationships. Capacity to interact effectively with a range of stakeholders within and outside the Bank. Good interpersonal communication and diplomacy skills.
• Drive for Results - Takes ownership and accountability to meet deadlines and achieve agreed-upon results and has the personal organization to do so.
• Teamwork (Collaboration) and Inclusion - Collaborates with other team members and contributes productively to the team's work and output, demonstrating respect for different points of view. Proven ability to work in teams and intercultural environment, with minimal supervision.
• Knowledge, Learning and Communication - Actively seeks knowledge needed to complete assignments and shares knowledge with others, communicating and presenting information in a clear and organized manner. • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and French required.
• Business Judgment and Analytical Decision Making - Analyzes facts and data to support sound, logical decisions regarding own and others' work.

World Bank Group Core Competencies

The World Bank Group offers comprehensive benefits, including a retirement plan; medical, life and disability insurance; and paid leave, including parental leave, as well as reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce, and do not discriminate based on gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.

Learn more about working at the World Bank and IFC, including our values and inspiring stories.

This vacancy is archived.

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