Grants & Financial Coordinator

Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, MIT
  • Location
    Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Apr 11

Position description

J-PAL North America (J-PAL NA) is actively recruiting a Grants & Financial Coordinator based at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, MA. Working at J-PAL NA means being part of a vibrant, collaborative team of professionals who are committed to translating research into innovative policy solutions that are effective in reducing poverty. As a regional office of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), J-PAL NA is part of an affiliate network of over 170 affiliated professors at universities around the world, including some of the world’s leading economics researchers. J-PAL NA works closely with J-PAL’s global headquarters and five additional independent regional offices in Africa, Europe, Latin America, South Asia, and Southeast Asia to generate cutting-edge research, policy outreach, and training.

The Grants & Financial Coordinator is responsible for coordination and administration of J-PAL NA’s sponsored research grants and gifts and provides support for related financial activities. As part of the Finance and Operations team, the Grants & Financial Coordinator helps to advance J-PAL NA’s mission by ensuring that J-PAL NA is run with maximum efficiency and its financial systems are tightly managed. The Finance and Operations team serves as a strategic partner in sustaining and strengthening every aspect of J-PAL NA’s operating systems, including strategic planning, financial planning and management, human resources, facilities management, event management, information management, and office administration. The Grants & Financial Coordinator will support the full life-cycle of grant funding, including preparation and submission of proposals, development and monitoring of multi-year budgets, creation and analysis of financial projections, grant administration, subaward management, preparation of reports, and award closeout.

Advancing diversity, equity and inclusion is essential to achieving J-PAL NA’s mission to reduce poverty. We seek applicants from diverse backgrounds and especially welcome applicants with backgrounds that have been historically underrepresented in the field of economics.


  • Pre-Award Activities (30%): Works with Grants and Financial Officer, PIs, research and policy managers and others to develop budgets for grant proposals and manage grant funds in accordance with MIT and donor regulations. Assists in donor research and proposal preparation and serves as project manager for submission of proposals. Coordinates with Office of Sponsored Programs and Foundation Relations Office to shepherd proposals through the proposal review and submission process.
  • Post-Award Grant Administration (30%): Coordinates the receipt of award documentation; maintains proposal and funding records. Liaises with MIT offices and partner organizations to establish awards and subawards. Liaises with MIT offices to support the completion of data use agreements, human subjects reviews, and other documents required for research. Creates progress reports, and generate financial reports in accordance with specific grant requirements. Monitors project deadlines and deliverables. Prepares and submits requests for no cost extensions and other necessary changes to grant agreements.
  • Financial Management (40%): Creates and maintains systems to manage grant funds within and across budgets, including monthly reconciliation of accounts. Monitors and analyzes actual and projected costs and identifies potential overruns. Develops multi-year financial projections. Assists with preparation of annual operating budget for J-PAL NA. Reviews and approves financial transactions, such as reimbursements for travel and corporate card payments. Manages service contracts and vendor relationships, including procurement. Processes and tracks expenses and reimbursements. Prepares invoices/billings and collects funds for contracts. Works with the Grants & Financial Officer to recommend and implement process improvements and to develop and document best practices. Participates in special projects as assigned.


Education: Bachelor’s degree required.

Experience: A minimum of 2 years of experience working in grants management or financial administration.

Communication & Technical Skills: Strong writing skills and the ability to communicate clearly with multiple parties. Exceptional attention to detail, accuracy and financial skills related to preparation and reporting on complex budgets. Technical proficiency with learning and using computer applications, including Excel, Salesforce, and financial planning systems such as SAP.

Organization: Strong project management skills. Ability to anticipate, plan, prioritize and meet deadlines, manage multiple tasks, manage numerous requests from various parties, and effectively manage a high volume of work.

Judgement & Integrity: Capable of dealing with high-profile organizations and officials with diplomacy and integrity. Tact and good judgement in handling confidential information.

Initiative: Self-motivated, ability to take initiative to implement or improve established processes.

Interest: Strong interest in contributing to J-PAL NA’s mission to reduce poverty in North America and a commitment to J-PAL NA’s organizational values.

Application instructions

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