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Short-term Consultancy – Information Ecosystems Analysis Lead Researcher

Location: Indore, India

About Internews

Internews empowers people worldwide with the trustworthy, high-quality news and information they need to make informed decisions, participate in their communities, and hold power to account. Our vision is to unleash human potential everywhere by turning on the bright light of information.

For more than 35 years, in more than 100 countries, Internews has worked to build healthy media and information environments where they are most needed. We have proudly incubated hundreds of sustainable organizations, bolstered the skills of thousands of media professionals, activists, and citizens, and helped these partners reach millions of people with quality, local information.

Summary

Internews seeks to engage a consultant to lead research on air quality information systems in Indore, India for the USAID-funded Clean Air Catalyst project. Under the supervision of the Earth Journalism Network (EJN) Asia-Pacific Senior Program Manager, the Lead Researcher will lead the design and implementation of the research. The ideal candidate should have the flexibility to coordinate certain field research activities online or remotely in response to the evolving COVID-19 situation.

Background

The Clean Air Catalyst project is lead by the World Resources Institute (WRI) and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), and aims to accelerate clean air solutions in low- and middle-income countries. Internews EJN will be working with journalists and other content providers in three pilot cities – Jakarta (Indonesia), Indore (India), and Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) to raise awareness and understanding of air pollution, and communicate potential solutions. Internews EJN will conduct an Information Ecosystem Analysis in each of the three pilot cities.

Logistics

The duration of the Information Ecosystem Assessment (IEA) is expected to be three months, phased over a supply-side media landscape research phase, and a demand-side field research phase. There may be an opportunity in the second year of this project on expand on this contract through a rumor tracking activity.

Information Ecosystem Assessment Research Design

At the heart of Internews’ work is the vision that healthy information ecosystems are a root solution to furthering human progress. “Information ecosystem” describes how local communities exist and evolve within particular information and communication systems. Within these systems, different types of news and information may be received from outside then passed on to others – through word of mouth, key community members, phone, the Internet, and other channels The term broadly refers to a loose, dynamic configuration of different sources, flows, producers, consumers, and sharers of information interacting within a defined community or space. By understanding information ecosystems, policymakers and practitioners can design the most appropriate and effective strategies that can serve even the most information deprived communities and societies.

The IEA uses a multi-phase and human-centered approach to develop a deep understanding of how people and communities in the project’s target geographic areas find, share, value, and trust information in their own local contexts.

The research will attempt to examine both the “supply” and “demand” sides of information ecosystems in relation to air pollution in each of the pilot locations. “Supply” covers the  media landscape, media capacity, information infrastructure, tools, media, producers, consumer data, curators, and sharers. “Demand” considers the human factor, including how people and communities find, share, value, trust and use air quality information in their own local contexts.

The methodology will use a combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches to gather and analyze data. The team will do preliminary research and gather baseline data on the information ecosystem. These include tools, media and news channels, networks and sharers, and other sources and means through which information is disseminated and consumed.

The consultant will conduct the research together with the field staff of WRI and EDF. They will review and finalize the research design in collaboration with Internews staff and the consortium members of the Clean Air Catalyst project, conduct remote research on the information landscape (supply side), and complement remote research with qualitative field research techniques such as focus group discussions, key informant interviews, one-to-one interviews, surveys, and case studies. The design of the field-based research will be contingent on COVID-19 risk.

Based on this research, Internews will work with journalists, content providers, scientists, government officials and other stakeholders to develop clear recommendations for project programming, including training of journalists to address gaps in information relating to air pollution. Initial research findings will be presented to the project consortium members through briefings as part of the consultation process. The feedback from a range of stakeholders will be collected and incorporated in the final report.

Scope of Work

  • Review Internews’ qualitative research methodology and other documents relevant to the IEA
  • Provide revised qualitative research methodology according to own expertise, incorporating security and access considerations relevant to the India context
  • Lead and oversee all desk research and field data collection in collaboration with the Internews EJN, field staff of WRI and EDF, and the wider Clean Air Catalyst project team
  • Provide preliminary findings of the IEA to EJN and the Clean Air Catalyst consortium by agreed deadline
  • Submit a draft report to EJN Clean Air Catalyst Project Officer and EJN Asia-Pacific Senior Program Manager for review by agreed deadline and revise the report according to feedback
  • Submit final report to EJN Clean Air Catalyst Project Officer and EJN Asia-Pacific Senior Program Manager by agreed deadline
  • In all duties, an understanding of and demonstrated commitment to upholding Internews’ Core Values.

Qualifications

Required:

  • Based in Indore OR with extensive network base in Indore
  • Fluency in Hindi and English required – final report will be delivered in English
  • Relevant university degree, preferably with a focus on monitoring and evaluation and research studies
  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience in monitoring and evaluation of large internationally funded media, health or environment programs, preferably those with media development components and ideally in India
  • Experience in qualitative and quantitative data collection/survey design, implementation and analysis
  • Competent in qualitative methodologies and participatory assessments
  • Competent in MS Excel, word processing, Power Point, and experience using statistical programs such as SPSS
  • Experience working in India; familiarity with Indian health and/or environment issues
  • Excellent interpersonal communication skills and cultural sensitivity, including the ability to forge strong relationships and build trust, demonstrated through previous experience
  • Strong team management, presentation, writing and communication skills
  • Ability to manage up, coordinating proactively and efficiently with senior management
  • Report writing experience
  • Experience working in challenging environments and ability to work discreetly and securely.

Preferred:

  • Experience in implementing Information Ecosystem Analysis is highly desired
  • Knowledge of other local languages (Marathi, Urdu, Sindhi, Gujarati, Punjabi, Bengali)
  • Previous work experience with U.S. Government-funded programs and projects
  • Experience with media, health, or environment-related projects

To apply, please visit the Internews website: https://phf.tbe.taleo.net/phf04/ats/careers/v2/viewRequisition?org=INTERNEWS&cws=38&rid=1337

Status: Open

Deadline: Ongoing

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