The Sana’a Center is Hiring a Head of Operations

The Sana’a Center is Hiring a Head of Operations

The Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies is seeking a full-time Head of Operations.  As Head of Operations, the selected candidate will work closely with the deputy executive director, project managers, partners, administration and financial teams. Primary duties would involve coordinating and supervising  programmatic and administration functions at the Sana’a Center.

We are a dynamic, highly mobile, multi-lingual team with diverse backgrounds and expertise. Our main office is in Yemen, while the majority of our team works remotely from locations across Yemen, around the Middle East and in Western capitals. Among our core strengths are our versatility, initiative, access, networks, and audacity. We seek new team members who would complement this dynamic.

Expected tasks:

  • Supervise and manage the implementation of the Center’s various programs and projects.  
  • Manage a project team, at times taking a hands on approach.  
  • Coordinate and lead donor reporting requirements.  
  • Ensure internal and inter-departmental communication is fluid and utilized to maintain an environment of continuous improvement.
  • Provide a leadership support function to teams and lead staff to achieve production goals.
  • Manage budgets and costs effectively.
  • Act as a liaison between senior management and project managers.  
  • Ensure key performance indicators are in place and delivery targets are met.
  • Lead the implementation of new policies and procedures relating to the Center’s programs and products.  
  • Work closely with partners

Needed qualification and skills:

  • A bachelor degree in project management or relevant fields (graduate degree is preferable).  
  • At least five years of experience in operations/project management, especially in non-profit organizations.  
  • Strong knowledge of the Yemeni context.
  • Fluency in both Arabic and English (spoken and written).
  • Leadership skills and the ability to lead teams from different departments in different locations with diverse backgrounds to achieve organizational goals.
  • Excellent communication skills.
  • The ability to work in complex environments.
  • The ability to work independently and take the lead when hurdles arise or when tasks require completion on short deadlines.
  • Has the ability to be proactive and layout team plans to address future scenarios in rapidly developing circumstances.
  • Adaptable and able to respond quickly to challenges.

Salary: Dependant on experience.

Location: Yemen, but open to applicants abroad in the case of an exceptionally strong candidate.

Application Deadline: May 28, 2019.

Interested applicants should email jobs@sanaacenter.org with a cover letter, CV, and two writing samples (These do not need to be published; samples of reports will be accepted).  

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, political affiliation, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, disability or age. We will contact only those candidates who meet the qualifications.

More about the Sana’a Center:

Founded in 2014, the Sana’a Center is one of the few independent research centers that has continued to operate in Yemen throughout the ongoing armed conflict. While the Center maintains cordial relations with all key stakeholders it has remained fiercely unaligned with any of the belligerent parties. The Sana’a Center has thus maintained a unique positioning and ability to work throughout Yemen and beyond.

The Sana’a Center maintains a strong network across Yemen with access to key political, military and security figures, tribal leaders, the financial sector, economists, journalists, humanitarian actors, civil society and other important stakeholders. The Center has also established a broad network and presence within the international community connecting it to international organizations, diplomatic circles, regional and international policy makers, research centers and global forums.

The Sana’a Center’s reports and researchers are widely quoted in local, regional and international media outlets, while the analysis of the Center’s experts is regularly sought out by local and international stakeholders.

The Sana’a Center is Seeking a Full-Time Editor

The Sana’a Center is Seeking a Full-Time Editor

**This position has been filled and applications are no longer being accepted**

The Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies is expanding its editorial department and is seeking a full-time editor. The editorial department is the hub between the center’s various programs, which currently examine the socioeconomic, political, security, gender, humanitarian, and human rights issues at play in Yemen.

As an editor you would work immediately under the chief editor and in close cooperation with senior management, researchers and writers. Primary duties would involve editing articles, policy briefs and papers for publication and facilitating all aspects of the production cycle, from helping writers develop and structure ideas to posting finished articles online.  

