The World Bank

World Bank in Washington, United States

Senior Education Specialist

Job #: req18549

Organization: World Bank

Sector: Education

Grade: GG

Term Duration: 4 years 0 months

Recruitment Type: International Recruitment

Location: Washington, DC,United States

Required Language(s): English and French

Preferred Language(s): Arabic

Closing Date: 8/19/2022 (MM/DD/YYYY) at 11:59pm UTC


Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? Working at the World Bank Group provides a unique opportunity for you to help our clients solve their greatest development challenges. The World Bank Group is one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries; a unique global partnership of five institutions dedicated to ending extreme poverty, increasing shared prosperity and promoting sustainable development. With 189 member countries and more than 120 offices worldwide, we work with public and private sector partners, investing in groundbreaking projects and using data, research, and technology to develop solutions to the most urgent global challenges. For more information, visit (link)

THE MENA REGION – HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND EDUCATION: The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region covers Algeria, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, Morocco, the Gulf States, Syria, Tunisia, West Bank and Gaza (Palestinian territories) and Yemen. These countries include low-income and middle-income countries that look for technical advice and financial support, and high-income countries that request Reimbursable Advisory Services. The MENA region has been undergoing major changes over the past several years and the World Bank is poised to support the countries in the region to achieve peace and stability for economic and social development.

The Bank’s MENA Regional Vice Presidency has placed Human Development including education at the heart of its engagement as a critical part of its strategy in supporting countries rebuild trust between citizens and the state, promoting regional cooperation, building resilience in countries amidst the refugee challenges in the region, and supporting recovery and reconstruction. The MENA Human Development team is led by a Director and encompasses three units (Health, Nutrition and Population; Social and Protection and Jobs, and Education). The team is guided by the MENA Human Capital Plan that aims to help MENA become a region that realizes its vast potential by harnessing its greatest untapped assets: the human capital of its population, including youth, women, and the elderly.

Countries in the MENA region have taken great strides in education in the past few decades, but challenges remain, particularly in the areas of education quality, inequality, governance and accountability, and the relevance of skills for the labor market. The World Bank MENA Education Unit focuses on helping countries build the human capital required for economic growth and social development by providing analytical products, technical and financial support, as well as advisory services. As such, the MENA Education Unit supports countries in developing and implementing strategies for learning at all levels of education from childhood to tertiary. Teams work closely with countries to improve their systems of delivery, promote equity in education, and foster better management. We also work closely with education colleagues from other regions of the World Bank as well as colleagues in other Global Practices in MENA.


Education is central to achieving the World Bank Group’s twin goals: it is a reliable route out of poverty because it has large returns to income for individuals and because it can drive economic growth and shared prosperity. The main challenge in the education sector is to achieve “learning for all, learning for life”—that is, to ensure that all children and young people acquire the knowledge and skills they need for their lives. The developing world has achieved great advances in education in the past two decades, yet major challenges remain: how to remove the educational barriers faced by the poorest people and those living in fragile states, and how to improve the quality of education so that schooling leads to real learning. The MENA Education Unit is part of the Education Global Practice. We draw upon global knowledge and tools and experts. In turn, we contribute to the global agenda and make available our expertise to other regional education units.

The MENA Education Unit is seeking a Senior Education Specialist /Economist to lead the Bank’s Education engagement in Tunisia. The candidate would be expected to travel to the MENA region to participate in essential functions of operations as appropriate. In collaboration with the rest of the Tunisia and MENA Education team, the Senior Education Specialist/Economist will engage in a wide-range of analytical, research, and operational tasks.

Duties and Accountabilities: The primary responsibility of the Senior Education Specialist/Economist will be to contribute to the development and implementation of the education GP’s work program in Tunisia. This includes:

  • Lead the support to the implementation of the PREFAT Basic education project as well as the PROMESSE Higher Education project building upon existing policy dialogues, ministerial capacity and analytical work to observably improve learning in the Tunisian education system and transition from education to jobs. This includes but not limited to, ensuring: (i) up-to-date project documents, including ISRs, manuals, Aide Memoires, etc.; (ii) collaborate with the implementing Ministries to organize and supervise project activities; (iii) conduct periodic implementation support missions; and (iv) the design and execution of project-level monitoring and evaluation systems.
  • Support education-related programs within the Bank’s portfolio of projects and activities including tasks managed by other Global Practices.
  • Embed high-quality analytical work in the growing education portfolio in Tunisia, including but not limited to: (i) efficiency of education expenditures; (ii) determinants of learning; (iii) relevance, financing and governance of tertiary education; (iv) EdTech and digital skills for education and jobs.
  • Liaise with and lead policy dialogue with internal and external stakeholders to ensure the effective and efficient implementation of project activities.
  • Lead analytical products focusing on education and contribute to cross-cutting reports within Human Development, Human Capital, or other important areas for development where education plays a role.
  • Engage and contribute to the policy dialogue with government officials.
  • Contribute to other tasks as needed including potential work on other countries in the region, preparing new projects, events and conferences.

Selection Criteria

  • Advanced degree (Master’s or Ph.D.) in Education, Economics or relevant field.
  • Minimum of 8 years of relevant professional experience or equivalent combination of education and experience, with a focus on Early childhood development, learning poverty, learning assessment and demonstrated ability to lead policy dialogues and design programs for comprehensive education reforms.
  • Experience in supporting the education system in MENA, including Tunisia, is preferred.
  • Experience working with clients to build capacity and engage in policy dialogue on education.
  • Capacity for organization and coordination, as well as ability to work with high degree of independence, in a team environment and in consultation with senior staff.
  • Successful experience leading cross-sectoral WBG teams
  • Proven team-leadership with an ability to fund raise for, build, and lead a larger team that provides substantial implementation support and knowledge transfer to counterparts.
  • Track record of forming trustful partnerships with external partners, including development partners.
  • Ability to design and complete strategic analytical tasks that informs operations, such as: (i) field experiments/impact evaluations, (ii) flagship studies, (iii) economic analyses.

World Bank Group Core Competencies

The World Bank Group offers comprehensive benefits, including a retirement plan; medical, life and disability insurance; and paid leave, including parental leave, as well as reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce, and do not discriminate based on gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.

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Tags: advisory services, basic education, early childhood development, economic growth, extreme poverty, gulf states, human development, inequality, middle east, monitoring and evaluation, north africa, parental leave, reconstruction, regional cooperation, social development, sustainable development, west bank, west bank and gaza