Post-Doctoral Fellow – Value Chain Modeling (Dakar, Senegal)

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The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid-Tropics (ICRISAT) is seeking applications for Post-Doctoral Fellow to develop integrated models of smallholder agricultural value chains to study the effects of market and weather-related disruptive events on agrarian populations. These activities are undertaken as part of a Habitus project on Hyperlocal Elicitation and Understanding of Risks to Stability in Complex Systems (HEURISTICS: 2021-2024).

The Post-Doctoral Fellow’s work location will be c/o agCelerant-Senegal, Dakar, Senegal and s/he will be reporting directly to the HEURISTICS project principal investigator at ICRISAT.

ICRISAT is a non-profit, non-political organization that conducts agricultural research for development in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa with a wide array of partners throughout the world. Covering 6.5 million square kilometers of land in 55 countries, the semi-arid tropics is home to over 2 billion people, with 650 million of these being the poorest of the poor. ICRISAT and its partners help empower those living in the semi-arid tropics, especially smallholder farmers, to overcome poverty, hunger, malnutrition and a degraded environment through more efficient and profitable agriculture.

Headquartered in Patancheru near Hyderabad, India ICRISAT has two regional hubs and five country offices in sub-Saharan Africa. ICRISAT, established in 1972, is a member of the CGIAR Consortium. For more details, see

Position Overview:

Habitus aims to create self-sustaining, adaptive, generalizable, and scalable methods for generating causal system models based on local knowledge to aid operational decision making. The HEURISTICS project (2021-2024) will assist decision makers to assess and enhance the resilience of local populations to destabilizing shocks and long-term changes (e.g., disease outbreaks, communal violence, weather extremes, climate change) and to evaluate the likely effects of interventions. From the perspective of local agrarian populations in West Africa, the aim is to provide services such as decision support tools and safe access to trusted buyers, lenders, insurers, etc.

CCAFS aims to address the increasing challenge of global warming and declining food security on agricultural practices, policies and measures through a strategic collaboration between CGIAR and Future Earth. CCAFS brings together the world’s best researchers in agricultural science, climate science, environmental and social sciences to identify and address the most important interactions, synergies and trade-offs between climate change and agriculture. CCAFS is structured around four closely inter-linked global research flagships: Climate-smart agricultural practices; Climate information services and climate-informed safety nets; Low-emissions agricultural development; and Policies and institutions for climate-resilient food systems. The Program is focusing on five regions: South-East Asia, South Asia, Latin America, East Africa and West Africa.  For more information visit

Job responsibilities:

  • Develop Probabilistic Relational Agent-based Models (PRAM) of entire smallholder value chains in the central peanut basin and Senegal River Valley, that provide estimates of risks on food security and system stability considering behaviors, power structures, safety nets etc.
  • Integrate outputs from granular, biophysically-based decision support models that provide estimates of risks on smallholders’ and other stakeholders’ production and income levels considering market price volatility, variability in crop yields affected by management levels and climatic variability
  • Apply systems dynamics approaches to facilitate, from a whole value chain perspective (producers, intermediaries, consumers…) the understanding of tradeoffs under different intervention scenarios and market diversification strategies
  • Conduct data analytics to understand historical patterns in production levels, harvest and cash flows with focus on incorporating operational parameters such as stock inventory and production planning in cash and resource synchronization
  • Assist the project team in preparing the extension of the approach to the cereal-legumes value chains of Northern Ghana
  • Assist the project team in communicating HEURISTICS research results within ICRISAT, CGIAR, DARPA and to external audiences, including the preparation of peer-reviewed and public awareness material 

Essential Criteria:

  • PhD or equivalent University level diploma in computer science, mathematics, agricultural sciences, social sciences, or related field
  • Experience building, analyzing, simulating complex network models; experience with mixed methods and agent-based modeling an advantage
  • Strong programming experience (preferably python), analytical and quantitative skills, and demonstrated experience with cropping systems modeling; experience with value chain modeling an advantage
  • Experience in resilience analysis and understanding of agricultural development pathways
  • Strong written and oral communication skills with demonstrated ability to conduct clear presentations and prepare written reports
  • Experience with African smallholder agriculture and business development services an advantage
  • Highly motivated and self-driven candidate, with good interpersonal skills and the ability to thrive in a diverse, multidisciplinary environment 


The is a Post-Doctoral Fellow [PDF] for two (2) years, renewable based on the performance of the incumbent and the Institute’s continuing need for the position.

How to apply:

Applicants should apply on or before 10 February 2021, with latest Curriculum Vitae, and the names and contact information of three references that are knowledgeable about your professional qualifications and work experience. All applications will be acknowledged; however only short listed candidates will be contacted.

Please CLICK HERE to submit your application. 

“ICRISAT is an equal opportunity employer”

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