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Country Director, Nigeria

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Abuja, Nigeria

TITLE:    Country Director, Nigeria

REPORTING TO:  Director, Country Strategy

LOCATION: Abuja, Nigeria

ASSIGNMENT LENGTH: Two years, renewable by mutual consent and availability of funding

POSITION SUMMARY:   The Population Council is seeking a Country Director for its office in Nigeria. Successful candidates will have experience in key management and leadership roles in international development and broad research knowledge of global health, including family planning and reproductive health, HIV and AIDS, and gender and youth.  

The Country Director is responsible for achieving the strategic direction of the Council’s work in Nigeria. They lead external relations with government, donors, and national and international NGOs to identify research opportunities, promote utilization of research results and fundraise. The Country Director provides technical support to research initiatives to gather and utilize high quality evidence for program and policy change.  The Country Director supervises and ensures project goals and milestones are met in accordance with project budgets and work plans. They provide on-going budget oversight and management of all projects and grantees in coordination with headquarters financial team.  The Country Director has overall responsibility to monitor that the financial and administrative management of the office complies with local laws, budgetary allocations, donor requirements, and Council policies and procedures. They provide guidance, supervision, capacity building, and leadership to Council staff and consultants in Nigeria, and oversees recruitment and hiring, and performance management.  

The Country Director also serves as a Principal Investigator for selected research studies. The Council has a diverse portfolio of research in Nigeria, with activities that represent all three of the Council's social and behavioral program areas as well as the Center for Biomedical Research. 

The Population Council has been working in partnership with government, ministries, and community-based organizations in Nigeria since the 1960s. The Council established a country office in 2006 and has since expanded its research portfolio to address HIV and AIDS among key and vulnerable populations, maternal mortality and morbidity, adolescent sexual and reproductive health, new evidence for improving access to family planning and reproductive health services, and child marriage.



Country Office Leadership and Management 

1. Update the country strategy to articulate needs and priorities of the country within the context of the Council’s three programmatic areas of HIV and AIDS, Reproductive Health, and Poverty, Gender and Youth. 

2. Develop and implement effective office systems and procedures within the context of Council policy.  Directly manage the Finance and Administrative team that support program activities on the execution of local and international policies and procedures. 

3. Provide ongoing budget oversight and management.

4. Provide positive and supportive guidance, supervision and leadership to Council staff and consultants, including recruiting and hiring, and performance management.


5. Carry out operational and behavioral research by developing or contributing to the development of protocols and study procedures and instruments, collaborating with partner organizations, overseeing study implementation and monitoring progress, and analyzing data. 

6. Prepare reports and manuscripts for peer reviewed journals on research projects.

7. Ensure quality, ethics, program relevance and country needs in the design and implementation of programmatic research and other activities in Nigeria. 

8. Support/help strengthen the capacity of Nigerian staff and consultants.

9. Work closely with program leadership, to develop and produce high quality research.  

10. Maintain and develop collaborative efforts with staff across the Council, including in Africa, other regions, and offices in the United States (I.e, New York and Washington DC.)

Business Development

11. Raise funds for program activities of the Population Council in Nigeria, including proposal development and donor stewardship, with an emphasis on growing each of the Council’s core program areas. 


12. Represent the Population Council in all of its activities in Nigeria. This includes interacting and developing relationships with all the major organizations, including donors, development partners, policy makers, collaborating agencies, NGOs and government and private sector institutions.



1. Advanced degree in social science, medicine, global health, or related field, with relevant training and expertise; Doctorate strongly preferred.

2. At least ten years of relevant experience in a progressively senior capacity.  

3. Proven ability to and interest in managing and administering a country-level program that addresses one or more of the three focus areas at the Council: HIV and AIDS; reproductive health; or poverty, gender, and youth. This requires experience in recruiting, monitoring, and supervising staff; managing project resources; and fundraising and donor reporting.

4. Demonstrated ability to work well with varied levels of national and international staff within a complex technical assistance organization, and ability to work in a multicultural environment.

5. A proven track record of developing self and staff. 

6. Strong leadership and management skills and the vision to build, motivate and lead the Nigeria office in a collegial manner. 

7. Demonstrated ability to design, implement, analyze, publish, and disseminate research in developing countries. 

8. Reputation for excellence in public health programs, through past positions and publications record. 

9. Superior diplomatic, representational, problem-solving, management and interpersonal skills. 

10. Proven experience in cultivating donors and winning research grants.

11. Understanding of the Nigerian context (e.g., government entities) desirable. 

12. Excellent English written and oral communication skills.

13. Willingness to travel within the region and overseas on a regular basis.

Application Deadline: March 6, 2020. When applying through the web portal please attach your CV and Cover Letter in Word or PDF format.

The Population Council is an international, nonprofit, nongovernmental institution that seeks to improve the well-being and reproductive health of current and future generations around the world and to help achieve a humane, equitable, and sustainable balance between people and resources. The Council conducts biomedical, social science, and public health research and helps build research capacities in developing countries. Established in 1952, the Council is governed by an international board of trustees. Its New York headquarters supports a global network of country offices.  We are seeking an individual to fill the position described.  

The Population Council provides equal opportunity; it does not discriminate against any person with regard to age, color, creed, national origin, disability, political belief, veteran status, religion, marital status, gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation. Decisions on employment are based on an individual’s qualifications as related to the position for which they are being considered. The Council especially encourages applications from qualified women and members of minority groups. The Population Council is international in the composition of its board of trustees and its staff, as well as in the nature and deployment of its activities.

How to Apply: 

Organization Info

Listing Stats

Post Date: 
Feb 5 2020
Active Until: 
Mar 5 2020
Hiring Organization: 
The Population Council