Research Department, New Naratif

Position : Research Coordinator (RC)

Working Hours : full-time, 40hrs per week

Salary Offered : US $750/- to US$1,000/- (negotiable depending on experience, knowledge and skills of the candidate)

Location : Online/Digital within any one of the eleven Southeast Asian countries

Reporting to : Research Manager (RM) – direct line supervisor, currently filled by MD. In the absence of MD, the position reports to Operations Manager as de-facto head of the organisation.

Peers : Operations Coordinator, Civic Participation Coordinator (across departments); Researchers (within department)

Forms part of : Research Team

Qualifications : As a Southeast Asian candidate (preferred), the RC must have native-level English ability (spoken and written) and, preferably, fluency in one or more Southeast Asian languages. The RC should have at least 1-2 years experience with project management and online collaboration. As the RC will be working directly with researchers and coordinating research projects, research skills and experience will be an advantage.  

Travel Required : Domestically and internationally as and when necessary and approved by MD

Type of Contract : Annual Contracts issued from April 1st to March 31, (renewable annually, based on performance and funding available) 

New Naratif is a movement for democracy in Southeast Asia. We publish information, build communities, and empower people to create positive change. Learn more about us at newnaratif.com/hello.

While we publish news, New Naratif operates more like a hybrid of a creative storytelling studio, community organiser and mobiliser, and a think tank, rather than a pure media operation. 

The Research Department functions as New Naratif’s internal think tank, researching important themes and offering input into all our outputs, producing articles (like our “Explainers”), contributing handouts and reading lists to our democracy classrooms, advising and helping with our campaigns (like “The Citizens’ Agenda”), conducting original research (like our media freedom project), and generally being a resource for the organisation as a whole.

As Research Coordinator, you’ll work with the research team to ensure that our research operations run smoothly and stay on track. You’ll be tracking budgets, writing reports, handling administration, maintaining calendars, and documenting meetings. You’ll interface between the researchers and the other departments. You’ll also work with our Community team in distributing the outputs of our research.

In addition, much of New Naratif’s outputs are structured around themes: every six months (eventually every quarter), we pick a new issue, theme, topic, or event and focus our efforts on educating and empowering people to create change around that issue or event. 

Examples include Southeast Asian regional issues such as women’s rights, gender and LGBTQIA+ rights, labour migration and labour rights, forced migration, inclusion and civic participation, youths and political rights, transparency and accountability of electoral procedures, freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and association, land grabbing and land rights, all of which New Naratif has published on in the recent past.   

Our team gets together and figures out what to focus on, what information people need to know to create change, who the people on the ground are that we can engage, and what events/classes help bring our community together to build capacity for change. The whole process takes six months.

As Research Coordinator, you’ll be in charge of coordinating the thematic output and running this crucial company-wide project from start to finish. This is a crucial aspect of the role and you’ll be coordinating across the entire organisation and working closely with all team members to shepherd the project. You’ll be, for example, ensuring that the research timetable is outlined and up to date, is followed by all research team members, is understood by cross-department team members. Also, based on the timeline, you’ll identify the necessary cross-departmental support that may be needed and necessary including hiring of external service providers and ensure they understand and adhere to the research schedule. 

This position would suit someone with experience in research management and administration of research principles internally and externally with key team members and stakeholders. It would also suit someone with research skills and experience who wants to broaden their experience into running and coordinating multiple research projects.

