D2FTF is committed to complete ten case studies by September of 2018, highlighting how organizations within the Feed the Future zones of influence are using digital tools and technologies to more effectively and efficiently meet their goals, while documenting improved agricultural outcomes as a result. These case studies will include:
- Desk research and writing
- Potential field visits of approximately one week to facilitate more in-depth face-to-face meetings and solicit input from stakeholders to facilitate a deeper understanding of field operations and interactions with beneficiaries
- Communication and dissemination of the final case studies.
II. SCOPE OF WORK
mSTAR is seeking up to four Washington, DC-based consultants to research, draft and finalize four case studies on either (1) how organizations implementing agricultural programs are using 2 digital tools and technologies; the impact that these digital tools and technologies have had on their results; and how these digital interventions link to Feed the Future goals and objectives, even if the programs are not Feed the Future supported; or (2) a meta-analysis of digital tools used in agriculture to date.
Case studies on specific organizations will include, but are not limited to, the following elements:
- The organization or project’s goals, objectives, and target populations
- the digital tools the organizations or projects are currently using, the type of tool, the purpose of the tool, the tool’s entry point into the value chain, and how the tool supports the overall objective of the project or organization
- the organization or project’s experience with using these digital tools
- the organization or project’s philosophy underlining its use of digital tools
- the process by which the organization or project find appropriate digital tools, how they assess this appropriateness, how they pilot digital tools, and any constraints that exist in this process
- how these organizations or projects define the success of digital tools
- the impact the integration of digital tools has had on the organization or project and its clients
- how digital tools influence the organization or project’s M&E framework and data collection of the organization or project.
The meta-analysis will look at the existing evidence of the impact that digital tools can have in agriculture. USAID has already looked at over 200 studies and narrowed these down to about 40 that offer quantitative evidence of positive impact of a variety of digital tools (digital financial services, SMS, IVR, sensors, and more) on the lives and incomes of smallholder farmers. The meta-analysis:
- Update the existing evidence database to include any additional relevant studies;
- Identify lessons learned across the database of evidence;
- Identify gaps in the evidence as well as new questions that arise from the existing evidence;
- Analyze how certain types of research are more or less helpful in understanding impact of digital tools in agriculture;
- Highlight areas where that are, based on the evidence, most ripe for investment and/or scale. These case studies may include international travel and interviews of field staff and beneficiaries and/or virtual (using Skype, phone) interviews of the project or organization to determine their experience with digital tools, including:
- Advantages and disadvantages of digital tools in the field
- Disaggregating the gender impacts of digital tools in the field
These 8-10-page case studies will be researched using multiple primary and secondary sources and will be written using compelling language, useful to the reader, and will be supported by robust 3 quantitative and qualitative evidence. The primary audience of these case studies will be USAID’s Bureau for Food Security and Feed the Future teams, in both Washington, D.C. and the field, as well as the broader development practitioner community working at the intersection of digital technology and agriculture. The consultant will work in close collaboration with mSTAR and USAID’s D2FTF team. The consultant will provide the following:
- Desk Research: Lead a desk review of relevant, existing materials on the organizations such as website materials, impact assessments, research, evidence documents, videos, and interviews, and other resources as needed.
- Write Case Study (one or more): Write one or more of 8-10 pages case study with the elements discussed in the above paragraphs.
- Stakeholder Engagement: May lead field visits of approximately one week to facilitate more in-depth face-to-face meetings, a deeper understanding of field operations and interactions with beneficiaries and/or lead virtual interviews (via Skype, phone calls) with experts and representatives of projects and organizations working in the field.
- Communications: Prepare a short 500-700-word blog post introducing the topic and main themes of each case study, and liaise with USAID and mSTAR communication specialists to disseminate the materials broadly to the public
- Other tasks as needed: This may include drafting one-pagers, executive summaries, charts, slide decks as resources describing lessons learned from the case studies, and related tasks.
The complete application package includes:
- Cover Letter: The cover letter shall demonstrate the applicant’s understanding of and interest in the topic, describe the applicant’s capability for completing the assignment, include a timeline for completing the work, include examples of previous experience with similar activities, and confirm availability to perform the work during the anticipated period of performance indicated above (maximum two pages). Please also include language or regional expertise as well as any specific experience working with a particular digital tool or approach, if possible. The cover letter MUST include the consultant’s estimated number of days he/she will require to perform the work detailed in the scope of work and suggested daily rate.
- Resume/CV: The resume/CV shall include a list of at least three references with contact email and phone numbers who can independently verify past work.
- Writing Sample: A writing sample of a similar case study, blog, or report that the candidate has already had published 4. Biographical Data Form: Completed and signed FHI 360 biographical data form with previous salaries for both full-time work and consultancies. Applicants are responsible for the review of the terms and conditions provided in the attachments and listed below. Applicants must provide full, accurate, and complete information as required by this solicitation and its attachments
Incomplete application packages will not be considered for the consultancy.
For additional information, please refer to the complete consultant solicitation posted below.
About the Organization
FHI 360 is a global development organization with a rigorous, evidence-based approach. Our professional staff includes experts in health, nutrition, education, economic development, civil society, environment and research. FHI 360 operates from 60 offices with 4,400 staff in the U.S. and around the world. Our commitment to partnerships at every level and our multidisciplinary approach enable us to have a lasting impact on the individuals, communities and countries we serve–improving lives for millions.