Established in 1964, the African Development Bank (AfDB) is the premier pan-African development institution, promoting economic growth and social progress across the continent. There are 81 member states, including 54 in Africa (Regional Member Countries). The Bank’s development agenda is delivering the financial and technical support for transformative projects that will significantly reduce poverty through inclusive and sustainable economic growth. In order to sharply focus the objectives of the Ten-Year Strategy (2013 – 2022) and ensure greater and accelerated developmental impact, the Bank has identified five High-5 operational priority areas: Light up and power Africa; Feed Africa; Industrialize Africa; Integrate Africa; and improve the quality of life for the people of Africa. The Vice President, Economics Research, Policy Dialogue and Knowledge Management Bank is part of the senior management team leading the successful implementation of this vision.
The core mandate of the Vice Presidency (ECVP) is to lead the Bank Group on prioritizing the generation, analysis, dissemination, brokering and implementation of relevant knowledge solutions in all High-5 operational priorities and the cross-cutting themes of its Ten-Year Strategy. Such solutions must be a clear response to priority development challenges facing regional member countries (RMCs), individually or collectively and need to involve RMCs in both the planning and implementation of the solutions. The solutions include: (i) research on major development issues facing Africa and their relation to global economic governance and other major global public goods; (ii) country diagnostics and future perspectives; (iii) policy dialogue and advisory services; (iv) economic, sector, and thematic knowledge work; (v) improving national and sub-regional statistical systems; (vi) preparation, design and support to implementation of public financial management and Governance operations; (vii) capacity development for policy formulation and implementation; (viii) technical assistance and advice related to RMCs’ management of natural resources; and (vii) knowledge dissemination and development of national, regional, and inter-regional knowledge networks.
The Vice President, Economics Research, Policy Dialogue and Knowledge Management (VP, ECVP) is also the Chief Economist for the Bank Group. The Vice President directly oversees the work of six Directorates: African Development Institute (ECAD), African Natural Resource Institute (ECNR), Country Economics (ECCE), Economic Governance (ECGF), Macroeconomics Policy, Forecasting and Research (ECMR) and Statistics (ECST), each of which is led by a Director.
Under the overall direction of the Bank Group President, the Vice President:
- Leads the knowledge work of the African Development Bank Group (generation, analysis, dissemination and brokering) to reposition the Bank as the continent’s premier development knowledge solutions institution;
- Provides strategic vision, delivery and leadership on economic and sector work (ESW) at the Bank in particular, to inform and shape both its policy dialogue and its operations work in RMCs and regions with sound analysis and direction on a permanent basis and in support of the Bank’s Business Delivery Units (BDUs);
- Leads, mentors and otherwise, helps manage a first-rate group of economists and policy analysts to strengthen the capacity of the Bank on country and regional policy dialogue, as well as governance operations;
- Develops and enhances the Bank Group’s external policy dialogue and knowledge management profile as well as its influence within the global development landscape;
- Supports the President and the rest of senior management team to drive and deliver the Bank Group’s operations, with a focus on knowledge and governance, across Africa;
- Promotes strategic partnerships with centers of excellence, knowledge hubs and networks across Africa and the globe in the generation, analysis and dissemination of knowledge solutions; and
- Champions the reinforcement of links with knowledge institutions (universities, think tanks, research networks, etc.) to strengthen knowledge generation at regional and country level; and
- Develops further the Bank’s capacity to assist RMCs with public financial management, governance and capacity development.
Specific accountabilities of the function
- Positioning the Bank as a stronger knowledge institution for development on the continent;
- Leading and guiding the various departments of the ECVP Complex in the successful delivery of their respective mandate, through oversight of the design and implementation of coherent work programs, development of clear performance metrics, timely execution and delivery to high-quality standards;
- Providing effective and timely advice to the President and Senior Management of the Bank to address priority macroeconomic and social development issues and effectively implement the Bank’s strategy and High 5 priorities;
- Providing corporate-wide strategic guidance, as part of the One Bank approach, for planning and delivering knowledge solutions to complement the Bank’s financial services and thus enhance its development effectiveness;
- Engaging with the Bank Group’s Executive Directors and contributing to the Board and its Committee meetings;
- Developing the knowledge capabilities of the Bank and related support to RMCs toward achieving greater development impact by interacting and building relationships with senior policymakers, technocrats and other opinion formers, business and civil society leaders in the Bank’s RMCs and non-RMCs;
- Overseeing the training and development of the Bank Group’s economists and related staff as well as strengthening networking and knowledge-sharing among research, country, and sector economists;
- Championing investments by the Bank in the development of up-to-date, complete, and integrated databases on socioeconomic development in RMCs, and in Bank Group operations;
- Providing Bank-wide knowledge-sharing and support services tailored to the needs of operations departments and their staff and work with them to help strengthen their knowledge contributions and enhance the scope and quality standards of the Bank’s country economic and sector work; and
- Leading and proving professional guidance to the various departments reporting to the Chief Economist in the successful delivery of their respective mandate, through oversight of the design and implementation of coherent work programs, development of clear performance metrics, execution and timely delivery to high-quality standards;
- Building strong teams withing the departments and within the ECVP Complex, and ensuring high levels of collaboration in the ECVP and with the rest of the Bank Group in the spirit of One Bank.
