Gender in Agriculture Partnership

Transforming agriculture to empower women and deliver food, nutrition and income security

Program Officer, Rural Finance and Risk Job - Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Division: Global Development Program    

Department: Agricultural Development    

Foundation Overview

Guided by the belief that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people's health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, it seeks to ensure that all people-especially those with the fewest resources-have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life. Based in Seattle, the foundation is led by CEO Sue Desmond-Hellmann and co-chair William H. Gates Sr., under the direction of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett.

Group Summary

The goal of the Global Development Program (GDP) is to increase opportunities for people in the developing world to lift themselves out of hunger and poverty and to help deliver targeted healthcare solutions in these regions. Our strategies focus on Agriculture Development; Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene; Financial Services for the Poor; and Family Health which includes Maternal, Newborn and Child Health, Family Planning, and Nutrition. These strategies are supported by functional teams that focus on Vaccine Delivery and Integrated Delivery. GDP also has Special Initiatives that focus Urban Poverty, Emergency Relief, Global Libraries and Value for the Money.

The Agricultural Development Department focuses on sustainable productivity growth for smallholder farmers to achieve the impact that we seek: poverty reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Productivity growth for smallholders depends upon improved seeds, livestock and other technologies, incentives to adopt these improvements through functioning input and output markets, and an improved policy environment. We currently define our goals by commodity, with a focus on delivering tangible productivity gains for a priority set of crops and livestock products within a handful of target geographies. In developing and executing on their strategies, our commodity portfolio managers rely on functional and context expertise from three groups: Research & Development, Farmer Services & Systems, and Country & Policy.


The Program Officer (PO), Rural Finance & Risk, will work closely with members of functional and commodity teams within Agricultural Development as well as liaise across the foundation, particularly with colleagues in Financial Services for the Poor and Program Related Investments. With a specific focus on rural finance and household risk, s/he will be expected to develop and manage grants as well as structure program related investments, in collaboration with other POs. S/he will contribute to the development and implementation of commodity- and country-based strategies for improving on-farm productivity and realized value for smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

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