We are a dynamic, highly mobile, multi-lingual team with diverse backgrounds and expertise. Our main office is in Sana’a, while the majority of our team works remotely from locations across Yemen, around the Middle East and in Western capitals. Among our core strengths are our versatility, initiative, access, networks, and audacity. We seek new team members who would complement this dynamic.

Qualifications:

Absolute necessities:

  • Strong editorial experience;
  • a command of English that goes well beyond grammar and vocabulary;
  • an intuitive sense for how the arrangement of words impacts their reception and the ability to craft them appropriately for the audience at hand;
  • in editing others, you are able to identify and strip away the language habits, confusions and ego that often blur the message;
  • the ability to properly structure a sound argument at 5,000-words or more;
  • the ability to work remotely and travel periodically for Sana’a Center events; and
  • you are candid, poised and patient.

Preferable assets:

  • Strong economic and financial literacy;
  • Arabic language skills, spoken and written;
  • previous experience related to Yemen and/or the surrounding region.

Starting salary:

  • Based on experience, and to be reviewed following a three-month trial period.

For those interested, please email jobs@sanaacenter.org with the following:

  • your CV and a cover letter;
  • three professional writing/editing samples.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, political affiliation, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, disability or age.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. We will contact only those candidates who meet the qualifications and seem like they may be a good fit for our team.

This job opening will close once a qualified candidate is found.  

More about the Sana’a Center:

Founded in 2014, the Sana’a Center is one of the few independent research centers that has continued to operate in Yemen throughout the ongoing armed conflict. While the Center maintains cordial relations with all key stakeholders it has remained fiercely unaligned with any of the belligerent parties. The Sana’a Center has thus maintained a unique positioning and ability to work throughout Yemen and beyond.

The Sana’a Center maintains a strong network across Yemen with access to key political, military and security figures, tribal leaders, the financial sector, economists, journalists, humanitarian actors, civil society and other important stakeholders. The Center has also established a broad network and presence within the international community connecting it to international organizations, diplomatic circles, regional and international policy makers, research centers and global forums.

The Sana’a Center’s reports and researchers are widely quoted in local, regional and international media outlets, while the analysis of the Center’s experts is regularly sought out by local and international stakeholders.

Development Champions Forum Concludes Fifth Meeting

Development Champions Forum Concludes Fifth Meeting

Yemen’s Development Champions Forum concluded its fifth meeting on April 29 in Amman, Jordan. Over three days, the Development Champions discussed critical economic issues in Yemen, focusing on the situation of the private sector, removing obstacles to the return of Yemeni capital post-conflict, and priorities to restructure state finances.

The Sana’a Center Speaks at the High-Level Pledging Event for the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen

The Sana’a Center Speaks at the High-Level Pledging Event for the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen

The 2019 High-Level Pledging Event for the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen brought together 40 countries and dozens of international organizations in Geneva, Switzerland, on February 26.

The panel discussion, entitled ‘The Challenges of Food Security and the Role of the Economy’  featured Amal Nasser, non-resident economist at the Sana’a Center, among its speakers.

Also speaking were: Lise Grande, the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen; Valerie Guarnieri, Assistant Executive Director of the World Food Programme; Mohammed al-Jaber, Executive Director of the Yemen Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations Support Center; and Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International.

The following is the text of Nasser’s speech:

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen,

Thank you for holding this event today and for inviting me to speak. It is great to have people from so many countries coming together to try and address the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

As an economist, however, I feel the overwhelming focus on the humanitarian situation distracts us somewhat from the point – that the humanitarian crisis is actually an economic crisis, and that this economic crisis is a result of a political conflict.

This means that the only true solution to the humanitarian crisis is to end the war. Until the war is over, we have to realize that any successes we have in addressing the crisis will be temporary and fragile. 

That said, there are ways the current situation can be improved, and I would like to talk about them today. But first I’d like to highlight a couple key points:

Most of Yemen’s 1.2 million public sector workers have not received a regular pay check since August 2016.

While there have been some recent efforts to restart Yemen’s Social Welfare Fund, it ran out of funds for cash disbursements in December 2014. This means millions of Yemenis have been without state support for more than four years.

