Climate Smart Agriculture Advisor

at Mercy Corps
Location Nairobi, Kenya
Date Posted February 13, 2020
Category Accounting & Finance
Currency KSH


Climate Smart Agriculture Advisor
Organisation: Mercy Corps

Closing date: 23 Feb 2020
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

Mercy Corps began working in Kenya in 2008 and has to date built a robust and diverse portfolio of programs aimed at sustainably improving the lives and livelihoods of Kenyans affected by poverty, resource scarcity and conflict. To do this, we deliver integrated programming to strengthen resilience, market and governance systems, address the root causes of conflict, and equip vulnerable populations- in particular youth, women, adolescents and marginalized social groups- with the skills, opportunities and resources they need to be healthy, productive, and drive the development of their communities. Mercy Corps Kenya also collaborates with Mercy Corps teams and partners in neighbouring countries to implement a number of multi-country and cross-border programs.

Experience Requirements

A minimum of 5 years experience in a technical role on an international development program related to food security and nutrition.
3 or more years experience working in rural economies in the ASAL counties highly required.
Experience on a USAID-funded program preferred

Job Responsibilities

Program / Department Summary
USAID's Office of Food For Peace recently awarded funding to a Mercy Corps-led consortium of Kenyan and international partners for a 5-year Development Food Security Activity (DFSA) in Turkana and Samburu Counties. Through a phased approach that emphasizes evidence gap analysis, as well as partnership, learning, and co-creation with government, civil society, communities, and the private sector, this program aims to drive sustained reductions in acute malnutrition in both counties.

The Mercy Corps’ NAWIRI consortium brings together the global leadership, research capacity, technical expertise, and implementation experience necessary to partner with local institutions to test, adapt, and scale evidence-based solutions. The program requires a robust county-centered design with government leadership, active engagement from communities, the private sector, and civil society. Together we will sustainably reduce persistent acute malnutrition for vulnerable populations in Turkana and Samburu counties.

General Position Summary
The Climate Smart Agriculture Advisor will provide overall technical leadership and vision for agriculture-based livelihoods for improved nutrition in Turkana and Samburu. S/He will provide in-depth technical guidance and mentoring in climate-smart agriculture (fruits, vegetables, field crops, livestock) and natural resources management (namely rangelands) approaches for NAWIRI activities in Samburu and Turkana. The Climate Smart Agriculture Advisor will partner closely with program leadership, other technical leads, research and learning leads and field teams to ensure climate-smart approaches are integrated into the design and implementation of program activities. S/He will work closely with relevant county government officials to prioritise activities and investments.

This position requires a technical lead that understands the tightly interconnected relationship between natural resources management, agriculture-based (crops & livestock) livelihoods, seasonality, risk and resilience and the sustained nutrition of women and children in the arid and semi-arid lands in Turkana and Samburu. S/He will be responsible for the development of high quality implementation strategies and plans for the agricultural sector. The strategies and plans will include tools for participatory planning, implementation and monitoring of the sector strategies and plans. The Climate Smart Agriculture Advisor will be responsible for providing technical support and strategic direction to Field Directors and field-based livelihoods staff who oversee programme implementation.

Essential Job Functions
Support the Deputy Chief of Party (DCoP) by providing vision and strategy to the program’s agriculture (crop & livestock) and natural resources management approach and how it integrates into the overall technical direction and implementation.
Forge strong, institutional linkages and maintain a productive working relationship with USAID, Government of Kenya, the CRS consortium, PREG Partners, and other relevant partners in agriculture and NRM-related activities.
Assist in defining and analyzing NAWIRI practices and priorities across all partners; identifying opportunities for integration and synergies within other sectors such as nutrition, health, alternative livelihoods, and governance.
Recognize opportunities for innovative action and create an environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed; promote and model a culture of learning and adaptive management.
Ensure that cross-cutting aspects of the program such as nutrition, gender equity, social inclusion, youth, and water systems are included and well integrated into the agriculture resilience strategy and activities.
Collaborate with different program components including research, implementation, monitoring & evaluation (M&E) and learning to drive overall effectiveness and coherence of program strategy. Represent NAWIRI at all relevant drylands -related meetings/workshops and other stakeholder meetings as requested

Education Requirements

Advanced degree in a drylands agriculture, livestock production, agro-ecology, environment, natural resources management, or resilience program.


Demonstrated expertise and ability to investigate and provide consultative services on a broad range of technical questions and policy issues including natural resource management, sustainable agriculture, extensive livestock production, pastoralism and policy reform.
Demonstrable familiarity with Kenya’s ASAL, agriculture, livestock and natural resources sectors political and policy environment.
Proficient analytical skills that demonstrate an understanding of the current concepts, priorities, and issues in program monitoring, data collection, and evaluation.
Experience in the design or implementation of formative or implementation research with qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis methodologies required.
Highly developed written and oral communications skills as well as strong interpersonal communication and team building skills to ensure effective coordination within USAID and effective advocacy of Agency positions externally with both specialist as well as non-specialist audiences.
Advanced computer skills and experience developing data management systems.
Team player who takes initiative and is a problem-solver.
Effective verbal and written communication, multitasking and organizational skills.
Ability to manage priorities autonomously
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