Public Health Specialist

Senior Public Health Specialist, Nutrition – World Bank Secondment

Location: World Bank Headquarters, Washington, DC

Deadline: ASAP


Job Brief

Vital Strategies is a US-based international public health organization working in more than 70 countries to address important and challenging health issues. We develop and oversee programs to strengthen public health systems and address leading causes of morbidity and mortality, providing expertise in project implementation and management, strategic communications, epidemiology and surveillance, and other core public health capacities.

Resolve to Save Lives is a global health initiative funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and led by Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Housed at Vital Strategies, Resolve to Save Lives has been working closely with governments, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, academic and other partners in a number of countries to reduce morbidity and mortality caused by cardiovascular diseases by reducing global sodium intake by 30%, eliminating artificial trans fats from the food supply, and improving the control of hypertension globally to 50% from 14%.

The World Bank Group has set two 2030 global goals: to end extreme poverty by decreasing the percentage of people living on less than $1.90 a day to no more than 3%; and to promote shared prosperity by fostering the income growth of the bottom 40% for every country. The Health, Nutrition and Population Global Practice (HNPGP) works with World Bank regions, country offices and other World Bank Group global practices and cross-cutting solutions areas to assist countries in addressing their most pressing development challenges. HNPGP 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 global practice boundaries, forge coalitions and influence multi-practice solutions is essential for achieving the major objectives of improving HNP outcomes, especially obesity and NCDs.

Overall Role

Resolve to Save Lives is recruiting a Senior Public Health Specialist to assist the World Bank Group with the development and implementation of strategies and operations to strengthen nutrition policies to address the prevention of obesity and related non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and diabetes that compromise health and Human Capital and increase health-care costs. The COVID-19 crisis has added to the urgency for addressing these issues since obesity and NCDs increase COVID-related mortality. The position will be seconded by Vital Strategies / Resolve to Save Lives to the World Bank/HNPGP for a period of two years.

Key Responsibilities

  • Support development of the World Bank’s nutrition portfolio by providing technical and strategic input, focused on how the WBG can prevent obesity and related common non-communicable diseases through strong and evidence-based national, regional and global nutrition policies
  • Work with the Nutrition Global Solutions Group and relevant regional/country teams/task team leaders to build the obesity/NCD agenda into HNP/human capital projects and contribute to the design of key lending projects, by leveraging policy lending, results-based financing or investment lending
  • Work across WBG global practices to help inform the design, implementation and evaluation of WB programs and investments in this space
  • Ensure delivery of targeted technical support for key regional/country teams and national counterparts
  • Work with the World Bank and strategic partners to develop a research portfolio that builds on existing evidence and focuses on translation into policy to guide future WB investments
  • Prepare regular and timely technical reports on program implementation
  • Act as a liaison between the World Bank nutrition program and Resolve to Save Lives and its partners

Experience and qualifications

  • Advanced university degree in public health/nutrition; PhD preferred, but not essential
  • At least 15 years’ experience (less with PhD) working on nutrition policy and/or public health in low- and middle-income countries
  • Experience working in global health or development, ideally within or in close in partnership with multi-lateral agencies
  • Ability to communicate technical knowledge and expertise in both policy and operational environments
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English
  • Demonstrated ability to work across sectoral boundaries and in diverse, multicultural settings
  • Proven experience developing public health nutrition related policies, tools, and technical guidance
  • Knowledge of best practices in public health nutrition policy and programs
  • Excellent analytical skills
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills and ability to collaborate with others
Candidates have to confirm having received the recruitment information through the recruiting channel NGO Recruitment in the application letter for this position

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