Research Management Coordinator – Agronomist

Research Management Coordinator – Agronomist

The position:  The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) seeks to recruit Research Management Coordinator – Agronomist for its office based at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia at ILRI compound.

General:  The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) is an International organization, one of the 15 CGIAR centres, which conducts agricultural research for rural development in drought-prone of Africa and Asia, headquartered in Patancheru (Hyderabad,  Telangana, India) with several regional centers (Bamako (Mali), Nairobi (Kenya)) and country offices, including in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  ICRISAT adopts integrated genetic and natural resources management as its overarching research strategy to improve productivity and enhance resilience of dryland systems. ICRISAT-Ethiopia works with national partners on availing technologies to dry land farmers and agro-pastoralists, enhancing technology utilization, linking farmers to markets, and strengthening the national capacity.


ICRISAT and partners have been engaged in developing farmer-centred, landscape and farming system-oriented soil fertility management tools and guidelines in Ethiopia and other SSA countries intended to increase productivity, target management options and reduces production costs of small scale farmers. ICRISAT invites applications for the position of a soil scientist, with extensive skills in agronomy and modelling to support our ICRISAT-Ethiopia programme. The position will be based in Addis Ababa at ILRI compound, with frequent travels to the respective regions and woredas. The appointment starts with two years contract and further employment is subject to performance.

Job Purpose:

ICRISAT and partners have been implementing dryland systems in Ethiopia and other SSA countries intended to minimize risks of drought, increase productivity and enhance resilience of fragile landscapes. ICRISAT invites applications for the position of a dryland agronomist to support our ICRISAT-Ethiopia programme in developing best-bet technologies and practices in the semi-arid regions of Ethiopia and beyond., with frequent travels to the respective regions and woredas.

Key   Responsibilities:

  • Provides scientific leadership in synthesizing best-bet Dryland agronomy technologies, tools and approaches in Ethiopia and beyond;
  • Identifies incentive mechanisms for adopting best-bet dryland agronomy technologies and practices, by reviewing existing in-country and broader experiences;
  • Facilitates national and international partners in improving production and productivity of dryland agriculture, with particular emphasis on horticulture and dryland water management;
  • Conducts various cross-scheme, on-farm dryland agronomy trials through organizing and facilitating farmers research groups in four regions of Ethiopia;
  • Works with multi-disciplinary team of irrigation engineers, modellers, input suppliers, social scientists and other experts to support an efficient small scale dryland farming which would bring increased benefits to farmers;
  • Develops and strengthens partnership between the various bureaus and regional agricultural research institutions so that expertise and technologies from the various institutions reach farmers’ fields and schemes;
  • Organizes training events, cross-site and cross-regional visits, and expert meetings in improved scheme management including on-farm water management, soil fertility management, IPM, seed systems and home garden management;
  • Back stops regional and woreda experts in compiling and sharing scheme level information on dryland agriculture;
  • Distils key lessons across sites and regions, compile and publishes reports on dryland success factors and institutional learning;
  • Contributes to the resource mobilization efforts of ICRISAT and the CGIAR Research Programs through writing research proposals, building capacity in our partners, engaging with the University sector by co-supervising postgraduate students.
  • Supports the project manager in communications and compilation of knowledge; facilitating workshops and reaching experts engaged in SSI in the regions;
  • Publishes major scientific findings in journals, book chapters and other communication outlets.


Minimum Requirements:


  • PhD or Master’s degree in Dryland Agronomy, Horticulture, Entomology, Soil Science or related fields


  • PhD with 3 years’ experience or Masters’ degree with 10 years’ experience
  • Significant expertise in planning and executing dryland agriculture agronomic practices at scheme and watershed scales;
  • Considerable practical agricultural experience, including experience on facilitating FRGs, on-farm experimentation and working with farmers;
  • Experience with adapting agricultural practices to local biophysical and socio-economic conditions;


  • In depth knowledge in a technical or specialized field;
  • Understanding of theoretical concepts / principles and their context
  • Dryland Agronomy, Horticulture, Entomology, soil science or related fields; with at least three years’ experience in dryland agriculture;
  • Record of writing scientific papers and compiling, publishing and sharing knowledge;
  • Must be an IT literate in use of Microsoft and Statistical packages;
  • Ability to work with people at various skills and institutions;
  • Willingness to travel and stay considerable time away from home;
  • Commitment to improve farm productivity and address rural poverty

Desirable Criteria

  • Knowledge of the context of smallholder farmers in the highly vulnerable climates of the semi-arid tropics and agronomic knowledge of the major crops and cropping systems of Ethiopia and region.
  • Demonstrated ability to write proposals and fund raise.

Duty Station:  Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with frequent travels to the respective regions and woredas.

Grade:  HG 17

Monthly Base Salary:  Birr 87,984 (Negotiable depending on salary history of the candidate)

Terms of appointment:  This is a Nationally Recruited Staff (NRS) position, initial appointment is for two years with the possibility of renewal, contingent upon individual performance and the availability of funding. The ILRI/ICRISAT remuneration package for nationally recruited staff in Ethiopia includes very competitive salary and benefits such as life and medical insurance, offshore pension plan, etc. The ILRI campus is set in a secure, attractive campus with dining and sports facilities.

Applications:  Applicants should provide a cover letter and curriculum vitae; names and addresses (including telephone and email) of three referees who are knowledgeable about the candidate’s professional qualifications and work experience to be included in the curriculum vitae. The position and reference number:  RMCA/04/21  should be clearly indicated in the subject line of the cover letter. All applications to be submitted online on our recruitment portal: by clicking on the " Apply Now " tab above before  5 February 2021.


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