West Africa Regional Food Security Specialist-Remote Monitoring and Network | Niamey, Niger | 2022

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) is an integrated set of activities funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and is intended to provide timely, accurate, evidence-based, and transparent food security early warning information and analysis. Created in 1985 in response to famines in East and West Africa, FEWS NET provides global coverage through a mix of presence and remote monitoring. FEWS NET’s work is implemented across several pillars by a team of partners that includes the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Geological Survey, the University of California-Santa Barbara’s Climate Hazards Center, Kimetrica, and Chemonics International (Chemonics). Chemonics houses FEWS NET’s Early Warning Team (EWT), a team charged with integrated emergency food insecurity analysis through a Washington-based technical office and more than 20 field offices.

Based on an in-depth understanding of local livelihoods, EWT members monitor information and data on factors that affect food security, such as weather conditions and climate, crops, pasture, markets and trade, and nutrition. The FEWS NET EWT produces regular reports, including Food Security Outlooks and Outlook Updates, emergency alerts, market and price updates, and global weather hazards analyses. FEWS NET makes reports available at www.fews.net. and distributes them globally to governments, relief agencies, and other organizations engaged in humanitarian response and development programs.

The seventh phase of FEWS NET began in 2019. The work of FEWS NET EWT relies on close collaboration with international, regional, and national partners on food security data and information gathering and analysis. Major activities include joint monitoring and assessments, data exchanges, collaborative analysis and reporting, and technical capacity strengthening. FEWS NET supports local and regional food security networks to contribute to achieving the global objective of food security for all.

Responsibilities include:

  • Developing/updating FEWS NET’s knowledge base for remote monitoring countries through both in-country activities and desk research and analysis for food security-relevant topics, including agroclimatology, livelihoods, market and trade (M&T), and nutrition.
  • Developing/updating seasonal monitoring plans and undertaking routine and special monitoring activities (remote and in-person) for RM countries.
  • Supervising FEWS NET food security and/or price monitors/enumerators or consultants providing data and information for RM countries.
  • Fulfilling FEWS NET RM reporting requirements, including developing monthly country reports and contributing to the Food Assistance Outlook Brief.
  • Carrying out network strengthening activities for RM countries with the objective of building and maintaining a strong network of partners that supports FEWS NET’s access to data, information, and analyses.
  • Participating in relevant network activities (e.g., joint assessments, Integrated Food Security Phase Classification/Cadre Harmonisé analyses, HEA Outcome Analyses), as required.
  • Developing and maintaining collaborative relationships with relevant USAID Missions and US Embassy technical contacts, UN agency representatives, national government staff, and international and local NGO colleagues to facilitate technical exchanges, promote consensus-building, resolve technical disagreements, and facilitate joint, coordinated actions to mitigate acute food insecurity.

Qualifications:

  • Proficiency in spoken and written French and English is required; other local language skills relevant to the region are desirable.
  • Bachelor’s degree in a discipline relevant to the work of FEWS NET, such as economics, agricultural economics, agronomy, nutrition, climatology, anthropology, or social geography is required; advanced university degree (Master’s degree or higher) is desirable.
  • Significant experience with the Cadre Harmonisé and/or Integrated Food Security Phase Classification; training and certification in one or both is preferred.
  • At least two years of relevant experience (with PhD), four years of relevant experience (with Master’s degree), or six years of relevant experience (with Bachelor’s degree) is required. Relevant experience includes working on food security information systems, food security analysis, early warning, or other related fields; experience working with UN agencies and/or NGOs is desirable.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively conduct rapid assessments, focus group discussions and key informant interviews; utilize other rapid rural appraisal techniques, and undertake other qualitative and quantitative research using appropriate data collection methods required.
  • GIS and quantitative data analysis skills desired
  • Previous experience working and coordinating effectively with regional partners and stakeholders required
  • Excellent planning, organizational, and analytical skills required
  • Strong communication skills required, in particular in writing and presenting complex technical information.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with project colleagues and relevant external stakeholders at all levels

Application instructions:

The RFSS-RMN osition will remain open for applications through 11:59 p.m. EST on August 11th, 2022. A full scope of work for this position and application information can be found at www.fews.net/vacancies.

All application materials, including responses to the general information form, CVs, and cover letters, should be provided in English. No telephone inquiries. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

For applicants located in the EU, please see Chemonics Data Privacy Notice linked here:  https://chemonics.com/eu-recruiting-data-privacy-notice/