Technical Advisor - Monitoring, Evaluation, Knowledge Management and Learning Manager – Kenya

Organization(s): Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
Contract Length: Full-time staff position
Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is implementing a 4-year grant funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) to coordinate a range of activities to increase cassava productivity and sustainability at scale in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Tanzania, Western Kenya, and Uganda.  CRS is partnering with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) to lead a network of regional associations and agricultural institutions, country-level agricultural research organizations and local civil society implementing organizations. The vision of the Great Lakes Cassava Initiative (GLCI) is to enhance productivity and resilience of vulnerable cassava farmers by assisting over a million cassava farm families with access to improved, preferred, disease-resistant planting materials and agronomic support to increase cassava productivity by more than 25%, laying the foundation to exploit emerging growth markets. GLCI monitoring, evaluation, knowledge management and learning systems play an important role in tracking the progression of cassava disease, measuring the success of disease-resistant planting varieties, assessing the results of farmer group strengthening activities, and fostering the knowledge exchange between the GLCI network members and farming communities needed to achieve GLCI goals. The knowledge generated by M&E systems needs to be well managed and lead to organizational learning so that management decisions, as far as possible, are based on field-based evidence. These systems must adapt to a wide range of local conditions in terms of geography, levels of infrastructure, local capacity, language, access to roads, power, phone and internet connectivity.

Primary Function:
The GLCI Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) Specialist is responsible for managing GLCI's project wide monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and knowledge management (KM) and Learning programs. The MEL specialist is directly supervised by the GLCI Chief of Party and works closely with the Technical Director, the four GLCI objective team leaders (OTL-Seed, OTL-Training, OTL-Planning and Partnerships, and OTL - Disease), the GLCI Country Program Mangers (CPM's) and technical support team members in implementing these programs. The MEL specialist is a participant in CRS' MEL community of practice and maintains a relationship with the PQSD agriculture and M&E global teams, the all Africa Team, and the Chief Learning Officer for the purposes of exchanging technical advice and learnings.

Specific Responsibilities:
1. Complete the initial deployment of GLCI's M&E, KM and Learning Systems
  • 1. Review, test and deploy GLCI data collection, reporting, analyses, and knowledge exchange and learning processes and tools in both French and English
  • 2. Integrate GLCI and MDS data collection systems
  • 3. Integrate GLCI M&E System with the use of ruggedized computers and software for field level data recording
  • 4. Integrate the rollout of GLCI's M&E system and online training program particularly with regard to the use of ruggedized computers and Agilix software for field training
  • 5. Establish a knowledge management and learning strategy for GLCI, implement a web-based KM platform, establish an initial knowledge base, and introduce collaborative tools to support knowledge exchange within the GLCI community
  • 6. Implement a communication and training program designed to prepare GLCI staff at all levels to adopt the M&E, KM and learning systems
  • 7. Transfer of data from existing local M&E systems to the program-wide systems
  • 8. Implement a full scale rollout to staff, partners, field agents, and farmer groups across all six GLCI countries
  • 9. Provide technical assistance to staff and partners to support them in managing the adoption of the program-wide GLCI systems in their areas of responsibility
  • 10. Deliver regular information reports that keep the GLCI community apprised of M&E and KM and learning system results
  • 11. Enhance the capacity of the GLCI staff and partners to achieve their goals by a process of accompaniment, including regular sites visits
  • 12. Coordinate the learning and exchange of experience across the different GLCI implementing Country Programs
  • 13. Ensure that the GLCi lessons learnt and good practice are compiled and used to improve future planning and implementation
  • 14. Ensure that lessons learnt are shared within and across East Africa Region and Central Africa Region as well as with the CRS M&E community for wider dissemination
2. Manage the on-going implementation and enhancement of GLCI's project wide M&E Program
  • 1. Maintain BLCI's M&E system processes and tools
  • 2. Work with GLCI Objective Team Leaders to determine GLCI's on-going M&E needs
  • 3. Manage the agreements with in-house and external providers of automated data capture, analysis, and reporting tools
  • 4. Provide on-going communications, training, and support to GLCI staff to aid their adoption of these M&E system processes and tools
  • 5. Maintain and communicate the schedule for field data collection activities
  • 6. Monitor the implementation of these activities, assess and report progress in order to surface, escalate and resolve issues o Coordinate and/or perform data analysis activities
  • 7. Produce and /or coordinate the production and dissemination of data analysis.
  • 8. Plan and conduct events to contribute to and/or share lessons learned
  • 9. Collect feedback from GLCI staff and use that feedback to refine the M&E system
  • 10. Communicate program results to the GLCI community, the CRS community, and community supporters such as NetHope
3. Manage the on-going implementation and enhancement of GLCI's project wide KM Program
  • 1. Work with the Head Of Programs, Objective Team Leaders, Country Program Managers and technical team members to develop and/or refine GLCI's knowledge strategy
  • 2. Maintain GLCI's KM platform (website and collaborative tools)
  • 3. Manage the agreements with in-house and external providers of the platform's technology
  • 4. Manage the organization and content of the GLCI website
  • 5. Work with the GLCI network to extend GLCI's knowledge base and to maintain its quality through contributions to the website and evaluation of its content
  • 6. Facilitate the formation and on-going operation of GLCI knowledge communities
  • 7. Assist community members to adopt and use GLCI's collaborative tools
  • 8. Collect feedback from the GLCI community and use that feedback to refine KM program processes and tools
  • 9. Periodically assess progress in achieving GLCI's knowledge strategy and communicate results to the GLCI community, the CRS community, and community supporters
Personal Skills:
  • 1. Ability to tackle new systems and provide solutions for non-specialists in data capture, analysis, reporting, and knowledge exchange activities
  • 2. Ability to plan and implement the rollout of new system processes and tools
  • 3. Ability to provide change management services including communications, training, coaching, and development of reward and recognition strategies to support such rollouts
  • 4. Ability to provide training and technical support for a range of staff from project managers to field workers
  • 5. Ability to communicate requirements for ICT based M&E and KM systems and to monitor their implementation
  • 6. Ability to work as part of a team and to facilitate learning events.
  • 7. Ability to take on multiple tasks simultaneously
  • 8. Ability to work under tight deadlines
  • 9. Ability to develop and maintain good relations with consortium partners, foundation staff and other donors, and appropriate academic and research institution staff, and to utilize the relationships to promote the work of CRS
  1. MSc in Agricultural economics, statistics or Monitoring and Evaluation
  2. Minimum four to five years field experience in developing countries
  3. Knowledge and experience with M&E systems for agricultural projects, preferred
  4. Skilled in the use and/or application of technical principles, theories, and concepts
  5. Knowledge and experience with the implementation of organizational change and KM programs preferred.
  6. Knowledge of online M&E systems, KM platforms, and experience with mobile data capture and retrieval systems. Demonstrated knowledge of best practices in assigned technical field and program
  7. Demonstrated ability to transfer knowledge to diverse audiences through training, mentoring, and other formal and non-formal methods.
  8. Fluency in English and French, required.
  9. Computer skills (experience with database management, on-line form development, Microsoft office, and statistical packages tools desirable)
  10. Willingness to travel up to 30% of time.
To apply for this position please visit the Catholic Relief Services website at

Reference No: I 09 113

Application deadline: 24 December 2009