Regional Crop Value Chain Expert

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Vacancy Announcement

ETHIOPIAN AGRICULTURAL TRANSFORMATION AGENCY

Position :                           Regional Crop Value Chain Expert

Term of Employment :   One Year possibility of extension

Duty Station(s) :              Oromia (Addis Ababa),

Required Number:          One

Salary & Benefits :           Competitive

Application Deadline :    03 June 2021

BACKGROUND

The Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) is a strategy and delivery-oriented government agency created to help accelerate the growth and transformation of the country’s agriculture sector. The ATA envisions that, by 2025, smallholder farmers are commercialized with greater incomes, inclusiveness, resilience and sustainability, contributing to Ethiopia’s achievement of middle-income country status.

The agency focuses on two primary national approaches to catalyze agricultural transformation. First, we support the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Resources (MoALR), its affiliate institutions, and other partners to identify and address systemic bottlenecks within an Agricultural Transformation Agenda. Second, we support Regional Governments to accelerate development of high-priority commodity value chains in clearly defined geographic clusters, through the Agricultural Commercialization Clusters (ACC) Initiative.

Our major activities include conducting strategic and analytical studies, providing technical implementation support, coordinating platforms to better integrate partners and projects, and designing and directly leading a number of implementation projects. Our headquarters are in Addis Ababa, and we have regional offices in Amhara, Oromia, SNNP, and Tigray regional offices, allowing us to work closely with a wide range of public, private and development sector partners across the country.

Our Culture

We have an exceptional team of highly competent employees with a proven track record of success in managing complex activities and achieving transformational results.  Our culture is one where talented, dedicated and adaptable individuals are committed to doing their best and exhibit great team work to achieve excellent results.

At ATA, we provide an exceptional platform for people who want to achieve their highest potential and make a meaningful contribution in changing the country’s agricultural sector.  We offer rewarding work in a young, fast-paced growing organization with passionate, committed, motivated colleagues and excellent career development and training.  We recognize our most valuable assets are our staff and are committed to providing our employees with the tools, training and mentorships necessary to achieve their career goals.

POSITION SUMMARY:

The Cluster Development project within ATA has been established to improve income of smallholder farmers (SHFs) by helping them to increase agricultural yield and achieve greater commercialization. The project is expected to develop farmer production clusters (FPCs) which is an approach of grouping farmers with adjacent farm plots to consolidate their farm activity, develop them like a business entity and access targeted support across the value chain.

The Crop Value Chain Expert reports to the Regional Director of Production Segment. The Cluster Development Project team is working to deliver three major project components, which include: farmer clustering, assessment and transition support/capacity building ultimately contributing to the evolution of the FPCs from (pre) basic to production company. The Regional Crop Value Chain Expert is responsible for implementing key interventions and provide technical support and capacity building across implementing partners. Achieving successful implementation of the project will require strong understanding of best agricultural practices in agricultural commodities, and ability to undertake and oversee problem-solving activities and policy analysis, and willingness to innovate, design and plan catalytic and implementable interventions from the expert.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES:

Responsibilities for the Crop Value Chain Expert of the Cluster Development Project include, but not limited to:

·        Assist the regional Director for Production segment in managing the Cluster Development project team workload in order to ensure on time completion of deliverables. Activities include:

o   Assist the regional Director for production segment in detailed implementation planning and resource allocation for Cluster Development of crop FPCs/ACCs

o   Ensure effective operational planning of interventions and activities, budgeting, reporting, and monitoring, evaluation, and learning on FPC/ACC interventions in the priority crop value chains

o   Ensure effective day-to-day management and execution of relevant ATA-owned interventions implemented by the Cluster Development Project Team

o   Cooperate with relevant ATA-owned interventions implemented by other ATA teams

o   Follow up and facilitate the Input supply system to ensure needs-based input supply as per the full package recommendation

o   Participate in periodic VCA meetings to review project progress and develop and monitor actions to ensure timely and effective delivery of project outcomes

o   Facilitate communication with internal and external teams

o   Identify systemic and operational issues affecting the priority crop value chains from regional to cluster levels

