Back Sustainable Livelihoods Lead, USAID Guatemala Prosperous and Resilient Landscapes Activity

Tags: climate change finance English Spanish Environment

Research Triangle Institute (RTI) has over 30 years’ experience assisting governments, communities, and the private sector. As a not-for-profit, independent research institute based in North Carolina, USA, RTI has roughly 5,000 employees with global experience implementing international development projects. RTI's Sustainable Growth & Resilience (SG&R) technical unit within the International Development Group brings together RTI experts and capabilities across food security, agriculture, energy, environment, water, governance, and economic opportunity. SG&R will leverage RTI's experience designing and delivering multisectoral programming and technical solutions to respond to climate change, build resilience, and promote economic growth around the world.

SG&R’s Environment portfolio has delivered innovative, breakthrough solutions in key development sectors, including countering wildlife crime, sustainable forest management, protected area management, climate change, water resources, environmental policy, economic livelihood development, community engagement, and institutional capacity building.

Project Description

RTI is preparing for the anticipated $30M USAID Guatemala Prosperous and Resilient Landscapes Activity. The purpose of the activity is to reduce Guatemala’s land-based greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increase carbon sequestration from land use. This activity will increase the prosperity and resilience of rural Guatemalan communities in the Western Highlands, Alta, and Baja Verapaz, and Petén by investing in activities that reduce the drivers of deforestation and increase forest cover while improving livelihoods, especially for forest dependent communities, indigenous peoples, women, and youth.

To accomplish this, USAID will seek to work across four strategic approaches, including: (1) forest conservation, sustainable forest management, and integrated fire management; (2) applying climate-smart livestock practices; (3) landscape restoration; and (4) improving and expanding agroforestry systems and sustainable soil management practices.

The objectives of the Prosperous and Resilient Landscapes Activity are:

  1. Reduce land-based greenhouse gas emissions in Guatemala and increase carbon sequestration
    1. Improve livelihoods for forest dependent communities, indigenous peoples, and women while partnering with different stakeholders in Guatemala to protect, manage, and restore forests and other lands to combat climate change.

      Position Description

      RTI is seeking a Sustainable Livelihoods Lead who will lead market systems strengthening and work to reinforce relationships between the project team and partner organizations for activities under Objective 2. The Sustainable Livelihoods Lead will drive the technical strategy and coordinate implementation for activities related to value chain development, market linkages, access to finance, job creation, revenue generation, and overall livelihoods improvements through activities that help to reduce land-based GHG emissions. This position will work closely with the COP and RTI home office team to ensure market systems and value chain development activities are implemented at a high level of quality and that they meet stated goals and reporting requirements. The Sustainable Livelihoods Lead position will be based in Guatemala City and will report to the COP.

      Position contingent upon award and funding. Local nationals encouraged to apply.

      Primary responsibilities will include but not be limited to:

      • Lead market systems strengthening activities through support to economic activities that help to reduce land-based GHG emissions and increase carbon sequestration, strengthen local land use planning, and build landscape management capacity, and provide oversight to all technical aspects of the project.
      • Lead value chain development activities to strengthen relationships and coordination among stakeholders involved in local land use decisions and activities, improve income generation within sustainable forest management, climate-smart livestock, agroforestry, landscape restoration, and related sectors.
      • Coordinate with the COP and Resilient Landscapes/Objective 1 Lead to ensure landscape prosperity/livelihoods activities complement actions under Objective 1 and contribute to improved resilience targets, results, and impacts.
      • Take part in or lead relevant assessments, potentially including value chain assessments and political economy analyses.
      • Facilitate access of small and medium enterprises to extension services and oversee creation of demonstration plots to encourage uptake of climate-smart agriculture, agroforestry, and silvopastoral techniques.
      • Oversee local partner organizations to implement enterprise development support program building business management capacity of forest sector SMEs and support their entrance into the PROBOSQUE and PINPEP programs.
      • Develop partnerships with financial institutions to create appropriate financial mechanisms, such as loans and insurance products, that encourage growth of forestry and agroforestry enterprises and household-level resilience of smallholder producers.
      • Build and maintain strong working relationships with key stakeholders in the Government of Guatemala, civil society, and the private sector.
      • Work with the Cross-Cutting and Governance Lead to develop and support policy/advocacy activities to improve the enabling environment for forest enterprises and climate smart livestock.
      • Work with the project leadership to explore opportunities to develop payment for ecosystem services schemes, including for watershed protection or carbon sequestration.
      • Contribute to quarterly and annual project reports and other technical reports as needed.

        Required Skills and Qualifications:

        • Bachelor's Degree and 12 years of experience, Master's degree and 10 years of experience, PhD and 6 years of experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
        • A minimum of 7 years professional experience working in market systems development, value chain strengthening, or enterprise development and on development programs with proven results strengthening enterprises in agriculture, forestry, or related sectors.
        • Minimum 5 years of work experience in a technical leadership role on complex development projects.
        • Demonstrated effectiveness engaging the private sector in market systems and value chain development activities, including small and medium enterprises.
        • Experience integrating women, youth, and other vulnerable or marginalized groups into enterprise development and economic growth activities.
        • Strong communication, both oral and written, strong interpersonal skills, and the ability to develop excellent relations with donor officials and key local stakeholders.
        • Proven ability to lead a team of diverse technical specialists to accomplish project objectives
        • Culturally sensitive and respectful.
        • Native fluency or full professional proficiency in Spanish required; English fluency preferred, and proficiency in other languages of Guatemala a plus.

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