Livestock Trade Matters Lead Researcher - Eldoret, Kenya

Mercy Corps

Consulting & Strategy

NGO, NPO & Charity KSh Confidential
1 month ago

Job Summary

Applications are invited from qualified persons for the above vacant position.

  • Minimum Qualification:Masters
  • Experience Level:Mid level
  • Experience Length:3 years

Job Description/Requirements

Description

Project/Consultancy Title: Livestock Trade Matters Lead Researcher

Project Location(s): Home-based, Kenya

LOE: Up to 44 FTE days from 02 January through 30 June 2023

Application closing date: Friday 30 December 2022, 23.59. Please apply early - applications considered on a rolling basis.

  • Background
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. At Mercy Corps, we aim to be on the cutting edge of developing more efficient, effective paths to social impact at scale. We believe that solutions - to even the most “sticky” problems - are within reach, be that at the community level or the global level. Our years of experience have taught us that often, to break through on a particularly tough challenge, we have to be bold in our thinking and disrupt, we have to innovate, to achieve a lasting and transformative solution. For solutions to advance along a pathway to scale, data, research, and evidence are needed at key stages. Mercy Corps is committed to generating and using evidence to understand and improve our impact, and to enhance the humanitarian and development community’s ability to address the world’s most complex challenges.
As part of this commitment, Mercy Corps is a member of the Supporting Pastoralism & Agriculture in Recurrent & Protracted Crises (SPARC) consortium led by Cowater International in partnership with the Overseas Development Institute and the International Livestock Research Institute. SPARC is a six-year (2020-2026) initiative funded by FCDO. The goal is to generate and promote the application of evidence on what works to strengthen the resilience of agricultural and pastoral livelihoods in fragile, drylands contexts in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. The program aims to advance research on livelihoods, agriculture and pastoralism that can be used by FCDO and other agencies to guide decisions on programs and policies to support livelihoods resilience in the drylands. Through research and evidence, SPARC will develop knowledge to enhance the ability of FCDO, the donor community, NGOs, local and national governments and other stakeholders to assist pastoralists, agro-pastoralists and farmers in the context of conflict, climate change, and other shocks and stressors.

Purpose / Project Description:
Mercy Corps, in partnership with ODI, is conducting the Livestock Trade Matters study to investigate selected marketing chains in Kenya and Mali. Drawing on existing information, and — initially — qualitative enquiry; the study will address two overarching questions.

1) How do marketing chains function? What are the costs and benefits from marketing livestock; and how are these distributed between and amongst herders, traders and other intermediaries?

2) How can severe losses that arise when droughts, including delayed or irregular rains, hit the rangelands and herders offload stock onto over-supplied markets be mitigated? How can other threats, such as bans on marketing for veterinary reasons or Covid/pandemic-type closures, be reduced?
The research will take place in two phases. The first will establish provisional understandings of marketing in selected chains, and to identify key issues for further, more detailed studies — which constitute the second phase. In the second phase, methods will be more formal and will involve quantitative methods to complement qualitative insights. This contract may be extended and the SOW may be revised to integrate additional tasks or responsibilities under Phase II of the study.


Consultant Objectives:
Mercy Corps seeks one Kenya-based researcher to:
1) Draft literature summary based on available grey and white literature
2) Collaborate with other research leads to identify specific marketing chains including point of origin geographies for greater targeting of data collection.
3) Identifying and interview relevant experts to inform study design
4) Co-design and conduct a qualitative study of livestock trade in Kenya.
5) Co-design and conduct a gross margin analysis of livestock trading along 2-3 dominant Kenyan trade corridors.


Consultant Activities:
The Consultant will:
● Share relevant literature per predetermined criteria and document
● Review and summarize literature per analysis criteria
● Participate in study working group meetings to share and discuss analysis findings and set plan for next steps.
● Participate in roundtable discussions set up by SPARC research leads and external stakeholders (e.g. FCDO, Pastres, USAID, etc)
● Input into contact database and populate with relevant experts and potential key informants
● Develop key informant interview guides and conduct key informant interviews as needed.
● Maintain detailed interview notes electronically. Share digital notes with the study team for review and uploading into SPARC’s OSF platform.
● Analyze qualitative and quantitative data.
● Review draft reports
● Co-design Phase II studies based on Phase I findings

Consultant Deliverables:
The Consultant will produce the following items per timelines outlined in the Timeframe table:
● Literature review summary report
● Study design summary report (3-5 pages max)
● Blog (draft) for SPARC web-site. Blog topic will be co-developed with study team
● Phase I summary report

Timeframe / Schedule:
  1. Literature review initial draft 20 January 2023
  2. Literature review final report 8 February 2023
  3. Study design summary report + draft
  4. tools 17 February 2023
  5. Draft Blog article 01 April 2023 (or 2 weeks prior to end of contract if terminating early)
  6. Phase I summary report (format TBD) 10 June 2023
The Consultant will report to:
Carmen Jaquez, Senior Advisor, Livestock & Agriculture; Livestock Trade Matters study co-lead
The Consultant will work closely with:
  • Study research leads & assistants
  • Steve Wiggins, ODI
  • Boukary Barry, ODI consultant
  • TBD Research Assistant, Mercy Corps consultant
  • Ellen Reid, Mercy Corps Senior Coordinator for Research and Learning
Desired & required qualifications:
● Based in Kenya with ability to travel to remote communities and markets across the northern ASAL areas within Kenya required.
○ Must be willing and able to travel throughout northeastern counties and into rural areas.
● Excellent English language (verbal and written) required.
○ Experience producing peer reviewed published literature preferred.
● Demonstrated experience leading livestock market assessments or studies in the Horn of Africa; leading livestock market assessments in Kenya preferred.
● Experience designing qualitative and quantitative socio-economic studies in the Horn of Africa
○ Demonstrated experience developing focus group discussion guides, key informant interview guides, and financial and economic data collection tools and protocols required.
○ Facilitation of focus group discussions experience preferred
● Demonstrated social networks into livestock trade across some/all of the Kenya live animal trade corridors required.Interest and passion for livestock marketing, inclusive market systems, smallholder-led market systems preferred.
● Objectivity and willingness to check own assumptions, explore under-represented viewpoints and commitment to moving beyond rote regurgitation of general information preferred.
● MSc in agricultural economics/economics, business, entrepreneurship, livestock, and/or applied economics, evaluation or socio-economic research.
● Fluent (verbal) Kiswahili required with additional working knowledge (conversational) of languages spoken within pastoralists groups (e.g. Somali, Borana, Gabra, Rendille, Turkana, Masaai) preferred.

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