Democratic Governance Specialist Job Announcement No. AID–013-20

Speeches Shim

Democratic Governance Specialist

Job Announcement No. AID–013-20

OPEN TO:               All Interested Candidates

POSITION:              Democratic Governance Specialist

OPENING DATE:  November 18, 2020                                

CLOSING DATE:   December 4, 2020

WORK HOURS:     Full-time; 40 hours/week

SALARY RANGE:  FSN 11 - (ZMK 547,450.72 p.a. - ZMK 863,029.27 p.a.)

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in Zambia is seeking eligible and qualified applicants for the position of the Democratic Governance Specialist.


The Democratic Governance Specialist is located in the USAID/Zambia Democracy Rights and Governance (DRG) Office.

The Democratic Governance Program Management Specialist will be charged with the primary responsibility for monitoring and evaluating the progress and impact of USAID democracy, rights, and governance programs and activities, and provide managerial support for the development and implementation of related strategies, programs, and activities in Zambia.  S/he will be held accountable for and evaluated against mutually established specific work objectives and performance indicators. 

She/he is a senior professional with broad experience related to democratic governance or civic engagement programs, or in related government service.  Relevant experience includes decentralization and local governance, civic engagement, public sector institutional capacity building, civil society capacity building, and governance of service delivery in sector specific areas.  The incumbent will use her/his independent judgement and initiative to complete complex tasks with minimal technical supervision. 

The incumbent will utilize her/his technical skills and knowledge of program implementation to recognize opportunities for new initiatives and propose modifications of program results.  S/he will also be a key liaison between USAID and the Government of the Republic of Zambia (GRZ) and private sector and civil society representatives, including though not limited to the Cabinet Office’s Decentralization Secretariat, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Finance, Local Government Service Commission, and the Office of the Auditor General.

The Democratic Governance Specialist will provide high quality and timely analysis, both written and oral, for input to policy dialogue.  S/he will ensure financial and administrative management of assigned programs, including Contracting Officer’s Representative (COR) and Agreement Officer’s Representative (AOR) duties.  Secondary responsibilities, as delegated, may include program management and technical advice in areas such as social sector governance and economic governance. On a broader level, the Democratic Governance Specialist will work with other USAID/Zambia technical offices across education, health, natural resources, and rural enterprise sectors to deepen effective governance and contribute to stronger social and economic outcomes.

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES                                                  

A.        Program Planning                 30%

  • Assist with the strategic planning and design of development activities, intermediate results, modifications to activity designs, and measures of achievement in Zambia.  This will include USAID’s Country Development Cooperation Strategy, Operational Plan, Performance Plan and Report, the DRG Office’s Project Appraisal Documents, and the U.S. Embassy’s Integrated Country Strategy.
  • Track developments in key GRZ ministries, agencies, commissions, local government, private sector, professional associations, civil society/media, and regional organizations, and provide analysis and recommendations for democratic governance including decentralization of public services and fiscal resources, and the strengthening of citizen and private sector inputs in development and service delivery strengthening of citizen-led development coordination structures, problem-solving linkages between local authorities and line ministries of the central government, and fiscal decentralization.
  • Conduct analyses and make recommendations on policy, technical and administrative issues that form the basis of positions to be advanced by USAID/Zambia technical teams and leadership, the Embassy Political-Economic Section and the Ambassador or Chargé d'Affaires.

B.        Program Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting               30%

  • Day-to-day oversight and management of performance to ensure program implementation achieves planned results.  He/she will, in collaboration with implementing partners, develop performance monitoring systems and report on program performance, in accordance with USAID reporting requirements.
  • Monitor progress and impact of USAID democracy, rights, and governance programs in Zambia through continuous contact with implementing partners.  This will include travel to field sites.
  • Track, revise, and report on indicators of results and ensure that measurements of progress are accurate and clearly describe the objectives of the program and the results achieved. 
  • Report to USAID staff on progress and impact of USAID programs as appropriate during program implementation reviews and during the preparation of USAID's annual performance report.  Generate weekly and annual reporting as per USAID requirements.
  • Conduct regular data quality assessments to ensure that indicators and data for USAID–funded programs are appropriate, collectible, and accurate.
  • Regularly communicate and interact with USAID and Zambia stakeholders, including GRZ officials at national, provincial, and local levels, private sector firms and associations, local civil society organizations and professional associations, bilateral and multilateral donor agencies, and other implementing partners working in democracy, rights, and governance related areas.  
  • Identify and analyze democratic governance and political developments of strategic importance and implications for U.S. Government interests in Zambia, and prepare written reports on developments in the sector, emphasizing the policy implications for program implementation, and ensuring that ongoing and planned programs in Zambia remain relevant.
  • Represent USAID and participate in a wide array of events including conferences, workshops, and meetings.
  • Work closely with stakeholders and partners to ensure that program achievements and lessons learned are properly disseminated.
  • Prepare summary charts, graphs, and tables on the aforementioned information for the purpose of better informing USAID and Zambia stakeholders on trends, status, needs, and opportunities.

