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Job Title

Project Management Specialist (Democracy & Civil Society)




Advert Details

Recruiter: USAID Kenya Updated on: 2018-11-29 02:10:01
Contract Permanent
Location: Nairobi Available: Imamdiately
Category: Democracy and Governance Offer: Equivalent to FSN-PSC 10 (Step 1 3,012,761 KSH to Step 13 5,121,689 KSH per annum). In accordance with AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of USAID/Kenya and East Africa. Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value.



This position requires technical expertise in the field of good governance, devolution, civil society and media freedom and capacity, as well as practical knowledge of program design, activity management, and monitoring, evaluation, reporting and learning.

Minimum Requirements


Any application that does not meet the minimum requirements stated below will not be evaluated. Only short listed applicants will be contacted. If you have not been contacted within one month from the closing date of this advertisement, please consider your application unsuccessful.


a. Education:  Bachelor’s degree in Political Science, Governance and Civil Society, Public Policy and Administration, Law, Development, Community Planning/Development, International Studies or related field is required.        

b. Prior Work Experience:  Minimum of five years of experience directly relevant to the governance and civil society field is required, ideally in Kenya or elsewhere in East Africa. Prior work experience with a donor/international development agency is also required. 

c. Post Entry Training:  The incumbent will be expected to possess the necessary technical training and skills required to perform the duties/responsibilities required to this position.  Post-entry training will be focused primarily on the Agency’s established policies, procedures, and regulations that govern: (1) USAID-specific AOR/COR responsibilities/duties; (2) USAID-specific activity management and procurement systems; and (3) USAID-sponsored training in project design and activity management.  Organized/formal training (both internal and external) may be provided from time-to-time depending on the availability of program funds and when determined to be in direct support of DGC activities.   Participation in training, job-related seminars, e-learning through USAID University on governance and civic space may also be pursued, pending the need and appropriateness of such activities and the availability of funding.   

d. Language Proficiency:  Level IV English (fluent) written and spoken ability is required.  Level IV spoken Kiswahili is required.   

e. Job Knowledge:  Must have a strong understanding of program management and development assistance in the governance and civil society field.  Demonstrated knowledge of civil society, civic space and devolution issues in Kenya, as well as an understanding of development priorities.  Demonstrated knowledge of international best practice in governance, civil society and civic space is required.    

f. Skills and Abilities:  Ability to develop and maintain a range of mid-level working relationships within the U.S. government, with the Government of Kenya, international donor partners, civil society, media and with the private sector is required.  Ability to quickly understand the basics of development activity management including the requirements for financial and programmatic reporting is required.  Proficient use of word processing, spreadsheet, Google Docs, and PowerPoint software programs, and willingness to use these programs to prepare reports, draft correspondence, prepare presentations, and take notes is required.  Candidate must be able to communicate well in writing and verbally to a diversity of audiences.  Diplomacy, confidentiality, and sound judgement are required in handling sensitive issues. Ability to work as part of a team within the DGC Office and across the broader Mission is essential as is proven ability to work in a multicultural environment.      



Applicants must submit a resume/cv which describes how their relevant professional experience and education has prepared them to meet the specific challenges of the duties and responsibilities described above.  As part of the interview process, those applicants ranked highest may be required to submit a timed writing sample on a topic provided.  The selection committee may conduct reference checks at any time during the selection process.

Applications that do not meet the required minimum qualifications will not be scored.  


- Prior work experience (30 points) 

- Job Knowledge (40 points)

- Skills and abilities (30 points)

Total possible points:  100


Candidates meeting the above required qualifications for the position will be evaluated based on information presented in the application and reference checks.   References will be asked to assess the applicant’s technical knowledge, work performance, communication skills, and group dynamics, using the above criteria.   USAID reserves the right to conduct interviews with the top ranked short-listed applicants.  The interview will be one of the determining factors in the final selection.


How to Apply

Step 1: Register in MyJobsInKenya at

Step 2: Complete the job application questionnaire at The applicant must answer all the questions in the Questionnaire. 

Step 3: Internal Applicants/Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages), a copy of your most recent Performance Evaluation Report, and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents as one attachment and upload to MyJobsInKenya.




External Applicants/Not Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages) and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents as one attachment and upload to MyJobsInKenya . 


