Horticulture Specialist (1 position), Level : SB 5/Peg 1 (Only for Nepalese nationals)

Location : Kathmandu with frequent travel to project areas, NEPAL
Application Deadline :02-Jan-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Other
Post Level :Other
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :Initially One year (Renewable based on performance)
Expected Duration of Assignment :2022

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Nepal’s agriculture shows weak growth rates with low productivity, coupled with a food trade deficit and high malnutrition. This is associated with low marketed volumes and farmers’ limited access to agriculture technology. Postharvest losses of fresh produces are high because of inappropriate harvest, careless commodity handling and a lack of storage facilities. 

Against this backdrop, Value Chain Development of Fruit and Vegetables in Nepal Project (VCDP) focuses on increasing production, reducing postharvest losses, and promoting market linkages. Led by the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development (MoALD), Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), and United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the 5-year project aims to increase incomes of smallholder farmers growing fruit and vegetables. The project is being implemented in three major road corridors (the BP and part of Arniko highway, Prithvi highway extended up to Putalibazar Municipality and Hetauda - Dumkibas section of East-West highway) in Bagmati and Gandaki Provinces. The project aims to reach at least 10,000 farmers and 20 cooperatives of the project command areas.  

Management arrangements:

The Horticulture Specialist will work under the guidance and supervision of the National Project Manager. S/he will work in close collaboration with UNDP Nepal office, government partners (Local governments, Nepal Agricultural Research Council, Department of Agriculture), the donor and other stakeholders.

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the guidance of the National Project Director and National Project Manager, the Horticulture Specialist is responsible for activities under project outcome 2 (reduce postharvest losses of selected fruit and vegetables by postharvest technology development). Specifically, the incumbent will carry out the following activities:

1. Planning and monitoring of project interventions and knowledge management:

  • Support identification of pocket areas, municipalities, cooperatives, farmers, extension officers and other agricultural service providers;
  • Assist the completion of the baseline survey and necessary socio-economic researches (i.e. gross margin analysis);
  • Support to identify area for postharvest research, to develop new postharvest research proposals (including varietal screening, management practices, harvesting, picking methods and timing, cleaning, grading, sorting, packaging, and transportation) to carry out in on-station and on-farm in collaboration with the Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC);
  • Support for preparation of research papers, training materials and manuals for technology transfer of the newly developed technologies;
  • Support analysing financial incentives for farmers’ adoption of postharvest technology (both existing and new);
  • Develop extension materials for productivity enhancement and postharvest management based on existing information suitable to farmers and technicians;and
  • Document best practices and lessons learnt in ongoing basis and share in appropriate forums.

2. Strengthening capacity of project partners and beneficiaries:

  • Provide technical support to NARC scientists for the implementation postharvest research activities;
  • Support the improvement of the physical facility of the postharvest laboratory at the Horticulture Research Division of NARC;
  • In collaboration with the NARC, extension officers/technicians of municipality, informal agricultural service providers, and other potential partners, plan and implement the provision of extension of existing postharvest technologies at cooperatives and farmers’ levels;
  • Support provision of training programmes on postharvest technology and management to extension officers or technicians, cooperatives, and beneficiary farmers of project areas; and
  • Provide technical inputs to Palikas and cooperative for the promotion of appropriate technologies in order to enhance productivity and reduce postharvest losses of fruit and vegetables.

3. Stakeholders engagement and partners coordination:

  • Co-ordinate with NARC and its research entities for smooth implementation of VCDP supported research and dissemination activities;
  • Co-ordinate with federal and provincial agricultural extensions agencies for the dissemination of postharvest technologies;
  • Prepare detailed roll-out strategy for technology dissemination;
  • Establish contacts with potential partners and identify synergies;
  • Attend events (scientific, policy, promotional) and conferences on postharvest management and provide feedback and information;
  • Represent the project with consent from NPM and share experiences for up scaling the learnings of the project;
  • Identify opportunities for campaigns, services, and distribution channels that will lead to reduced postharvest losses of fruit and vegetables; and
  • Make linkages with academia and coordinate for interns and MS research related to postharvest management of fresh produces.

4. Project management support:

  • Support design, improvement and implementation of the value chain grants for input support to enable adoption of postharvest technologies;
  • Provide technical backup to the specialists responsible for Outcome 1 and 3 for technical assurance;
  • Contribute on project visibility activities and extend technical support to the Technical Specialist as per requirements;
  • Contribute on progress reporting (providing information and data on time along with report review) as required by the donor agency and the implementing partner;
  • Support NPM to make harmony with 39 local governments for the execution of project activities; and 
  • Perform other tasks as required for the smooth implementation of the project.

5. Gender and social inclusion in project interventions:

  • Ensure gender and social inclusion component in any type of project interventions; and
  • Manage data disaggregated by sex, age, and caste/ethnicity from the records of project interventions.

Impact of Function: 

Successful management of the value chain development of fruit and vegetables project in compliance with the Government of Nepal’s and UNDP’s rules and procedures.


Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Serves and promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of the UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Good inter-personal skills;
  • Clear and upfront communication skills;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism;
  • Display cultural and gender sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Collaborates effectively in a team environment;
  • Organized and good with following-up on pending issues; meets deadlines;
  • Promote learning and knowledge management/sharing;
  • Focused on delivering results by taking calculated-risks and problem-solving approach;
  • Fair and transparent decision making; regularly shares information with team members; and
  • Actively works towards continuing personal learning and development.

Functional Competencies:

  • Promotes sharing of knowledge and experience, and actively works towards continued learning and development on personal level as well as for supervisees;
  • Good practical knowledge of inter-disciplinary development issues;
  • Ability to go beyond established procedures and models, propose new approaches which expand the range of projects;
  • Demonstrates strong numerical and analytical skills;
  • Has experience working with Monitoring and Evaluation tools;
  • Experience in developing business plans for financial institutions including energy enterprises;
  • Experience in coordination, technical assistance and advisory support top government and private institutions;
  • Experienced in delivering training and other needed capacity/ institutional building support to a wide range of stakeholders including financial institutions;
  • Demonstrates excellent organizational and administrative skills;
  • Identifies and communicates relevant information for a variety of audiences for advocating UNDP’s mandate;
  • Analyzes and selects materials for strengthening strategic alliances with partners and stakeholders;
  • Understands and applies fundamental concepts and principles of a professional discipline or technical specialty relating to the position;
  • Possesses basic knowledge of organizational policies and procedures relating to the position and applies them consistently in work tasks;
  • Demonstrates good knowledge of information technology and applies it in work assignments;
  • Effectively networks with partners seizing opportunities to build strategic alliances relevant to UNDP’s mandate and strategic agenda;
  • Assesses project performance to identify success factors and incorporates best practices into project work;
  • Monitors specific stages of projects/programme implementation; and
  • Researches linkages across programme activities to identify critical points of integration.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s degree in Agriculture or equivalent with specialization on Horticulture.


  • At least 7 years of experiences in the field of agriculture value chain of fresh produces, postharvest technology for fruit and vegetables, and extension provision;
  • At least 4 years of experiences in horticultural research;
  • Sound understanding of agriculture policies, and agriculture research and extension systems of Nepal;
  • Ability to manage and supervise a team of multidisciplinary professionals;
  • A proven track record of farmers friendly horticultural extension materials development; and
  • Good understanding of UNDP rules and procedures (an experience of completing UN assignments would be an asset).

Language Requirement:

  • Fluency in spoken and written English and Nepali.


  • Good knowledge of computer applications such as word, excel, power point and statistical applications.

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