- Managing performance and underlying performance contracts of all direct reports --Department Heads of the Complex and others-- to ensure successful delivery of ECVP’s mandate;
- Participating in and contributing to the Senior Leadership Group, Senior Management Coordination Committee and Operations Committee meetings;
- Promoting close collaboration and integrative delivery of the Bank’s work by the Bank’s lead economists, country economists, macroeconomists, research economists, governance experts, statisticians and the various policy dialogue teams, to encouraged them to work better as One Bank, including through regular engagements with the Director Generals, Sector Directors, Country Managers and Sector Leads;
- Leading the preparation of the Bank’s flagship knowledge outputs, such as the African Economic Outlook, and their timely delivery to the highest quality standards;
- Providing regular economic intelligence (statements, briefs, policy reviews) to Senior Management on economic development issues across the Hih-5 operational priorities of the Bank’s Ten-Year Strategy and related developments;
- Overseeing the management of the Bank’s support to the strengthening of RMCs’ statistical systems;
- Representing the Bank Group in public forums and other fora related to socioeconomic development, including the media, events and with policymakers and opinion formers to increase institutional visibility and strategic impact;
- Guiding and participating in collaborative research and knowledge management activities carried out jointly with regional and international organizations including the with the Bretton Woods institutions, the UN system and African and global think tanks;
- Overseeing the strengthening of the African Development Institute to deliver practical and high-impact capacity development support in RMCs, while working in close partnerships with other bilateral and multilateral development institutions to mainstreaming capacity development, knowledge leveraging and dissemination;
- Enhancing the role of the Natural Resource Institute (ECNR) in advising and supporting RMCs with practical solutions for the strategic and value-adding management and of Africa’s natural resources to improve the quality of life for both present and future generations;
- Guiding the Bank’s work on economic governance and public financial management for high impact policy-based operations (PBOs) in the Bank’s RMCs;
- Working closely with the Bank’s Results Department (SNDR) to better capture the impact of the Bank’s knowledge activities and outputs as part of the Bank’s Results Framework; and
- Assisting and carrying out any duties assigned by the Bank Group President.
COMPETENCIES (skills, experience and knowledge)
- Relevant post-graduate academic qualifications (minimum a Masters; PhD a plus) in economics, statistics and/or related fields from a reputable university;
- At least 10-15 years of pertinent experience, with at least 5 years at a senior management level with a track-record of effective human and financial resource management, with a proven track record of effective delivery of outputs and desired outcomes;
- An excellent understanding of Africa’s development challenges and related contemporary debates in socioeconomic policy, broadly understood, both in Africa and elsewhere preferably gained in multilateral, bilateral, regional development organizations and/or government and the private sector;
- Proven track record of conceptualizing, implementing and managing policy-oriented research, action research and/or development projects, including ensuring quality of high-level research output and knowledge leverage, dissemination and outreach;
- Strong familiarity with the roles of other development finance institutions in assisting economic reform and addressing poverty reduction in developing countries; (links with academic, think tank and other social sciences research networks on development issues a plus);
- Demonstrable ability to think strategically, design long term plans and programs in line with strategic priorities, coupled with excellent negotiation skills and flexibility in dealing with high-level demands;
- Demonstrable ability to act as spokesperson for the organization, build partnerships and to motivate and inspire staff and managers to deliver results;
- Excellent management and team building skills and flexibility in dealing with the high-level demands of a complex organization;
- Impeccable oral and written communication skills in French or English, (good working knowledge of the other language a plus); and
- Competence in the use of standard desktop Office Suite and related applications; working knowledge of knowledge management technologies/ platforms a plus.