Institute for Climate Change and Adaptation Job Vacancy: Research Assistant - Lodwar, Kenya

Research Assistant for Turkana Obsevatory- REACH Kenya Programme "Improving Water Security for the Poor"

The University of Oxford is leading a consortium of institutions in Africa and Asia that is carrying out research related to the UK-DFID (UK Department for International Development) funded programme termed "Improving Water Security for the Poor (IWSP)", which aims to improve water security for the poor by delivering world-class science that transforms policy and practice. The impacts and implications of the work will support wider regional initiatives to improve water security for millions of poor people. In this regard, the University of Oxford, United Kingdom and the University of Nairobi, Kenya, entered into a collaborative framework agreement to initiate the research programme entitled ‘REACH: Improving Water Security for the Poor’ in Kenya.

Under this collaboration, the University of Oxford together with the University of Nairobi are establishing Water Security Observatories for ‘small towns and fragile lands’ in Turkana County and ‘water secure institutions’ in Kitui County for research purposes as well as building science-practitioner partnerships with county governments, the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, UNICEF, and other agencies for research execution and up-take for policy. The Institute for Climate Change and Adaptation (ICCA), University of Nairobi, is the executing agency for the REACH Programme in Kenya.

The REACH Kenya Programme seeks to recruit a Research Assistant for its Turkana Observatory which is headquartered in Lodwar, Turkana County, Kenya.

Key Responsibilities:
Reporting to the REACH Country Director and working under the supervision and direction of both the Director and the Administrative and Finance Officer, the Research Assistant will:
  • Manage daily operations of the Turkana office 
  • Provide support in administrative and logistical issues to ensure the effective running of the REACH programme Team, including planning and organising for field visits, accommodation and local travel
  • Maintain a record of local expenditures and assist in procurement of services and goods under the programme
  • Assist researchers in fieldwork and data collection
  • Arrange for and coordinate appointments and meetings in the field
  • Liaise with the County authorities to ensure programme compliance with licensing laws and environmental regulations
  • Compile project reports as and when required
  • Attend programme meetings and prepare the minutes.
  • Routinely collect data and relevant information for programme purposes, academic articles, publications, and presentations
  • Provide other research and management support as required and directed by the REACH Country Director and/or the Administration and Finance Officer
  • Carry out any other assigned duties.
  • A minimum of Bachelor’s degree in the sciences field from a recognized university
  • Advanced ICDL (International Computer Driving License) or Equivalent
  • At least six months experience working as a Research Assistant
  • Working knowledge of climate change and/or water issues; Competency in Remote Sensing and GIS; and knowledge of the County will be added advantages.
  • Note that preference will be given to locals from the region who speak the local language, and that women are encouraged to apply.
  • Team player
  • Computer literate
  • Outstanding analytical, organizational and research skills
  • Strong oral and written communication skills to discuss and document research progress
  • Ability to work independently
  • High capacity to learn, work under pressure and manage different priorities
  • Excellent judgement skills, able to make decisions and accountable
  • A track record of work experience demonstrating the skills required for this position
Terms and Conditions of Employment:
The Contract of Employment is offered on a consultancy basis for a one year period from 5th September 2016, concluding 31st August 2017. This may be extended by mutual agreement between the post holder and ICCA on an annual basis, for a period of up to three years.
For the purposes of this work, the Research Assistant will be registered as self-employed and responsible for the payment of all taxes and self-employment contributions that s/he incurs.

Title: Research Assistant (Turkana Observatory) 

University: University of Nairobi
Programme: REACH Kenya Programme
Location of office: Lodwar
Grade: Research Assistant
Hours: Full time
Stipend: GBP400 per month (gross)
Duration: One year, renewable, starting 5th September 2016
Reporting to: Country Director & Administrative and Finance Officer
Vacancy reference: RKP-RA-T01

Additional information:
The position offers a consolidated gross monthly stipend as indicated, and will be less withholding tax. The Research Assistant will be liable to paying any necessary taxes. No other benefits (e.g. medical, house allowance, etc) are associated with this position. Operational and logistical costs related to the programme will be covered.

How to apply:
Applications in both soft and hard copies, including cover letter with a motivation statement, two/three page CV, copies of certificates, and three references, be submitted and received on or before midnight (East African Time) on Sunday 21st August 2016.

Candidates shortlisted for interviews will be contacted by COB on Wednesday 24th August 2016.

Please also note that interviews will be conducted in Lodwar town, Turkana County, on a date between 29th August and 2nd September 2016.

Applications should be delivered to:
Country Director - REACH Project
Institute for Climate Change and Adaptation (ICCA)
College of Biological and Physical Sciences (off Riverside Drive)
University of Nairobi
PO Box 30197-00100, Nairobi.
Examination Centre, West Wing First Floor Room 109