ETHIOPIAN AGRICULTURAL TRANSFORMATION INSTITUTE
Job Description and Job Specification
|Project Team Lead I – Cooperative Based Seed Production (CBSP)
|Term of Employment:
|One year with a possibility of extension
|Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
|February 12, 2023
The Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Institute (ATI) is a strategy and delivery-oriented government Institute created to help accelerate the growth and transformation of the country’s agriculture sector. The ATI envisions to be the leading center of innovative solutions for the transformation of Ethiopian Agriculture by 2030.
The Institute focuses on two primary national approaches to catalyze agricultural transformation. First, we support the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), its affiliate institutions, and other partners to identify and address systemic bottlenecks within an Agricultural Transformation Agenda. Second, we support Regional Governments to accelerate the 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, Sidama, South-West, and Tigray regional offices, allowing us to work closely with a wide range of public, private and development sector partners across the country.
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 ATI, 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.
The Cooperative Based Seed Production (CBSP) Team Lead will report to Crop Commercialization Program Director and work on both Private and Cooperative based Seed Production (PCBSP). The private and Cooperative Based Seed Production (CBSP) project in ATI aims to set up or strengthen private and farmer-based cooperatives in the production and delivery of high-quality seed in sufficient quantities in a timely manner, enabling farmers to increase their yield, and ultimately their household income. The project initial supporting cooperative unions and in this phase include private seed production in addition to the farmers’ cooperative Unions. The seed production project is an effort the Ethiopian seed system to introduce the cooperative based seed production (CBSP) and private systems in which farmers organized at local levels produce seed of mostly modern, and to some extent, local varieties. Specific areas of focus will include the effective deployment of the Quality Declared Seed (QDS) regulatory system, contractual agreements between regional/national research institutions and CBSPs to ensure access to early-generation seed, access to proper financing, and providing essential goods and services (e.g., warehousing, cleaning equipment) to selected CBSPs and private sectors as required.
The team lead has the responsibility to coordinate and guide the overall technical support and capacity building roles in connection with the establishment of new CBSPs, upgrading of local private seed producers to small and medium seed producers, the establishment of matching CBSPs with key stakeholders; and work on development and upgrading of high-quality horticulture seed and seedlings production sites. The team lead is expected to have extensive background knowledge and experience in managing the production and distribution of improved seeds and cooperative development. In addition, s/he would likewise possess the operational and entrepreneurial ability to mobilize stakeholders across the seed system and drive practical change on the ground. This position will be part of a dedicated private and CBSP. The project team lead officially reports to the Crop Commercialization Program Director.
The CBSP Team Lead will manage an operational team and oversee regional offices and is accountable for the effective delivery of the private and CBSP project across all ATI regions. S/he is accountable for ensuring that seed production project (private and CBSP) contributes to the establishment or strengthening of existing cooperatives and become seed business institutions, improving SHF access to quality assured seed, increased job creation in agriculture as well as improving institutional capacity through effective delivery of the following KPIs:
- A competitive cooperative based and selected private sector seed business established
- Capacity of CBSPs and selected private seed and staff Improved through training on technical skills and seed business development
- Enabling environment created for CBSPS and private sector seed producer to ensure sustainable seed production and marketing
- SHFs awareness, on the improved variety seed provided by the CBSPs
- Women and youth engagement in agriculture improved
- Organize and provide high level technical and strategic guidance for regional officers
- Manage budget and resource requirements of ongoing activities.
- Conduct periodic assessment on implementation and challenges and disseminate findings from diagnostic study to relevant stakeholders.
Responsibilities for the Team Lead of the CBSP project include, but not limited to:
Manage the CBSP team workload in order to ensure timely completion of deliverables. Activities include:
- Assist the Director for Crop Commercialization Program in detailed implementation planning and resource allocation for private and CBSP project and delivering on ACC prioritized interventions and any future projects
- Reprioritize outputs/deliverables and adjust implementation plans when required, in consultation with regional ACC Directors
- Coordinate cross-regional activities such as trainings and workshops
- Provide guidance to POs, service providers and implementation partners in the implementation of all activities
- Undertake regular monitoring and periodic evaluation of project activities and implementation of lessons learnt/best practices across the regions
- Lead periodic program management meetings to review project progress with staff and partners at the HQ and regional level and develop and monitor actions to ensure timely and effective delivery of project outcomes
- Monitor the achievement of key milestones and initiate and process the release of subgrants
- Orient project staff in the expansion of CBSPs or activities to newer areas by participating in outreach campaigns and awareness creation events
- Coordinate the selection of CBSPs and private seed producers and facilitate the linkage with MoA, BOA and Research centers and seed producers.
