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Post-Doctoral Fellow - Agricultural Innovation Systems

Terms of Reference
 
Post-Doctoral Fellow (Agricultural Innovation Systems)
 
Ref: FARA/adv./01/PDF/2016
 
BACKGROUND:
 
The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) is the umbrella organization that brings together and forms coalition of major stakeholders in agricultural research and development in Africa. Since its establishment in 2002 FARA has been able to develop several African-wide initiatives through consultation with stakeholders. A handful of these initiatives explore various parts of agricultural innovation systems to foster a change in the way agricultural research and development activities are carried out.
 
FARA worked with its constituents to mainstream the innovation systems into agriculture through the development of the Integrated Agricultural research for Development (IAR4D) concept. It further developed the Innovation Platform (IP) as the implementation framework for the concept. The efficacy of these tools were proven with the Sub Saharan Africa Challenge Program (SSA CP) and subsequently used in other programs including the CGIAR Research program with systems connotation viz., the Humidtropics, the Dryland etc. The Agricultural IP are now widely accepted and currently in use by a wide array of stakeholders across Africa.
 
Moving things forward, FARA has the responsibility to continue its leadership role in refining the concept and adapting it to changing circumstances in Africa agriculture. A functional part of these changes is the need to run the smallholder agriculture as business; to ensure competitiveness of commodities produced within the Africa smallholder agriculture with those produced from the commercial systems in other part of the world. The issues of mechanization of the smallholder’s systems, the integration of ICT and other electronic communication tools. The dwindling farm labor due to ageing of the typical Africa farmer, the development of scaling strategies to reach wider stakeholders with knowledge, technologies and invention with innovation potentials.
 
Purpose:
 
FARA is seeking to engage a Post-Doctoral Fellow to carry out various research and development studies within the context of the agricultural innovation systems approach. The bulk of the activities will focus on generating knowledge that respond to outstanding issues on the innovation systems thinking. S/he will give priority attention to explicating issues that affect the generation and management of innovations from research on specific value chains in selected countries in Africa. Such endeavor should generate knowledge that inform the direction of investment and needed activities to achieve broad based social and economic benefits from the specific commodity value chain.
 
Duties and responsibilities:
 
The PDF will work in close collaboration with other partners staff located within the FARA Directorate of Research and Innovation (DRI) and shall perform inter-alia the following duties and responsibilities: 
  • Consolidate the work on the mainstreaming of ICT and gender on the IP inventory and innovation management strategies.
  • Channel state of the art methodologies to conduct studies on key issues on Program of Accompanying Research for Agricultural Innovation (PARI).
  • Contribute to exchanges on the research progress and insights for further theoretical and practical reflection with actors within PARI
  • Produce scientific and business communication materials for scientific and target communities within he PARI niche.
  • Contribute to technical reporting on different activities and other duties within the scope of work. 
Required:
 
An academics / Researcher from a University with ample sabbatical leave space is desired. The candidate should have a minimum of PhD in Agriculture or other field related to African agricultural research and development. The candidate should have good writing skills proven with excellent record of scientific publications in high profile journals. Proven experience in the use of both qualitative and quantitative tools and methods to understand agricultural innovation processes and African livelihood and farming systems. Furthermore, knowledge of multi-stakeholder processes is important. Excellent English speaking and writing skills with French working knowledge will be an added advantage. Readiness to travel to field and interact with stakeholders on the field to carry out theoretical study, field research and writing of scientific publications and other reports. Working independently and using own initiatives to execute the responsibilities of the position. Good interpersonal skills and experience working in multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary teams are essential.
 
Duration:
This position is for six months, with the option of renewal based on performance and availability of funds.
 
Compensation:
The successful candidate shall be remunerated on lump sum basis.
 
Location:
The successful candidate shall be based at the FARA Secretariat in Accra
 
Applications:
 
Qualified candidates are invited to submit via email comprehensive Curriculum Vitae together with a cover letter and names/contact details of three referees to: Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo, Executive Director, FARA, PMB CT 173, Cantonments, Accra, Ghana. Email: recruitment@faraafrica.org. Applications will be assessed against the required skills, experience and aptitudes set out above. Applications will be accepted up to 7th October 2016.
 
Due to anticipated high volume of applicants, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
 
FARA Affirmative Action Statement on Employment: there is no discrimination on the basis of gender race, religion, ethnic orientation, disability or health status. 
NB: Please quote in your application the reference code of the vacancy for which you are applying. 
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