Research Officer

Country: Ethiopia
Organization: Farm Africa
Closing date: 15 Jun 2021

JOB TITLE: Research Officer **

REPORTS TO: Programme Manager

REPORTING TO POSTHOLDER: Two woreda experts **

LOCATION: Bale Robe with periodical travels to Addis Ababa**

DURATION: Until April, 2024 with probation period of 60 working days

Farm Africa and KIT Royal Tropical Institute have secured funding from the David and Lucile Packaged Foundation to conduct a joint research and development project entitled “*Inclusive Conservation and Livelihoods in Tropical Forests: Exploring Gender Transformative Approaches*” in the Bale Ecoregion, Ethiopia. The project duration is three years from 1st May ,2021 – 30th April,2024. Implementation is closely linked to the SHARE II project of Farm Africa.

Farm Africa wishes to recruit a competent researcher who will lead the identified joint project. The researcher will be the main researcher in the project location of the Bale ecoregion, in charge of developing, coordinating and conducting different research activities that accompany the implementation activities of the project. The researcher will ensure that the research activities match the implementation activities of the project, are suitable and appropriate to local conditions, and generate high quality data as a basis for scientific publication. Among others, the researcher will be in charge of leading field research activities for the baseline measurement (training of enumerators, supervision of enumerators, qualitative data collection, field memos), the participatory action component (guidance of women groups, participatory observation in activities, focus group discussions, etc.) and the endline measurement (training of enumerators, supervision of enumerators, qualitative data collection, field memos). The researcher will analyse and interpret the research findings in collaboration with KIT staff. The researcher will report to Farm Africa and work hand-in-hand with Farm Africa staff, while receiving methodological and research guidance by KIT staff.


Farm Africa is a UK-headquartered INGO established in 1985 and with operations in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and DRC. Farm Africa is a technical specialist in rural development, implementing projects in forestry, agriculture, natural resource management, and market-system development with extensive project implementation experience in Ethiopia. The organization has a deep commitment and long-term presence in the region, with over 35 years’ experience of supporting rural communities across sub-Saharan Africa to lift them out of poverty through interventions focused on improving production and productivity of crops, empowering communities to manage their natural resources sustainably, and increasing access to profitable markets.

Effective agriculture has the power to change lives. It underpins prosperity, food security and stability the world over. Farm Africa focuses on transforming agriculture and managing natural resources sustainably. We champion a holistic approach that boosts yields, protects the environment and connects smallholder farmers to thriving markets.

We work with different types of farmers in a range of regions. Their local situations vary, but the problems they face are all too familiar: lack of training and technology, inadequate inputs, no finance, vulnerability to climate change and poor links to markets.

We have an ambitious strategy to expand our work over the next five years. We’ll increase our impact, lift more communities out of poverty, work with more corporate partners who share our vision, open up more agricultural markets, provide more expertise, and make change happen.


KIT Royal Tropical Institute is an independent, not-for-profit knowledge centre founded in 1910, based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. KIT’s Sustainable Economic Development & Gender unit is comprised of an international team of about 35 experts and researchers providing services in the field of rural development, agricultural transformation, and women’s empowerment. As an applied knowledge institute, KIT has a long history and reputation in the fields of local economic development in rural areas, including conservation areas and areas of high ecological importance. KIT has implemented various large-scale research projects together with international and national partners, specifically focusing on sub-Saharan Africa, including Ethiopia.



  • Design and implement the participatory action research trajectory of this project, in consultation with the Farm Africa line manager and the lead researchers from KIT.
  • Facilitate and engage in participatory baseline and endline data collection as well as throughout the duration of the project to support the participatory action research component of the project.
  • Coordinate and train enumerators for quantitative data collection for baseline and endline measurements, following the methodology, instructions and training provided by KIT staff.
  • Keep close track of all field research activities through a field logbook and develop effective systems for monitoring research progress against plans, including preparation of baseline, progress and endline monitoring reports.
  • Establish databases for the collection of all qualitative data and, where required, quantitative data.
  • Cooperate with KIT staff on the analysis and interpretation of qualitative data and, where required, quantitative data.
  • Prepare research manuscripts and submit to Farm Africa and KIT for joint publication in a reputable journal.


