Agriculture Expert – Nepal

Open Period: 
Friday, October 16, 2020
Close Period: 
Friday, October 30, 2020
Background: 
Socio-economic impacts of climate-related hazards in South Asian countries continue to threaten the countries’ economic growth, particularly in key sectors such as agriculture, water, and infrastructure. During the 16th Summit of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in 2010, these countries collectively resolved to strengthen climate resilience. The Climate Adaptation and Resilience for South Asia (CARE) Project aims to contribute in translating this policy into actions through enhanced regional cooperation and knowledge on climate resilience and adaptation, and development of standards and guidelines to facilitate climate-resilient planning and investments.
The Project’s Development Objective is to create an enabling environment for climate-resilient policies and investments across South Asia, with the following indicators:
Increased access to regional climate data and analytics for climate-informed decision-making; National-level decision-making and planning that are better climate risk-informed; Regional climate resilience guidelines incorporated into national standards; Sectoral investments supported to include climate risks and resilient design; and Institutional capacities strengthened to undertake climate-informed policies and planning.
The project has three components, for implementation over 5 years:
1) Promoting evidence-based climate-smart decision-making, to enhance access to data required for risk-informed planning and investments; 2) Enabling climate-resilient policies and standards for development, to enhance transformation of policies and capacities for climate resilience and adaptation across South Asia; and 3) Project management and implementation support.
Component 1 shall be implemented by RIMES. This component involves the creation of a regional resilience data and analytics service (RDAS) platform and decision-support systems (DSSs) for selected sectors of agriculture, water, road transport, planning and finance in Bangladesh, Nepal, and Pakistan. Component 1 also includes capacity development of users of these systems and their products. The RDAS is a cloud-based open-access platform for acquiring, storing, managing, processing, analyzing, visualizing, and reporting data, for use in screening climate risks to inform investments. The DSSs are sector-specific systems, linked to the RDAS, and used to assist users in sectoral planning and decision-making.
The country-specific activities planned for Nepal are as follows:
Downscale DHM’s “climate outlook” for implementation of LAPAs and sectoral programs; Improve dataflows and functionalities of existing Agriculture Management Information System (AMIS) for Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development; Automate collection and management of hydrological and climate data and link DHM APIs with user-department DSSs for utilization of hydromet data analytics; Integrate existing hazards maps to support on-going hazard/risk assessments for resilient rural/local roads network; Improve MoF’s PFM information system for climate budget allocation, tracking expenditure, monitoring sustainability and assessing investment results in climate-related sectors
Objective: 
The National Sectoral Expert – Agriculture shall support RIMES’ Sectoral Expert Unit in Bangkok in assessing the weather/climate information needs and requirements of agriculture sector in Nepal. The Sectoral Expert shall provide technical inputs for enhancing AMIS and upscale its functionality to local/provincial level. This process is expected to improve planning and decision-making in agriculture sector and provide operational support to agriculture extension workers and farmers through advisories.
Scope of Work: 
User Needs Assessment
Conduct a desk review to map stakeholders in food and agriculture sector (especially MOALD and allied agencies), assess existing DSSs/portals in Nepal (especially AMIS), and identify gaps/requirements; Design a user needs assessment approach and methodology and develop the assessment materials such as survey, interview and focus group discussion (FGD) questionnaires for federal and provincial level stakeholders; Lead the user needs assessments for agriculture sector including, but not limited to, surveys, consultation meetings, interviews, FGDs and/or decision-simulation workshops to identify the sector’s weather/climate information needs (e.g., with relevance to growing practices, fertilizer/pest and disease management, etc) and requirements, decision-making contexts, data availability and accessibility and technical capacity of MOALD among others; Review AMIS’ existing data components and functionalities, access/use, challenges and gaps; Summarize and report on the outcomes of the assessment
DSS Enhancement
Initiate discussions and generate support for AMIS enhancement from the ministry/agency maintaining the system; Identify specific parameters and data (sources) to be integrated in AMIS as well as decision points and contexts to be supported by the system; Provide recommendations and technical inputs on improving the design, content and analytics of AMIS to ensure its application in planning and decision-making in agriculture sector; Other relevant work for the enhancement of AMIS as assigned by the Climate Application Specialist or Project Director
Reporting Requirements : 
The National Sectoral Expert – Agriculture will work with the Regional Sectoral Expert – Agriculture, and DSS Lead. S/he will work under the direct supervision of the Climate Application Specialist and Project Director, who will monitor the quality of the following deliverables.
Desk review report within 30 days of contract signing; User needs assessment materials within 60 days of contract signing; Report on assessment outcomes within 135 days of contract signing; Final report summarizing the recommendations and technical inputs on DSS design and development within 165 days of contract signing
Qualifications: 
Master’s degree or equivalent qualification in agriculture science/engineering/management or related fields; At least five (5) years of experience in climate services for agriculture; At least four (4) years of experience working with agriculture sector in Nepal for assessing the demand and providing sectoral input in the design and operationalization of tools; Knowledge of climate services for food and agriculture sectors, climate risk and resource management particularly in crop subsector; Experience with agriculture DSS such as AMIS, etc; Demonstrated experience working with government agencies, especially in agriculture sector; Excellent analytical, writing and communication skills; Proficiency in spoken and written English and Nepali languages; Can work independently and collaboratively with stakeholders and colleagues to achieve goals; Delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; Operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules
Contract Duration: 
The contract will be for 60 working days spread over 6 months.
Application Process: 
Interested candidates must submit their application letter and resume to rimeshra@rimes.int before midnight of 30 Oct 2020, Bangkok time. RIMES promotes diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Well-qualified Nepali nationals particularly females are encouraged to apply.