Subject Matter Expert (Evaluation of Climate Risk Management at USAID)

United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
Private Sector
Experience Level: 
Mid-Level (5-7 Years)
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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Company Overview

Palladium is a global leader in the design, development and delivery of Positive Impact - the intentional creation of enduring social and economic value. We work with foundations, investors, governments, corporations, communities and civil society to formulate strategies and implement solutions that generate lasting social, environmental and financial benefits.

For the past 50 years, we have been making Positive Impact possible. With a team of more than 2,500 employees operating in 90 plus countries and a global network of more than 35,000 technical experts, Palladium has improved - and is committed to continuing to improve - economies, societies and most importantly, people's lives.

Palladium is a child-safe organisation, and screens applicants for suitability to work with children. We also provide equal employment to all participants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, veteran or marital status.

Project Overview and Role

Palladium implements USAID's E3 Analytics and Evaluation Project, which supports the design and implementation of rigorous evaluations for USAID's Bureau for Economic Growth, Education, and Environment (E3). Under this Project, the Palladium team will conduct a performance evaluation of the implementation of USAID's climate risk management (CRM) policy.

CRM is the process of assessing, addressing and adaptively managing climate risks that may impact the ability of USAID programs to achieve objectives. The goal of CRM is to both render USAID's work more climate resilient (i.e. better able to anticipate, prepare for and adapt to changing climate conditions, and withstand, respond to and recover rapidly from disruptions) and to avoid maladaptation (i.e. development efforts that inadvertently increase climate risks). USAID policy documents including ADS 201mat "Climate Change in USAID Regional/Country Strategies" and ADS 201mal "Climate Risk Management for USAID Projects and Activities" set forth the requirements for CRM on which this evaluation will focus.

The purpose of this evaluation is to gain better understanding of how climate risks to USAID activities are being managed as part of activity implementation, the impact of managing climate risks on development results, the strengths and weaknesses of the CRM policy in supporting climate resilient development, and how support for the CRM policy can be strengthened. It is expected that the evaluation will address the following questions:

  1. How have activities with moderate-to-high climate risks implemented and adaptively managed measures to address climate risk? What are the conditions that enable and barriers to managing climate risks?
  2. What is the impact of managing climate risks on USAID's programming, development results, and beneficiaries?
  3. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the CRM policy as a means of achieving climate resilient development? How can it be improved?
  4. What support has enabled, facilitated, or promoted implementation of the CRM policy? In what ways can the Agency better support implementation of the CRM policy?

The evaluation will take a mixed-method approach including desk research, key informant interviews, focus group discussions, an online survey, and field visits. The evaluation may also include case studies of CRM at 3 or 4 USAID Missions around the world. This could entail one- to two-week field trips to each country, with 2 weeks in between each trip.


Palladium is seeking a subject matter expert on climate risk management, climate change adaptation, and/or climate resilience in a developing country context. The subject matter expert will support the team leader in the design, implementation, and reporting activities for the CRM evaluation. The subject matter expert will also work closely with a research associate and will receive support from the Palladium home office team throughout the evaluation.

The subject matter expert is expected to be responsible for the following:

  • Contribute to the drafting and finalization of the evaluation design proposal including: evaluation framework, case study design, data collection instruments, data collection and analysis plans, work plans, and other relevant sections.
  • Contribute to the desk research and provide inputs to inform required evaluation design documents.
  • Implementation of all evaluation activities and work plan to carry out required design, data collection, and analysis tasks.
  • Carry out data collection and analysis based on the approved evaluation design and methodology. This may include reviewing and analyzing secondary documents and existing CRM monitoring data, conducting key informant interviews and focus group discussions both remotely and in up to four selected field countries, supervising survey development and implementation, and other approaches to collect and analyze data, including ensuring necessary mechanisms for data quality assurance.
  • Participate in the findings/conclusions/recommendations workshop with the USAID/E3 Office of Global Climate Change and other Agency staff prior to drafting evaluation report.
  • Contribute to the drafting and finalizing the draft and final evaluation report; including responding to comments from Palladium home office and USAID.
  • Participate in presentations to USAID regarding findings, conclusions, and recommendations from the evaluation.
  • Provide input on dissemination materials, such as briefs and one-pagers, including text, photos, and diagrams.
  • Ensure that all evaluation processes and products meet the requirements and quality standards of Palladium and USAID.


The subject matter expert will have technical experience in climate risk management, climate change adaptation, and/or climate resilience in a developing country context. It is preferred that the subject matter expert also have knowledge and/or experience working with USAID rules, evaluation policy, regulations, and procedures. Relevant experience and knowledge in implementing similarly complex evaluations involving multiple stakeholders is also preferred. Additional requirements include:

  • Must have at least a master's degree in a relevant field of study with a minimum 5 years of experience in climate risk management, climate change adaptation, and/or climate resilience in a developing country context.
  • Fluent in English including speaking, writing, and reading.
  • Outstanding organizational, analytical, report writing, and presentation skills.