Research & Program Consultant - Global Programs and Environmental Justice

Washington DC, USA

About the position

Namati focuses on “community paralegals”, sometimes called barefoot lawyers or legal empowerment advocates, who demystify law and help people exercise their rights. Namati works with community paralegals in 8 countries and hosts the Global Legal Empowerment Network, made up of over 1500 groups from 130 countries. Community paralegals take on some of the greatest challenges of our times: protecting community lands, enforcing environmental law, and securing basic rights to healthcare and citizenship.

The Global Programs team plays several roles at Namati. The team supports our CEO in generating comparative learning across Namati programs, drawing on data and experiences from the variety of contexts and thematic areas in which we work. The team also supports the development of our program in the United States.

Namati is searching for a savvy program and research consultant who will provide ongoing support to our CEO and Global Programs team for up to the next 3 months. The program and research consultant will provide support across Namati program areas, with a focus on the US environmental justice program.

In the US we hope to contribute to a "legal empowerment" approach to environmental justice: one that equips communities affected by environmental harm to advocate for themselves. We are currently exploring what this would look like in the DC-Maryland region, where we are planning to recruit a small crew of community-based legal empowerment advocates. We want to bolster their work, connect them with each other, and develop together a systematic legal empowerment approach.

Here are the kinds of things you’ll do-

  • Schedule and attend a meeting with Namati’s CEO and a potential partner environmental justice group in Maryland to co-design a legal empowerment program.
  • Draft emails for the CEO to send to legal groups in the US who can serve as mentors to the legal empowerment advocates. Schedule and attend meetings with these legal groups. 
  • Organize recruitment of legal empowerment advocates in the DC-Maryland region by communicating with candidates, arranging interviews, assessing applications. 
  • Book a venue for an upcoming legal empowerment advocate meeting in Maryland and arrange for a nutritious lunch that minimizes packaging and waste.
  • Conduct desk research on potential avenues for paralegals and communities to address impacts from sources of industrial pollution in the DC-Maryland region.
  • Provide assistance to the Global Programs team in handling tough cases across Namati programs, identifying and documenting innovation, and assessing new opportunities.
  • Support program teams to develop specific tools or materials, for example a scoring tool for community-led assessments of health facility performance, or community education materials on the impacts of mining.


About you/must-haves for the position

  • Aptitude for investigation and analysis: You have a demonstrated track record of skilled research and writing. Your creative edge and entrepreneurial approach to learning set you apart.
  • Exceptional communication skills: Your written and verbal communications evidence clarity of thought and sharpness of analysis.
  • Commitment to excellence: You are a mature, organized, detail-oriented and proactive professional known for producing high quality content on deadline. 
  • Flexible and independent: Although careful planning and execution define your work, you are positive and graceful when unexpected challenges arise. You thrive when working independently with minimal direct supervision.
  • Collaborative and service-oriented: You’re comfortable working as part of a remote team spanning multiple time zones that is committed to a work culture premised on transparency, trust, and fellowship among colleagues. You’re known as a team-player who brings an “all hands on deck” mindset to all projects -- you’re happy to contribute however you can to advance Namati’s mission.
  • Growth-oriented: You’re always seeking to better yourself and your work, and you will push yourself to the peak of performance to help fulfill our mission. In service of that growth, you welcome and delight in feedback from supervisors, peers, and anyone else.


About Namati

Namati is dedicated to placing the power of law in the hands of people.

For billions of people around the world, the law is broken. It’s an abstraction -- or worse, a threat -- but not something we can use to exercise our basic rights.

Namati is building a global movement of grassroots advocates who empower people to understand, use, and shape the law. These “barefoot lawyers” form a dynamic, creative frontline that can squeeze justice out of even broken systems.  

In the past four years, Namati and our partners have worked with over 65,000 clients to take on some of the greatest challenges of our times: protecting community lands, enforcing environmental law, and securing basic rights to healthcare and citizenship.

We track data on every case and use that information to advocate for systemic changes, like better policies for land governance in Liberia, environmental regulation in India, and healthcare delivery in Mozambique.

And we're joining forces for change. Namati convenes the Global Legal Empowerment Network -- over 1,500 groups and 5,000 individuals from 150 countries learning from one another and bringing justice to communities in every part of the world.

Our work has gained recognition. Namati and the Global Legal Empowerment Network were recognized with the prestigious Skoll Award in 2016. Honoring CEO Vivek Maru as a fellow, Ashoka called ours the “best law-for-all model we’ve seen.” We’ve been published and featured in the Guardian, the New York Times, and Forbes. And we’ve had some hefty supporters, including an advisory board with leaders like Amartya Sen, Mo Ibrahim, Fazle Abed, and Madeleine Albright.

As we move into our next phase, we’re growing our global team of passionate, results-oriented, big-hearted advocates, united by a common mission and a strong culture:

  • Our mission is our North Star. It’s why we all wake up every day. We pour our hearts into this work.
  • We’re innovators and changemakers. We are a young, energetic social enterprise and we know that our work is urgent. We believe in being nimble and doing what works.
  • Our work makes real, tangible, measurable progress in people’s lives. We take abstract concepts – rule of law and human rights – and make them concrete, helping people find solutions that improve their lives every day.
  • We walk our talk. Our movement is about legal empowerment and we bring this spirit of empowerment and collaboration to all our partnerships. We hold humility as a core value: we lead when necessary and follow when necessary.
  • We are a truly global organization. Our offices are located in Delhi, Freetown, Maputo, Oakland, Washington DC, and Yangon, and our staff come from all corners of the world. We are united by our common mission.
  • We see our people as our most valuable resource. We bring on individuals of the highest caliber and character and we mentor, train, and support our staff.  
  • We hold one another in the highest esteem. Our work relationships are built on deep abiding respect and love.

For more about what it’s like to work at Namati, please see our Cultural Principles.



Washington, DC. 


Structure & compensation

This position is structured as a consultancy of up to 3 months, compensated daily for up to 5 days per week, with the potential for extension beyond 3 months based on performance.  


To apply

Please complete our online application form; you'll be asked to submit one writing sample. We prefer for all materials (CV, cover letter, writing sample) to be uploaded as one PDF.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until Friday, July 6th.

No phone calls please. Namati is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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