Job Opportunity: Program Officer for the Middle East and North Africa

Does your dream job involve working with international partners to support democracy in the Middle East? Well you're in luck, NDI is recruiting a Program Officer/Senior Program Officer with political and organizational expertise to support NDI’s democratic development programs in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

The Program Officer/Sr. Program Officer will work with members of the MENA team in the management, planning, design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of democracy support programs with political parties, civic organizations and legislatures. It is anticipated that this position will focus 70% of time on program support and management duties and 30% on monitoring and evaluation duties; this will be adjust over time as the incumbent settles into the position. The position will be based in Washington, DC, and may require occasional travel oversea. 

In an effort to assist countries in MENA develop and sustain democratic forms of governance, NDI conducts programs throughout the region to support electoral processes, strengthen political parties, increase citizen involvement in political processes and build legislative capacity.  The Institute also conducts activities to promote the political participation of women, youth and other marginalized sectors of society.

Primary Programmatic Responsibilities

  • In partnership with field staff, plans and oversees implementation of program activities in assigned countries.
  • Drafts, or oversees drafting and submission of board memos, proposals, work plans, quarterly and other reports with minimal substantive guidance.
  • Collaboratively develops program concepts and strategies, including objectives and evaluation frameworks; manages proposal process and timeline for proposal submissions.
  • Leads work plan discussions and manages process for work plan drafting and submission.
  • Anticipates program needs and ensures that field offices receive needed administrative or program backstopping in DC.
  • Ensures that program progress is appropriately measured and shares results with donors, NDI counterparts and other stakeholders.
  • Serves as primary point of contact on assigned countries and represents NDI at local conferences and meetings with NGO community, funders and donors and members of the foreign policy community to assist with NDI's public outreach.
  • Serves as primary point of contact for country directors in assigned countries.
  • Takes responsibility for management of program finances.
  • Travels to the region to assess new opportunities, participate in and evaluate current projects, and negotiate with key program contacts, political leaders, donors and others.
  • Provides support for local and regional program conferences, workshops and meetings; organizes major cross-functional workshops; organizes delegations abroad.
  • Recruits international trainers, volunteers and staff for numerous positions within the assigned regional department; initiates and coordinates cross-team programming activities; directs collaboration within the team and between teams.
  • Ensures that donor regulations and NDI policies are followed by program staff in DC and the field.
  • Undertakes additional duties as determined by Senior Management.

Primary Monitoring and Evaluation Responsibilities 

  • Guide MENA-DC and field-based teams, including country program M&E Officers, in identifying, developing and utilizing performance monitoring tools and systems to strengthen program management and donor reporting.
  • Spearhead efforts within the MENA team to develop indicators of success and methods of program impact measurement.
  • Work with the MENA Team staff to respond to donor evaluations and data quality assessments.
  • Support the MENA Team’s participation in the institute-wide Community of Practice for field-based M&E staff.
  • Design orientations and workshops on M&E to MENA DC and field based staff.
  • Guide MENA-DC and field-based teams, including country program M&E Officers, in setting up and maintaining M&E systems.


  • Bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, law, international development or related subject; graduate degree preferred.
  • A minimum of four (4) years for program officer and six (6) years for senior program office of relevant work experience in international development, community organizing, political campaigns, organizational development, legislative affairs, or equivalent experience at NDI, with a minimum of two (2) years of professional experience in performance monitoring and evaluation. Additional years of relevant work experience may be substituted for educational requirement.
  • Experience designing and writing project proposals and work plans.
  • Experience in results-oriented program design, strategic planning, and program evaluation techniques preferred.
  • Experience with designing and employing evaluation tools and methods such as surveys, interviews, focus groups, and research from secondary sources.
  • Strong knowledge of data analysis, word processing and spreadsheet applications.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English to effectively present information, respond to questions, and prepare written reports in a professional and timely manner.
  • Experience developing and managing budgets and knowledge of basic budget and accounting procedures.
  • Demonstrated competency in one or more areas of NDI’s functional areas.
  • Strong project management and political analytical skills for interpreting complex program and political issues and relating to program objectives.
  • Strong managerial and interpersonal skills and cultural sensitivity to effectively interact with all levels of staff, U.S. and foreign government personnel and members of donor organizations.
  • High degree of organization, initiative and attention to detail.
  • Interest in and knowledge of regional political environment and people.
  • Experience living and working experience outside the U.S. preferred.
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Windows environment, email technology, spreadsheets and Google Apps.
  • Ability and willingness to travel to regional locations, which are often remote or lacking modern communications or transportation infrastructure.
  • Arabic and/or French language abilities preferred.
Candidates must possess current authorization to work in the U.S. without requiring employer sponsorship in order to be eligible for this position.
To apply for this position, please visit NDI's website at