EOI | Looking for RDI Network Committee Member (University Rep)

Topics Cross-sector partnerships | Networking
Header banner with RDI Network's light teal, medium teal and dark teal triangles on the left side. In the centre there is an icon of three genderless people and a speech bubble. In the same colours as the logo. The words underneath the icon say 'Expression of Interest: Looking for RDI Network Committee Members'.

Are you an experienced academic actively engaged in the field of international development? Are you committed to seeing evidence influence development policy and practice?

An exciting opportunity exists to join the Research for Development Impact Network (RDI Network) Committee as a new univeristy member. We are looking a highly skilled, experienced, and engaged academic to complement our current Committee members. You will play a vital role in advising, leading and facilitating activities of the Network including networking, work-plan development, event management, project and team management skills, MEL methodologies and practice, ethical research and evaluation.

DEADLINE EXTENDED – Applications close 9am AEDT on Tuesday 9th June. Please read the details below prior to submitting an expression of interest.


About the RDI Network:

The RDI Network is a network of practitioners, researchers and evaluators working in international development. We believe overcoming poverty and injustice requires effective partnerships that link quality research, policy and practice.

The Network exists to foster collaboration between Australian universities and NGOs in order to promote high quality and ethical development research, translated as evidence and applied to effective policy and practice. Working in close partnership with the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID), the Network functions as a key cross-sectoral platform for shared learning and action in the international development sector. The RDI Network is supported by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

RDI Network Vision:

Effective, equitable international development through evidence and collaboration.

RDI Network Mission:

More than the sum of the parts: bringing together enquiry, evidence, practice, policy, and people, to strengthen development outcomes.

In line with the Network vision, the objective of the current program is to improve the way research evidence informs development policy, practice and discourse in the Australian development sector.

Further background information about the Network and its work is available here.


About the RDI Committee:

The purpose of the RDI Committee is to provide strategic oversight and direction on activities undertaken by and through the RDI Network.  It forms a respected cross-sector voice with access to significant policy and practice fora and dialogues.

The Committee consists of representatives from both ACFID member NGOs and affiliated universities and is co-chaired by an ACFID representative, an NGO representative and a university representative. A list of current Committee members can be found here. The Committee is supported by a secretariat of three staff members based in Melbourne.

Who should nominate:

To nominate for the Committee, you must:

  • Be a staff or board member of a university that is a ACFID affiliate member.
  • Have the full support of your institution in the role as Committee member.
  • Fully endorse and demonstrate commitment to the vision, mission and objective of the Network (listed previously);
  • Have previous or current engagement with RDI Network or other inter/national networks with initiatives relevant to the objective of the Network; and
  • Have an interest in or experience in research, programming, monitoring and evaluation, training, and/or be committed to the application of evidence to development policy and practice.

Benefits to committee members and supporting institutions:

  • Opportunities to expand the personal and professional cross-sector network of the member and their institution or organisation;
  • Increased opportunities to interact and contribute to dialogue with DFAT;
  • Increased opportunity to strengthen relationships and collaborate with ACFID, and peer NGOs and universities on the RDI Committee;
  • Increased opportunities for the Committee member and their institution or organisation to showcase their work at RDI Network events;
  • Opportunities for professional development and to learn and apply new skills: e.g. how to network, work-plan development, event management, project and team management skills, MEL methodologies and practice, ethical research and evaluation.

Committee members are seen as experts in the field. As the Network grows, the reputation and profile of Committee members as experts in international development research will also increase.

What is the expected commitment?

Committee members are generally appointed for a three-year term and may serve up to two terms.

The role of Committee members includes assisting the RDI Network to:

  • Provide leadership in crafting a shared, strategic and ethical development research and evaluation agenda, and to improve the quality of research information exchange between Australian and regional researchers.
  • Facilitate relationships and communication with diverse sector stakeholders including Australian and regional research and evaluation actors (including academia, research institutes and NGOs), members of the private sector and peer networks and institutions.
  • Represent a resource of Australian-based expertise on research and evaluation policy and practice relating to international development; providing advisory and advocacy support to the RDI Network, ACFID and its members, and DFAT.
  • Committee members act as Network representatives (rather than representatives from individual agencies or institutions) when hosting events or engaging with the Government and other stakeholders on behalf of the RDI Network.

The Committee meets at least four times a year, with two meetings via teleconference, and two in person (moving between Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne). The next meeting will be an online meeting in mid-July. Each Committee member should expect that flights, accommodation and any other costs of attending Committee meetings will be covered by their respective organisation or institution as part of their Network support.

Committee members are expected to dedicate at least 12 days per year advancing Network activities (at least three days per quarter).

Committee members also occasionally provide advice to the RDI Network secretariat on emerging issues and will be expected to remain abreast of the Network’s activities. Committee members are expected to act as a conduit to their institution or organisation, and will lead or contribute to Network activities and events – either individually or through the provision of connection to suitably qualified contacts.

To express your interest in a role on the RDI Committee, please provide:

  • A one-page expression of interest statement against the selection criteria (above), explaining how you plan to contribute to the Committee;
  • A recent CV detailing your present role(s) and responsibilities; and
  • Evidence of endorsement from your institution, expressing support for the time commitment to be on the Committee and confirmation of covering the costs of attending in-person meetings (signed letter or email).


Please send your completed expression of interest by email to Philippa Smales, Network and Partnerships Manager at [email protected] no later than 9am Tuesday 9th June 2020.


The successful applicants will be determined by the current sitting NGO members of the RDI Committee.

For further information, contact Philippa Smales via email [email protected] (please email to arrange a phone call if you would like to discuss the opportunity).