·        Assist the regional Director for production segment in managing stakeholders to get prioritized support from the government agricultural ecosystem, private sector, and other implementers for FPCs in order to keep transitioning towards company level entities. Activities include:

o   Work with regional implementation partners to resolve strategic and operational issues that arise over the course of the project lifetime

o   Liaison the RBoA at levels in the preparation of annual FPC roll out plan and to collect data for FPCs at the agreed time intervals

o   Provide technical support on the development and revision of tools and approaches used to assess and certify FPCs

o   Work with other project teams and project deliverable owners (e.g. Subgrantees) to ensure the provision of focused support for FPCs/ACCs

o   Engage on a regular FPC assessment to ensure the FPC transition

o   Work closely with the RBoA to develop criteria for FPCs and DAs reward and recognition

o   Support the HO team in developing FPCs transition criteria development

o   Prepare guideline for best practice documentation

·        Conduct assessments, developing, and leading the implementation of solutions in order to solve technical and operational challenges

o   Introduce new technologies and farming system, participatory planning of production and marketing activities,

o   Collaborate with the regional agribusiness promotion expert to map and develop market linkages for clusters with national, regional, and international potential markets and market channels identified

o   Evaluate investment needs to upgrade production and processing, accessing finance, improving production practices, upgrading post-harvest handling and storage

o   Provide problem solving support during the redesign and/or enhancement of Cluster Development Project

o   Coordinate and provide guidance to Cluster Coordinators and DAs on periodic FPC /ACC assessment

o   Provide technical support in the development and revision of transitions and support packages

·        Conduct capacity building activities and follow up support in order to ensure the creation of human capital capable of executing the Cluster Development Project activities at the region

o   Provide guidance to Cluster Coordinators, Zonal, and Woreda experts and DAs and other implementation partners in the implementation of project activities

o   Build the capacity and ensure coordination among key stakeholders  in the priority crop value chains

o   Conduct awareness creation on FPC interventions and governance for implementors such as Regional, Zonal and Woreda experts and DAs

o   Facilitate Workshops and ToT training for Zonal and Woreda experts on crop full packages and crop protection (inclusive input, credit, technology, etc. access)

o   Provide technical support in the capacity gap assessments and revision of capacity building packages for grass-root level implementors

o   Enhance the capacity of cluster coordinators through training and exposer visit

o   Play active role in regional crops package revision, demonstration                   and activities implementation

  • Responsible for compiling and submitting data and reports to ensure alignment on project implementation and identify potential risks that could affect the overall performance of the project

            o   Prepare regular reports on own activities and guide Cluster                                   Coordinators in the utilization of reporting tools

            o   Prepare and submit high standard aggregated biweekly, quarterly,                     annual and on demand performance reports to regional                                       Production  Director and Cluster Development Team Lead

Other

  •  The Crop Value Chain Expert is responsible for additional tasks assigned by the Cluster Development Team Lead and Regional Production Director to meet the team’s functions

Job Requirements

  • Minimum Bachelor’s (Master’s preferred) in Agronomy, Crop Science, Plant Science, Crop Protection, Plant Breeding, Irrigation Agronomy, Dryland Agriculture, and another relevant fields
  • At least 8 years (for Bachelor’s) or 6 years (for Master’s) relevant work experience,
  •  The Crop Value Chain Expert is expected to have familiarity with National and Regional Agricultural policy and regulatory framework on crop development, protection, and marketing strategies, and specifically:
  • Understanding of the agriculture sector in general (Input and Credit access, Mechanization, agrochemical uses, crop protection, post- harvest losses, best agricultural practices, etc…)  and FPC/ACC commodities in particular.
  • Understanding and practical experience on crop agronomy practices, crop protection, pre and post crop production management and cluster development
  • Proven ability to undertake and oversee analytical studies, problem-solving and policy analysis, and willingness to innovate, design and plan catalytic and implementable interventions
  • General understanding of private sector, commercial farming, food processing and marketing experience
  • Excellent stakeholder management, integration, crop value chain and resource mobilization skill
  • Proven knowledge and skills in crop value chain related expertise
  • Broad perspective on how the entire system operates and how public, private, and informal actors operate within the agricultural system
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, with highly collaborative working style
  • Experience in working within multi-stakeholders and multi-cultural teams

 

How to Apply

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS

We invite all candidates meeting the required qualifications to submit (i) a cover letter and (ii) CV (maximum 3 pages) to  https://apply.ata.gov.et   by mentioning the position title on the subject line.

Please DO NOT submit scans of certificates with your application.

Women are highly encouraged to apply.

Only short listed candidates will be contacted.

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