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ICRAF-CATIE Interdisciplinary Scientist Career Opportunity

Vacancy: ICRAF-CATIE Interdisciplinary Scientist
About our organizations
The World Agroforestry Centre (also known as the International Centre for Research in Agroforestry or ICRAF) is an independent research institution which generates science-based knowledge about the role trees play in agricultural landscapes and rural livelihoods. As part of the Centre’s work to bring tree-based solutions to bear on poverty and environmental problems, researchers – working in close collaboration with partners – are developing new technologies, tools and policy recommendations for increased food security and ecosystem health.
The Centre’s headquarters are located in Nairobi, Kenya, and research is conducted in 23 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. ICRAF is a member of the Consortium of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) through which research and development support is received from over 50 donors.
The Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza, (CATIE) is a regional institution which carries out research, provides higher education and implements pilot development projects in the fields of agroforestry (with cocoa, coffee and silvopastoral systems), ecological agriculture, forest and biodiversity and various other related fields in Mesoamerica and other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. It has its headquarters in Turrialba, Costa Rica with country offices throughout the Central American region.
To learn more about ICRAF and CATIE, please visit our websites: and
About the position
ICRAF and CATIE have created a new position for an ICRAF scientist to be based at CATIE to forge closer links amongst the two institutions through the development of joint agroforestry research. The position involves the following overall remit and specific tasks.
The overall remit is to lead the development and implementation of a coherent joint agroforestry research programme that realises opportunities from the complementarity of ICRAF and CATIE as institutions. This will be done in liaison with ICRAF Global Research Project leaders, the ICRAF Amazon Co-ordinator, the Research Director at CATIE and other scientists at CATIE and ICRAF, There are three main goals of the position.
·         To develop and implement research on agroforestry science that underpins rural livelihoods and environmental sustainability in Mesoamerica and the Amazon Basin.
·         To design research proposals and capture funding for joint CATIE-ICRAF activities in Mesoamerica and the Amazon basin.
·         To strengthen the links between ICRAF, other international research centres with global agroforestry research interests and CATIE.
Specific tasks involved will include (but not be restricted to) the following elements, grouped according to the major functions of the position with an indicative time allocation to each function.
Research (65%)
·         Develop a collaborative research programme for ICRAF in the Mesoamerican region, linking it with ICRAF’s research structure and the CGIAR consortium research programme 6 “Forests, Trees and Agroforestry” while maximizing benefits from harnessing complementarity with CATIE research expertise and experience.
·         Actively participate in agroforestry research at CATIE potentially including work on coffee and cocoa agroforestry systems, silvopastoral systems and climate change. The balance of research focus is flexible and will depend on the expertise and interests of the person recruited and on CATIE’s portfolio of R&D projects in the region.
·         Collaborate in the design and development of ICRAF’s agroforestry systems research agenda in the Amazon region.  The Amazonian state of Acre is a member of CATIE and could be one of the territories for joint ICRAF-CATIE interventions in the Amazon basin.
·         Establish rapport with national AF stakeholders and multi-stakeholder platforms or networks in Mesoamerica and the Amazon region.
·         Supervise PhD and Masters research students.
·         Publish high impact scientific journal articles.
Developing the partnership between ICRAF and CATIE and associated resource mobilization (20%)
·         Establish a strong partnership programme with CATIE, held together by a joint research programme and projects (see above).
·         Identify possible donors for the region and develop proposals to mobilize resources from them.
·         Help position CATIE as the major scientific cooperation platform for various CGIAR consortium research programs in Central America (principally CRPs 1.2, 6 and 7 – integrated agricultural systems (humid); trees and forests and climate change).
·         Facilitate and strengthen the links between CATIE, a key regional centre and various CGIAR centres operating in Central America (ICRAF, CIFOR, CIAT and Bioversity).
·         Convene periodic meetings to strengthen and review the presence of ICRAF in the region.
Administration and communication (15%)
·         Establish an ICRAF liaison office at CATIE with the aim of strengthening ICRAF- CATIE collaboration, collaboration with CGIAR  Centres as well as other international research organizations working with CATIE’s MesoAmerican research and development platform.
·         Develop a communication strategy and a database of agroforestry (AF) stakeholders in the MesoAmerican region, including identification of their agroforestry needs.
·         Develop and share agroforestry publications to promote agroforestry in the MesoAmerican region and further integrate CATIE’s research output into the global agroforestry research and development arena.
·         Must have a Doctorate in  a relevant field
·         Must have five years relevant work experience
·         Exceptional interpersonal and writing skills
·         Competence in research design and data analysis in an NRM context
·         Positive attitude to developing collaborative research
·         Flexible attitude to travel and other requirements to capture resources and implement research for development in a tropical context
·         Working knowledge of written and spoken Spanish and English.
Terms of offer
The position is offered by the World Agroforestry Centre for a scientist to be based at the CATIE headquarters in Turrialbla.
ICRAF is an equal opportunity employer and offers a collegial and gender-sensitive working environment. We believe that staff diversity promotes excellence and strongly encourage applications from qualified women. This position is on international terms and will be for an initial period of three (3) years, renewable subject to nine (9) months probation period, assessment of performance, continued relevance of the position and availability of resources.
How to apply
Applications for the position must include:
·         A cover letter illustrating your suitability for the position against the listed requirements and salary expectations
·         A detailed curriculum vitae
·         The names and addresses of three referees, including telephone, fax numbers and email addresses.
All correspondence should be addressed to the Human Resources Unit, World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), PO Box 30677, Nairobi, Kenya OR via email: and should indicate “Application for ICRAF-CATIE Interdisciplinary Scientist” on their application letters and email submissions.
Applications will be considered until 15th April 2011 or until a suitable candidate is identified and selected. Interviews of short listed candidates will be held in Turrialba, Costa Rica in the week of 22-27th May, 2011 with an expectation of the successful candidate assuming the position from September 2011. Please note that only short-listed applicants meeting the above requirements will be contacted.

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