Humanitarian Crisis Analysis Team Lead – Maiduguri, Nigeria
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps Nigeria implements a variety of programs with the vision of a Nigeria in which all people are empowered, engaged, resilient and secure. The organization’s programs are implemented in twelve states, mainly in north, North Central and north-east Nigeria and Lagos. Our work covers the following sectors: economic development, livelihoods/food security, adolescent girls & boys empowerment, financial resilience, conflict mitigation and humanitarian response. Common themes include community engagement, inclusive development, gender, and working in partnership with local government, the private sector and civil society actors.
Nigeria is a complex, sophisticated society – and the crisis in its north-east has many dimensions. Mercy Corps is committed to the goal of better understanding crisis contexts in order to deliver better impact for the people and communities we serve. Only by understanding, in real time, not only what has happened but the political, social and economic dynamics underlying conflict and displacement can we hope to optimize impact and influence. Globally, Mercy Corps has humanitarian analysis teams currently deployed in Syria, Libya and Yemen and has the intent of both expanding the reach of this analysis and deepening its ability to match data-driven machine learning with human insights.
This position will pilot the development of rich, timely context analysis in selected north-eastern states, including mapping of conflict dynamics and the humanitarian situation, to inform program decision-making, assurance of safety and security for Mercy Corps staff and assets and those of our partners and the communities we serve, and to shape policy messages to local, regional, national and international actors.
General Position Summary
The Team Lead manages the Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team which seeks to assist the country program in understanding the complex crisis situation in north-east Nigeria. The Team Lead will utilize an extensive network of field contacts – both within Mercy Corps’ sphere and outside of it – to gather information on different dimensions of the crisis, consolidate it and analyze it for critical insights. Areas of focus for data gathering will include, inter alia, the social, political, and economic dynamics that shape the crisis and its manifestations in the north-east; consolidation of varying humanitarian indicators; and conflict reporting.
The Team Lead will develop a strong network of information and opinion sources; be able to scan, filter and interpret news and social media outlets; and be familiar with local, national and international power holders and influencers and how they interact to shape the crisis situation and impact humanitarian operations.
She/he will produce clear, concise and timely analytical reports that can inform Mercy Corps’ own program, security and operational decision-making, as well as be fed into policy development and advocacy as appropriate at local, federal and international levels (both by Mercy Corps and by the wider NGO community.) In addition to frequent and regular context reports, the Team Lead will coordinate more in-depth occasional thematic or situation reports, act as a focal point on humanitarian issues with Mercy Corps’ global Research and Learning and Policy and Advocacy teams (as guided by the Country Director), and provide regular briefings to programs and operations key staff and teams as directed and appropriate. The Team Lead will also provide briefings to key stakeholders in external agencies and members of the donor community as needed. Also support country team in various needs assessment exercises for the purpose of new program design and adaptations.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Systems and Reporting
● Manage the growth and strategy of Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team in close collaboration with Country Director, building systems and processes to sustain impactful and consistent analysis.
● Cultivate targeted audiences both internally and externally for high quality contextual analysis.
● Develop and grow a network of field contacts to serve as sources in shaping and developing a rich understanding of the political, social and economic environment in areas of focus.
● Maintain a constant scan of traditional and social media in order to inform analysis of the humanitarian situation.
● Develop and maintain an in-depth understanding of Mercy Corps’ programming and the humanitarian situation in general in areas of focus and for populations of particular interest (e.g. youth).
● Consolidate and digest diverse data to produce regular broad-based context reports, flash reports in response to fast moving events and occasional thematic or situation reports (illuminating specific issues or locations in greater depth) as directed by the Country Director (Nigeria) and the Senior Director for Humanitarian Analysis (global).
● Oversee use of technology platforms to interpret and map humanitarian and conflict data.
● Translate analysis and insights into program materials as directed and appropriate.
● Liaise as appropriate with country, regional and global Mercy Corps staff engaged in advocacy and influence work.
