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Social Scientist (Specialization in collective action and governance in Natural Resources Management (NRM))

The Africa Rice Center
Location: Cotonou, Benin
Last Date: September 15, 2010
Email:  (Reference:


Social Scientist

(Specialization in collective action and governance

in Natural Resources Management (NRM)) 

Ref: IRS/05/RD/July 2010 

The Africa Rice Center (AfricaRice, ex-WARDA) is looking for a highly qualified Social Scientist, specialized in collective action and governance in natural resources management (NRM) to be based at its temporary headquarters in Cotonou, Benin.   

About AfricaRice 

 AfricaRice is an association of 24 African member states and one of the 15 international Centers supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). AfricaRice’s mission is to contribute to poverty alleviation and food security in Africa, through research, development and partnership activities aimed at increasing the productivity and profitability of the rice sector in ways that ensure the sustainability of the farming environments. AfricaRice is temporarily headquartered in Cotonou, Benin. 


The social scientist will be part of a multi-disciplinary research team working to sustain and improve the productivity of rice-based systems in rainfed, irrigated and lowland ecologies of Africa consistent with AfricaRice’s mission and mandate. She/he will conduct strategic and applied research on institutional and organizational constraints to collective action and governance in NRM, with special emphasis on inland valley systems in West Africa. His/her specific tasks will include the following: 

o   Develop and implement a research program focused around social, cultural, organizational and institutional dimensions of rice sector development, related to land tenure, water management, group formation and collective action and governance in NRM

o   Provide leadership to social science activities conducted at the household – community level and ensure that these are captured in mid-term plans and future R&D projects

o   Interact closely with other AfricaRice programs

o   Actively link with R&D partners that operate at district – national or watershed level to ensure out-scaling of results

o   Build capacity within national programs and universities in social science, supervise MSc and PhD students

o   Participate actively in ongoing research projects

o   Develop annual work plans and budgets in consultation with the Program Leader, project coordinators and team members

o   Publish research results in peer reviewed journals and other relevant outlets

o   Actively participate in the dissemination of research results of direct relevance to farmers and other rice development stakeholders

o   Participate in and contribute to resource mobilization efforts

o   Undertake any other duties as required by the Center 


The selected candidate should have: 

  • A PhD in innovation systems research, sociology or related fields
  • More than five years work experience, preferably in Africa
  • Strong statistics and systems analysis skills
  • Excellent communication skills in either English or French, with a working knowledge of the other
  • An excellent publication record
  • Proven ability to work efficiently as a member of a multi-disciplinary team
  • Strong background or degree in agronomy

Duration of the Appointment:  

The appointment is for two years with possibility for renewal

 Application procedure:  

Candidates should send an application (including date of availability and a statement of any special qualifications for the position) and an up-to-date curriculum vitae with the names and addresses (including telephone / fax / e-mail) of three referees to: 

Human Resources Manager


01 BP 2031 Cotonou, Benin

F: + (229) 21 35 05 56; T: (229) 21 35 01 88


Applications will be considered up to September 15, 2010 or until the position is filled. 

AfricaRice believes that staff diversity promotes excellence in its operations, and encourages applications from women and developing country professionals. 

AfricaRice thanks all applicants but only the short listed candidates will be contacted. 

Further details can be obtained from the AfricaRice website at 


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