Researcher – Innovation Scaling and Agribusiness Acceleration in Pretoria, South Africa

jobsnearmeafric International Water Management Institute

Closing date: January 24, 2024


The International Water Management Institute (IWMI), a CGIAR Research Center is seeking a multi skilled & competent candidate to join as a Researcher – Innovation Scaling and Agribusiness Acceleration.

This is an internationally recruited position; therefore, individuals with relevant abilities from diverse locations around the world are encouraged to apply. Please disregard the preferred geographic location indicated above, as this is a technical limitation of the Workable software. The candidate can be based in South Africa or Kenya.

The Researcher – Innovation Scaling and Agribusiness Acceleration will play a pivotal role at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) in helping to lead IWMI’s agribusiness acceleration and scaling portfolio, particularly in East and Southern Africa, but also globally. The focus will be on climate-smart agriculture innovations, inclusive finance, acceleration methodologies, and the science and practice of scaling, private sector collaboration, and international sustainability management. This role involves leading scientific research in climate-smart agriculture (CSA) and climate information services (CIS), as well as managing outreach and multi-stakeholder partnerships.


CSA Innovation Scaling and Business Acceleration Research,

Conduct research activities, including field data collection, literature synthesis, and interviews focusing on scaling climate-smart agriculture practices.
Analyze supply chains and financing to enhance access to CSA practices/technologies.
Collaborate on business acceleration activities linking CGIAR innovation with private sector capacity.
Analyze the scaling ecosystem, identify enabling environments, and address blocking mechanisms.

Develop and apply analytical frameworks for impact assessment using quantitative and qualitative methods.
Scaling Partnerships,

Identify and develop partnerships and policies for scaling CSA innovations.
Coordinate technical assistance from CGIAR researchers to various stakeholders.
Design and implement innovation/acceleration grants in a multi-sector environment.
Multi-stakeholder Engagement,

Facilitate dialogues with public and private sector actors. eBDUqSu u3CTH
Manage the development and dissemination of communication to stakeholders.



PhD in agronomy, innovation systems, inclusive finance, ICT4development, or related fields coupled with 3 years of experience; OR Master’s in the aforementioned or related discipline with 5-7 years of experience in scaling climate-smart agricultural innovation in East and Southern Africa.
Extensive experience in stakeholder engagement, qualitative and quantitative research methods.
Excellent track record of peer-reviewed publications and dissemination of research findings.



Research skills in agricultural innovation scaling, social inclusion, and value chain in East and Southern Africa.
Strong multi-stakeholder partnership facilitation skills.
Ability to apply technical, economic, and institutional theories critically.
Collaborative work ethic with both academic and non-academic stakeholders.
Excellent oral and written language skills in English, including effective listening and strong verbal and written communication abilities.


Communication skills in local languages of East and Southern Africa.
Experience in impact investing, strategy consulting, or social entrepreneurship.
Background in innovation scaling in fragile and conflict-affected settings.


This is an internationally recruited position with a competitive salary, an attractive retirement plan, comprehensive international health insurance, life insurance accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) insurance, and long-term disability coverage. Internationally recruited staff who are employed at a duty station outside of their home base/country of nationality will also receive relocation assistance, a housing allowance, home-leave plane tickets for self and eligible dependents and education assistance for eligible dependents. The duration of the contract will initially be for a period of three years.


Apply for the position by following the application instructions at We will be accepting applications through 24:00 (IST) on January 24, 2024 (applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis). Your application must include a CV, cover letter, and three (3) references, which may be contacted if you are shortlisted. Receipt of all applications will be acknowledged, but only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

IWMI believes that diversity powers our innovation, contributes to our excellence, and is critical for our mission. We offer a multi-cultural, multi-color, multi-generational and multi-disciplinary working environment. We are consciously creating an inclusive organization that reflects our global character and our commitment to gender equity. We, therefore, encourage applicants from all cultures, races, ethnicities, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientations, and gender identities.

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