● Represent Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team to key external stakeholders and core internal programming/operational focal points as a reliable, up-to-date and timely source of insights in the northeast.
Programming and Operations
● Ensure that communication of analysis and insights to internal and external stakeholders is appropriate and regular. Liaise with programs and operations staff as needed and directed to develop a solid understanding of program approaches, content and implementation modalities.
● As directed by Country Director, participate in Senior Management Team discussions to provide analytic insights and risk assessments where necessary.
● As directed by the Country Director, provide analytic insights and risk assessments as part of crisis management related to northeast Nigeria.
● Develop further technology based insights to leverage the use of data in analysis
● Develop and maintain an awareness of Mercy Corps’ culture and values as well as humanitarian principles and international humanitarian law.
● As directed by the Country Director, advise on access issues pertinent to security situations and any resulting humanitarian needs.
● Ensure effective communication within analysis team and ensure the accuracy, brevity and clarity of analysis updates, briefings and incident reports to internal and external stakeholders in a timely manner
● Stay abreast of Mercy Corps program assessments and new business activities. Support these teams and special projects with analysis and insight where appropriate.
● Represent the Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team in Mercy Corps Nigeria committees or ad hoc task force activities.
Training and Outreach
● Supervise, provide guidance to, and support the professional growth of the Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team staff to ensure consistent quality of outputs and a high functioning, collaborative team.
● Assist in promoting good contextual understand across Mercy Corps staff in Nigeria
● Coach colleagues and improve their skills in risk and vulnerability assessments to include political, social and economic context analysis.
● As needed and directed, participate in Mercy Corps regional and global events, gatherings and networks to represent Nigeria’s humanitarian analysis capacity.
● Ensure own compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country
● Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders
● Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
Analyst, Information and Reporting Officer, Information Assistant (Nigeria Crisis Analysis Team)
Reports Directly To: Country Director (Abuja).
Works Directly With: Country Director, Deputy Country Director (Abuja), Program Management (Nigeria); Senior Director of Humanitarian Analysis (global); Senior Advisor – Crisis Analytics (global); Regional Humanitarian Advisor and Regional Security Advisor (WCNA).
Knowledge and Experience
● Masters degree in a social sciences or investigative journalism; or equivalent work experience
● Understanding of humanitarian principles and the humanitarian system at national and international levels
● 3 years field-based experience in complex and insecure settings and preferably a conflict environment
● Experience in liaising with civilian authorities, as well as with regional, national and international institutions
● Ability to build and maintain networks of information sources across different sectors, groups and locations
● Experience with information collation and analysis, mapping and use of infographics to frame analysis
● Proven excellent writing skills, displaying an ability to convey complex information concisely
● Highly developed interpersonal communication skills including influencing, negotiation and coaching
● Willingness to work and travel in often difficult and insecure environments
● Competency in Internet and Microsoft Office systems including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access and other database/mapping systems
● Fluency in English (written and spoken) is required; knowledge of regional languages in north-east Nigeria preferred
● Knowledge and understanding of northeast Nigeria is strongly preferred.
This is a pilot initiative – so the successful job holder will need entrepreneurial drive to develop and establish humanitarian analysis as a critical part of Mercy Corps’ Nigeria program and an essential component of its global commitment. The Team Lead will need to balance a committed team approach, consistent with Mercy Corps’ values, and the ability to work and deliver on his/her own initiative. She/he will need sharp investigative and analytical skills and be able to quickly digest complex information and produce concise insights pertinent to the humanitarian situation.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in Maiduguri, Nigeria. If he/she is not a Nigerian national, please note that this assignment is unaccompanied. Team members in this location are expected to follow all Mercy Corps security protocols, which may change from time to time, relevant to the prevailing risk environment. Medical services are available. Electricity is available but is predominantly through generator. Running water, Internet connectivity and communication are reliable. Short, but frequent, trips to outlying areas will be necessary.
Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Staff are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps’ policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.
In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.
We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.