What you’ll be doing

As the Research Coordinator, your main focus is to coordinate and optimise all New Naratif research activities. Responsibilities include: 

  • Coordinate and ensure good collaboration within the Research department, and between the Research department and other departments.
  • Work with Research department and relevant Editors on the production, adaptation, editing, and publication process of New Naratif research outputs.
  • Track metrics, including budgets and spending, for the research department.
  • Track deliverables for grants and draft reports for grants related to the research department.
  • Work with the Community department to distribute and promote published research; Explore external opportunities for public engagement and collaborations on behalf of the Research team.
  • Lead and document research department meetings.
  • Maintain the research department calendar (pivot calendar, updating the schedule of research outputs, scheduling meetings, etc.).
  • Maintain the administrative backend for research (e.g. Google Drive, Trello, etc.).
  • Coordinate the implementation of the New Naratif thematic campaigns, taking into account all formats of work produced by New Naratif, across all formats and languages, and all events.
  • Other duties as may be required for supporting the research team or for the coordination of New Naratif research across the entire organisation.
  • Contribute to the implementation of New Naratif strategy as part of your country/region team.
  • New Naratif is fundamentally a movement for democracy, and our content is geared towards helping build capacity for democracy amongst our members and audience. How we operate, and what we choose to publish, is in service of that goal.

What you won’t be doing

  • You will not be expected to do any research yourself. We’re looking for someone to coordinate and ensure smooth collaboration between researchers and between the entire team.
  • You will not be creating or formulating strategy. Instead, the Research Manager will set the strategy and you’ll help execute it.

What we’re looking for

Strong candidates will have the following capabilities:

  1. Project management and coordination. Our projects have a lot of moving parts. In particular, the twice-yearly thematic project has a lot of different outputs and requires inputs from every single person and department in New Naratif. You’ll need to track all of these and keep everyone informed.

Tell us about your project management experience?

  1. People skills. Managing a project isn’t just about the paperwork. You need to work with people who are working remotely, scattered across Southeast Asia, thousands of miles apart and in different time zones. We’re all passionate and aspire to a high level of moral values. We’re here to model best practices as a transparent, ethical, progressive organisation. We’ll demand all this from you and hold you accountable. 

How do you collaborate?

  1. Empathy for the marginalised and voiceless of Southeast Asia. New Naratif is first and foremost a platform for the people of Southeast Asia to imagine and then create a better Southeast Asia. You need to love and understand this region and its history, in all its complexity and diversity. You need to be willing to learn, explore, and grow alongside this region. It means you need to look beyond the borders and boundaries which are currently imposed on us. We want your experience of living in a Southeast Asian country, your connectivity to the communities, knowing everyday local experiences, concerns and challenges which reflect in your work and outputs you supervise. 

What does Southeast Asia mean to you?

Application Process

If you’re ready to take on the challenge of building capacity for change in Southeast Asia, please send an email to jobs AT newnaratif.com with your CV, cover letter answering the questions above, and a portfolio or examples of your work. Please provide the names and contact information for two character referees.

Shortlisted candidates will have 2-3 interviews. We anticipate the process will last around a month. Following your appointment, you would undergo a three-month trial period.

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Therefore, we encourage you to submit an application as soon as possible as the process may close once we feel a sufficient number of applications are received or a suitable candidate has been found.

More Information

The role is a Junior or Mid-level position, depending on your experience, meaning that you will be given clearly defined tasks and responsibilities, and will report to the Research Manager as head of your department.

  • You have to be responsible, communicate and collaborate well online and be willing to work from home or your own choice of location as long as you are digitally connected with your team and provide the necessary remote supervision and ensure the work schedule is smooth and uninterrupted. 
  • We collaborate chiefly using WordPress, Google Workspace, Wire, and Trello. 

Benefits include 

  • 28 days of personal leave per year
  • 12 days of public holiday leave per year (which can be taken on any public or religious holiday of your choice), and 
  • 1 session of company-paid mental health therapy per month. 

New Naratif contracts are governed by UK law, on a consultancy basis, and typically are for one year at a time, renewable at the end of every financial year (31 March). 

New Naratif is a not-for-profit, private company, limited by guarantee, registered in the United Kingdom and Malaysia, and headquartered in Kuala Lumpur. 

We are committed to creating an inclusive workplace for all employees regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, or disability. 

We have a strong preference for Southeast Asians who have personal experience of and understand being marginalised and oppressed.

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