GBBC Member Careers

Consultant: Famine Prevention

World Food Programme

World Food Programme

Posted on Thursday, August 3, 2023


WFP celebrates and embraces diversity. It is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, HIV status or disability.


The United Nations World Food Programme is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide.  The mission of WFP is to help the world achieve Zero Hunger in our lifetimes.  Every day, WFP works worldwide to ensure that no child goes to bed hungry and that the poorest and most vulnerable, particularly women and children, can access the nutritious food they need.


Education: Ph.D. in agricultural or development economics, international relations, social science, political science or a related field; or a degree in these fields with additional years of demonstratable experience in programming for prevention and reduction of humanitarian needs.


Experience: More than 12 years of relevant experience in food security, food policy, conflict, resilience and vulnerability.




Over the past years there have been important developments in our understanding of how political, economic and environmental conditions interact and affect societies and individuals facing food crisis and famine. The pathways to famine are not linear processes that can be solely attributed to any one or two factors. Rather, famine is the result of a system of processes that includes the interplay between key drivers and their reinforcing nature, on the one hand, and societies’ preparedness and response to their condition of food insecurity, on the other. 

Humanitarian and development communities have over the past years developed a range of effective programmatic interventions to respond to and reduce needs in the face of shocks like conflict, climate shocks and economic recession. While this has had significant impact in mitigating the impacts of famine, less emphasis has been placed on prevention. Preventing famine requires interventions that address a complex range of structural and socio-economic factors that drive or compound the effects of shocks and result in famine, including social tensions, inequalities, regional and national political dynamics, alongside structural issues such as trade inequalities.  Tackling these drivers requires multi-sectoral, whole-of-society actions, and improved programme design, alongside enhanced political will, advocacy, and mechanisms for strengthened accountability.

In recognition of this, there is a need to identify short-, medium- and longer-term options and possible actions relevant to addressing the drivers of famine. Initially, the focus will be on Hunger hotspot countries.


The Global Network, led by WFP and FAO, as members of the High-level Task Force on Famine Prevention (HLTF), is seeking candidates working and researching at a country-level, to undertake analysis on specific country contexts, with an emphasis on better understanding the factors that exacerbate food insecurity and drive famine, including the identification of recommendations for programming and partnerships that can go beyond mitigation and accelerate prevention efforts through WFP and its partners’ programming efforts.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)

The consultant is expected to be a globally respected academic figure with significant experience in articulating global/national policy inputs for famine prevention.

The consultant is also expected to interact with senior individuals in the UN system, and high-level stakeholders from government, civil society and academia.

The incumbent is expected to:

  1. Conduct in-depth independent analysis and coordinate advice amongst senior policy stakeholders and academics to articulate and prioritize key drivers of famine in specific Hunger Hotspot countries, and present findings to senior figures. Focus should be on understanding how the effects of political, economic and social factors transpire, interact, and reinforce each other with a view to defining solutions/actions.
  2. Put forward independent expert recommendations that can reduce vulnerability and support local systems and communities to effectively adapt or transform in the face of the complex factors driving famine.
  3. Provide substantive expert and independent input to Global Network partners by creating evidential links in specific Hunger Hotspot countries between drivers of famine and recommended interventions.


Knowledge & Skills:

  • Proven expertise in specific countries or regions that experience structural and recurring famine conditions.
  • Extensive research background on issues related to famine and food security;
  • Strong grasp of the recent literature and discourses on pathways to famine and prevention;
  • Extensive experience shaping country-level strategies in contexts affected by food crises;
  • Experience in leading international stakeholder consultations;
  • Proven success in delivering effective policy strategies.



Languages: English (essential), French and/or Spanish (desirable)


The expected outputs are short papers describing key drivers of famine and recommendations to inform actions, partnerships and other transformative change agendas to tackle these complex dimensions.

The process should be as follows:

  1. Conduct in-depth research on selected Hunger Hotspot countries.
  2. Develop short paper on the ‘key drivers of famine with related findings that provide independent expert recommendations on HDP solutions.
  3. Based on advice and evidence convene ‘solutions dialogues’ with the appropriate stakeholders, for insights and validation.
  4. Surface validated evidence and solutions within WFP and the UN system.



Consultant – Famine Prevention


WAE CST Level III (When Actually Employed)


100 days over 11 months

DUTY STATION (City, Country):



Deadline Extended: Thursday, 5 October at 23:59 CEST.


WFP has a zero-tolerance approach to conduct such as fraud, sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to WFP’s standards of conduct and will therefore undergo rigorous background verification internally or through third parties. Selected candidates will also be required to provide additional information as part of the verification exercise. Misrepresentation of information provided during the recruitment process may lead to disqualification or termination of employment

WFP will not request payment at any stage of the recruitment process including at the offer stage. Any requests for payment should be refused and reported to local law enforcement authorities for appropriate action.