Associate Director, Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Current and Emerging Threats to Crops

Virginia Tech
Virginia, United States
Salary Not specified
Jan 26, 2021
Employment Level
Non-Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time

We are currently seeking qualified candidates for the position of: Associate Director, Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Current and Emerging Threats to Crops, to be based in Blacksburg, Virginia (preferred, remote candidates may be considered as well).


Virginia Tech’s Center for International Research, Education, and Development (CIRED) is currently recruiting for the position of Associate Director of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Current and Emerging Threats to Crops (CETC IL), an anticipated USAID-funded project that will aim to design, lead, and implement a research program focused on the control of current and emerging biotic threats to food security crops that the poor depend on. The Innovation Lab will build on a series of successes in agricultural research that have generated innovative solutions for management of insects and other pests, diseases, and weeds. The project will explore the following areas:

  • Inclusive and sustainable agriculture-led economic growth
  • Strengthening resilience among people and systems
  • A well-nourished population, especially among women and children.


The project will aim to:

  • Support smallholder farmers to improve production through research and innovations that provide greater resilience to pests, diseases and weeds.
  • Help farmers increase household income by reducing the economic burden of pest and disease control and losses to pests, diseases, and weeds through earlier identification and control.
  • Mitigate potential negative environmental consequences through development and promotion of innovative, safe and effective control models and methods.
  • Improve household level food security by reducing losses, allowing more production for consumption or income generation.
  • Reduce risk to incentivize investment, fostering increased opportunity and resilience, helping drive investment on and off farm.


Essential Duties and Responsibilities

The position reports to the CETC IL Director within CIRED at Virginia Tech. Responsibilities include:

  1. Assists the CETC IL Director in management and execution of all projects in host countries.
  2. Developing project proposals and concept notes for associate awards.
  3. Coordinating with U.S. and host country participating scientists.
  4. Coordinating the preparation of budgets.
  5. Preparing annual reports, workplans, and travel matrixes.
  6. Reviewing projects.
  7. Participating in regional planning meetings.
  8. Providing research guidance to project partners.
  9. Organizing regional and international workshops, symposia, etc. for the program.
  10. Contributing to VT's scholarly mission through publication of project research.
  11. Representing the Director in project meetings.
  12. Participating in preparation of success stories and other promotional materials.


Required Qualifications:

  1. Ph.D. in a relevant crop protection discipline.
  2. Significant experience implementing and/or managing international collaborative research projects.
  3. Minimum of 5 years of relevant technical expertise.
  4. Demonstrated inclusive program management and leadership.
  5. Demonstrated knowledge and experience with sustainable, climate-smart agricultural technologies, integrated pest management, or related disciplines.
  6. Demonstrated experience organizing workshops/symposia/meetings/conferences/webinars.
  7. Demonstrated experience developing international research proposals.
  8. Demonstrated publication in field of expertise.
  9. Must have strong written and verbal skills.
  10. Must be willing and able to travel internationally.


Preferred Qualifications:

  1. Proficiency in a foreign language.
  2. Demonstrated experience with a range of international agricultural stakeholders, including policymakers.
  3. Passion for improving global food security.


How to Apply:

To apply, please send a cover letter and resume by email to:, with “Associate Director, Innovation Lab for Current and Emerging Threats to Crops” in the subject heading. The position will remain open until filled. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. Recruitment is contingent upon successful award of the project; this document should not be construed in any way to represent a contract of employment.

Virginia Tech is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and protected veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. Anyone having questions concerning discrimination or accessibility should contact the Virginia Tech Office for Equity and Accessibility.

About the Organization:

Virginia Tech’s Center for International Research, Education, and Development (CIRED) manages and implements externally funded projects in developing countries.