Title Senior Programmes Adviser 
Period June 2018 – November 2019, with potential for extension
Input 220 working days annually / 330 days total, pro rata
Location Dhaka (Bangladesh) with travel to field sites and potential occasional international travel
Reports to Team Leader, PROKAS


The British Council, in consortium with Palladium and WISE Development, is contracted by DFID to implement the Promoting Knowledge for Accountable System (PROKAS) Programme in Bangladesh. PROKAS is a component part of DFID Bangladesh’s wider Transparency and Right to Information Programme.  PROKAS started in 2015 and a recent contract extension enables PROKAS to continue until November 2019, with potential for further extension. PROKAS supports government, private sector and civil society to work collectively to improve transparency and accountability in targeted thematic areas.  PROKAS is an actively managed programme, not only a funding channel.

  • Background to PROKAS
  • PROKAS is a politically smart programme that increases transparency and reduces corruption in Bangladesh by supporting action in areas where there is strong potential for change.  We work with issues where there is an opportunity to bring groups together – civil society, government, academia, the business community – to solve complex accountability problems through coalition building and collective action approaches, supported by political and other analysis. Whilst PROKAS awards grants to participating partners, particularly civil society partners, IBPs are not traditional ‘grant projects’; regular reflection and learning enables projects to flexibly adapt to accommodate new ideas, or new partners, or changes in the external context.

PROKAS is currently delivering three Issue Based Projects (IBP):

  • Climate finance transparency: supporting two coalitions of partners to strengthen both supply and demand aspects of climate finance transparency and right to information, particularly through the development of an online climate finance portal, which has the potential to serve as an exemplar to other climate vulnerable developing countries.
  • Fairer labour migration: Government, civil society and private sector partners are collaborating to strengthen mechanisms, policy and legislation to provide greater safeguards to labour migrants from Bangladesh, many of whom fall prey to bribery, corruption and other exploitative practices. Partners are collaborating to pilot grievance and compensation mechanisms for victims of exploitation.
  • Food safety governance: The widespread practice of using unregulated and unsafe feed in the poultry sector leads to unsafe poultry products being consumed across Bangladesh. Working with government, civil society and consumer associations, PROKAS is exploring how to strengthen regulation and producer / consumer behaviours around the highly complex poultry value chain.

A fourth IBP, relating to trade barriers and economic growth, is being explored. It is expected that if satisfactory opportunities for projects suited to collective action can be identified, this IBP will be ready to commence in June 2018. It is anticipated a limited number of additional IBPs may be developed, linked to existing themes of PROKAS’ work.

PROKAS’s scope of work

PROKAS’s main areas of work involve:

  • Identifying issues where the programme has the greatest scope to bring about improvements in transparency and accountability, based on an understanding of the political economy and individual actors and groups’ incentives for reform
  • Identifying, facilitating and supporting local partners who are best placed to have an impact on those issues.
  • Identifying and collaboratively developing related “Issues Based Projects” (IBPs) which demonstrate a clear link to the overall programme results framework and theory of change;
  • Brokering opportunities and providing funding for civil society and other non-state actors to work in coalitions and networks (with government)  on agreed activities within issue-based projects (IBPs)
  • Providing or arranging technical support for government and non-government partners engaged in collaborative issue based projects to deliver on their agreed plans and strategies
  • Effective management, including strategy testing and adaptation of a portfolio of IBPs, including those mentioned above

PROKAS has been designed to support government and civil society initiatives to improve transparency and accountability in specific targeted thematic areas. Initiatives to be supported will fall broadly into the following categories:


  • Initiatives that increase capacity to respond to Right to Information (RTI) requests;
  • Initiatives that promote and/or facilitate proactive dissemination of information.


  • Initiatives that help citizens and/or CSOs access and use information, and mobilise to hold decision makers to account on targeted issues;
  • Initiatives that track implementation of responsibilities by officials;
  • Initiatives that encourage/require officials to explain their actions;
  • Initiatives that target specific aspects of poor performance or corruption in targeted government departments or sectors.

Key tasks:

The Senior Programmes Adviser will be responsible for identifying, developing and managing a portfolio of projects, partners and products relating to multiple thematic areas of the programme, and for ensuring consistency of programme approaches across multiple streams of activity. Tasks and activities include, but will not be limited to:

  • Supporting the Team Leader to develop and implement the project vision, strategy and narrative
  • Developing and maintaining relationships with senior government, civil service, private sector, civil society and international contacts of relevance to PROKAS
  • Leading on research, analysis and documentation of Bangladesh’s ‘everyday political economy’, including brokering meetings and consultations to establish more deeply what is happening in the political environment
  • Guiding the work of PROKAS’ political economy consultants, ensuring they gain access to key literature, reports, data and contacts
  • Critically reviewing political economy and other contextual analysis deliverables produced by external consultants
  • Providing regular political and contextual briefings (verbal & written) to the senior management team, IBP delivery teams, and external stakeholders as appropriate
  • Leading on additional contextual and situational analysis for identifying appropriate issues for PROKAS intervention or further research
  • Identifying and brokering relevant key stakeholders to explore potential additional or spin-off ‘issue-based projects’ for future consideration
  • Supporting the development, documentation and dissemination of knowledge and learning across the programme’s full portfolio, including the production of high quality knowledge products for audiences in and beyond Bangladesh
  • Undertaking formal representation of PROKAS at high profile events in and beyond Bangladesh
  • Contributing to the capacity development of PROKAS partners and team to conduct and use contextual analysis more effectively in the design and delivery of their projects
  • Supporting the refresh/development of theories of change and strategic plans for each IBP
  • Contributing substantively to quarterly and annual reports

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A minimum of a Master’s degree in politics, political science, law, economics or other highly relevant subject.

Knowledge, skills and experience

  •  At least 15 years’ experience working on governance / political governance projects and programmes in Bangladesh in an advisory capacity, with at least 10 years working at a senior level
  • Deep knowledge of governance, accountability and transparency issues in Bangladesh across a range of sectors
  • Experience of working with government, civil society and the private sector in Bangladesh with a proven network of contacts in each
  • Expertise in the use of political economy and other contextual analysis approaches for policy or programme development
  • Strong background in conducting and / or designing governance-focussed research in either academic, policy or programming environments
  • Track record of producing a variety of written products to a high standard on issues relating to politics, governance, transparency and accountability in Bangladesh



Analytical, Communication & Inter-personal Competencies

  • Strong analytical abilities, as demonstrated by research, strategic roles or other experience.
  • Effective and influential writing skills, as evidenced by track record of reports and publications and peer reviewed work.
  • Advanced communications and presentation skills as evidenced by presentations, including conference presentations
  • Demonstrable leadership, interpersonal and team building skills
  • Strong networker who is able to build and maintain effective senior relationships.
  • Demonstrated sensitivity to cultural, gender and inclusion issues
  • Spoken and written fluency in Bangla and English

Closing Date
11:59 PM Thursday 31 May, 2018

Apply through: Application link