TERMS OF REFERENCE: Consultancy on Event Organisation for the 1st African Conference on Agricultural Technologies (ACAT) – May 2023; Nairobi, Kenya

  1. Background and Context

1.1 About the Task

AATF is seeking event organization services to provide program planning and content management including speaker, rapporteur, and reporting management; venue and catering management including suitable entertainment; and delegate management for the 1st African Conference on Agricultural Technologies (ACAT) that will include the celebration of its 20th anniversary to be held in May 2023 in Nairobi, and that is expected to attract 400 participants and run for five days.

 1.2 Brief Description of AATF

AATF is a not-for-profit organisation with a mission of making available, to smallholder farmers, agricultural technologies that were previously not accessible to them. Founded on the premise of tackling poverty and food insecurity through technological interventions, AATF empowers farmers to transform their livelihoods by equipping them with better tools and inputs that would, without the organisation’s intervention, take a much longer time to reach them and cost a lot more.  These efforts, combined with optimal agricultural practices and product value addition, will contribute to agricultural transformation in Africa leading to food security and poverty reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa.

1.3 Background to the 1st African Conference on Agricultural Technologies (ACAT)

AATF has been at the forefront of facilitating access, development, and commercialization of agricultural technologies that help to address the multiple stressors facing the sector due to population growth, climate change, and the growing resistance of pests and diseases to existing control measures.

These technologies are intended to improve the health and wealth of communities by mitigating production challenges, enhancing productivity, and contributing to the continent’s economies. Whereas steady growth has been observed in technology development, there has been little diffusion of these products to their intended beneficiaries, i.e., farmers and consumers, due to persistent bottlenecks that lead to low return on the large investment in Agricultural technology research and development, consequently hampering the technology scaling efforts.

The breadth of these bottlenecks needs to be illuminated by action from high-level decision makers and relevant government institutions across the continent, to facilitate both in-country and cross-boundary value chain optimization and trade.

AATF will therefore host a forum, the African Conference on Agricultural Technology (ACAT), that will be held every two years to highlight the broad range of concerns associated with getting innovative technologies into the hands of farmers. The Conference will also provide an opportunity for in-depth discussions and consensus building on the barriers to technology development and transfer and generate higher policy level interest at the country and continental level to resolve the identified challenges. ACAT will amplify efforts exerted by other like-minded organizations, for the transformation of the agriculture sector and the adoption of technologies and innovations.

This inaugural ACAT to be held in May 2023 will also celebrate 20 years since the founding of the AATF. The forum is expected to attract 400 in-person delegates including Agriculture Ministers and other relevant Ministers; eminent local, regional, and global leaders; top industry captains from the national, regional, and global private sector; and lead representatives of farmer organizations and key implementing partners.

The African Conference on Agricultural Technologies (ACAT) will focus on Science Technology and Innovation under the theme Agricultural Resilience Through Innovation.  It will seek to

  • Showcase emerging agri-science and technological innovations
  • Unlock innovation and technology access and delivery
  • Promote networking and shared learning on agricultural biotechnology
  • Feed into continental and global policy processes

The forum will feature an exciting array of sessions in a variety of formats including high-level plenaries and ministerial segments on innovation and technology transfer. An engaging set of thematic panel sessions will workshop key issues in the Agtech space including digitalisation, mechanization, agro-processing, urban agriculture, One Health, and gene editing, among others. The Conference is expected to attract live demonstrations of scalable technologies including awards to mark the continent’s best agricultural Innovators.

1.4 Purpose and Objectives of the Consultancy

The main objective of this assignment is to provide wholistic event management design, implementation and reporting services that will ensure attainment of a successful, well attended, engaging and productive conference that responds to the theme of Agricultural Resilience Through Innovation.

