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Annex 3. Resources and Teamwork

A3.1 Resources
A3.2 Teamwork

A3.1 Resources

A3.1.1 Human resources
A3.1.2 Logistical resources and equipment
A3.1.3 Financial resources

The resources needed to implement the case study and prepare proposals for FSD policy, strategies and development programmes are: human, logistical and financial.

A3.1.1 Human resources

Human technical resources: phase 1

All the stages of phase 1 require a reliable level of expertise in each discipline plus the capacity to relate the various points of view and approaches to the problem to derive a coherent view of the matter. It is essential that experts who have research experience and are well informed about FSDSs be assigned responsibility for these stages. Preferably, the pre-case study should be carried out by a food system economist, assisted by an urban planner (see Table A3.1 for advice on the selection of team members and Table A3.2 for details on desired qualifications and experience).

Bibliographic research may be assigned to one person. It is preferable to assign the entire phase 1 to a food system economist and to an urbanist or town planner with good knowledge of local conditions.

Human technical resources: phase 2

Phase 2 shall be carried out by an interdisciplinary team comprising a coordinator and several carefully chosen experts (see Table A3.1, A3.2 and A3.3), among which:

The number of team members, their specialities and the time they need to spend with the team can vary because:

All team members must be able to use word processing and data management software (e.g. Microsoft Word, Excel, Access). Where appropriate the team should be familiar with graphics software (e.g. PowerPoint, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop) for slide show presentations and illustration of documentation.

Human support resources

Table A3.1 Qualifications and Experience of Team Members in Phase 1

Food System Economist (Senior)

  • A good university degree (a master’s degree or doctorate) in economics, agricultural economics or related subject;
  • excellent knowledge of food supply and distribution systems and urban food marketing issues for the city in question;
  • excellent knowledge of past and present agricultural and food marketing policies, strategies and development programmes at urban, periurban and rural level;
  • good knowledge of legal and regulatory aspects concerning food supply and distribution activities in his/her own country/city;
  • experience in analysing agricultural/food supply and distribution issues;
  • experience in formulating agricultural/food marketing policies and development programmes;
  • experience in designing vocational training programmes in FSDS-related topics;
  • experience in pre-feasibility studies concerning food marketing infrastructure;
  • research experience in areas directly related to FSDSs;
  • ability to adequately manage an interdisciplinary team;
  • ability to be critical and write concisely and synthetically.

Urbanist or Town Planner (Senior)

  • A good university degree (a master’s degree or doctorate) in urban planning, urban geography, or related subject;
  • an understanding of food supply and distribution systems and urban food marketing issues for the city in question;
  • good knowledge of the city in question with respect to:

- its morphology;

- access roads, transport facilities and infrastructure;

- location and functioning of major market infrastructure, food markets, commercial districts, storage and processing facilities;

- planning documents and regulations at the different scales and their coverage of the commercial and marketing sectors (new infrastructure, commercial district development, upgrading plans, etc.);

- detailed knowledge of legal measures, regulations, plans for commercial and food marketing aspects;

- good knowledge of traffic issues and interventions,

- good knowledge of existing and planned transport plans concerning access to the city;

  • experience in research and planning in areas directly related to urban planning and management in general and as they relate to food supply and distribution issues in particular;
  • experience in vocational training programmes;
  • ability and experience of to work in a multidisciplinary team;
  • ability to be critical and write concisely and synthetically.