- Manage and monitor expenditure against plans, and analyse monthly financial reports with an emphasis on keeping expenditure on track with budget projections
- Ensure valid documentation is done after each milestone is accomplished and regularly submitted
Assist the Crop Commercialization Program Director to build harmonized relationship with key actors affecting the inputs value chain in order to ensure the creation of conducive environment for the development of private sector driven input production and supply system. Activities include:
- Work with implementation partners (federal and regional) to resolve strategic and operational issues that arise over the course of the project
- Liaison federal and regional stakeholders to ensure conducive environment for CBSP transition
- Facilitate B2B market linkages by working closely with government and all type of seed producers.
- Work closely with other ATI project teams to ensure the integration of CBSP in their service provision
Develop, refine, lead, and monitor the implementation of solutions in order to solve operational and technical challenges & ensuring the creation of sustainable private sector driven input production and supply system. Activities include:
- Conduct critical assessments to determine capacity gaps hindering effective implementation of the CBSP and private seed producers project
- Provide strategic oversight to the project delivery and ensure updates on project progress, risks and risk mitigation strategies to Inputs Director
- Providing problem solving support during the design or enhancement of the CBSP project
Compile and submit data and reports in order to ensure alignment on project implementation. Activities include:
- Guide and follow up with project team on the preparation of all performance reports as required by the Crop Commercialization Program Director to problem solve for implementation issues, to make strategic decisions, to develop solutions, etc.
- Prepare and submit regular and periodical reports on own KPIs, Workstreams, Millstones and/or Activities and guide regional officers and team for similar way of report writing and official submission to federal through the regional ATI working structure Prepare all biweekly, quarterly, and annual performance reports required by the ATI.
- Ensure the utilization of standard data collection processes, tools and requirements; work with the Performance, Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Unit for ensuring project progress is captured robustly, mid and final project evaluation conducted meeting minimum standards
Perform any administrative duties required to manage the performance of the team in order to ensure the team’s effective utilization. These tasks include but are not limited to:
o Performance management
- Work with Supervisors and Direct Reports and conduct performance management of POs/SPOs
- Contribute to the performance review of direct reports
- Conduct required performance assessment of implementation partners
o Human resource planning, management and development
- Work with relevant Human Resources officers and be heavily involved in the hiring of new personnel
- Conduct and contribute to the performance management of relevant ATI staff as required
- Provide the required coaching to team in order to ensure the continuous development of team members
o Budget management
- Estimate requirements and provide inputs as required in the development of team-level budgets
- Manage and ensure the effective utilization of budget allocated to team
o Other administrative tasks
- Approve requests and plans of direct reports
- Perform administrate tasks as required by the operating procedures and standards of the ATI
o The Team Lead is responsible for additional interventions assigned by the Crop Commercialization Program Director and/or ACC Vertical SD to meet the Inputs team’s functions
- The Team Lead is expected to have a strong understanding of Ethiopia’s agricultural system with a broad perspective on interactions between public, private and informal actors in the seed system and specifically:
- MA/MSc degree in fields such as Agriculture Science, Project Management, Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Business Management, Development Economics, Rural development program or other closely related fields
- Minimum of 10 years of work experience in areas related to on-the-ground community seed initiatives, e.g., working alongside farmers’ cooperative unions, in community seed banks, small and medium enterprise (SME) development, cooperative development, value-chain development, private seed sector development and other related disciplines
- Deep knowledge of different community-based seed production modalities, e.g., farmers’ unions, primary cooperatives, organized out-growers, farmer entrepreneurs, etc. and associated regulatory issues
- Expertise in SPV crops, i.e., wheat and tef, as well as in other focus areas, i.e., pulses, oilseeds, horticulture and tubers
- Experience in project management, program design, performance management, stakeholder management, contract management, and MLE systems
- Knowledge of analytical methods such as different statistical tools
- Practical experience in developing and maintaining linkages between producers and markets
- Ability to thrive in a fast-moving, start-up environment, with an emphasis on high-performance, teamwork and accountability
- Excellent written and oral communication skills
- Strong set of personal values including integrity, honesty, and desire to be of service.w
- Fluency in Amharic and proficiency in English are essential
We invite all candidates meeting the required qualifications to submit (i) a cover letter and (ii) a CV (maximum 5 pages)
It is mandatory to mention the position title under the subject line of your cover letter.
Please DO NOT submit scans of certificates with your application.
Women are highly encouraged to apply.
NB. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.
- Address Ethiopia
- Experience Level Manager
- Total Years Experience 10-20