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Food Systems Adviser

various locations

  • Organization: FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Location: various locations
  • Grade: Consultant - Contractors Agreement - Consultancy
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Nutrition
    • Food Security, Livestock and Livelihoods
  • Closing Date: 2021-10-22

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IMPORTANT NOTICE: Please note that Closure Date and Time displayed above are based on date and time settings of your personal device

  • FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background, and culture
  • Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented member nations, and person with disabilities are encouraged to apply
  • Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct and to uphold our values. FAO has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and FAO, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority, and discrimination
  • All selected candidates, therefore, will undergo rigorous reference and background checks
  • All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality
  • The incumbent may be re-assigned to different activities and/or duty stations depending on the evolving needs of the Organization

Organizational Setting

Launched at the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit by the European Union, FAO and WFP, the Global Network Against Food Crises is an alliance of humanitarian and development actors united by the commitment to tackle the root causes of food crises and promote sustainable solutions through shared analysis and knowledge, strengthened coordination in evidence-based responses and collective efforts across the Humanitarian, Development and Peace (HDP) nexus.

The April 2021 Global Report on Food Crises indicates a 22 million increase in the number of people experiencing acute food insecurity around the world since the previous year - the majority of whom live in countries experiencing chronic and worsening food crises over the past five years. Food crises are acute manifestations of the structural dysfunctions in food systems within and across countries, compounded by low and often inefficient public spending, local and global market failures, and deficiencies in food systems governance mechanisms at all levels. Thus, there is growing recognition of the need to support countries prone to food crises to proactively address underlying structural drivers and risk factors, in an effort to sustainably reduce humanitarian needs and achieve progress against Sustainable Development Goal 2.

In support of these efforts, the Global Network against Food Crises is seizing the opportunity and momentum created by the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit (FSS) to mobilise partners at the global, regional and national levels to identify and address policy and investments gaps preventing governments and citizens from achieving sustainable solutions to food crises.

In this context, the Senior Steering Group of the Global Network (GN) endorsed the Global Network Road Map on Food Systems in early 2021 - defining the role of the GN in supporting the processes leading up to, as well as the agreements resulting from, the UN Food Systems Summit (FSS). To help operationalise this engagement, the GN - Technical Support Unit (TSU) proposes an approach aimed at supporting national processes promoting food systems transformation, including but not limited to FSS National Dialogues. The approach is particularly relevant for the follow up to national dialogues and other pre- and post-summit processes, including the implementation of actionable recommendations and the promotion of long-term pathways for sustainable food systems transformation in food crisis contexts. This approach will be implemented in a close partnership arrangement between FAO, WFP and the European Union, with additional actors are relevant in specific contexts.
For countries to exit from food crises, humanitarian, development and peace actors must work across the nexus to address structural drivers and risk factors that trigger and perpetuate food crises from the perspective of policy, investment and governance. As such, the GN’s country-level support envisages the deployment of technical and analytical capacities to support governments and their humanitarian and development partners in the design and implementation of a coherent set of country-owned policies, strategies and actions – combining sustainable and resilient food systems and economic inclusion approaches.

Reporting Lines

The Adviser will have a dual reporting line to FAO Country Representative and WFP Country Director or officers by them delegated, with technical guidance from relevant FAO/WFP HQ teams. At country level, s/he will work in close collaboration with the EU Delegation, relevant government ministries/institutions for, among others, sustainable agriculture, food and nutrition security and social protection, as well as key development partners and humanitarian actors.

Technical Focus

The Adviser will facilitate inclusive, evidence-based policy dialogues, aimed at generating a shared understanding of what sustainable and resilient food systems entail in the national and local context, and identifying agreed priority policy, investment and programming changes required from the governments, its technical and financial partners and the private sector, including financial institutions, to support food systems transformation towards greater sustainability and resilience. Through his/her work, the Adviser will adopt the Global Network approach by ensuring that synergies are created between relevant areas of work as well as facilitating coordination with stakeholders at regional and global level.

Tasks and responsibilities

• Facilitate the contributions of relevant stakeholders at country-level, including by informing investments, policy and programming frameworks to establish the basis for medium/long-term processes to ensure sustainability of efforts around food systems.
• Identify opportunities for policy convergence around food systems and prepare work plans to advance the transformation of food systems.
• Support ongoing and planned food systems assessments and related analyses: identify potential data and information system gaps to be inserted in a budgeted workplan to prompt complementary technical support.
• Support policy work around food systems: identify policy and regulatory framework gaps and conflicting incentives, the changes needed to improve the coherence and sustainable impact of policies and investments in terms of the three dimensions of sustainability - economic, environmental, social - and related trade-offs.
• Facilitate inclusive, evidence-based policy dialogues to generate a shared understanding of what sustainable and resilient food systems entail in national and local contexts, and identify agreed priority interventions, including related policy and investment implications, required to facilitate positive changes within food systems. Facilitate coordination between partners and relevant donors to support the identified priorities.
• Facilitate the uptake by relevant stakeholders of the policy and investment recommendations generated through policy dialogues. Mobilise support, including technical expertise and resources, for their implementation.
• Advance global knowledge on food systems transformation in fragile contexts and HDP nexus implementation through the contribution to joint global learning events organized by the Global Network against Food Crises, FIRST and other relevant partners.


Minimum Requirements

• Advanced university degree in agricultural or development economics, international relations, social science, public policy, political science, food security and nutrition related area, food related studies.
• Relevant experience in policy analysis, formulation, advice and development related to food systems, food security, sustainable agriculture, nutrition, and/or rural development;
o Consultant level A: a minimum of 12 years of relevant experience
o Consultant level B: a minimum of five years of relevant experience
• Working knowledge of one of the following FAO languages: English, French or Spanish, and limited knowledge of a second language, including also Arabic, Chinese, Russian.

FAO Core Competencies

• Results Focus
• Teamwork
• Communication
• Building Effective Relationships
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills

• Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in in countries that are vulnerable to disaster or other emergency risks is desirable
• Demonstrated experience in strengthening the enabling environment for food security, agriculture, nutrition, and/or rural development providing policy advice, addressing cross-cutting issues in different sectors, and linking policy and data generation/analysis
• Extent and relevance of experience in the analysis and formulation of policies around food security, agriculture, nutrition, and rural development
• Extent and relevance of experience in facilitating policy dialogue and multi-stakeholder consultations around food security, agriculture, nutrition, and rural development
• Experience in working for UN entities and with the European Union is a strong asset.

Please note that all candidates should adhere to FAO Values of Commitment to FAO, Respect for All and Integrity and Transparency

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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