Table A3.2 Steps in the Selection of Team Members in Phase 1

  • Analyse all the personal histories received;
  • Make a preliminary selection of up to three candidates per post;
  • Interview each of these three candidates, checking:

- the information contained in the personal histories;

- knowledge of FSDS-related problems;

- knowledge of the national economic and social situation, institutions concerned and food economy;

- knowledge of existing literature in candidate’s discipline and of national and international sources;

- aptitude for team work and interdisciplinary dialogue;

- level of expertise in computer use;

- knowledge of the language in which all the team’s documentation will be drafted;

- knowledge of local languages;

- willingness to travel about the country and talk with people of all social levels;

- ability to "lead" a working party;

- whether the candidate’s efficiency and acceptability within or outside the team is compromised due to his/her ethnic group, religion and political opinions;

  • should the interviewee meet the requirements for joining the team, he/she shall be given a copy of the preliminary TOR and asked to prepare a short written description of how he/she can contribute to the team’s work, covering technical matters, methodological approach, proposals for field visits and surveys and a preliminary proposal of his/her own TOR;
  • a final interview to discuss each selected candidate’s proposals.

Table A3.3 Team Coordinator


  • A good university degree (a master’s degree or doctorate);
  • experience in research and planning in areas directly related to FSDSs;
  • an overall view of the issue;
  • an ability to work with others;
  • sufficiently well-organized to be able to do the work in his/her area of expertise and, at the same time, act as coordinator, without over emphasizing the importance of his/her discipline;
  • the ability to be critical, concise and to sum up accurately.


  • make a critical reading of the papers prepared by the team members, amalgamate the main ideas contained in the various contributions and take account of team members’ comments;
  • provide the team with all the information likely to interest them;
  • manage the team’s document base;
  • ensure that each team member prepares his/her specific terms of reference bearing in mind initial general discussions on the set objectives;
  • make a detailed plan of work for the entire study, with its various components, including the work to be done by each team member. The coordinator shall ensure that the plan is adhered to;
  • hold regular meetings, the frequency of which will be decided in conjunction with the team;
  • keep him/herself informed about meetings held by team members;
  • ensure that all the activities of the working parties and the interinstitutional study groups (ISG) are adequately covered when allocating the tasks to individuals and groups;
  • check the preliminary drafts of papers prepared by team members prior to their discussion in plenary session, set deadlines for revisions and check that comments and suggestions are taken into consideration;
  • sum up the contributions of the various sectors and submit to the team for approval, incorporating any pertinent comment into the final versions;
  • keep the IPSC informed about the progress of work;
  • ensure that pertinent decisions stemming from the working sessions are duly recorded and distributed to all team and IPSC members;
  • involve the private and public institutions and encourage contacts between them and the team;
  • manage any financial resources made available;
  • assign research work to the various team members in accordance with their specific areas of expertise;
  • define the team’s work routine (individual and team work, and work in mixed groups);
  • establish priorities;
  • draw up work schedules and set deadlines;
  • define requirements in terms of data, external cooperation, etc.;
  • determine requirements in terms of the resources to be assigned to each part of the study.

The coordinator shall preferably be given the responsibility of both Phase 1 and 2, in order to ensure continuity throughout the study.


  • When forming the interdisciplinary team, give priority to candidates with a mixed training background and avoid, as much as possible, juxtaposing the disciplines;
  • ensure that the team members have the knowledge needed to fulfil their role to the best of their ability. Their approach to development problems, a knowledge of FSDSs and the urban situation, and a real interest in the case study are essential prerequisites. Each team member’s training and experience will have an important effect on the quality of the results;
  • give preference to candidates with proven expertise and capacity;
  • include at least one woman in the team and pay particular attention to her part in activities;
  • ensure that the selected candidates are able to converse with the various interest groups.

A3.1.2 Logistical resources and equipment

The main logistical resources required for the implementation of the case study are:

A3.1.3 Financial resources

A budget will be needed for each phase. Each budget should be prepared by the team leader following consultation with the team members and in conjunction with the institution(s) funding the study. Budgets should be revised periodically. An accurate accounting system should be kept.

