The Regional Office for the Near East (RNE) is responsible for leading FAO's response to regional priorities for food security, agriculture and rural development through the identification, planning and implementation of FAO's priority activities in the region. It ensures a multidisciplinary approach to programmes, identifies priority areas of action for the Organization in the region and, in collaboration with departments and divisions at Headquarters, develops, promotes and oversees FAO's strategic response to regional priorities. RNE also advises on the incorporation of regional priorities into the Organization's Programme of Work and Budget (PWB) and implements approved programmes and projects in the region, monitors the level of programme implementation and draws attention to problems and deficiencies. RNE develops and maintains relations with region-wide institutions including the Regional Economic Integration Organizations (REIOs) and the private sector.
An important area of work of RNE is the development of agricultural value chains and agribusiness in the region and the promotion sustainable agro-processing as an important alternative to add value to agricultural production in the region. The Value Chain Specialist operates in the context of the three RNE Regional Initiatives (Small-Scale Family Farming; Water Scarcity; and Resilience and Food Security) and the different donor funded projects that are implemented in the NENA region. The consultant is expected to provide strategic technical and programmatic support across relevant dimensions of FAO’s Strategic Programmes 4 and 5 and the abovementioned Regional Initiatives. The incumbent is specifically tasked to support the RNE Agro-Industry Officer on value chain and agribusiness related work performed in several countries in the region, and on activities related to the development of small-scale agro-industries in the NENA region.
Under the overall responsibility of the FAO Regional Representative for the Near East and North Africa (RNE), the consultant reports to the Regional Agro-Industry Officer and collaborates with the Delivery Managers of the Regional Initiatives and technical officers in HQ, RNE and Country Offices.
Provides technical support for the implementation of value chain, agribusiness and agro-processing activities in the region, including the conduction of value chain studies, implementation of project activities, and development of technical guidelines.
Tasks and responsibilities
- Assist and sometimes lead the work of multidisciplinary value chain (VC) analysis teams (local consultants and project staff);
- Assist/lead the development of Terms of Reference for the conduction of value chain studies, and for consultants that may be hired for the conduction of value chain and agribusiness related activities;
- Train project and national teams on value chain analysis, including data collection, mapping, identification of main constraints, and conduction of stakeholder workshops;
- Assist and sometimes lead the conduction of gender sensitive value chain analysis, framed by the FAO guides: ‘Developing sustainable food value chains: guiding principles’ and ‘Developing gender sensitive value chains: a guiding framework’;
- Secure in the context of market, value chain and agribusiness studies a proper level of consultation with key informants and VC stakeholders along the chain (farmers, aggregators, processors, distributors) as well as support service providers and policy makers;
- Secure the quality of value chain studies conducted for different VCs in the region, including the proper conduction of desk research, and preparation of value chain analysis identifying constraints, opportunities and leverage points for upgrading of the value chain;
- Ensure that value chain studies and interventions follow a proper process that is driven by the main actors in the value chains and that a vision is developed jointly with concrete upgrading strategies to achieve the vision;
- Present findings from value chain analyses at stakeholder workshops and contribute to the validation of proposed visions and strategies by stakeholders to ensure their support, engagement and ownership;
- Conduct end market analysis, including market demand, structure and main drivers;
- Develop relevant tools, technical guidelines and methodologies related to agribusiness and value chain development work;
- Assist the development a regional strategic framework for the development of small-scale agro-industries in the NENA region, including the conduction of consultations with experts and decision makers in countries in the region;
- Assist the activities of Strategic Programme 4 in the region, with a focus on the implementation of different agro-industry and value chain related projects in the region;
- Provide other types of pertinent support for project activities as needed.
CANDIDATES WILL BE ASSESSED AGAINST THE FOLLOWING
- Advanced university degree in agricultural economics, business, or related field;
- Relevant experience (7 years minimum) in agrifood systems development, including the development of agrifood value chains, agribusiness development, business plans and feasibility studies;
- Excellent working knowledge in English and Arabic (written and spoken).
FAO Core Competencies
- Results Focus
- Building Effective Relationships
- Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement
- Excellent analytical and writing skills of reports and technical documents
- Ability to lead / coordinate multidisciplinary teams
- Working experience in the Near East and North Africa region is preferred
- Deep understanding and practical knowledge of the value chain development framework
Selection Criteria: Working knowledge of French is highly preferred.