Individual Consultant: Developing a Forage Informatic Dashboard

  • Executive-level, Short-term contract assignment
  • Posted on 18 January 2021

Job Description

Request for Proposal (RFP)
Issued on: 1/19/2020
Solicitation Number: US.1740.01.2020
For: Develop forage informatic dashboard using seed data and metrics and a policy brief on forage seed systems in Ethiopia
Proposal Deadline: 01/26/2021

Project Overview

The Feed the Future Global Supporting Seed Systems for Development activity (S34D) is a five-year Leader with Associates Cooperative Agreement Award, funded by Feed the Future through the Bureau of Resilience and Food Security (RFS) and by USAID through the Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA). Catholic Relief Services is leading this consortium with the support of a team of Consortium Partners (CP’s): The Alliance for Bioversity International and CIAT (ABC), the Pan-Africa Bean Research Alliance (PABRA), Opportunity International (OI), and Agri Experience (AE). S34D’s Life of Activity (LOA) runs from August 2018 through August 2023. The overarching goal of S34D is to improve the functioning of national seed sectors in an inclusive manner in our focus countries. The activity aims to meet its goals by increasing the capacity of each of the seedsystems to sustainably offer quality, affordable seeds of a range of crops (Objective 1) and increasing collaboration and coordination among all seed systems actors and actions (Objective 2). This integrated approach is further strengthened by cross-cutting IRs that seek to improve policies and practices that support pluralistic seed systems, rather than focusing on individual parts of each system. The current activity focuses on the intersection of formal and informal seed systems.


Forages play a catalytic role in bridging gaps between crop and livestock sub-sectors. Increased livestock productivity is key for adapting and absorbing recurrent weather-related shocks and working towards building a transformative capacity in the long term for geographies with high livestock population and where continuous crop production is not viable. Research shows the increased importance of cultivated forages in reaching livestock productivity potentials (Ethiopia MoA Feed Strategy (2020); Peters et al (2001) 1 ). There are several ongoing efforts to tackle increase quality animal feed in the country and increase livestock productivity for Ethiopia. However, there are no comprehensive metrics for decision and policy-makers to review and assess growth in the sub-sector. Therefore, it would be good for research and development partners, private sector investors, and governments to have a better understanding of the trends in the forage sub-sector to invest in appropriate areas that enable inclusive agricultural transformation. More information about this less explored area will support discussions around making the right decisions and enable effective measurements to gauge developments. Currently there are no seed indices that focus on forage seeds, which are very different from crop seeds and less studied. This activity will fill in that gap.

Scope of Work (SOW)

As background, CRS has conducted an in-depth research into the current existing seed metrics – TASAI, ASI, and World Bank’s EBA. CRS has a well-established knowledge set on which we will build off the current activity – especially the framework.

The goal of this consultancy is to develop a framework suited to summarize forage seed data and informatics so decision-makers and policy-makers could assess whether cultivated forage seed subsector is progressing to achieve the set targets. The consultant will support, CRS in developing this framework.

To meet this goal, the consultant will execute the following tasks.

1. Support CRS in developing the forage seed metric framework; In FY2019, CRS undertook a research study to assess the comparative advantage of the three key seed system metrics that exist: TASAI; World Bank’s EBA, and ASI. CRS had developed a set of recommendations to improve the existing metrics and create new ones to fill in gaps. Leveraging the work that was done in FY2019, CRS would like to develop a similar but simple framework catered for the forage seed sub-sector. The Consultant will support CRS to develop this framework.

2. Once the framework is developed (#1 above), the Consultant will lead the coordination and collaboration on the ground to collect information to populate the chosen metrics in #1. Use primary, secondary, and grey literature.

3. Develop a forage seed system Policy Brief based on S34D’s FY20 activities. The text of the brief is no more than 8 to 10 pages. The policy brief will comprise the policy implications uncovered during the FY20 studies and help facilitate discussions among various stakeholders. Support in preparation of validation, dissemination, and finalization of the forage seed dashboard and the policy brief. Our goal is to serve stakeholders with the informatics that aid with such decision-making. As much as possible, data and information will be disaggregated by sex and age (wherever applicable).

The outputs of this activity are a forage-seed informatic tool developed and shared in the public domain, and one policy brief on forage seed subsector to facilitate dialogues among stakeholders. The audience is national governments, institutions, and partners in Ethiopia. The lessons will be shared with policymakers, donor partners (such as USAID, BMGF, GIZ etc.) and regional players such as AGRA-PIATA.


The contractor’s technical point of contact will be a CRS Senior Technical Advisor. Communication will include regular skype meetings and submission of deliverables.

Because of Covid-19, the consultant is required to adhere to Covid-19 restriction from USAID, CDC and WHO. CRS will provide regular Covid updates to the consultant. Any potential domestic travel will require prior authorization from CRS


Questions must be submitted via e-mail to no later than close of business 1/22/2021. The solicitation number indicated above must be included in the subject line. Responses will be provided to all known offerors. CRS is under no obligation to respond to questions that are not received prior to the aforementioned deadline.

Proposal Deadline

All proposals must be received by CRS (to ) no later than [11:59 PM for electronic submission] 1/26/2021. The solicitation number indicated above must be included in the subject line.

Note: The deadline has been changed to January 26, 2021.

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