Note to Applicants:

1. Applications must be received by the closing date and time specified in Section I, item 3, and submitted through as stated in Section IV.

2. Submissions will only be accepted through Late and Incomplete applications (those that do not contain the applicant’s most current and up to date detailed CV and relevant education certificates) will not be considered for the position. The closing date for receipt of applications is indicated above.



Job Specification



2. ISSUANCE DATE: October 29, 2018

3. CLOSING DATE/TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: November 9, 2018 (4:30 PM East Africa Time)

4. POSITION TITLE: Project Management Specialist (Democracy & Civil Society)

5. MARKET VALUE:  Equivalent to FSN-PSC 10 (Step 1 3,012,761 KSH to Step 13 5,121,689 KSH per annum).  In accordance with AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of USAID/Kenya and East Africa. Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value.

6. PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE:  1 year probation period with possibility of contract renewal depending on successful performance, funding availability and continued need for the position.

7. PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Nairobi, Kenya; with possible travel as stated in the Statement of Work.

8. SECURITY CERTIFICATION REQUIRED: Prior to joining USAID, the selected candidate will be required to:

• Undergo a comprehensive background investigation 

• Undergo a health check to obtain medical clearance and;

• Obtain and Retain an embassy issued Security Certification.


10. AREA OF CONSIDERATION: Open to qualified Kenyan Citizens and Current employees of the U.S. Mission.  Employees currently on probation are ineligible to apply. USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for employment of all people without regard to race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, disability status, veteran status, marital status or any other characteristic for equality of opportunity in all aspects of employment

11. PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The position requirements do not involve rigorous physical demands.



The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Kenya and East Africa (KEA) Mission seeks a qualified Kenyan for the position of Project Management Specialist in the Democracy, Governance and Conflict (DGC) Office. This position requires technical expertise in the field of good governance, devolution, civil society and media freedom and capacity, as well as practical knowledge of program design, activity management, and monitoring, evaluation, reporting and learning. The incumbent provides support to the USAID governance portfolio. 

S/he must possess a high degree of competence and maturity, and the ability to manage relationships with the Embassy, other donors, the private sector, non-governmental and civil society organizations, and private voluntary organizations (PVOs) working in Kenya and the East Africa region. The position also entails building and maintaining partnerships and effective communication with local and national government representatives, ensuring that USAID/KEA is fully engaged in governance and civil society issues in Kenya. The incumbent is expected to incorporate science, technology, innovation and partnerships (STIP), as well as Collaborative Learning and Adaptation (CLA) into all activity design, implementation and evaluation duties.  The position functions under the supervision of the Deputy Office Chief, unless otherwise directed by the Office Chief.

The DGC Office is responsible for the design and achievement of USAID democracy, human rights, governance, conflict mitigation and CVE objectives and manages both Kenya-specific and regional activities.  In Kenya, the office works collaboratively to effectively implement devolution by partnering with county governments, national government, civil society and citizens to ensure effective implementation of devolution.  Protecting the rights of vulnerable populations, preventing and mitigating conflict, and countering violent extremism are included in the DGC strategic approach.  DGC seeks to improve democracy, rights and governance systems, institutions and practices that will contribute significantly to the legitimacy of local and national governments and their ability to provide improved services to citizens.  Within the East Africa region, DGC will continue to support stakeholders, including regional institutions, national and local governments, and cross-border communities to improve the management of risks that cross borders such as conflict and violent extremism. USAID/KEA partners with regional bodies to advance the development and implementation of regional efforts aimed at interrupting the radicalization process and stopping terrorist groups from gaining appeal among vulnerable populations. USAID/KEA also supports regional institutional capacity to conduct early warning and early response to cross-border conflict.  Advancing gender equity as well as increasing the visibility, effectiveness and influence of women and youth leaders is strategically integrated across the DGC portfolio. 



This position operates under the direction of the Governance Deputy Office Chief, but personally performs the complex work focused on good governance and civil society.  S/he must understand and apply a technical body of knowledge, as well as applicable laws and agency regulations and instructions on a day-to-day basis. Once the Project Management Specialist is fully on-boarded, guidance received from the Deputy Office Chief is almost wholly related to policy, program objectives, and office priorities.  Within such guidelines, the holder of this position designs and manages important activities and carries them to completion without significant supervision. Demands are heavy on personal initiative, resourcefulness and sound judgment.  S/he will work independently, while informing and consulting within DGC, USAID/KEA, and the US Embassy, as necessary. S/he will be required to travel within Kenya.

