Specialist - Outreach-Fixed Term

East Lansing MI
Aug 01, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
Working Title

Deputy Chief of Party

Position Summary

The GRAIN project is a four-year, $19.5 million USAID-funded project implemented through Michigan State University’s (MSU) Global Center for Food Systems Innovation (GCFSI). This project is a human and institutional capacity building project that will serve as an integral component of the Wheat Sector Development Program (WSDP) being implemented by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GIRoA) through the Ministry and Directorates of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL/DAILs).  The primary goals of the project are to elevate research capacity to support increased production of quality wheat, to institute effective methods of post-harvest storage as well as to develop improved capacity to test, certify, and produce new and better varieties of wheat seed for Afghanistan’s agricultural sector.  

The project design of GRAIN includes an initial extensive needs assessment that will capture what MAIL and the DAILs need included in the research development component of the Wheat Sector Development Program.  This needs assessment process will ensure that MSU, as the implementing partner, will collaborate on and address what MAIL perceives as paramount to building national wheat research capacity.  The DCOP, as a critical member of the MSU GRAIN implementation team, will work with MAIL, select DAILs, USAID, provincial university faculty researchers, private sector stakeholders, CIMMYT/ICARDA, other projects/donors to enhance Afghanistan’s ability to conduct wheat research that will address national and regional food security and economic development goals. 

Responsibilities and Duties:

  • Serves as an advisor to the Agricultural Research Institute of Afghanistan (ARIA) to develop sustainable research capacity within that organization

  • Collaborates with private sector entities to develop public-private partnerships that support development of higher yielding, more nutritious, more drought resistant and more disease resistant varieties of both dry land and irrigated wheat

  • Serves as an integral member of the project administrative leadership team in sharing oversight and management responsibilities for conceptualizing, planning, revising and implementing the project work plan, the GRAIN Monitoring and Evaluation Plan, the project communication plan, and the GRAIN Environmental Plan

  • Assumes the role of Acting Chief of Party in the absence of theCOP

  • Collaborates with the project leadership team to develop sustainable field research facilities that will serve to support continued wheat research at the close of the project

  • Supports project planning, communication and reporting activities as needed

Minimum Requirements
  • Minimum of a MS or MSc in Agricultural Science (Ph.D. with research in wheat is preferred.)

  • Demonstrated administrative experience on international development projects.  (Preference will be given to USAID-funded project experience)

  • Demonstrated work experience in post-conflict nations with preference to candidates with direct experience in Afghanistan

  • Native or near Native English language skills

  • Ability and willingness to assume project leadership responsibilities and to live, travel and work in Afghanistan.

Required Application Materials

Application Procedures: Please submit the following: 1) a 1-page letter of intent; 2) a detailed curriculum vita including a summary of relevant experiences and accomplishments; and 3) the names and full contact information for three ormore references.

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