Specifically, the service provider will be expected to: 

  1. Provide overall event management and on the ground, support including production of a work plan to ensure delivery of a quality ACAT 2023
  2. Support identification and management of service providers and other suppliers directly including serving as a liaison between them and AATF for efficiency and effectiveness
  3. Propose and design a staffing structure for effective services provision and utilization of resources
  4. Support the AATF ACAT secretariat including management of event organization meetings and implementation/follow-up of decisions
  5. Assist in identifying and managing a suitable venue
  6. Oversee program planning and management, including identification, participation, and management of high-level speakers and participants
  7. Lead content development and facilitation services including reporting, supported by a well-structured rapporteur system
  8. Support design and hosting of the AATF 20th Anniversary Celebration Event to suitably showcase progress made over the years

1.5 Deliverables 

Deliverables should include the following:

  1. An inception report including Workplan and planned timeline and costings
  2. Clear staffing plan and services to deliver quality event needs
  3. Confirmed suitable venue, including appropriate entertainment
  4. Well-designed, engaging, inclusive program with confirmed suitable high-level speakers and theme leads
  5. Well-defined and structured internal and external communications and visibility-enhancing program that ensures secretariat, participants, and stakeholders are well informed of the event, deliberations, decisions, and key moments
  6. Successful and productive ACAT 2023
  7. A clear after event program for seamless wrap up of the event including reports, and appreciation notes

1.6 Indicative Schedule of Activities

The inaugural ACAT is planned for May 22 – 26 2023 in Nairobi, Kenya

1.7 Expected Profiles of the Consultant(s)

  • Demonstrated experience and evidence organizing and managing similarly high-level international events, dialogues and conferences in Africa
  • Extensive experience managing high-level virtual, hybrid and in-person events
  • Demonstrable networks across African agriculture, governments and agribusiness development agencies including investors and financial institutions
  • Experience nurturing and curating new event ideas from conceptualisation to delivery and reporting
  • Strong program development, speaker identification, management and tracking capabilities
  • Good understanding of the agriculture environment in Africa
  • Experience coordinating a multi-stakeholder virtual team and service providers towards delivery of an event
  • Good understanding of the African Agricultural terrain, key players and issues will be an added advantage.

1.8  Application Criteria

Interested consultants should submit detailed technical and financial proposals (not more than 8 pages) covering:

  1. Capacity statement.
  2. Demonstrated understanding of the terms of reference.
  3. Proposed methodology to be used in undertaking the assignment.
  4. A detailed work plan (time and activity schedule).
  5. A detailed financial proposal

The proposal should, in addition to the above, be accompanied by the below as annexes:

  • Profile and CV of the consultant (s).
  • Samples of three most recent related works (and/or references for the same with contact details of the referees.

 1.9 Timeline and Estimated Consulting Days

This consulting assignment is expected to begin on immediately upon contracting and go ahead until final report of the event is presented to AATF approximately two weeks after the event.

1.10  Evaluation and Award of the Consultancy

AATF shall evaluate the proposals and award the assignment based on technical and financial feasibility. AATF reserves the right to accept or reject any proposal received without giving reasons and is not bound to accept the lowest or the highest bidder.

1.11 Terms and conditions of the proposal

AATF reserves the right to request new or additional information regarding each service provider and any individual or other persons associated with its project proposal. AATF reserves the right not to make any appointment from the proposals submitted. Service providers shall not make available or disclose details pertaining to their Project proposal with anyone not specifically involved unless authorized to do so by AATF. Service providers shall not issue any press release or other public announcement pertaining to details of their project proposal without prior written approval.

AATF Service providers are required to declare any conflict of interest they may have in the transaction for which the tender is submitted or any potential conflict of interest. AATF reserves the right not to consider further any proposal where such a conflict of interest exists or where such a potential conflict of interest may arise.

1.12  Confidentiality statement

All data and information received from AATF for the purpose of this assignment are to be treated confidential and are only to be used in connection with the execution of these Terms of Reference. All intellectual property rights arising from the execution of these Terms of Reference are assigned to AATF.

1.13  Deadline for submission

Applications should be submitted to AATF Procurement Officer at: procurement@aatf-africa.org by COB 9th December 2022 with the subject head ‘’ ACAT Event Organization Consultancy’’

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