Are you our new Program Manager?

RootChangeDevelopment Revolution

About Us

Root Change is a development laboratory, testing new ideas and leveraging learning to advocate for far-reaching change within the development sector.  Based in Washington, DC, our small, but mighty team believes that traditional approaches to development have failed to address the systemic causes of poverty, injustice, and vulnerability in the world. That is why we design programs, technologies, and interactive experiences that help people, organizations, and communities build better futures for themselves. Our daily work is focused on putting more power in the hands of local communities, developing the capacity of systems—made up of civil society, government, and citizens—to work together more effectively, and creating adaptive approaches that are responsive to ever-changing environments. 

Most recently, our work has supported:

We’re looking for a Program Manager to join the Root Change team in the ”Development Revolution”!.

Your Role

The Program Manager will support the Root Change team, working closely with the entire staff and our diverse partners—international NGOs, movements, foundations, civil society organizations, and more. The Program Manager will provide leadership on a portfolio of projects to support partners to identify, develop, and apply local solutions to local problems. They will  contribute to developing innovative tools and approaches and support new business development and communications.

More specifically, your work will include:

Project Management, Technical Assistance, and Facilitation (60%)

  • Develop innovative project designs with colleagues and clients, using Root Change’s unique tools and approaches, such as Pando and network mapping, Constituent Voice, social labs, and helping to scale the Community Independence Initiative
  • Design and test project interventions to build system capacity using  , lean experimentation or “learning by doing” approaches with clients and partners.
  • Use facilitation, coaching, accompaniment,  mentoring  workshops, and webinars to support Root Change partners and clients both virtually and in-person to achieve their goals.
  • Incorporate the values and practices  of locally led development, the shift the power movement, and social inclusion into all Root Change initiatives, projects and events. 
  • Create new tools, guidance documents, reports and conceptual frameworks to extend the thinking and practice of Root Change into new arenas.
  • Manage work streams and coordinate project teams for timely and high-quality submission of deliverables to donors, partners and clients.
  • Supervise and coach team members and Root Change Fellows to help them excel in their work.
  • Develop and own meaningful relationships with clients, partners, colleagues and sector leaders in the North and the Global South.

New Business Development (20%)

  • Cultivate relationships with organizations and individuals in support of new business pipeline development. 
  • Develop new business opportunities by promoting and responding to inquiries regarding Root Change offerings  including at events and conferences.
  • Respond to information requests from donors, colleagues, clients and  partners in a timely manner. 
  • Participate on proposal teams, taking on various roles including managing the proposal development process, coordination,  writing technical sections, gathering administrative documents, preparing budgets, reviewing and editing, and managing communications and agreements with potential partners and clients
  • Attend  external events to collect information and network.

Communication and Outreach (10%)

  • Identify opportunities for advancing Root Change’s mission and thought leadership through external publications, events, blogs, and social media 
  • Identify communication products for strategically sharing Root Change work, lessons and findings, to external audiences. 
  • Act as a representative of Root Change at key professional conferences and events.
  • Create blogs, brochures, and other communications products, and use other social media to communicate the Root Change perspective and experience. 
  • Identify opportunities for outreach to new constituents and stakeholders.

Learning and Research & Development (5%)

  • Share insights from project implementation with Root Change colleagues for institutional learning. 
  • Keep in touch with current trends, innovative ideas, exciting projects and tools, and interesting people and introduce them to Root Change staff.
  • Assist with reports and knowledge retrieval.
  • Maintain the e-filing system of shared network drives, saving all relevant information to  its designated location. 

Administrative and Finance Tasks (5%)

  • Participate in and help lead team meetings. 
  • Manage all administrative tasks necessary to carry out work assigned such as time sheets, flight and hotel bookings, and expense reconciliations.
  • Provide assistance and backstopping to team members as needed.
  • Perform other duties as assigned. 

Your Background

  • 5+ years of experience managing community development projects internationally. 
  • Experience working on site with local partners, organizations, or project constituents to carry out project activities. 
  • Strong educational or professional background in international development.
  • A passion for supporting locally-led development and listening to the voices of the communities we seek to serve
  • Fluency in English and Spanish required; Fluency in French a plus

Your Skills & Experience

  • Experience with facilitating groups or leading workshops or events and in designing and implementing experiential educational processes with adults. 
  • Skilled in project and team management, preparing work plans, and coordinating with diverse clients and partners. 
  • Comfort with leading challenging discussions and handling conflict to promote forward movement and consensus among groups and teams.
  • Experience with innovation, human-centered design, and design thinking.
  • Ability to work with power differentials to achieve “radical equality”,  
  • Familiarity with quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis methods.
  • Experience with grant or proposal writing, preparing technical concept notes, project budgets, and negotiating contracts with clients and partners. 
  • Strong writing and professional communications skills, experience preparing blogs, one-pagers, program reports, and/or digital marketing materials for a variety of audiences. 
  • Experience in navigating issues of race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation and other identities that are targets of discrimination.  
  • Ability to adapt in response to feedback and work collaboratively as a team player in a fast-paced, evolving environment
  • Comfortable in questioning assumptions, testing new ideas, working outside of comfort zone, and pivoting on established work plans instantaneously 
  • Previous experience with collective impact, social labs, systems thinking or systems change initiatives, coalition building, advocacy, social movements, social network analysis and feedback methodologies (such as Constituent Voice) a plus

    (Equivalent skills that align with those above may be considered.)

Our Values
Each member of the Root Change team is expected to embody the organization’s core values, including belief that:

  • All people have a right to participate in decisions affecting their lives
  • Gender and racial equity is mandatory for social transformation
  • Local development actors should drive the development agenda in their own countries
  • Diversity in background, race, gender, and age strengthens our capacity to be wise managers of public and private funds


While travel is currently restricted due to the global coronavirus pandemic, we foresee  it beginning to open up in late 2021 to early 2022. When this occurs, we estimate this position will require 25-40% travel both in the U.S. and internationally. 

The position is based in Washington, D.C.; temporary remote work is possible until we return to the office.  Our ideal start date is September 1, 2021. Applicants must be authorized to work in the U.S.

Competitive annual salary commensurate with experience. Full-time staff receive all federal holidays off, 25 days of paid vacation, annual staff bonus, and annual professional development stipend.

Other perks include:

  • While working on a small, tight-knit team, you will deepen your exposure to all aspects of international development and social change work. From scoping research, to project design, to monitoring and evaluation, you will get to develop a diverse skill set that can be broadly applied in the sector. 
  • Take advantage of other unique Root Change resources such as the Thinking and Working in Systems course and DPMI to augment your professional development.


Submit a one-page cover letter and your resume by July 30 at 11:59pm ET using the following online form. Interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. 

Please email with any questions. 

Root Change is an equal opportunity employer. We eagerly seek to build a diverse, equitable, and inclusive team and invite candidates of all backgrounds to apply.  We do not discriminate based upon race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, status as a protected veteran, status as an individual with a disability, or other applicable legally protected characteristics.