  • Identify project beneficiaries in collaboration with government stakeholders.
  • Establish research council(s) at woreda level and organize periodical workshops to review the progress of development and research works and ensure community input.
  • Identify the needs of project beneficiaries to improve their livelihood and ensure sustainable conservation of natural resources and integrate their needs into project implementation.
  • Provide inputs and training for project beneficiaries based on the identified needs.
  • Engage with beneficiary communities, public authorities and other stakeholders on knowledge dissemination.


  • Closely work with the Bale SHARE II project staff of Farm Africa to coordinate the alignment of research with implementation activities.
  • Facilitate activity and budget planning based on monthly and periodical sessions.
  • Monitoring of monthly expenditures and approve the expenditures within a given level of authorization.
  • Understand organizational values and act as spokesperson for Farm Africa Ethiopia.


Education, qualifications & other knowledge

  • PhD in Rural Development/Livelihoods, Gender and Environmental Management (or Conservation/Natural Resources Management), Development Studies or related disciplines from a recognized university
  • Scientific publications related to the PhD (and/or other scientific publications)
  • One -year research experience after PhD graduation; or two -years research experience with MSc degree
  • NGO experience
  • At least one-year development project management experience
  • Demonstrated experience in independently conducting field research activities, particularly qualitative data collection with rural communities
  • Experience in quantitative data collection

Skills and abilities

  • Demonstrated ability in qualitative data analysis, including coding through software such as Atlas.TI or NVIVO (or similar)
  • Experience in quantitative data analysis and in participatory action research
  • Sound knowledge of the international development framework and contemporary development and conservation issues facing Ethiopia
  • Proven ability to work collaboratively and effectively with academic and non-academic stakeholders
  • Ability to facilitate and coordinate multi-stakeholder partnerships in a research & development project
  • Ability to and maintain strong external partnerships and alliances with external institutional environments
  • Open minded and ability to learn from others
  • Excellent listening, verbal and nonverbal communication skills
  • Good interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a multidisciplinary, multi-institutional and multicultural environment.
  • Ability to tailor written information to maximize impact for various audiences and stakeholders
  • Excellent communication skills in English and Afaan Oromo; knowledge of Amharic is desirable


  • An opportunity for (recent) PhD graduates to further develop as an independent and impactful researcher, embedded in Farm Africa and its implementation activities, with close linkages to KIT.
  • High quality supervision on research, including support with methodology development (e.g. data collection tool design), data collection, data analysis and interpretation, and scientific writing for publication in international scientific peer-reviewed journals
  • An exciting work environment at the interface of conservation and livelihoods, research and practice.
  • A professional and values-based work place within Farm Africa Ethiopia as a specialist not-for-profit rural development organisation.
  • A project-based appointment until April, 2024 based on the performance.


Investing in smallholder farming is the number one way to combat poverty in rural Africa. Farm Africa is a leading NGO specialising in growing agriculture, protecting the environment and developing businesses in rural Africa.

EXPERT. Deep expertise and insightful evidence-based solutions are at the heart of everything Farm Africa does.

GROUNDED. Positive change starts with Africa’s people, so our experts work closely with local communities, engaging them in every level of decision-making.

IMPACTFUL. We take a long-term view so we can deliver lasting changes for farmers and their families.

BOLD. We model innovative new approaches and are not afraid to challenge strategies that are failing.

How to apply:

Those who meet the above requirements should submit their short CV (maximum of 4 pages) and a cover letter (maximum 1 page) addressing with the subject Research Officer by June 15, 2021.

Documents cannot be returned and due to large number of applications, only short-listed candidates will be contacted. Applications are especially welcomed from female applicants.


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