Nutrition/ Social Science Researcher

Fixed-Term Contract

Position: Nutrition/ Social Science Researcher (to lead Climate Change Nutrition study)

Full time: 30 months

Zvitambo is an internationally recognized multidisciplinary public health research institute with the mission of helping children survive and thrive through research. We work in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Child Care to conduct research and provide technical support and education to reduce the burden of malnutrition and infectious diseases, and give children a good start in life. Zvitambo is registered as a non-profit company with the Ministry of Justice, and operates from a head office in Harare, and a field site in Shurugwi.

Job Purpose

Zvitambo is seeking an experienced researcher (nutritionist or social scientist) to coordinate a study examining the links between climate change and child nutrition. The postholder will coordinate the study team including data scientists and other field researchers. This study includes both quantitative and qualitative work.  The study will be conducted in Murehwa and Shurugwi. Travel to both study sites will be required. The post holder will be based at our offices in Harare.

The researcher will assist the PI in developing the study protocol, implementing the protocol, leading qualitative interviews, coordinating workshops and writing manuscripts for publication. The quantitative portion of the study will use secondary data to examine linkages between climate change and child nutrition. For the qualitative work, we will use River of Life methodology combined with transect walks to understand community understanding of the linkages between climate change and child nutrition. This knowledge will be summarized and the postholder will be responsible for leading co-design workshops with agricultural and health care workers at the community level. The final part of the study will be to develop policy communication for stakeholders. This project is a partnership between Zvitambo, Cornell University, the Food and Nutrition Council, and the Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre (CIMMYT). The post holder will coordinate this interdisciplinary research team.

Main Duties

  • Lead the design, planning, and implementation of field work.
  • Assume responsibility for project management including, communication across the research teams, day to day management and oversight of project activities.
  • Lead the preparation of materials for ethical approval and fieldwork protocol guidance.
  • Ensures proper documentation on all study participants.
  • Prepare progress reports to regulatory bodies (e.g. MRCZ and MoHCC)
  • Participate in study-related training sessions and regular meetings.
  • Lead the qualitative data collection and analysis including translation and use of appropriate software (e.g. NVIVO).
  • Contribute to writing project reports and journal publications based on research findings; the latter to be submitted to peer-review journals of high international ranking.
  • Contribute to the presentation of appropriate research findings at project workshops to policy and practitioner audiences, and at academic conferences as required by the research programme.
  • The duties of the post outlined above are not exhaustive, and the postholder will be expected to be cooperative and flexible, undertaking such administrative and other duties as may from time to time be reasonably expected of a member of research staff.

QUALIFICATIONS

Essential:

  • At least 3 years’ experience co-ordinating research projects.
  • Relevant postgraduate nutrition/social science qualification.
  • Experience using a variety of qualitative research methods, including conducting semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions.
  • Experience with qualitative analysis and use of appropriate qualitative analytical software.
  • Excellent organisational skills.
  • Excellent team player.
  • Ability to manage and prioritise own workload and organise research within the project timetable.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office software (including Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint).
  • Proven team working skills.
  • Fluency in Shona and English.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills in English and Shona.
  • Clean class 4 drivers licence.

Desirable:

  • PhD in social science, nutrition, public health or a relevant field
  • Experience working with communities to co-design interventions especially in a rural setting
  • Experience working within a research organization
  • Keen understanding of the research ecosystem in Zimbabwe.

How to apply:

Please email your application to [email protected] with the subject heading: Application for Climate Change Project Lead.  Please include a cover letter, CV, and other supporting documents; it is preferable if this can be combined as one PDF document.

The closing date for applications is May 22, 2024.  This post will start in June/July of 2024. Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.

Consider your application unsuccessful if not contacted within eight (8) weeks after the closing date of the advert. Any form of lobbying at any stage will lead to automatic disqualification.

By submitting your personal information, you consent to Zvitambo holding and using it in accordance with its recruitment policy and procedure. Zvitambo reserves the right to verify documents attached with the relevant awarding institutions to authenticate their validity.

Zvitambo is an equal opportunity employer committed to having a diverse work force.