Interim Senior Program Officer, Data & Analytics - Gates Foundation


Just the messenger - apply here:

Seattle, WA

The goal of the Global Development program is to help deliver targeted healthcare solutions in the developing world and (working closely with our Global Growth & Opportunities) to increase opportunities for people to lift themselves out of hunger and poverty in these regions. Our strategies focus on Polio; Agriculture Development; Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene; Financial Services for the Poor; Maternal, Newborn and Child Health; Family Planning; and Nutrition. These strategies are supported by functional teams that focus on Vaccine Delivery, Integrated Delivery, and Data and Analytics.

Position Summary & Responsibilities
The Interim Senior Program Officer (SPO) for Data & Analytics will provide expertise to support strategic decision-making within and across strategy portfolios, across the global programs, with partners, and to programmatic initiatives with analytical needs. You will play a key role in shaping the application of cutting edge artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms to real life challenging problems. From creating experiments and prototyping implementations to designing new architectures, the SPO will lead various efforts that address challenges in machine perception, data mining, machine learning, and natural language understanding. This role will collaborate closely with the Foundation’s Program Strategy Teams to apply these analytical approaches to provide practical and timely insights to the focus domains of the Foundation. This role will report to the Deputy Director of Strategy, Data and Analytics, (SDA) for Global Development (GD).

Specific responsibilities include:

Strategic and technical:
Strengthen internal efforts to enhance the quality of the generation, collation, accessibility, synthesis and visualization of data/information to support the foundation to achieve programmatic goals and to communicate strengths and weaknesses of use of data in decision-making.
Lead in developing generalizable and scalable AI and conversational architectures and machine learning systems applied to optimize delivery effectiveness in our target countries
Efficiently implement algorithms and run experiments on real data (either small, big or zero data)
Develop machine learning algorithms and smart applications that enable humans to make better decisions and perform more efficiently in their tasks and allow for their swift integration into delivery systems

Act as technical resource on data and analytics (in particular, big data analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence) for programmatic staff and stakeholders.
Investment Portfolio:
Consult with grantees and other partners to maximize impact of projects and ensure optimal learning. This may include: site visits, providing operational guidance and convening meetings of key stakeholders.

Review letters of inquiry and grant proposals related to big data analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, burden of disease, modeling the impact of products and interventions, cost-effectiveness, and geospatial modeling; provide clear, concise and insightful written analyses and recommendations for funding including drafting and editing proposal summaries and progress reports for existing grants for review by foundation leadership.

Manage internal processes and portfolio progress while ensuring appropriate documentation, grant budgeting and reporting. Share learnings with internal and external stakeholders to advance the field.

Communications/external representation:
Work closely with key external partners (e.g., IHME, WHO, UNAIDS, the Gavi Alliance, The Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, World Bank, grantees, national governments) to represent foundation’s perspective on data-related issues and to increase analytical capacity.
Serve as internal and external advocate for efficiently organizing analytical capabilities and practices within and across BMGF program teams, and in the broader stakeholder community (grantees, donors, NGOs, governments, beneficiaries, etc.).
Core Knowledge and Skills:
The successful candidate will be passionate about improving the art and science of making evidence-informed decisions using practical and innovative analytics and will be recognized internally and externally by the global community as an authority in an analytical field, with a deep background in machine learning and applied statistics. You will demonstrate significant competency in decision analysis, which encompasses analytic approaches such as simulation modeling and cost-effectiveness analysis, and have experience in implementing machine learning training and prediction pipelines, as well as an excellent track record of informing policies and practices in global development through the application of analytics and/or decision sciences.

Education and Experience:

  • Advanced degree in analytical modeling, economics/health economics, psychology, engineering, epidemiology and computer science is required (PhD preferred)
  • 7+ years of relevant professional work experience in applying analytics and/or decision science to study and improve how people make decisions
  • Excellent implementation track record in at least three of the following: Natural Language Understanding, Computer Vision, Machine Learning, Algorithmic Foundations of Optimization, Data Mining, Artificial Intelligence
  • Programming experience in one or more of the following: C, C++, Python, R, Java
  • Excellent written, facilitation and oral communications skills effective with a broad and diverse audience
  • Demonstrated ability to prioritize, focus and achieve results
  • Experience with providing support and direction to varied analytical projects to assure the quality of content and interaction with client
  • Ability to question and engage colleagues including managers and partners in constructive manner
  • Experience in developing and managing meaningful partnerships and relationships inside and outside the organization
  • Ability to travel up to 25% domestically and internationally
  • Optional/Desirable Experience:
  • Proficiency with simulation modeling, budget impact analysis, cost-effectiveness and benefit cost analysis, statistics/econometrics
  • Development experience and/or knowledge of global development issues and institutions, preferably working with global partners such as the WB, WHO, the GAVI Alliance, UNAIDS, etc.
  • Additional demonstrated skills in geospatial modeling
  • Knowledge of and experience with Global Health and/or Development
  • Familiarity with the grant development/making/ and investment portfolio process

This is a Limited Term Employee role associated with our parental leave program targeted for 12 - 18-months starting in January/February 2018, however the start and end dates for this assignment may change.
For internal candidates, you are required to have a conversation with your manager to confirm their support before you apply to this position. Managers have the right to decline a request to apply for a backfill position, regardless of tenure in role. With Manager Support and if selected for the role, internal FTEs will retain their FTE status during this stretch assignment.
As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We’re committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve—in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.
All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Age
  • Religion
  • Pregnancy
  • Sex
  • Sexual Orientation
  • Disability
  • Gender Identity
  • Gender Expression
  • National Origin
  • Genetic Information
  • Veteran Status
  • Marital Status
  • Prior Protected Activity