The Land Portal Foundation seeks six dynamic and highly motivated regional consultants to conduct research about the land governance context in specific countries, as well as, to develop partnerships and to communicate land information. These are part-time (5 days a month) for a 12-month period, with the possibility of renewal based on performance and depending on funding availability. The Land Portal Foundation will consider applications focused on the Global South, specifically from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Arab region.
The Land Portal exists to nurture a vibrant online platform to inform and engage with partners, promoting open data and the sharing of best practices and stimulating debate and collaboration both on and offline. We provide a vital bridge for those grappling with complex land governance issues – from researchers and NGOs through to governments and grassroots communities – connecting people, facilitating dialogue and joining the dots between fragmented information.
The Land Portal was established in 2009 to create, curate and disseminate land governance information,helping to foster a more inclusive and accessible data landscape. Over the subsequent ten years, the Land Portal has grown to become an information gateway and resource base, a vibrant online community of users from around the world, and a trusted voice within the land governance sector globally.
We believe data and information are powerful tools for achieving our vision of a land governance system that benefits those with the most insecure land rights and the greatest vulnerability to landlessness. However, information sources remain highly fragmented, unstructured, poorly curated, represent a narrow range of perspectives, and continue to be published in ways that do not facilitate maximum discovery, engagement and reuse. Until policy and decision-makers, intermediaries and grassroots groups have access to the data and information they need to make sound decisions, their initiatives (programs, policies, campaigns) will fail to achieve maximum impact.
Raising awareness of “open data” – and the critical role it plays in realising tenure security for individuals and communities around the world – continues to be our greatest challenge. To this end, we make use of every possible conference, meeting and speaking engagement to promote the concept of “going open”, while recognising that, given the highly sensitive nature of land data (particularly for vulnerable communities), not everything can or should be made entirely open.
In 2020, Land Portal launched the ‘Country Insights’, an initiative that seeks to improve knowledge about the land governance situation in various countries of the world. Two key deliverables of the Country Insights are country portfolios, a narrative that introduces the main challenges and innovations to govern land at the national level, and webinars, online discussions and other mechanisms to share the knowledge and stimulate debate about the main researched issues during the development of country portfolios. By the end of April, 36 country portfolios will have been developed (or updated) and two webinars will have been organized. They cover countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and one country in Central America.
In the period 2021-2024, Land Portal wants to expand this initiative to cover more regions, namely, the Arab region and the whole Latin America, and continue to develop portfolios for Africa and Asia.
Country Research Engagement Consultants have a dual responsibility of research and communications & engagement in a specific region or country. They will report directly to the Knowledge Engagement Network Coordinator.
Regarding research, they will be responsible for identifying land-related data and information in the region, to write country portfolios’ narratives, while also building partnerships with local practitioners, researchers and organizations to share data and to co-create data-driven stories and compelling narratives. The consultants will also ensure local data is properly represented on the Land Portal website, and support the Land Portal in understanding better the local data ecosystem.
Regarding communication related tasks, they will be responsible for identifying relevant land issues in a particular region and/or countries and stimulating dialogue about these issues with relevant networks and partners. They will also update the Land Portal website with land-related news, events and blogs, organize webinars, online discussions and collect blogs that feature relevant local voices, and realize knowledge products to disseminate country portfolios
Principal tasks and responsibilities
Specific responsibilities relating to research:
- Undertake thorough desk research to develop country portfolios that follow Land Portal’s guidelines, identifying peer-reviewers, and consolidating drafts.
- Identifying land-related data and resources from government agencies and departments, universities, civil society organizations, private sector and other stakeholder groups to be aggregated and ingested by Land Portal with the support of Land Portal data analysts.
- In cooperation with regional land experts, universities and research partners, explore analysis of land indicators to reveal trends and new perspectives on land issues and, with support from Land Portal’s team, highlight these trends in innovative ways through data stories, visualizations or other methods.
Specific responsibilities relating to communications & engagement:
- Identifying opportunities for data sharing collaborations and data sharing partnerships in the region of interest to the Land Portal Foundation.
- Create original interviews and/or blogs with local authors to produce compelling stories on land-related topics.
- Organize webinars, online discussions or interviews according to Land Portal’s guidelines. This involves identifying topics and panelists, developing a concept note and a script, assuming the moderation role or identifying a moderator, and writing a short summary report.
- Identify and inform the Land Portal of potential opportunities for partnership in the region on co-authoring webinars, discussions, data stories, participation in projects, media partnerships for land conferences, etc. (this may generate the potential to work a few extra days to coordinate those collaborations).
- Contribute to a quarterly newsletter via Mailchimp compiling updates from the Country Insights initiative and the most compelling data stories, interviews and other resources from local stakeholders.
Qualifications and skills
The successful candidate will have:
- University degree (Masters or PhD level) in international development, law, rural & agricultural development, public policy management or any other field related to land governance
- Prior experience or studies in land governance related issues;
- Some knowledge of data management and analysis;
- Some knowledge of open data and data sharing best practices;
- Fluency (native level) in English and fluency in relevant local languages; French is required for the consultant covering Western Africa, Arabic for the Arab Region, and Spanish for Latin America;
- Minimum 5 year of relevant work experience;
- Excellent computer skills, including with Content Management Systems;
- Great attention to detail;
- Excellent communications skills and understanding of social media, as well as good drafting, communicating and presentation abilities;
Personal and professional attributes
- Inclusive and effective communication skills and techniques with an ability to respectfully engage with, and to communicate concepts to others;
- High standard of ethics and integrity which inspires trust and confidence;
- Enthusiasm and commitment to sustained effort through diligence and pursuit of high standards;
- Commitment to ongoing personal and professional development which drives best practice;
- Proactively utilizes initiative, innovation and a commitment to continuous improvement;
- Strong collaborative skills which enable effective engagement within a high functioning cohesive team;
- Ability to employ sound judgment and decision making amongst competing demands;
- Ability to show initiative in planning and developing new ideas and approaches, and to implement and communicate change effectively;
- Problem-solving attitude;
- Diplomacy, team spirit and willingness to take initiatives;
- Ability to meet strict deadlines;
- Disciplined - good at managing his or her own time and committed to work from home in a remote environment.
The Country Research & Engagement Consultant will report to the Knowledge Engagement Coordinator. For some of the communications & engagement related tasks s/he might be asked to coordinate with the Communications Specialist.
Timeframe & location
This consultancy will be staffed on a part-time basis (5 days per month) for a 12 months period renewable according to funding availability and performance. The Consultant will be working from home.
How to apply?
Please send your curriculum vitae (CV) and a cover letter explaining your interests, qualifications and regional experiences - please specify which region(s) -, addressed to Laura Meggiolaro, Land Portal Team Leader no later than 19 April, 2021 at midnight CET. Email your cover letter and CV to email@example.com
Please write “Country Research & Engagement – Job Application - (your region of focus)” in the subject of the email.