The Governance and Civil Society PMS will provide support to DGC in the following ways:


Program Management and Related Duties (55%)

The incumbent manages new and existing governance and civil society programs and activities as a team member in the DGC Office. These duties include participation in activity design, spearheading technical contributions to procurement processes, and activity implementation, identifying and resolving issues, ensuring activities are carried out in a technically sound and cost-effective manner, and in accordance with all applicable Mission and Agency directives and requirements.  S/he will serve as the Contracting/Agreement Officer's Representative (AOR/COR) or activity manager for activities that include capacity development for the Government of Kenya, intergovernmental organizations, and civil society organizations (CSOs)in order to achieve development objectives, including effective implementation of devolution, as outlined in the Kenya Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS).   In addition, he/she will manage programs aimed at safeguarding civic space, including support to civil society and media sector.    Adaptability and flexibility will be required as the Project Management Specialist's primary responsibilities may change over time as new USAID strategies and priorities emerge.

S/he will be responsible for the monitoring and evaluation of implementing partners and their activities, for obtaining and reporting on results and possible setbacks, and for initiating programmatic adjustments, when necessary. The incumbent is responsible for monitoring and evaluation at the project/activity levels, including developing project and activity-level Monitoring and Evaluation plans, conducting Data Quality Assessments, supporting the design of technical evaluations, and analyzing data and information sources to inform programming decisions  The incumbent is responsible for drafting narratives and providing other inputs into the annual planning (Operational Plan) and reporting (Performance Plan and Report; Mission Resource Request, Congressional Budget Justifications, portfolio reviews, etc.).

As AOR/COR, the Project  Management Specialist is responsible for the reviewing and approving annual work plans, schedules for obligating funding, monitoring  expenditures, burn rates, and pipelines, portfolio reviews, evaluation planning and implementation, audits, development and outreach communications, and closeouts. These responsibilities are defined in the AOR/COR letter issued by the USAID/KEA Office of Acquisition and Assistance. The Specialist will support DGC, Mission, and USG efforts to ensure effective, cost-effective, and responsible programming and reporting in compliance with USG and USAID regulations and ethics standards, and, ultimately, help USAID achieve its development objectives related to governance and civil society.


Technical Specialist and Representational Duties (35%)

The incumbent will serve as a technical advisor to the DGC Office and may be requested to advise USAID Missions in the region on governance, civil society, civic space and related issues.  The Project Management Specialist will keep abreast of and analyze political, social, economic and other trends and legislation/policies affecting governance, civil society and civic space in Kenya, and will keep the Mission informed of these trends/legislation/policies. S/he will be considered a resource on civil society and civic space issues, and will be expected to participate actively in internal and external strategy discussions, including active engagement across sectors at the Mission.  The DGC Office manages programs that focus on other democracy and governance areas including elections and political process, devolution, conflict and CVE that contain program elements related to civil society and civic space.  The Program Management Specialist will contribute to the development of analyses and recommendations for these other programs as issues arise related to civic space and civil society.

The Project Management Specialist will identify ways to further USG foreign policy objectives related promotion of democracy and governance, including safeguarding civic space and press freedom or other issues that may arise.    This includes liaising with USAID’s Global Development Lab on technical solutions, as appropriate, and assisting with the development of new, innovative concepts and program designs which engage both traditional and non-traditional partners, with a focus on local solutions.  The incumbent will actively contribute to monitoring, evaluation, analysis and learning at the CDCS and Development Objective level.  Independently or in coordination with the senior governance specialists, s/he will synthesize trends at the regional/national levels, and incorporate learning from all analysis into current and future programming and share extensively across all stakeholders. S/he will participate in strategy development and project design teams including drafting USAID project documents and ushering such strategies and projects through the approval process.

S/he will be required to maintain relationships with a wide range of contacts in government, intergovernmental organizations,  private sector, civil society organizations, donor agencies, implementing partners, and other stakeholders related to governance, civil society and civic space, and to represent USAID and the USG with internal and external audiences, as required. S/he will lead or participate in donor and internal and external sector working groups. S/he will work to best facilitate knowledge management through exchange of technical information and ideas, to collaborate on cross-cutting issues, to provide effective collaboration among actors in the governance and civil society sector, and to promote program/project synergies.

