Consultant - Economist - Remote

Programs Anywhere, United States


Description

Background:

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.

The decline of Yemen’s economy due to conflict has had a major impact on people’s well-being. Since the recent conflict in 2015, food prices have doubled and the cost of basic living, measured by the Survival Minimum Expenditure basket has increased fourfold. Food is available in markets, but fewer and fewer Yemenis are able to afford it. As a result, 24.1 million Yemenis, 80% of the population are in need of humanitarian assistance. 17 million Yemenis rely on food assistance and over a third of households report inadequate food consumption (HNO 2019WFP VAM 08/2019FEWSNET 10/2019). Yemen is almost entirely reliant on imports, accounting for more than 90% of food items. As a result, any shocks to Yemen’s economy are passed on almost directly to consumers as higher prices. Given the already dire food security situation, Yemenis are not able to absorb further shocks. Economic competition between the north and south has impacted heavily on prices, particularly for fuel.

Despite all this, there are huge gaps in our ability to access reliable data on Yemen’s economy. The conflict has degraded the capacity of traditional institutions to measure its impact on the economy, and therefore understand better the drivers of need. In addition, there is a generally recognized but poorly evidenced understanding that political economy dynamics are a major driver of vulnerabilities.

Purpose / Project Description:

Yemen Economy Tracking Initiative (YETI) provides data and analysis on economic trends and developments to support analysis and economic policy for Yemen

Consultant Objectives:

The economist consultant will provide review, quality control and in depth feedback on YETI research outputs, notably on-demand flash analysis and thematic reports, and on the YETI dashboard.

Consultant Activities:

The Consultant will:

  • Provide review of YETI products to ensure they meet the standards required by the donor of economic research outputs.
  • To advise the team on product design and analysis
  • Engage in research on a range of topics related to Yemen’s economy, including but not restricted to understanding macroeconomic dynamics, role of currency instability in driving food prices, various dynamics driving costs for importers.
  • Engage in team analysis sessions and project calls as required.
  • Assist Mercy Corps country team in developing appropriate interventions, both humanitarian and development, to address Yemen’s needs in the context of the various economic crises affecting the country.

Consultant Deliverables:

The Consultant will:

  • Work with ACAPs and Mercy Corps teams on reviewing YETI project outputs.
  • Provide in depth review and feedback on finalized products.
  • Ensure appropriate economic language and concepts utilized in the delivery of said reports.
  • Assist in data analysis on economic datasets.
  • Conduct interviews with important stakeholders in Yemen’s economy, such as importers, banks, officials etc

Timeframe / Schedule: 

September 2021 – March 2022

Estimated total no. of days: TBC

The Consultant will report to:

Mercy Corps Team Lead - Analysis

Required Experience & Skills:

  • 5-10 years of experience in relevant technical field (required)
  • MA or PHD Level Qualifications
  • Familiarity with the Yemen context
  • Significant applied experience in the field of macroeconomic analysis, political-economy, monetary intervention designs.
  • Strong experience and familiarity with the workflows and needs of development actors.
  • Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills, including in multi- and cross-cultural communication and relationship-building
  • Competency in Internet and Microsoft Office systems including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access and other
  • Fluency in English, both written and spoken is required.

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
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 team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our stakeholders and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.