C.        Program Management                     30%

  • Carry out official Activity Manager or Contracting Officer’s Representative (COR) and Agreement Officer’s Representative (AOR) duties, for USAID Local Impact Governance and other activities as delegated by the DRG Office Director and approved by the Contracting or Agreement Officer.  Oversee the development of annual work plans by implementing partners and reviews plans for comprehensiveness, clarity, and adherence to USAID/Zambia’s Operational Plan, the DRG strategy, and USAID policies and regulations.
  • Draft statements of work, procurement documents, congressional notifications, correspondence, and other documentation.
  • Provide oversight and monitoring of the program for which s/he serves as COR/AOR including reviewing implementing partner narrative and financial reports, monitoring of funds for adherence to proposed interventions, preparing quarterly pipeline review/budget status reports, following up on irregular findings, providing advice for realignment of budgets and preparing quarterly accruals.
  • Maintain files and records specific to the program for which s/he is responsible including reports, meeting summaries and minutes, copies of all grants/cooperative agreements, assessments, and evaluations.
  • Maintain regular contact with implementing partners to support activity implementation and assess its effectiveness, efficiency, and impact, including reviewing and commenting on partners’ periodic reports. 
  • Coordinate the activities of short-term consultants and visitors.
  • Keep cooperating partners and implementing partners informed of USAID assistance plans, implementation progress, and relevant USAID processes through regular communications and meetings.
  • Foster donor and government coordination by serving on the Decentralization Working Group and related technical and sectoral governance coordination committees as a USAID representative.
  • Serve as a resource person to Mission personnel by answering technical questions and providing guidance related to effective sub-national governance and public administration across sectors.
  • Maintain regular contact with implementing partners to support activity implementation and assess its effectiveness, efficiency, and impact, including reviewing and commenting on partners’ periodic reports. 
  • Coordinate the activities of short-term consultants and visitors for the Zambia program.

D.        Logistical Arrangements                10%

  • Represent USAID/Zambia in presenting programs, policies or strategy as required at official meetings and events and providing written reporting as appropriate.
  • Perform USAID internal administrative tasks and other tasks as required such as actively participating in strategic planning and project design; and gathering information for draft concept papers, scopes of work, budget preparation, and evaluations. 
  • Prepare and occasionally present briefings for U.S. Government high level-visitors and participate in arranging for visits as required.
  • The logistical support provided by USAID/Zambia includes office space, transportation for official field work as well as travel arrangements and tickets for work related business, and secretarial support.


  1. Education:  Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university in Political Science or Comparative Government, Development Studies, Sociology or Social Anthropology, Public Administration, Behavioral Economics, or a related field.
  2. Prior Work Experience:  At least five years of progressively responsible, professional-level experience in democratic governance or civic engagement programs, or in related government service.  Experience in decentralization and local governance systems and work that integrates governance and civic oversight of public service sectors for targeted improvements in health, education or other public services is required.
  3. Post Entry Training:  Familiarization training in USAID-specific procedures, regulations, and methods, and orientation on working from a donor-Agency perspective, etc., will be provided.  Successful completion of formal COR/AOR certification courses is required.  Must become knowledgeable about USAID’s Journey to Self-Reliance policy ( and financing for self-reliance efforts, and with USAID’s Collaborating, Learning and Adapting (CLA) framework for design and program management (  USAID will provide other training to maintain professional capabilities in the field, including courses offered for professional USAID staff, as appropriate; and, courses, seminars, conferences, and other activities in fields related to the sector and needed to maintain and update professional qualifications, subject to offerings and the availability of funds.
  4. Language Proficiency (List both English and host country language(s) proficiency requirements by level (II, III, IV) sp/rd/wr:  Excellent (Level IV) English language skills (written, oral, reading) including public speaking skills, are essential, as is demonstrated ability to communicate effectively through oral presentations and briefings, written reporting and analysis, and information technology.  The incumbent is required to be able to prepare concise documents and reports including, though not limited to, budgets, concept papers, scopes of work, reports, and a range of other project documents for internal and external purposes, all of which must be delivered in a professional and competent manner requiring little or no editorial changes.
  5. Job Knowledge:  The Democratic Governance Specialist is required to have a comprehensive technical knowledge of two or more areas:  citizen-government engagement, social accountability, decentralization and sub-national governance, public administration, and participatory budgeting and planning.  S/He will be well-versed in Zambian political and economic complexities and have a high degree of understanding of the power dynamics between local authorities and national government.  The Democratic Governance Specialist must be able to provide high quality and timely analysis, both written and oral, drawing on USAID-generated programmatic evidence as well as international studies and best practices.
  6. Skills and Abilities:  This position requires skills in program management, political analysis, program reporting and monitoring.  The ability to serve as an effective liaison with a wide array of individuals and institutions is essential.  S/he must have the ability to develop a thorough understanding of USAID and host-government policies.  Excellent interpersonal skills in various settings and good social and professional judgment and to maintain collaborative working relationships in a team structure is required.  The ability to analyze data, review and understand research outputs and provide advice on policy measures and instruments is essential.  Computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, and Power Point is essential to the effective performance of this job.


Subject to availability of funds, this will be a five-year contract, with an option to extend, depending upon continuing need of the services.


The position is classified at FSN-11 level.  The final salary of the successful candidate will be negotiated within that range, depending on qualifications and previous earnings history.


Qualified candidates should send:

  1. A formal application letter or cover letter;
  2. A current CV;
  3. Photocopies of all professional certificates and degrees;
  4. A fully complete application form DS-174 (available online at; and
  5. Contact information for at least three professional references. 

SUBMIT ALL APPLICATION MATERIALS TO: (E-mailed applications required.)

The email subject heading must read either of the following (the location of the position must be clear):

Application: Democratic Governance Specialist, AID-013-20

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

Issuing Country 
Wednesday, November 18, 2020 - 3:00am

Last updated: November 19, 2020