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The position will be based in Nairobi and will involve travel to various parts of the country, with emphasis on the major potato seed growing areas (particularly Timau, Meru, Bungoma and Kitale). Occasional short visits abroad are expected, particularly to Rwanda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Syngenta Foundation’s HQ in Basel, Switzerland and other countries, as required.
The Program Manager will oversee the local implementation of the East African activities of the Syngenta Foundation’s Seeds2B program, particularly one of its initiatives, called Seeds2B Africa.
The Syngenta Foundation’s Seeds2B program aims to improve access to seeds of improved varieties for smallholders. The Seeds2B program supports the introduction and distribution of quality seeds of new varieties into markets and commercial seed production. It offers the following ‘menu of services‘ to seed companies and breeders:
- Technology scouting: matching varieties with market need
- Trials: assessing variety performance and market acceptance
- Marketing consent: assisting with registration of new varieties (at national or sub-regional level)
- Licensing: building equitable partnerships between breeders and seed producers
- Technical support: providing guidance to seed companies to reduce risks in seed multiplication
- Additional capital: helping seed companies to acquire capital to invest in the production, storage and marketing of new seeds
- Maintenance: providing technical support to seed companies, M&E, links to downstream partners, variety portfolio expansion
This position involves:
- Planning, co-ordination and implementation of project activities and preparing project reports, as required;
- Managing implementation of a portfolio of SFSA-funded seeds projects with external partners (seed companies, NGOs and international research organizations);
- Researching new seed needs and opportunities with value chain actors and seed companies;
- Undertaking training and demonstration pilots with smallholder farmers (through contracts with appropriate partners) and designing, implementing, monitoring and analyzing the progress of variety adaptation and registration trials with government agencies and implementing partners;
- Managing activity budgets and project data bases, including processing relevant financial transactions, reviewing budget/expenditure with Head Agricultural Partnerships and Regional Director (East Africa) to ensure all documents are up to date;
- Monitoring and reporting on relevant activities and impact;
- Liaising with relevant partners, stakeholders and collaborators (including Government regulatory officials and allied industries such the insurance sector (www.acreafrica.com) and representing the seeds project and work of Syngenta Foundation at national and regional meetings and workshops, as appropriate;
- Providing administrative and logistical support to Regional Director (East Africa) in his/her absence and acting as a liaison with seeds activities of Syngenta (the company) in East Africa;
- Any other duties, as may be requested.
Essential qualifications and experience
- First degree (BSc) in Agriculture or business or related subject
- Experience working with smallholder agriculture in Africa and development organizations
- Experience with developing and managing diverse partnerships
- Experience of working with seeds or agribusiness (preferably including private sector background or connections)
- Strong communication and report writing skill
- Experience in project management and accounting
Desired qualifications and experience
- Postgraduate experience in agronomy
- Experience of seed-system work or value-chain development in one of the four target crops
- Experience with crop trialing and data analysis and reporting
- Experience of small-holder training or extension systems
- Postgraduate experience in agronomy
- Previous involvement in international conferences and meetings on the seed sector
- Experience with or knowledge of:
- crop trialing and data analysis and reporting
- smallholder training and/or extension systems
- seed systems and value chains (production systems), particularly in beans, potatoes, vegetables and maize seeds regulatory work.
Method of Application
Interested and qualified? Go to Syngenta career website on syngentacrop.taleo.net to apply