Learning Global Health Economy
The purpose of the Junior Professional Associates program of the World Bank is to provide advanced students and recent graduates with the opportunity to gain entry-level professional experience, on a two-year, non-renewable contract with benefits.
Geir Sølve Sande Lie
- Student, master programme in Health Economics, Policy and Management (spring 2010)
- Junior Professonal Associate in the World Bank
What is the job?
My work relates to health systems and financing in low and middle income countries. As part of the Health, Nutrition and Population, Human Development Network Team we undertake high quality research that is capable of influencing health policy decisions. This can range from assessing low and middle income countries’ capability for creating fiscal space for health, mapping health care expenditure, creating global strategies for health system strengthening, population and reproductive health, or preparing to expand the credit line for the Global Program for Avian Influenza Control and Human Pandemic Preparedness and Response (GPAI); a “fast-track” emergency H1N1 financing to low- and middle-income countries to buy drugs, medical equipment and supplies.
How did you get the job?
I initially applied through the World Bank webpage. There was a posting for a two year program for recent graduates: Junior Professional Associates (JPA).
To what extent do you benefit from the knowledge acquired from studies in Health Economics, Policy and Management?
My academic background in health economics has been greatly helpful and I benefited from the analytical way of thinking and approaching a problem/question in a systematic way. This, combined with subjects in statistics and econometrics, has proved to be very valuable and has been very much in demand from colleagues in the World Bank.
Are there any possibilities for further development in the job?
A JPA assignment is not an entry point for a career in the World Bank and employment beyond the initial two-year contract will be prohibited for a period of two years after the end of the contract. However, some former JPAs may rejoin the organization later in their careers after gaining experience elsewhere and becoming experts in their professional fields. With a solid, two-year entry-level work experience in a multicultural environment such as the World Bank, I see other peers manage to use it as a stepping stone into their relevant fields of work.