Washington DC - Market Systems Development Intern

Programming Washington, District of Columbia



DATES OF INTERNSHIP:  June - September 2020

HOURS PER WEEK:  30-40 hours/week (Full-Time)

Note: Interns should not work over 40 hours/week

INTERN SUPERVISOR & CONTACT INFORMATION: Market Systems Development, Advisor

WORKS CLOSELY WITH: Team Lead, Markets


Mercy Corps responsibilities

For the duration of this internship assignment the intern will receive:

  • Training and supervisory support
  • Workspace within the MC office in Washington, DC
  • Access to Mercy Corps online tools
  • All other tools, materials and communication requirements for this project to be undertaken

Intern responsibilities

Intern will remain responsible for all costs associated with:

  • Travel to and from Mercy Corps HQ
  • Maintaining personal computer which will be used for the internship
  • Accommodation, travel and living expenses
  • All other costs associated with this internship


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. Mercy Corps’ Technical Support Unit (TSU) is a key part of the Program Department. TSU subject-matter experts help set agency strategy and provide consultation – from assessment and design through project implementation and results measurement – to field offices worldwide.

Mercy Corps’ markets technical team supports the agency’s global portfolio of market systems development (MSD) programs working to address the systemic constraints hindering poor and vulnerable populations’ participation in markets. Operating in contexts across the fragility-to-development spectrum, Mercy Corps is at the forefront of testing and learning from market programming in more fragile contexts.


A key component of the support provided by the markets technical team includes capturing and elevating learning from country programs, ensuring teams know and are able to access information about best practices for MSD programs, as well as developing technical resources to support design, implementation and measurement. The team would like to engage an intern to support these critical functions for Mercy Corps’ global MSD portfolio.


The Market Systems Development Intern will support high quality and impactful programming. S/he will gain skills in the following areas:

  1. Mercy Corps’ approach to market-based programming and efforts to improve well-being outcomes by working through markets in fragile contexts
  2. Desk research, effective written communication, and knowledge management skills
  3. Internal communications using Mercy Corps’ web-based information systems to draft and update communication materials (e.g. technical resources, case studies, etc.)
  4. Writing and sharing updates and learning through Mercy Corps’ internal knowledge sharing platforms


  1. Strategic review of best practices relevant to market systems development (MSD) programming and partnership mechanisms for working with the private sector, through literature review, interviews, and other forms of investigation
  2. Support to institutional learning on MSD and market-based programming in fragile contexts, including capture of program lessons, content development and design for internal and external communications (case studies, training materials, program examples)
  3. Review, edit and update tools and technical resources


  • Graduate degree recently completed (no more than 1 year) or in progress, in relevant discipline, required
  • Knowledge of relevant technical sectors (economic development, markets, resilience, systems change)
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to quickly understand and incorporate new concepts into one’s work
  • Demonstrated attention to detail, ability to follow procedures, meet deadlines and work independently and cooperatively with team members if required
  • Strong research, organizational and prioritization skills are necessary
  • Commitment to working with vulnerable groups in need regardless of race, religion or gender
  • Highly development computer skills and strong familiarity with Microsoft Office
  • Experience with graphic design (infographics, data visualization, etc.) a plus
  • French language skills a plus
  • Robust sense of humor

Mercy Corps interns represent the agency both during and outside of work hours and 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.

Mercy Corps Diversity Statement 

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 Statement

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.