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Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)

Senior Advisor, Program Management & Strategy

About the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)

The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) is driven by the vision of a world without malnutrition. GAIN is a Swiss-based foundation that mobilizes multi-sector partnerships and provides financial and technical support to deliver nutritious foods to those people most at risk of malnutrition. The organization is delivering improved nutrition to an estimated 820 million people in more than 30 countries, half of whom are women and children. Nutrition products are as varied as fortified cooking oil and flour in Africa, soy sauce in China and biscuits in Bangladesh, as well as specialized products for infant and young child nutrition. GAIN is also exploring innovative models to link agriculture and nutrition security, to protect the most vulnerable affected by emergencies and to foster lasting impacts on improving child growth and development. GAIN’s goal is to reach 1 billion people by 2015 with nutritious foods that have sustainable nutritional impact.

Overall Purpose

  • To support the Executive Director in delivering program and organizational excellence.
  • To provide technical leadership in formulating program strategy and oversight.

Tasks and Responsibilities

Program Management and Coordination:

  • Support the Executive Director (ED) in managing and coordinating GAIN’s program units, known as Initiatives. These are currently: Large Scale Food Fortification Initiative (LSFF), Maternal and Infant Young Child Initiative (MYCN), Agriculture and Nutrition Initiative (Agnut), as well as a crosscutting Business and Partnership Initiative (BPA) and the Monitoring, Learning and Research unit (MLR). 
  • Three initiatives have a Director based in Geneva, one Director is based in London (BPA) and one in Washington DC (Agnut). All Initiative Directors report directly to the ED.

Performance Oversight:

  • Assists the ED in reviewing the performance of all GAIN Initiatives. Responsible for coordinating quarterly performance review process of Initiatives and MLR, as well as other global programs.
  • Reviews the Annual and Mid-Term Performance reports and provides feedback. Works with the MLR unit on finalization of these documents for Board review.
  • Reviews the monitoring of organizational performance indicators.

Strategy Development:

  • Supports the ED in developing GAIN’s corporate strategy and operational plan. This is reviewed on a regular basis, for internal purposes and in preparation for Board meetings and Board/donor communications.
  • Assists the ED in developing sub-strategies and implementation plans for the Initiatives and all global programs as well as MLR, providing continuous oversight.
  • Assists the ED in developing sub-strategies and implementation plans for GAIN’s priority countries.

Project Review:

  • Provides substantive review of all projects for the ED.
  • Chairs the Project Review Committee, which approves final program design and funding.

Board Preparations and Coordination of Follow-up Work:

  • Working with the Senior Director, Program Operations and Management, prepares program presentations for the GAIN Board and ensures that all documentation presented to the Board is of high quality.
  • Working with the Senior Director, Program Operations and Management, manages the preparation for the Board Program Committee.
  • Ensures follow-up on program-related decisions emanating from the Board Program Committee, or from the Board.
  • Participates in Board meetings and presents strategy and program documentation.

Resource Mobilization:

  • Reviews donor proposals on behalf of the ED and works with the Program Development team to shape them.

Program Operations and Management Team (POM) work:

  • Contributes ad hoc to any POM initiatives, such as unit strategizing, possible line management of junior staff (TBD) and any other duties that may arise from this team.

Key Organizational Relationships

  • Reports to and works closely with the Executive Director.
  • Works directly with the Senior Director Program Operations and Development.
  • Works closely with the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Investment Officer.
  • Works closely with the Initiative Directors, MLR and BPA Directors.
  • Liaises regularly with the Operations Committee.
  • Member of the Executive Management Committee and Chair of the Project Review Committee.

Position Requirements

Competences (Skills and Attributes):

  • Strong analytical and critical thinking skills. Clear and systematic thinking and discipline in documentation that demonstrates good judgment, expert problem solving and creativity.
  • Excellent presentation and writing skills. Able to motivate and persuade others.
  • Highly organized. Ability to use initiative, to prioritize, multi-task and work well under pressure to meet deadlines.
  • Strong interpersonal skills. Able to work across hierarchy to drive and influence decision-making.
  • Sound negotiation skills, with a results-based orientation.
  • Ability to work effectively as part of a multicultural team and in a multi-lingual environment.


  • Seven to ten years of program management background, including development or oversight of international development programs, is essential.
  • At least seven years of experience in program strategy development, preferably at international level, in private foundations, international NGOs, government bodies or consulting organizations.
  • Experience in global health program strategy or management is essential.
  • Must possess a good understanding of the donor landscape.
  • Experience in developing, managing or delivering food, agriculture or nutrition programs is required.


  • Master or Ph.D degree in public health, economics, business administration or a suitable equivalent.

Other Requirements

  • Fluency in English. A second language is an asset.