iDE is an international NGO that was founded 40 years ago with the belief that markets lift people out of poverty. We catalyze change in markets by incentivizing low-income people to establish locally-led scalable solutions that are passed down through generations and founded on mutually beneficial partnerships. We help build local economies and value chains that deliver goods and services to “last mile” customers in remote areas. We do this by building networks of small-scale entrepreneurs that power “resilient market ecosystems’’, and boosting the incomes of marginalized people, medium-sized commercial farmers and the private sector. iDE resilience-building efforts are currently assisting farmers and entrepreneurs living in nine countries to adapt to multiple environmental, public health and socio-political shocks.
iDE and Nutrition: iDE utilizes our focus and expertise in market development to catalyze change in nutritional outcomes. We have tailored our model to uniquely focus on nutrition by evaluating the complex nature of food systems within social and cultural norms that shape dietary and production practices, the processing and distribution of foods and intrahousehold food allocation, as well as the availability and accessibility of foods based on the local market and ecological context to specifically ensure that gains realized in livelihoods development and income generation directly translate into increased nutritional intake for children and pregnant and lactating women. To activate these opportunities, iDE starts with our Human-Centered Design (HCD) process in each community. By taking the time to do an in-depth analysis of local systems and engaging communities directly in the HCD process, we ensure that our approaches are tailored to each specific local context. For nutrition, this includes integration of local governmental structures and studies to ensure that we are targeting the specific nutritional deficiencies necessary to most appropriately create impact and bring all relevant stakeholders into the systems change needed. HCD gives voice to local communities, governments, and other stakeholders, resulting in higher adoption rates since they participate in the co-creation of these solutions that can change their future.
iDE addresses important issues of malnutrition by engaging in activities that account for these multiple channels of impact on diet. iDE targets several critical areas of intervention:
- Promotion of Essential Nutrition Actions – Integrate World Health Organization guidelines around the critical intervention period of the first 1,000 days of a child’s life, supporting mothers to make healthy choices from pre-conception through the first two years.
- Nutrition Sales Networks – Support and cultivate rural entrepreneurs to impact last mile customers with access to goods that support healthy nutrition such as: sanitation and hygiene products, fortified foods, and information around benefits of a diverse diet and other targeted nutrition information.
- Nutrition Sensitive Agricultural Production – Apply a nutrition-sensitive approach when supporting improved agricultural production practices such as promotion of diverse and nutritious crops, balance between home consumption and sales, and home gardens specifically for nutritional benefits.
- Supply Chain Development – Develop and grow resilient supply chains to ensure goods and services that enhance the availability of high nutrient produce, animal source foods, fortified products, and sanitation products.
Globally, all of iDE’s work in Agriculture and WASH is intimately and inextricably linked to nutrition. With support from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 2023, iDE has capitalized on our initiatives in nutrition in Zambia, Ethiopia, Cambodia, and Honduras. In 2024, we aim to elevate nutrition to a global priority by delivering a strengthened and integrated package of nutrition solutions across nine countries we work in. We will use insights and lessons learned from our work in Zambia, Ethiopia, Cambodia, and Honduras to either replicate, scale, re-catalyze, or launch nutrition programming in Bangladesh, Nepal, Ghana, Mozambique, and Madagascar.
About the Market Systems Resilience Index (MSRI)
The Market Systems Resilience Index (MSRI) measures the market’s ability to react, withstand, and change in response to shocks and stressors. Understanding the different needs and vulnerabilities that households and market actors are required to overcome can help identify channels through which effective interventions can be adopted. MSRI is a standard resilience measurement tool that has been pioneered by iDE and has been implemented in seven countries across the globe. By using the MSRI at two or more points in time, projects can identify needed adjustments after the first measurement round and test whether the adjusted activities led to changes in the market system. In recent months, iDE teams have been collaborating to integrate nutrition and food security questions into the existing tool as an update of the index. The guiding framework for the tool is depicted in the table below:
The MSRI tool, first developed by iDE in 2018, has now undergone several iterations to improve its quality and address particular project and country contexts. These adaptations range from an update of the tool using a Gender Equity and Social Inclusion perspective to a variant built to address the coastal communities context. The tool is currently undergoing re-alignment with the foundations and next steps established in its follow-on peer-reviewed article and the current literature on market systems resilience to ensure its validity and rigor. This includes examining the link between nutrition and food security and resilience at the market level to potentially update the tool.
About the Assignment
iDE is scaling its nutrition activities in the vision described above across many countries and through multiple grants. We have traditionally had some crossover between iDE’s food security interventions and smaller nutrition interventions, and nutrition has been added through supplemental funding for current agriculture and WASH projects. However, we are also now implementing standalone nutrition projects. As a result, iDE’s measurement needs regarding nutrition have also increased. Therefore, we are looking for support to guide the measurement strategy for our nutrition activities across the countries and over time in this new sector.
iDE is seeking a nutrition measurement expert to review our 2023 nutrition work, talk with technical experts on our team about our vision for nutrition programming, and then help guide some of our immediate measurement needs. The key deliverables for this assignment are as follows:
1. Advise updates to our MSRI tool for nutrition and food security sensitivity:
– Update our existing evidence base on the links between nutrition and food security with resilience.
– Refining the proposed questions to ensure they are targeted to address relevant elements of nutrition and food security that are highly correlated with overall resilience. In close collaboration with other technical consultants, ensure adequate updates of the tool with a detailed process for maintaining the food and nutrition security sensitivity.
2. Advise on ethical considerations in nutrition and food security measurement:
– Review our current ethical considerations in our data collection, and advise on measures and limits we should implement considering our organizational expertise and our nutrition work with pregnant and lactating women, children, and the fact that we work in places with high maternal and child mortality rates.
The successful consultant should possess the following qualifications:
- Demonstrated expertise in nutrition and research methodology, especially within the international development sector.
- Preferred experience in leading or contributing to research or development of index measurements.
- Extensive experience in mixed methods (quantitative and qualitative).
- Some conceptual background on the link between nutrition and food security with resilience, preferably in the international development sector context.
- Strong communication and documentation skills to report findings, progress, and recommendations effectively.
- Ability to provide training and support for iDE staff on data-related tools and methodologies.
As our Nutrition programming gears up for the next year, this consultancy does have the possibility of being extended in early 2024 to address additional measurement needs.
Budget: 5,000 USD
Timeline: Dec 1 – Jan 31, 2023
Interested candidates should apply with a cover letter and CV/resume detailing their interest and qualifications directly through this site by 11:59pm (MST) on Monday, December 4th.