10 Paid Internships in Monitoring & Evaluation

There are a number of prestigious internships available to aspiring development and M&E professionals. Working in development can be complex, and each professional decision can be significant in this fast-paced and competitive professional arena. Any one of these opportunities stands to fast-track young leaders in global development and will certainly help you stand out. These internships and fellowships will provide skills and workplace experience, either in the field, or in some of the most prestigious development focused HQs in the world.

United Nations Development Programme

The UNDP take applications for a range of different internships on key UN development projects across the globe. These positions are advertised on the UNDP jobs board and are suitable for current students or recent graduates across a range of fields. These internships vary in length and recipients may be placed at any of the UNDP country offices, regional hubs, or at the UNDP Headquarters in New York. Although internships in M&E are rare, as most internships are graduate level positions whereas M&E jobs are more specialised, they do arise from time to time. But any UNDP internship is highly sought after, and these development internships are an excellent opportunity with an organisation focused on development; a position from which M&E skills can certainly be sharpened.

World Food Programme

The World Food Programme (WFP) runs annual summer internships, a 3-month internship for the summer months, which includes a stipend for the period. The content of these internships varies each year, but 2020’s summer internship focused specifically on Vulnerability Assessment Mapping/M&E in Jordan. Check this Internship annually to determine whether this is the internship for your specific M&E and broader development practice skillset. The linked vacancies page of the WFP includes a range of excellent short-term opportunities in M&E and Evaluations worldwide. If you’re looking to sharpen your skills right away, or just to keep in touch with the professional development opportunities of the WFP bookmark this page.

EPoD Fellowships with the Harvard Kennedy School

These research fellowships and internship opportunities provide experience in both research and practice. Evidence for Policy Design (EPoD), a center within the Harvard Kennedy School, aims to build and instil evidence-based practice in policy making in developmental contexts, and for this, M&E skills are critical. If your interest lies in the development of systems for monitoring evidence-based practice, then this is an excellent opportunity.  These internships are especially for researchers planning to join a PhD programme at Harvard’s Kennedy School, and as such, the fellowship focuses on developing critical research skills including research design, and data collection and analysis. These fellowships, or internships are 12 months long, with the potential for extension, and participants become members of a network of Harvard scholars.

The World Bank Young Professionals Programme

The World Bank’s Young Professionals Programme is a 2-year graduate internship programme which then fast tracks promising young development practitioners into careers in international development. Candidates spend time learning key skills at the Head Office in Washington DC, where they are trained in all the important elements of being a young leader in the field – key to this is identifying opportunities to optimise social impact, something for which strategy and M&E skills are critical. If your key interest is in M&E, then this internship will supplement these technical skills with key leadership and networking opportunities, and following the YPP, young leaders have 5 years of work experience in the World Bank, or associated network.

International Institute for Environment and Development

The iied offers a range of paid and unpaid internship positions. Only a small number of internships are offered each year, with each internship being a carefully planned and well-delivered professional development opportunity which serves both the intern and the organisation. These internship positions may be in the Research Department on various areas including Climate Change, Human  Settlements, or Shaping Sustainable Markets, where projects on monitoring and evaluation may be particularly relevant. Other possible departments include the Strategy and Learning Group, where M&E is a sound fit, or the Green Economy Coalition for those working in development practice focused on climate and sustainability.

Center for Global Development

The Center for Global Development (CGD) is an organisation focused on reducing global poverty and inequality. The organisation focuses on rigorous research for policy advice and is an excellent place to begin your development career, particularly if policy development is your area of interest. Evidence-based policy setting, with sound M&E to inform and monitor policy implementation can arguably significantly improve the lives and livelihoods of many. Internship opportunities are frequently advertised on the website, and these vary in length and value, depending on the amount of work required.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

These internships are an excellent opportunity for the development economists amongst you, or those with financial or corporate foundations in your studies, looking to move into more meaningful work in development. EBRD Internships will provide the opportunity to conduct financial analyses as these relate to development projects and would be a good opportunity to develop an understanding of how to evaluate returns to social projects, and social impact. The internships also involve research and report writing on broader economic and policy developments in countries where the EBRD operates. The internships provide a thorough and well-rounded introduction to rigorous development practice, with a financial and investment focus. If your skillset lies at the nexus of investment, impact and policy, then this would be an excellent opportunity.

The OPEC Fund for International Development

The OPEC Fund focuses on projects which place people and their basic needs at the core of their development activities. The fund focuses on development projects in education, healthcare and sanitation, all areas where sound M&E can substantially increase programme efficacy. The OPEC Fund offers a range of internship opportunities for students from diverse academic backgrounds with a view to providing critical work experience in an international organisation.  These paid internships may involve placement in one of a number of departments including public sector operations, private sector and trade, strategic planning, economic services and others. Working across 135 countries, this is an excellent opportunity to gain real exposure to working in development.

USAID Payne International Development Fellowship

The USAID Donald M Payne International Development Graduate Fellowship is a prestigious development opportunity for those looking to gain work experience within an organisation which is a global leader in international development. This is a well-paid internship opportunity, which aims to attract exceptional graduates. On completion of the internship, Fellows are appointed to the USAID Foreign Service where they are required to serve in full-time positions for 5 years. The internship focuses on pressing development challenges across the spectrum of work conducted by the USAID including poverty, hunger, injustice, disease and climate change, amongst others. If you are already specialised in one of these areas and hold key M&E skills then this could be an excellent start to a thriving career at the cutting edge of development.

DME for Peace

Development Monitoring and Evaluation or peace is a platform to network development and M&E practitioners and to feature opportunities in M&E and development practice, particularly in relation to peacebuilding and humanitarian issues. The M&E intern positions are listed on the jobs page of this platform. Smaller, M&E specific internship opportunities are frequently advertised here. For those looking to develop careers in the study of peacebuilding, and using M&E for analysing programmes implemented in conflict zones, and how to improve development efficacy in these contexts, this is a site to check frequently for excellent and unique internship opportunities.

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About Angela Biden

Angela Biden is a consulting strategist and M&E consultant. She has worked across a range of development, and business contexts. She holds a Masters in Economics and Philosophy, and has worked in the nexus of M&E and social impact; to help those doing good do more of it; for some 15 years. From policy board rooms, to Tech start-ups, to grass roots NGOs working in the face of the world’s most abject challenges; Angela is focused on conducting relevant and meaningful M&E: fit for purpose, realistic, and useful for stakeholders creating positive change.
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