Research Scientist Job in Kenya - African Insect Science for Food and Health

Overall purpose of the job

This position will support research for development (R4D) activities in the Building Equitable ClimateResilient African Bean & INsect Sectors (BRAINS) and Accelerating One Health Interventions to Tackle Pandemic at Source (Accelerate-One Health) projects. In the BRAINS project will use novel evidenceVACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT (Ref. No. IRS/621/072024) based ideas originating from bean, fruit tree crops and beneficial insect products to innovate through Research & Development (R&D), co-create and take proven technologies to scale through connection of knowledge to industry actors and national partners with policy support from government. to the Accelerate-One Health will holistically address the global impact of pests and diseases of One Health significance and sustainably optimize development impacts. The broad roles and responsibilities of the incumbent in the BRAINS project will be to innovatively realign R4D in bean corridors developed by The Pan-Africa Bean Research Alliance (PABRA) and the Alliance of Bioversity and CIAT with opportunities for pest (e.g., fruit flies, false codling moth) management in associated fruit tree crops (e.g., mango and avocado) and beneficial insects farming enterprises (bees and pollination; insects for food, feed and frass fertilizers) developed by icipe to provide sustainable and comprehensive solutions for holistic strengthening and resilience of the food systems, enhance gender equality, job creation and sustainability of small-scale agriculture. It is expected that such an integrated approach will facilitate carbon farming to mitigate climate change and ensure prosperous livelihood especially for women and youth. In the Accelerate-One Health project, the scientist will leverage on existing expertise and partnerships national partners to effectively respond to pest and diseases developmental challenges of One Health significance to strengthen the resilience of food systems, public health and socioeconomic status of the populace by tackling multiple drivers simultaneously to promote positive impacts on livelihood and the environment.

Specific Duties:

 Use innovative qualitative and quantitative R4D tools, data, and frameworks to take to scale pest management technologies (biopesticides, proteins baits, mass trapping, male annihilation technique, repellents, field sanitation/use of augmentorium, releases of parasitoids) and beneficial insects farming enterprises (bees and pollination; insects for food, feed and frass fertilizers) in fruit trees (mango and avocado) and bean corridors in the project target countries.

 Apply innovative tools, apps, and approaches to scaling technologies to project target countries to significantly enhance farmer uptake of technologies, profitability and access of women and youth in the bean-fruits- and insect-related corridors.

 Contribute to the promotion and upscaling of agri-silviculture in bean and fruit trees cropping systems to enhanced carbon sequestration and to conserve biodiversity.

 Conduct ecological studies, access risk drivers, spread, impact and inventory of co-evolved natural enemies (insects predators and microbes) of Parthenium hysterophorus.

 Classical biological of P. hysterophorus through importation of natural enemies from Ethiopia and or South Africa to quarantine facilities at icipe and evaluation of introduced and native natural enemies.

 Proactive support to the implementation of the Projects in the participating countries.

 Contribute to the timely preparation of annual work plans, budgets, scientific and technical reports to the donors.

 Supervise project team members (researchers, staff and students) to develop critical skills including resource mobilization, science writing and peer review.

 Actively seek and secure external support through resource mobilization to develop and grow the One Health research for development portfolio through cross-thematic linkages.

 Promote and establish collaborative linkages with national, regional and international institutions in the field of One Health.

 Conduct annual work plans and performance reviews with the staff under their supervision.

 Provide leadership assistance to the project’s Principal Investigator (PI).


 PhD in Entomology or a related field from a reputable University.

 7 years’ experience gained at either a research organization and or university.

 Track-record in entomology and interdisciplinary research in tropical insect science.

 Experience in technology transfer and dissemination to end-users.

 Experience in writing successful proposals grants.

 Experience in a science leadership role.

 Fluency in English and French communication skills.

 Pest ecology and management within the context of One Health (with proven laboratory and fieldbased experience).

 Good communication and interpersonal skills.

 Willingness to engage in travels and fieldwork.

Other desirable attributes

 Experience in capacity building through supervision and mentorship of MSc and PhD students.

 Good publication track record.

 Ability to work independently with minimum supervision.

 Strong organizational and leadership skills, with minimal supervision, and ability to work within multicultural and interdisciplinary teams in a dynamic work environment.

 Willingness to take initiative.

 Good team player and provide leadership assistance to the PI, supervise/mentor Postdoctoral Fellows and Postgraduate students, Research technicians, and Interns.

 Design, experiment, collate, analyse, interpret, and organize data into manuscripts for peerreviewed publications and project technical reporting.

 Partaking in resource mobilisation through proposal/grants development.

 Proactively engage with partners and seek new collaboration opportunities as relevant to the projects.

This position reports to the Interim Deputy Director General, Research and Partnerships

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