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IITA Careers for Gender Research Postdoctoral Research Fellow for the NEXTGEN Cassava Project


IITA is one of the world’s leading research partners in finding solutions for hunger, malnutrition, and poverty. Its award-winning research-for-development (R4D) approach addresses the development needs of tropical countries. IITA works with partners to enhance crop quality and productivity, reduce producer and consumer risks, and generate wealth from agriculture. IITA is a non-profit organization founded in 1967 in Nigeria and governed by a Board of Trustees. IITA works on the following crops: cowpea, soybean, banana/plantain, yam, cassava, and maize. It is a member of CGIAR, a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future. 

IITA, invites applications for the internationally recruited position below:

Job Title: Gender Research Postdoctoral Research Fellow for the NEXTGEN Cassava Project 

Ref Number: DDG-R4D/GRP/RF/04/16
Location: Ibadan


  • The NEXTGEN Cassava project aims to significantly increase the rate of genetic improvement of cassava breeding and unlock the full potential of cassava, a staple crop central to food security and livelihoods across Africa.
  • NEXTGEN implements and empirically tests a new breeding method known as genomic selection.
  • The NEXTGEN project also seeks to make cassava breeding more gender responsive by addressing the cassava variety preferences for both men and women engaged in cassava production, processing and consumption.
  • Improvement of cassava breeding objectives will result in new varieties that are more likely to be adopted to address farmer and consumer needs.

Position Responsibilities

  • The Postdoctoral Research Fellow (PDF) will be a part of the NEXTGEN cassava breeding project.
  • S/he will support in collecting, analyzing and communicating gender-disaggregated data. In particular, the PDF will analyze qualitative and quantitative data to distill key traits (especially around quality) and qualitative end user descriptions of these.
  • The PDF will then work with food science and breeding teams at IITA and NRCRI to communicate precise descriptions of traits preferred for these teams to develop appropriate measurement tools for lab analysis of described qualitative traits.
  • The PDF will serve as a link between end users and breeders, by delivering synthesized trait descriptors that can be examined and used by the food science and breeding teams.
  • The PDF will work with social and biological scientists in supporting them to strengthen gender-responsiveness of their research for the development and uptake of new technologies and practices.
  • S/he is primarily expected to undertake research on gender–differentiated trait preferences in cassava.
  • The PDF will carry out case studies on the intra-household decisions on varietal selection and gender roles in cassava value chains. In doing so, the PDF will also identify gender–differentiated trait preferences in cassava in order to support gender integration in the breeding programs of IITA and NRCRI (National Root Crops Research Institute). In addition, this information will be utilized in the development of advanced breeding tools such as Genomic Selection (GS).
  • The PDF will support coordination of the complementary gender research activities and contribute to gender mainstreaming trainings for scientists, staff and partners to build capacity in gender responsive research.
  • The position will be based at the IITA headquarters in Ibadan (Nigeria) and involve work in communities of Nigeria.
  • The PDF will be a part of the RTB gender team and jointly report to the IITA biophysical scientist and social scientists.

The PDF will be expected to perform:

  • As a member of IITA cassava breeding team involved in NEXTGEN Cassava program project, contribute to identifying gender–differentiated trait preferences and qualitative trait descriptors in cassava farming in collaboration with NRCRI.
  • Analyze gender roles in cassava value chain and examine how intra-household decisions on varietal selection, cassava production, processing and marketing are made
  • Undertake fieldwork and case studies, data processing and analysis and draw conclusions.
  • Disseminate the findings of research in the form of publications and reports.
  • As a part of the RTB gender team provide support to the RTB Gender Research Coordinator.
  • Co-author working papers, briefs and work with co-authors to prepare manuscripts for submission to relevant peer reviewed open-access journals.
  • Interact with genome science teams and breeders to transmit results from research and develop trait measurement protocols.
  • Undertake report writing responsibility as necessary and other relevant duties as assigned.


  • PhD, preferably in Anthropology, Sociology or related discipline. An undergraduate degree or coursework in an agriculture related field is a plus.
  • Specialization in gender and agriculture preferred. Experience working in interdisciplinary teams, especially with agricultural researchers highly desirable.
  • Work experience of at least 3 years in gender and agriculture research, including field work in developing countries of Asia, Africa or Latin America.
  • Skills in qualitative and quantitative research methods especially around designing, facilitating, capturing and analyzing qualitative data from semi-structured interviews and group interviews.
  • Good interpersonal skills.
  • Experience working successfully in multi-disciplinary and multi-cultural teams and developing effective partnerships for research.
  • Ability to triangulate mixed method data is highly desirable.
  • Excellent written and spoken communication skills in English.
  • An additional writing and communication skill in French is a plus.
  • Prior experience in Nigeria or West and Central Africa (sub-Saharan Africa).
  • Good publications record on gender a plus.

General Information

  • IITA offers an internationally competitive remuneration package paid in U.S. Dollars.
  • The position appointment will be for two years.

How to Apply

Interested applicants should forward their Covering letter which should address how the candidate’s background/experience relates to the specific duties of the position applied for, curriculum vitae, names and addresses of three professional referees (which must include either the Head of the applicant’s current or previous organization or applicant’s direct Supervisor/Superior at his/her present or former place of work). The application should be addressed to the Head, Human Resources Service.

Click here to apply online

Click here for more information (PDF)

25th April, 2016.

Note: IITA is an equal opportunity employer and particularly welcomes applications from women.


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