Agricultural / Agro-Allied

Senior Policy Advisor, UN Food Systems Summit at the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)

The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) is a Swiss-based foundation launched at the UN in 2002 to tackle the human suffering caused by malnutrition. Working with both governments and businesses, we aim to transform food systems so that they deliver more nutritious food for all people. In particular, we aim to make healthier food choices more desirable, more available, and more affordable. GAIN’s mission is to advance nutrition outcomes by improving consumption of nutritious and safe food for all people, especially the most vulnerable to malnutrition.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: Senior Policy Advisor, UN Food Systems Summit

Location: Nigeria
Classification: C6 – Senior Advisor
Direct reports: 1 – 5
Travel required: 30%

The Food Systems Summit will be held in September / October 2021, it is hosted by the UN Secretary General and involving all UN member states. It has a declared focus on system change addressing interconnected challenges: environmental sustainability, planetary boundary limits especially climate change, and increasing inequalities around access to food security and healthy diets. The FSS also takes place in a year which will see the Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit in December 2021 in which GAIN is actively involved, and which has a specific focus on nutrition commitment within food systems.

Overall Purpose:

  • A critical component of the Food Systems Summit will be national planning processes to develop coherent plans. One component of the FSS strategy is a set of food systems dialogues hosted by every member state to this end.
  • The Head of Policy and Advocacy will be responsible for ensuring that the interventions led by GAIN and by its different partners are coordinated so that overall project and policy milestones and goals are met. They will be expected to provide technical support to project staff as required.
  • The inclusion of nutritious and safe foods as a major theme is well aligned with GAIN’s strategy to make nutritious foods more affordable and accessible for all. The FSS is, therefore, a major opportunity to advance our strategy and merits a special effort to link and align many aspects of our programmes, learning and influencing. Country-level participation, through the influencing work led by the Country Director and the Head of Policy and Advocacy, is the key to its success.
  • The post holder lead GAIN Nigeria’s wider influencing agenda and support country office management and leadership as part of the Senior Management Team.

Tasks and Responsibilities
Lead GAIN’s policy works in the country and carry out the following tasks:

Food Systems Summit:

  • Tracking and mapping national preparations for the Food Systems Summit, and the N4G Summit
  • Act as a technical and organisational resource to facilitate and support national food systems dialogue / s and other planning mechanisms to develop a national food action plan and/or plans and commitments made at the Summits
  • Engage in, and where appropriate, contribute and facilitate the preparations for the national commitments
  • Facilitate GAIN expertise derived from its national programmes and its global expertise into national consultation and planning see [].
  • Be the principal country link to the cross-GAIN working group on the Summit
  • Lead on internal communication to educate and inform fellow GAIN colleagues on the objectives of the summit and each GAIN staff member can contribute.
  • Integrate and align the Food Systems Summit policy and advocacy work into GAIN’s national business plan.

Influencing Agenda:

  • Monitor, attend and engage to represent GAIN, where appropriate, in key national-level and country-level policy fora and meetings.
  • Lead on external engagement with key stakeholders in government, private sector, UN, donors and civil society including academia, media, and other development practitioners; to improve support for GAIN’s mission and increase resources allocated to nutrition in Nigeria.
  • Synthesize and disseminate knowledge and evidence from GAIN Nigeria programmes that can help drive the agenda for nutritious and safe food in Nigeria.
  • Create opportunities to spread key messages arising from GAIN Nigeria programming through e.g. media, social media, and positioning events.

Country Team Management and Leadership:

  • As a member of the GAIN Nigeria Senior Management Team, contribute to overall country team management to support the delivery of the country office business plan
  • Recruit, manage and develop high-performing staff to create and maintain an effective and motivated team.
  • Contribute to and in some cases lead proposal development and resource mobilization efforts to build the country office project portfolio and expand the scope of our work in Nigeria

Key Organizational Relationships:

  • GAIN Nigeria Country Director & the GAIN Nigeria team
  • 1-5 direct reports
  • The Policy and Advocacy team
  • Food Systems Summit Team
  • Programme Services Team, Knowledge Leadership, Communications, Nutrition Connect and implementation focal points
  • Key partners including government, communities, private sector, UN, civil society organizations, donors, research institutions

Job Requirements
Skill Profile:

  • Significant professional experience of policy development and planning work within a government, INGO or private sector setting that involves public-private engagement
  • Relationship management skills, including the ability to operate comfortably at senior levels with government, business, civil society and donors.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with a range of different stakeholders from business, farmers, civil society, academia, consumers, etc.
  • Key understanding of food systems transformation approaches
  • Ability to analyze complex policy challenges and chart practical ways forward
  • Excellent written and oral presentation skills with good research skills


  • Currently engaging in food policy dialogue at high levels in a local context
  • Capacity to work closely with national stakeholders to progress the Food Systems Summit influencing agenda and GAIN’s Action Track 1 work
  • Familiarity with some of GAIN’s advocacy tools: Food Systems Dashboard, Enabling Business to Advance Nutrition Index (EBANI), Access to Nutrition Index (ATNI), etc.


  • Master’s Level qualification in a relevant discipline e.g. Public Health or Nutrition, Business or Public Administration, Public Policy or related field or equivalent combination and stakeholder engagement, project management work experience.
  • Diploma or equivalent certification in project management or business administration is highly desirable. Preferable: PRINCE2 (Foundation and / or Practitioner), Scrum Master, Agile PM.

Other Requirements:

  • Excellent command of written and spoken English and a local language required
  • Willingness and ability to travel, within and outside of Nigeria
  • Ability to work independently and meet deadlines.
  • Pragmatic, dynamic and autonomous person.

What GAIN Offers

  • Flexible working hours
  • Friendly working environment
  • Professional development opportunities

Deadline: 20th November, 2020.

How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online

Click here for more information (PDF)

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