These two things combined have contributed more to the suffering of Yemenis than the war itself. As a consequence gender-based violence, child marriage, and child recruitment hit record levels like never before in Yemen.

That is why an economic de-escalation of the conflict is so critical. Basic state finances must be allowed to function and to provide for the basic needs of Yemenis.

It must be recognized that the lack of an economic de-escalation mechanism is among the primary factors blocking the implementation of the Stockholm Agreement – and specifically the agreement on Hudaydah.

Hudaydah, as we all know, is the country’s busiest port and the lifeline for millions on the edge of starvation. The main reason the city and port remain divided between the warring sides is that there is no agreement about what to do with port revenues.

There are also other factors aggravating the economic and humanitarian crises in Yemen:

Among the goals of the Saudi 2030 Economic Vision is to dramatically increase the share of Saudi nationals employed in the kingdom’s private sector. One of the ways the authorities are trying to achieve this is through forcing foreign workers out.

It is estimated that there are more than a million Yemenis working in Saudi Arabia. The remittances they send home amount to billions of dollars annually, and support millions of family members in Yemen. They are also Yemen’s largest source of foreign currency since large-scale oil exports stopped in 2015.

That means remittances have been the largest factor preventing the Yemeni rial from losing more value than it already has, with the rial’s depreciation in turn being the main reason why so many Yemenis can no longer afford food.

Tens of thousands of Yemeni workers have already been forced out of Saudi Arabia. According to Sana’a Center research, roughly 70 percent of Yemenis working in the kingdom will lose their jobs by 2020 if current policies announced in Riyadh are fully implemented.

However terrible the situation in Yemen is now, it will be profoundly worse if these workers are forced to come home.

So what are steps that can be taken to help mitigate Yemen’s economic and humanitarian crises?

One, there must be multilateral diplomatic pressure put on all the warring parties for an economic de-escalation. The first item on this agenda must be the re-unification of the central bank.

The consequences of this state institution being divided are immense:

  • profound currency instability;
  • challenges for importers to bring in basic commodities;
  • the inability for the state to collect revenues and pay salaries;
  • increased money laundering and smuggling.

And many others.

All of these consequences undermine the humanitarian effort, and therefore make it critical that the Central Bank of Yemen be re-unified and allowed to act independently from any of the warring parties.

Two, Saudi Arabia MUST grant Yemeni workers an exemption from its labor nationalization policies and excessive expat fees. The consequences of Yemeni workers in Saudi Arabia losing their jobs, and the economic, social and security collapse their return would cause on Saudi Arabia’s southern border would potentially last for decades.

Three, diplomatic pressure must be brought on the Houthi authorities in Sana’a to dismantle NAMCHA, the National Authority for the Management and Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. This recently created department is redundant in its mandate, but more importantly has done little other than facilitate corruption and the institutional theft and redirection of humanitarian aid.

Four, Yemen’s internationally recognized government should analyze and incorporate into its policies the recommendations of Yemen’s Development Champions. This is a group of almost two dozen of the most important socio-economic experts on Yemen, and they have issued a wide range of actionable recommendations regarding how to restore the central bank, how to support the humanitarian response, planning for post-conflict reconstruction, among many other issues.

Five, while it is great to raise money for the humanitarian effort, what will really matter is how this money is spent. To ensure accountability, there must be stronger monitoring of INGO activities in Yemen. Recent media reports about large scale theft and diversion of aid highlight the necessity for this increasing INGO monitoring and transparency.

Thank you.

Amal Nasser is a non-resident economist at the Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies

 

Workshops in Marib and Hadramawt to discuss the provinces’ urgent priorities and issues

Workshops in Marib and Hadramawt to discuss the provinces’ urgent priorities and issues

The Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies and the Oxford Research Group held a series of workshops in Yemen’s Hadramawt and Marib on January 20-29 to explore opportunities for peace between the two governorates.

Over 50 participants, including academics, activists, local authority representatives and journalists, discussed local issues related to prospects for peace and stability. The workshops drew a high proportion of women.