The incumbent will ensure a cross-cutting, cross-sectoral and inclusive approach for civil society, civic space and governance, including participating in cross-sectoral teams and the design and management of other democracy and governance or other sector programs with a civil society component. This will include providing technical expertise to other sectors, USAID Mission and other donors. It will also include incorporating cross-cutting issues -- such as gender, youth and persons living with disabilities -- into the governance, civic space,  civil society programming.  The incumbent will actively facilitate learning within USAID, including support for organization of training, symposia, and knowledge building activities in the areas of governance, civil society and civic space.  


Strategic Planning and Performance Reporting (10%)

Participates in USAID and USG strategy development, portfolio reviews, quarterly financial reviews and other USAID performance and planning processes.  Drafts substantive contributions based on her/his area of expertise to annual performance reports, operational plans and other USAID performance management documents.    



a. Supervision Received:  The PMS will work under direct supervision of the Governance Deputy Office Chief and general supervision of the Office Chief.  The Office Chief, the Deputy and other USAID and USG staff will provide technical guidance as necessary.  However, the incumbent is largely independent of technical supervision; guidance provided by the supervisor is primarily with regard to policy, priorities, results to be achieved, basic approaches to be followed, and the basic content of reports.   Work is assigned primarily in terms of desired results and suggested approaches.  As the incumbent is expected to work with a high degree of independence, s/he must be able to establish priorities, adhere to and meet established deadlines, and perform responsibilities and duties with minimal supervision and limited follow-up.  The incumbent must be able and willing to work beyond specific duties detailed in this position description, as assigned by DGC office, in direct support of USAID/KEA and USG strategic objectives and goals.

 In collaboration with the immediate supervisor and Office Director, the incumbent will: 1) establish annual work objectives and performance measures; 2) review work outputs and accomplishments to ensure compliance with Agency policies and implementation of best practices; 3) provide regular feedback to incumbent throughout the Performance Evaluation period; and 4) prepare the annual Performance Evaluation Report.   

b. Supervision Exercised:  This position is designated as non-supervisory; however, the incumbent plans, organizes and oversees the work of implementing partners’ projects and program activities; provides guidance and technical expertise; reviews the work produced, and evaluates the accomplishments of such contractors or grantees.

c. Available Guidelines:  The incumbent is required to understand USAID Mission and Agency-specific policies and procedures which govern Project Activity Management in addition to USAID/KEA-established administrative and operating procedures, policies and formats.  Oral guidance from the immediate supervisor and specific detailed instructions will be given when necessary for carrying out unique assignments.  The incumbent will be required to be proactive in keeping abreast of evolving guidelines and policies which affect the design, management, implementation, and monitoring of USG governance, civil society and civic space programs within Kenya and the region, including but not limited to the Automated Directives System (ADS), Mission Orders, Mission Notices, USG procurement regulations, and USAID and USG program strategy and policy documents.  In addition, the USAID/KEA DGC Office Chief and Deputy, other DGC team members, the Regional Legal Officer, other Mission technical support staff, and counterparts in USAID/Washington are available as resources to provide advice and guidance.

d. Exercise of Judgment:  The incumbent will exercise professional judgment to make decisions and recommendations on the USAID governance and civil society portfolio.  S/he will apply appropriate Agency and Federal regulations and policies to a broad spectrum of technical and project support matters and in communications with Embassy and Mission employees, GOK counterparts and counterparts at other donor organizations. The Mission may make policy based on her/his recommendations.  

e. Authority to Make Commitments:  The incumbent will speak with authority on USAID project implementation requirements and regulations acting as both a specialist and an information resource. S/he is expected to carry out responsibilities delegated to him/her as an AOR/COR; however, s/he cannot commit or promise USG funds.   

f. Nature, Level, and Purpose of Contacts:  The incumbent will interact regularly with mid-level government and donor officials (including other USG agencies), and civil society leaders at the local, national, and regional levels.  Most contacts will be in the governance and civil society sector, related to policy, planning, program implementation, budgeting, and monitoring and evaluation.  The incumbent will also be required to establish and maintain good working relationships with all categories of Mission personnel.    

g. Time Expected to Reach Full Performance Level:  One year.       

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