Name of project:         FARA Multi-Donor Trust Fund (FARA-MDTF)

Grant No:                    FARA-MDTF TF095129

Project ID No.:            P112684

 Ref: FARA/MDTF/CS/IC/2018/03a/ 03b.                               Date: April 12, 2018

 This request for expressions of interest follows the general procurement notice for this project that appeared in the Market, issue no. 4577029 of November 10, 2009.

The forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) has received a grant from the Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) towards the cost of implementation of Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) revised Medium Term Operational Plan (MTOP- 2R) to be implemented over the period, 2016-2018.

 FARA intends to apply part of the proceeds for the following consultant services: TO RECRUIT CONSULTANTS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF AGRI-COMPETENCY POLES FOR PRIORITY VALUE CHAINS IN AFRICA.

The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) is the apex continental organization responsible for coordinating and advocating for agricultural research-for-development. (AR4D). It serves as the entry point for agricultural research initiatives designed to have a continental reach or a sub-continental reach spanning more than one sub-region. Over the past years, FARA has embarked on initiatives to improve the lots of African youth. This is against the back ground that African demography reveals unprecedented youth population growth and youth unemployment continue to remain a major political and socioeconomic challenge. Outmigration to Europe from West Africa already reflects a dramatically growing surplus of youth, seeking gainful employment outside the currently existing agricultural business models. A tripling of outmigration of African youth seeking employment in Europe is projected. African agribusinesses, however, could create a multiplicity of local jobs for youth, given conducive and enabling institutional environments for rural development. Given the potential growth of agricultural markets in Africa, young entrepreneurs are uniquely positioned to, not only increase the continent’s capacity in food production, but create the needed conditions for the delivery of products and services to meet the needs of sustainable of the growing population.

To address these challenges, FARA established the UniBRAIN agribusiness incubation model as a platform to develop innovations linking scientific research findings with market needs and sharing of the best practices between farmers, academia and the you based on the value chain approach. In partnership with the Sub Regional Organization and other partners like ICRSAT, ANAFE and PanAAC, UniBRAIN was able offered agri-preneurs the opportunity to benefit from research and innovative agro technological information through six business incubation centres established in Uganda, Kenya, Mali, Ghana and Zambia.

Despite the progress made, distortions in the labour market, which often manifests in the form of discrepancy between supply and demand for labour may ultimately result in decreasing relevance and underutilization of labour. The situation is underpinned by two main cross currents. First, there is lack of information on the various competencies and skills needed for efficient functioning of specific value chains.  As a result, most educational trainings in many African countries tend to be supply driven, and do not equip the trainees with the kind of skills and competencies that the labour market requires.   Second, many academic, training and research institutions have focused their agricultural training on specific subject areas instead of the needed skills required to do specific jobs. This is worrying given the fact that globally, job market requires new skill-sets comprising of an effective mixture of skills across different disciplines to ensure adequate value chain competencies.  Addressing the looming demographic and labor crisis in Africa, urgently requires the deployment of available tools offered by agri-competency systems, as well as business incubation services to support job creation among the unemployed.  Defined as demand driven set of competencies and skills required to provide transdisciplinary and strategic human capital formation to achieve targeted skill-sets to drive holistic value chain development of economic crops, Agri-competency systems represents an important opportunity in addressing this problem.


The successful candidate will be required to develop a compendium of descriptors of core competencies required for priority value chains to pave the way for holistic training of young people to engage in selected agri-food value chains.

Specific objectives

  • Identify the capacity gaps in competencies required for holistic development of value chains of priority cash crops
  • Describe the competencies and build competency library for selected value chains
  • Recommend appropriate plans for development of the identified competencies and develop processes for making it available for training institutions.


The consultant will carry out the following activities:

  • Identify and select value chain of high priority to 3 regions (West and Central Africa; East Africa and Southern Africa)
  • Conduct a thorough assessment of gaps in the defined competencies
  • Develop a competency library for the full set of skills that required to enhance the efficient functioning of the selected value chains
  • Define a strategy for development of the competencies


 The consultant is expected to:

  • Submit an inception report detailing the approach to executing the assignment by 14th May 2018
  • Submit an interim progress report by 30th June 2018
  • Submit a detailed report by 30th July 2018 detailing the various aspects of the objectives including:
  1. Value chain selection
  2. Identification of key competencies for the holistic development of value chains
  3. Assessment of competency gaps.
  4. Compendium of competencies
  5. Recommendations for appropriate plan for development of the identified competencies


The assignment will be carried out in 20-man days in total (10-man days each for two consultants: one each for West and central Africa and another for Eastern and Southern Africa) spread over 4 calendar months (14th May –30th August, 2018).


The assignment will be home-based, but the consultant will be expected to travel either to specific pre-agreed places to conduct key informant interviews and present his findings at a stakeholder validation workshop.


The Consultant is expected to undertake the services with the highest standards of professional /ethical competence and integrity. He/ she should be able to deliver the listed assignments in a most effective and efficient manner, within the period of assignment stated in Section E.


The consultants will be reporting to the Executive Director of FARA through the Divisional Manager of CDI.


Where necessary, FARA will provide the following to the consultants:

  • Literature material
  • Travel and accommodation while in Accra or anywhere else to attend the stakeholders workshop
  • Any other logistical support, as may be agreed, to facilitate execution of the assignment.


The consultant(s) should be:

  • PhD in agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Agribusiness and any other relevant social science
  • A seasoned agricultural research and development professional with more than 10 years’ experience in leading agricultural research and development issues at the continental and global level.
  • Should be highly knowledgeable on the issues affecting African agricultural development, agricultural research, education, science and technology.
  • Have good knowledge of cash crops value chains in Africa
  • Should have demonstrated capacity to facilitate high level dialogue on agricultural development issues in Africa
  • Familiar with FARA’s role in African agricultural research and development and should portray virtues of integrity and confidentiality.

The attention of interested consultants is drawn to Paragraph 1.9 of World Bank’s Guidelines: Selection and Employment of Consultants under IBRD Loans and IDA Credits and Grants by World Bank Borrowers – January 2011, Revised July 2014 setting forth the World Bank’s Policy on conflict of interest.

Further information can be obtained at the address below during office hours between 0930 and 1600 GMT.


Expressions of interest must be sent (via e-mail) with a comprehensive curriculum vitae to the address below on or before 1600 GMT May 5, 2018:

Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo

Executive Director

Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA)

PMB CT 173, Cantonments, Accra, Ghana

Telephone: +233 302 772823/779421



FARA Affirmative Action Statement on Employment: there is no discrimination based on gender race, religion, ethnic orientation, disability or health status.

You may download a pdf copy of the advert   HERE

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