Programme Policy Officer

World Food Programme

Gode, Ethiopia

Under the overall guidance and technical supervision of the Head of Engineering and the overall supervision of the Head of Programme, Somali Region, the Programme Policy Officer (Agricultural Engineer) will be responsible for providing strategic guidance and operational support for the implementation of interventions aimed at enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of the use of the irrigation infrastructure developed. The position requires knowledge of sustainable practices for irrigation operation and maintenance, water management and proactive risk mitigation, farm planning and layout design, community mobilization and engagement.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)

The successful candidate will:

  • Provide engineering and project management support, apply best practices, standards and innovative technologies that comply with WFP standards and processes to ensure that all infrastructural development activities have acceptable standards, and all agribusiness initiatives are of meaningful profitability to the targeted beneficiaries.
  • Provide technical guidance in design, development, planning, implementation, and capacity building for agriculture in particular and resilience in general. Including (but not limited to) food security programming; household food access; household and community resilience; poverty reduction; rural economic development, agricultural development, agribusiness, or value chain development.
  • Work collaboratively with WFP Engineering team in ETCO and manage the irrigation projects in the region as assigned by the Head of Area office, Head of Engineering and Head of Changing Lives.
  • Support men, women and youth to increase their knowledge and awareness on gender equality, women economic empowerment and women’s participation in project design, implementation and decision making to advance enterprise development, value addition and agro processing activities.
  • Contribute to the collection, documentation and dissemination of relevant data and information related to agriculture, agribusiness, food value chains and systems, including for example, trends and developments, approaches, impacts, lessons and good practices. Contribute to preparation of accurate and timely reporting on outputs to facilitate informed decision-making and consistency of information presented to stakeholders including information for a database and website.
  • Provide specialized analytical expertise, technical and operational advisory support to partners and stakeholders to enable the highest possible quality in design and effectiveness of activities related to (agro)pastoralist livelihoods ensuring integration of context relevant, evidence-based, climate smart, environmentally, and socio-economically sustainable options that are more resilient to shocks and stressors.
  • Enable synergistic approaches with external partners and other WFP programmes including Refugees, Relief, Nutrition and supply chain interventions to maximize impact.


  • Undertake capacity gap needs assessment of the partners and organize capacity building programmes (workshops, training, exchange visits etc.) to address these gaps, especially focusing on storage facilities, construction of irrigation canal and other rainwater harvesting systems.
  • Contribute towards analysis of project proposals from Cooperating partners to enable effective decision making on project technical feasibility.
  • Monitor the implementation of the projects through field visits and provide necessary technical support.
  • Participate in technical or design review, exchange of knowledge and experience keeping abreast of Irrigation, water harvesting technologies and engineering technologies in general, to facilitate implementation of innovative engineering solutions.
  • Review weekly, biweekly and monthly reports submitted by the cooperating partners as well as irrigation consultants and contractors and provide valuable comments and suggestions.
  • Where necessary draft and prepare reports of the projects and submit to the Head of Area office and Head of Engineering for their review and comments.
  • Perform other related duties as required.


  • Education: University degree in the following fields; Irrigation Engineering, Water Engineering, or Agricultural Engineering.
  • Experience: Atleast three years of relevant postgraduate professional work experience at the field level implementing community-based development projects related to irrigation design, operations and maintenance, water management, farm planning and layout design.

Knowledge & Skills:

  • Understanding of community based participatory planning approaches
  • Ability to conduct capacity gaps needs assessments and design programmes to fill these gaps.
  • Experience in working in arid and semi-arid parts of Africa, working in Ethiopia will be an added advantage.
  • Familiarity with Irrigation, water harvesting technologies and pastoral livelihood approaches
  • Experience in working with communities, copoperatives and groups on enterprise development, gender and agriculture, agro processing and value addition
  • Excellent communication skills - both written and oral in English
  • Skills in workshop facilitation.
  • Strong organization and planning skills coupled with good interpersonal skills.
  • Good analytical skills; resourcefulness, initiative, maturity of judgment, tact, negotiating skills;
  • Ability to work in a team and establish effective working relations with persons of different national and cultural backgrounds.
  • Ability to deal patiently and tactfully with people of different cultural backgrounds.
  • Languages: Fluency in both oral and written communication in English.