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Director, Research


Applications for this position are now closed.

This role will co-lead the Research Team. School Leadership is a vastly understudied area of research in low and middle-income countries. GSL aims to address this challenge by collaborating with our partners, researchers, practitioners, and other similar organizations. GSL research consists of two broad functions: Program Research and Ecosystem Research. Our program research focuses on generating practice-based evidence on how to strengthen school leadership to improve student outcomes through our innovative school leader training programs. Our Ecosystem Research aims to better understand the educational contexts and systems within which school leaders are operating. We conduct and review research to understand school leader stories and what enabling factors make the biggest difference.

We are looking for an entrepreneurial individual to serve as one of our Research Directors. The Research Director will provide technical leadership, oversight, and coordination for some of our research projects. The Research Director will report to the Senior Director of Research.

School leaders have the potential to make incredible changes in the lives of students by building a strong school culture and helping teachers provide great instruction. Yet, school leadership has not been prioritized in low and middle-income countries. GSL works to change that through the following workstreams:

  1. We catalyze and support local partner organizations to deliver and scale high-quality training to school leaders. 

  2. We generate insights from our partners and the broader research community to inform education policymakers, researchers, and practitioners on the best ways to support and develop strong school leadership. 

  3. We connect our partner organizations with each other for deep learning between themselves and amongst the broader school leadership community - governments, funders, and policymakers.

We are a small but mighty remote team spread across the globe. We care about each other and we care about the work. You can learn more about our culture here. In five years, we have: 

  • Partnered with organizations in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Kenya, and Brazil that work with over 3,500 school leaders, impacting approximately 920,000 students.

  • Published an evidence review on what is known about school leadership globally, as well as two surveys that help the policy community hear from teacher and school leader voices.

  • Become one of the leading voices in conversations about school leadership in the global south, being asked to speak at conferences and webinars throughout the world, and be recognized for our work. In 2021, HundrED in partnership with the World Bank, recognized GSL as one of the top ten impactful and scalable solutions that support teachers' professional development. 

  • Established the School Leadership Network with the International Task Force on Teachers for Education 2030 hosted by UNESCO and the Varkey Foundation to convene online meetings with 100+ experts and 400+ school leaders from 50+ countries to foster peer learning, and share innovative practices, and strengthen school leaders' voice in policy circles.

  • Expanded our work to support needs during COVID in the Philippines, Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria, and Peru.

As Director of Research, you will be able to:​

  • Innovate: You will co-create novel monitoring, evaluation, research, and learning instruments to track the impact of school leaders training on school practices, teaching practices, and student outcomes. You will work on global surveys, A/B testing, randomized control trials (RCTs), process monitoring, and program evaluation. You will co-develop program intervention and research design proposals. 

  • Direct: You will pilot, implement, and collaborate with our partners to collect, manage, and analyze quantitative and qualitative data. You will support our partners in different countries to improve data robustness. 

  • Collaborate: You will work closely with the Senior Director and Director of Research at GSL and all GSL team members, monitoring and evaluation teams at our partner organizations, research teams in other organizations, and academics in universities around the world. 

  • Contribute: You will contribute to shaping how GSL research evolves as the organization and network expand and help answer important learning questions for our network. You will participate in, and co-lead capacity-building, sharing, and learning events with our partners. The results of your work, knowledge, and expertise will benefit public-good resources for school leaders and organizations that support school leaders in low and middle-income countries.

  • Publish: You will co-identify key findings from our studies, co-write publications, co-present in conferences and other speaking events, and join efforts in communicating insights from research to strengthen understanding and support for school leadership in low and middle-income countries. 

Your first year will be a success if you:

  • Lead sampling, instrument development, implementation, analysis, and reporting of GSL quantitative research projects, including a few A/B testings and RCTs, Annual Pulse Survey, and project monitoring and surveys. 

  • Cultivate and manage relationships to ensure effective communication channels across teams at GSL and with stakeholders across the partner networks.

  • Seek out best practices in education and school leadership by reading and reaching out to internal team members and external partners. 

  • Conduct ongoing reviews, modify, and improve the effectiveness of data collection and management processes.

  • Support partners to improve the collection and use of data. 

  • Analyze data and disseminate findings to all relevant stakeholders. 

  • Use data to contribute to strategic decision-making, organizational learning, and project planning with GSL and affiliate organization leadership.

  • Identify opportunities for research funding and developing proposals.

Candidate Qualifications

  • You should have a Master’s in a relevant field with strong quantitative skills. For this position, we have a strong preference for candidates with training in Economics and Statistics, and we welcome recent PhD graduates.  

  • You have a minimum of 8 years of experience, ideally in education and conducting field experiments, but we welcome other proofs of transferable knowledge and skills. 

  • You have experience in conducting quantitative research and data analysis in education or other social sector programs in low and middle-income countries or other transferable skills and contexts. 

  • You have experience in managing quantitative surveys and data collection using SurveyCTO, Qualtrics, or other survey solutions.

  • You have experience analyzing and presenting data visually and in writing to various internal and external stakeholders,  and you will be asked to demonstrate your ability through an assignment. 

  • You have experience in conducting quantitative sampling and data analysis, proficiency in at least one of the data analysis software (i.e., STATA, R, SPSS, etc.), and you will be asked to demonstrate your ability through an assignment.

  • Preferably, you are proficient in Spanish and/or Portuguese.

Work Location and Remuneration


The candidate must be based in a low- and middle-income country, with a preference for candidates based in Brazil, India, Indonesia, Kenya, and Malaysia. The candidate must have work authorization in their place of residence as GSL is not able to sponsor employment visas. The candidate must have the ability to travel internationally as well as within the country.  

Salary and title are commensurate with experience and competitive with the non-profit education sector in the country where candidates are based. The salary for this position is calculated based on the cost of living of the candidate's home country and their level of experience. As points of reference, below is the annual salary range in several countries:

  • Brazil: BRL 240,000 - BRL 320,000 per annum

  • Argentina: ARS 5.5 m to 7.5m per annum


Commitment to Diversity

GSL is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive work environment for all employees - across nationalities, races, ethnicity, religions, economic backgrounds, sexual orientations, disabilities, languages, ages, genders, and prior experiences.In our hiring, we seek those who have an inclusive mindset and who notice and correct inequities when they arise. 

Child Safeguarding

GSL is committed to safeguarding children. Background checks may be conducted as part of the hiring process. All team members are asked to agree to a safeguarding policy.

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