Sr Health Specialist/Sr Health Economist/Sr Economist
World Bank (World Bank)
Closed on 22 Sep 2020
Location: United States
Grade: GG, Mid-level Professional
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Job Description


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

Health, Nutrition and Population Global Practice Context

The central contribution of the HNP Global Practice to the World Bank’s twin goals is to enable the achievement of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), in which all people are effectively covered by essential health services, and nobody suffers undue financial hardship as a result of illnesses. In the quest for UHC, the HNP Global Practice is building on progress made in the framework of the Millennium Development Goals, an array of analytical and advisory services, strategic partnerships with partner institutions and other financing agencies, and an active lending portfolio. The HNP Global Practice includes staff members in Washington, DC and many country offices.

The HNP Global Practice is led by a Global Director, who has overall responsibility for the GP. The HNP Global Practice Leadership Team, which leads and manages the HNP GP, consists of the Senior Director, the Director, eleven HNP Practice Managers (Region-facing, Strategy and Operations, and the Global Financing Facility) and seven Global Leads (for Financing; Healthy Societies; Nutrition; Population and Development; Decision and Delivery Science; Service Delivery; and Private Sector). The HNP Global Practice works with and across multiple sectors, in recognition of the fact that HNP outcomes often depend on actions that lie outside the HNP sector. Accordingly, a capacity to work across GP boundaries, forge coalitions and influence multi-practice solutions is essential for achieving the major objectives of improving HNP outcomes.

The HNP Global Practice covering the Latin America and the Caribbean Region is managed by one Practice Manager.

Latin American and the Caribbean Context

The World Bank Group serves 30 client countries in the Latin America and the Caribbean Region (LCR). Clients range from large rapidly growing sophisticated middle-income clients to IDA countries, to small Caribbean states, and to one fragile state. Despite immense resources, dynamic societies, and an average annual per capita income of about US$4,000, deep inequalities persist in most LCR countries, with nearly a quarter of the Region's people living in poverty. The World Bank Group’s support to the LAC Region is focused on investing in human capital, strengthening the economic recovery, improving infrastructure, and protecting the poor.
The HNP program in the Latin American and the Caribbean Region is very varied and has grown very rapidly during the past 6 months. It includes: (i) a large pre-COVID-19 portfolio under implementation with a strong focus on UHC, quality and efficiency; (ii) a large portfolio of recently approved COVID-19 health emergency investment operations; (iii) analytical work on public health, health systems strengthening, efficiency of health spending and the quality of public and private health care service providers carried out jointly with the IFC, among others; (iv) close regional and country partnership activities with the OECD, PAHO and the IDB. The work on COVID-19 has taken a larger and larger importance in the overall program.

Duties and Responsibilities

The position advertised will work with the larger HNP Team to play a central role in the development and implementation of HNP portfolio in the Latin America and Caribbean region. The Senior Health Specialist or Senior Economist will provide rigorous technical assistance to World Bank country management teams and clients in the Latin America and Caribbean Region to ensure that flexible, high quality, relevant, and cost-effective program interventions are designed and implemented based on country analytics and in line with international best practice in delivering health services in countries across the full spectrum of development. In line with the HNP Strategy for LAC specific focus is on public health, primary health care, quality of health services, health financing, Non-Communicable Diseases and collaboration with the private sector. The Senior Health Specialist or Senior Economist will also work closely with colleagues in the Education, Social Protection and Jobs and other Global Practices in LAC to develop a coordinated Human Capital agenda.
In particular, the Senior Health Specialist or Senior Economist will have the following key responsibilities:

• Provide strategic and operational leadership on the Health, Nutrition and Population agenda in the Latin America and the Caribbean Region;

• Lead implementation support, as needed, to the Bank’s HNP portfolio in the Latin American and the Caribbean Region, which includes: (a) several Health system Support Projects aiming at (i) improving health service delivery and governance and (ii) responding to reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health needs; (b) an increasingly larger COVID-19 portfolio; (c) Regional Projects (d) future Investing in UHC and Human Capital;

• Contribute to the design and implementation of the next phase of the COVID-19 health response focusing on vaccines financing and implementation;

• Contribute to the design of the next phase of the health systems strengthening agenda, which will focus on public health and pandemics preparedness;

• Contribute to the technical discussions and monitoring of the Bank portfolio in close collaboration with the relevant government agencies and development partners;

• In country: lead policy dialogue, communications and interactions with government counterparts, country stakeholders as well as development partners;

• Lead preparation of sector-specific inputs for various operational products/outputs (e.g. sector/country briefings, background reports, portfolio performance reviews, etc.);

• Review and contribute to sector-specific policy and other documents related to the countries under responsibility and regional and global activities;

• Coordinate, maintain and foster partnerships with government actors, multilateral agencies and bilateral donors engaged in the health sector, including to advance an active external resource mobilization effort; and

• Respond to ad hoc information requests from internal and external parties.

Selection Criteria

• Graduate degrees (Master’s degree required, PhD or equivalent would be an asset) in public health, epidemiology, economics, health economics, public policy, business administration or related social sciences field. Candidates without a core qualification in at least one of these domains need not apply. Candidates with combined degrees will have an added advantage.

• Minimum of 8 years as senior specialist or senior program management positions in one or more of the following areas: health systems, public health program management, bio-engineering and medical technology, service delivery, monitoring and evaluation, operations research in health, results-based financing. Experience in two or more of these areas is advantageous.

• Prior experience in an international development institution (public, NGO or private) is preferred. Ability to function effectively in multi-disciplinary teams within a matrix environment is essential. Knowledge of the Latin American and Caribbean Region is an asset.

• A drive for results, including a proven track record of high standards/accountability for work products, meeting deadlines, an ability to prioritize tasks within his/her work program and strategies for working collectively with others on the team to deliver products of the highest caliber.

The five WBG Core Competencies for all staff:

Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.

About World Bank

With 189 member countries, staff from more than 170 countries, and offices in over 130 locations, the World Bank Group is a unique global partnership: five institutions working for sustainable solutions that reduce poverty and build shared prosperity in developing countries.

World Bank's mission is to end extreme poverty by reducing the share of the global population that lives in extreme poverty to 3 percent by 2030, and to promote shared prosperity by increasing the incomes of the poorest 40 percent of people in every country.