Terms of Reference for GIS Officer

  1. Background

The Horn of Africa Regional Environment Centre and Network, Addis Ababa University (AAU-HoA-REC&N) is a peculiar regional organization established to bridge the gap between policy, knowledge and practice in environmental matters of the Horn of Africa region. The organization is serving as a regional multi-stakeholder platform of knowledge exchange whereby academia, policy-decision makers and practitioners convene to promote environmental conservation and natural resources management as well as facilitating collaboration, strengthening and advocating for sustainable development and environmental governance across the Horn of Africa.

AAU-HoA-REC&N has broad goal of curbing the increasing trend of environmental degradation caused by miss-management and conflicts that is aggravated by climate change, lack of coordination and collaboration to restore degraded ecosystems and to ensure sustainable use of natural resources by supporting local communities to transform their livelihoods, to cope with their changing physical environment in the Horn of Africa countries. This is done by strengthening capacity, raising environmental awareness, improving environmental governance and policy throughout the region by facilitating and stimulating practical and demand driven action research to address societal problems.

A detailed overview about AAU-HoA-REC&N is available at www.hoarec.org.

One of the flagship projects of AAU-HoA-REC&N is the Integrated Land Use and Development Master Plan (ILDP) for Gambella People’s National Regional State (GPNRS). The overall goal of developing the ILDP project is to transform the lives and land-resources of the peoples of Gambella through provision of an ILDP to be used as a guide for optimal use of its land-based resources through the provision of coordinated, aligned and harmonized ILDP. In view of this goal AAU-HoA-REC&N is now seeking competent GIS Officer for ILDP programm based in Addis Ababa.

The GIS Officer will be required to maintain a comprehensive spatial database for the AAU-HoAREC&N target landscape, and to provide technical assistance on GIS , and remote-sensing , across the program, and support spatial analyses, such as monitoring land-use change etc. The work will provide support to both field interventions as well as on the development and implementation of an automated web-based GIS embedded M&E system policy development.

The GIS Officer will support the IT manager and senior specialist involved in data collection, storage, analysis, mapaing, imaging, and communication of geospatial information. The position will be based in Addis Ababa, with regular trips to the filed to provide direct technical advice, monitoring and capacity building of filed staff.

  1. Duties and Responsibilities

2.1 Specific Duties and responsibilities: 

Under the general supervision of the ILDP Programme and IT manager, the GIS officer will:

  • provide GIS services to the respective components and leading on capacity building and ensuring information is compiled accurately and timely from freely available satellite imageries and software;
  • compile, document and organize a database and library of spatial and non-spatial data for all project areas under the AAU-HoAREC&N development program, to advise on compatibility of data sets and acquisition of additional data;
  • organize and supervise Regional (HoRN) staff to compile a spatial database of project intervention sites using different methods of Remote Sensing and GIS;
  • develop guidelines for field data collection including the use of Geographic Positioning System (GPS), GIS including the use of Google maps;
  • produce maps of project woreda and kebele to show project interventions;
  • establish a spatial monitoring system compatible with existing systems and put in place data collection processes;
  • undertake capacity need assessment in mapping and GPS data collection for project intervention areas (regions and woreda) stakeholders;
  • prepare subject oriented GIS, RS training manuals and conduct capacity building activities for the intervention area  staffs;
  • prepare metadata and other documentation for each of the datasets that will be stored in the database;
  • participate in the preparation and updating of integrated Land use Planning of intervention  areas of the AAU-HoAREC&N;
  • manage the database infrastructure of the organization and branch offices, relevant institutions and their synchronization with the national demands;
  • Coordinate and facilitate the publication of all Gis-based maps, reports, etc
  • Establish and maintain a database of GIS and remote-sensing data
  • Support the maintenance of a geospatial database containing GIS, remote sensing and other spatial and non-spatial data for landscapes including the location of infrastructure or commercial development activities&
  • Continually identify, acquire and enrich the database with external spatial data relevant to projects under the AAU-HoAREC&N.
  • Identify and develop new methods of data compilation, data logging and analysis, using new database systems such as smart phone, online tools and websites.
  • Ensure the database is appropriately stored and regularly backed up.
  • Provide technical support to the development and maintenance of web database applications and any other database program and functions requiring programming and analysis.
  • Provide training, technical assistance and membership to programmatic staff regarding all aspect of database development and management, including data compilation logging, analysis , and access.
  • Provide advice on appropriate GIS, spatial analysis and database software, to ensure that the software used is of the appropriate standard.
  • Provide GIS support to the ILDP program, including development of thematic maps, such as species distribution and forest cover.
  • Support the analysis of remote-sensing data (e.g satellite images) in order to assess land-use and land –use change in the target landscape.
  • Undertake ground –truthing as needed, in conjunction with field staff, in order to verify the maps and spatial analysis produced and to determine levels of accuracy.
  • Model key species populations, building upon other data sources available to the programme
  • Performs other related tasks as demanded by the AAU-HoAREC&N.
  1. Competencies
  • Strong background in using ERDAS, ENVI, ArcGIS, QGIS and CollectEarth;
  • Experience with maintaining databases of spatial information, GIS/GPS shape files is essential;
  • Experience with remote sensing, forest inventories or assessments;
  • Extensive analytical and practical experience in land survey and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) tools and others;
  • Experience using Collect Earth and Open Foris, R and Java tools is desirable;
  • Understanding of and/or willing to learn statistical analysis;
  • Excellent verbal/written communication skills;
  • Good writing skills-for documentation, training, processes;
  • Good analytical/problem solving skills;
  • A basic understanding of the concepts behind data management in a national database;
  • Good IT technical skills.
  1. Required Skills and Experience

4.1 Skills

  • strong written and oral communication skills
  • IT skills, including the use and manipulation of complex databases and spreadsheets
  • knowledge of specialised software packages such as ArcGIS or ESRI
  • numerical skills with the ability to analyse data and statistics
  • the ability to translate client requirements into working solutions
  • familiarity with Ordnance Survey mapping and digitising techniques
  • presentation skills
  • project management skills
  • self-motivation and a proactive attitude to work
  • attention to detail
  • team working skills and the ability to work independently
  • The ability to work well under pressure.
  • Fluency in English and national language of the duty station.

4.2 Educational Qualification:

  • MSc. Degree in GIS/Remote Sensing, geoinformatics or in related fields.
  • Work Experience:
  • 5 years of experience in the field of GIS/RS with the application of Natural Resource Management.
  • 3 years of relevant experience working in NGOs
  • A background of land use planning, database and web-based GIS facilities will be an added value;
  1. Reporting and Performance Monitoring
  • The GIS Officer will report directly to the ILDP Programme coordinator  and  will prepare a complete work plan with a timeframe and outputs. Performance on the workplan will be assessed on a quarterly basis.
  1. Period of contract
  • The duration of the contract is for an initial period of 12 months starting 1January 2021 to 31 December2021 with possible extension and subject to annual review and negotiations with the successful candidate.
  1. General Information
  • All posts will be advertised on an equal opportunity basis and qualified people are encouraged to apply:
  • Competitive and attractive salaries and conditions of service will be offered to the successful              candidate.
  • CV’s to be submitted in English
  • The performance criteria that will be used to assess the performance of the GIS Officer at regular intervals and based upon which the contract may be continued or terminated are the effectiveness, efficiency and quality of delivering on the Scope of Services, Duties and Responsibilities and Deliverables of the assignment.
  • This position will be funded through a grant agreement signed with the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida).