Humanitarian Context Researcher

Beirut, Beirut Governorate, Lebanon | Full-time

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

The Program / Department / Team

The war in ME continues; more than 11 million people have been displaced from their homes and the number relying on humanitarian assistance continues to grow, in ME and in neighboring countries. With a large and complex portfolio of work across the region, Mercy Corps has established itself as an analytical, strategic and flexible responder, adapting continually to shifting front lines and operational realities to respond effectively and efficiently through multiple modalities with teams across the response region.  Mercy Corps has a large and diverse portfolio of work and a substantial team that works in multiple languages

The Position

The Humanitarian Context Researcher will conduct research to assist the Security Department in assessing areas of operation in highly sensitive areas, and support program teams through community profiling, actor and stakeholders mapping, and increase awareness in regards to conflict sensitivity and contextual changes.

The Humanitarian Context Researcher will be a dedicated individual with both the academic and professional expertise that allows them to provide real-time updates, and extensive studies in a timely manner under strict deadlines, while maintaining high standards of research integrity, quality, and confidentiality.

Essential Responsibilities

  • Work with the Security and Programs teams to develop and support project strategies.
  • Assist in drafting weekly, monthly, and quarterly reports discussing socio-economic, political, and geo-political events.
  • Use open source, partner data, statistical data, and academic reports to collect, process, clean, and analyse information.
  • Conduct humanitarian access research, through the development of actor mapping, stakeholder analysis, and map analysis.
  • Assist conducting studies that create risk management mitigation measures to ensure the safety of team members in sensitive areas.
  • Carry out additional tasks as assigned, present briefs, and draft papers on a needs basis in response to changing contextual dynamics.
  • Assist with the measurement and analysis of humanitarian access indicators to inform strategic decision making.
  • As directed, research specific geographic locations with a focus on humanitarian access and actor dynamics present in the area.

Supervisory Responsibility



Reports Directly To: Security Coordinator

Works Directly With: Security Director, Information Risk Management Officer, Programs Teams.

Minimum Qualification & Transferable Skills

  • Bachelor’s degree required, Master’s Degree preferred, in a Social Sciences discipline; preferably in political science, international affairs, or international development.
  • At least two years of experience working in research covering Middle East politics.
  • One year working in a research, operations, or security department of an institution in the MENA region preferred.
  • Fluency in English required; advanced knowledge of formal and common Arabic required.
  • Advanced formal and formal English writing skills required.
  • Knowledge and familiarity with UN products and institutions related to humanitarian relief.
  • Basic GIS Mapping skills and Excel working knowledge required.
  • Familiarity with political economy, response planning and/or needs mapping desired.

Success Factors

The successful candidate will have the ability to conduct advanced open source research on areas with highly complicated contextual dynamics to help map out humanitarian access routes, conduct community profiling, and assist in writing risk management recommendations. S/he will be able to work closely with a diverse team of individuals in a highly intense and fluid work and security environment. S/he will be a self-starter, take initiative and offer to assist in decision-making processes that could benefit from a safety/security perspective..

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.


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