Remote Sensing and GIS Analyst

United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
Senior (10+ Years)
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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Organizational Setting


The Emergency and Resilience Division is responsible for ensuring FAO’s efforts to support countries and partners in preparing for and effectively responding to food and agricultural threats and crises. It is responsible for coordinating the development and maintenance of corporate tools and standards to enable Decentralized Offices to assist member countries to prepare for, and respond to emergencies. PSE ensures humanitarian policy coordination and knowledge, liaison with the Inter-Agency Standing Committee as well as with humanitarian resource partners, co-leadership with World Food Programme of the global Food Security Cluster, organizational preparedness, surge capacity and response to large-scale emergencies. PSE supports food and nutrition security assessment and early warning activities related to emergency and humanitarian analysis and responses. PSE plays a major role in the development and leadership of the Organization’s programme to increase the resilience of livelihoods to food and agriculture threats and crises. In line with this mandate, the PSE Needs Assessment team supports agriculture, food and nutrition security assessments (pre and post disaster and protracted crises), preparedness, early warning and monitoring and evaluation activities.


Reporting Lines


This consultancy falls under the PSE roster and as such reporting lines will vary according to circumstances of deployment and will have also reporting line to CIO (Senior Information Technology Officer).


Technical Focus


Under FAO Strategic Programme 5 to increase the resilience of livelihoods to food and agriculture threats and crises, the PSE Needs assessment team is developing a Disaster platform to assess the impact of disasters on agriculture, livelihoods and food security, as well as the risk of disasters occurring and causing such impacts, and the recovery from disasters. This platform uses remote sensing in combination with other types of data using GIS related tools, to analyze and communicate relevant information for evidence based decision-making.


Tasks and responsibilities


The main tasks and responsibilities of the consultant include:

  • Conduct a survey of Earth observation and ancillary biogeophysical data and systems/software existing in FAO as well as from secondary sources, which could be used for natural and human-induced emergency disaster response. The data survey is to include satellite, aerial, in situ and ancillary data.
  • Continued development of a methodology for using remote sensing data in combination with other types of data (in situ data, social networks and mobile data collection) to assess
  1. impact of different disasters on agricultural production and livelihoods,
  2. monitoring the recovery of populations affected by disasters and the impact of FAO interventions,
  3. the risk of disasters occurring and impacting the agriculture sector and the livelihoods and food security.

The methodology will be presented in a report identifying the relevant tools, data, process, limitations and solutions for different data availability situations, resources and activities needed.

  • Application of the methodology using real data
  • Continued development of a GIS platform to be used to present the results of these assessments through different dashboards targeting internal and external audiences.
  • Be responsible for maintaining the platform and keeping it updated. 
  • In addition, perform other GIS work for the Needs Assessment Team, in particular related to mapping results of needs assessments and building capacity of the team in GIS.
  • Contribute to the FAO’s geospatial data infrastructure implementation strategy
  • Perform other duties as required.



 Minimum Requirements

  • Advanced University degree (Master’s or equivalent) in Agricultural Economy, Statistics, Rural Development, Agronomy, Social Sciences, or closely related technical field;
  • At least 10 years (category A), 5 years (category B) and 1 year (category C) of relevant experience in remote sensing and related GIS tools applied to food security and/or agricultural programmes;
  • Working knowledge (level C) of English and limited knowledge of a second FAO official language (French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Russian).

FAO Core Competencies

  • Results Focus
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Building Effective Relationships
  • Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement


    Technical/Functional Skills  


  • Relevant work experience in remote sensing and related GIS tools applied to food security and/or agricultural programmes;
  • Excellent knowledge of remote sensing and GIS tools and methodologies applied in food security, resilience and agricultural interventions, ideally for impact assessment;
  • Working knowledge of advanced GIS softwares such as ArcGIS;
  • Proficiency in MS Office (Word, Excel, Access, Outlook);
  • Ability to perform in multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary context;
  • Experience in complex/protracted emergencies would be an asset;

Experience in conflict sensitive and peacebuilding programmes would be an asse