Main budgetary elements:

A3.2 Teamwork

A3.2.1 General briefings
A3.2.2 Interdisciplinary briefings
A3.2.3 Planning sessions
A3.2.4 Study sessions
A3.2.5 Interinstitutional study groups
A3.2.6 Internal review meetings
A3.2.7 The work programme

The teamwork will take place in plenary sessions, in small groups and on a one-toone basis. These meetings, repeated as necessary, are:

A3.2.1 General briefings

The reasons for general briefings are to:

A3.2.2 Interdisciplinary briefings

The team shall examine the areas to be studied in detail depending on the complexity of the discipline concerned. The problem/approach grid shows how the disciplines are linked to each other and how such links form subsystems. The problem of assigning responsibility must be resolved before the team’s work can be organized.

The case study’s general TORs have to be adapted to local conditions and the interdisciplinary approach. The study objectives, general and sectoral methodologies need to be clearly defined.

During this process:

A3.2.3 Planning sessions

The planning sessions mainly serve to recap the results obtained, revise the TORs and the work programmes and resolve any problems and conflicts within and outside the team.

A3.2.4 Study sessions

The study sessions are devoted to collecting, analysing and discussing data and information on a specific issue and drafting interim reports.

It is important that the other members inspect the data and information obtained by each team member so they can decide whether additional data are required.

Each member will state the difficulties encountered. The intent is to exchange ideas to obtain a clearer view of each member’s particular problems and see how the group members have reacted to their TORs.

The study sessions may involve all team members or only some of them.


  • Set up a documentation management system when there is a large amount of available data (e.g. statistics, lists of institutions and their roles and functions, and on-going programmes). This will provide a useful compendium of statistics and basic data which could be quickly consulted by the team;
  • ensure that all team members make group visits to the various sites in the city and the extraurban areas. This would encourage interdisciplinary discussions and would give each one an overall view of the area/issues and provide a common point of reference (if members subsequently have to work individually on different aspects of the study);
  • as often as possible, consult the bodies, agencies and individuals, especially the intermediate and lower level supervisory staff in the public or private institutions (extension workers, cooperative managers, food transporters, food processors, market traders, shopkeepers and hawkers) who are usually close to the people in the towns and villages;
  • keep abreast of the situations or experiences in other towns and discuss the results and problems encountered with the various persons responsible;
  • as far as possible, involve the team members in the planning of the activities they will be in charge of;
  • ISG members will be carefully chosen on the basis of their expertise and, where appropriate, the conditions for their participation shall be clearly stated;
  • a coordinator will be appointed for each ISG and will be responsible for making internal recommendations, drafting reports or providing information on the group’s behalf. He/she will preferably be one of the interdisciplinary team members who will also act as secretary;
  • each meeting will be arranged on the basis of clearly defined objectives;
  • as far as possible, the ISG meetings will be limited in number and duration;
  • after each meeting, a short report will be prepared in which the agreed tasks and responsibilities will be detailed.

A3.2.5 Interinstitutional study groups

The analysis of definite processes (e.g. market and traffic management) may require the participation of technicians, employed by the public authorities or private organizations (chambers of commerce), with specific knowledge of and/or responsibility for the subject under study.

In this case, interinstitutional study groups (ISG) may be established to examine subject areas. The establishment of an ISG should also be a clear indication of institutional involvement in the team’s efforts and will pave the way for their support and collaboration in monitoring the FSDS study.

A3.2.6 Internal review meetings

Internal review meetings give a member or a group of members an opportunity to submit the results (interim or final) of work performed and obtain feedback from the other team members.

A particularly important internal review meeting is the one where the coordinator’s summary is discussed and approved. The coordinator will make a note of all the criticisms and ask for further detail when needed. The revised version of the summary will be resubmitted to the group members before the external review meeting takes place.

A3.2.7 The work programme

The implementation of a case study and the formulation of policies and programmes are exercises for which time and resources are limited. They must be well planned to ensure that the team can finish its work within the allotted time and that the results are in keeping with the TORs and expectations. A number of techniques, from the simple bar chart to sophisticated network analyses, can assist in the planning task (FAO, 1990, Vol. 1).

Following consultations with the other team members, the coordinator will prepare a plan of workplan which will include:

Progress will depend on the quality of the work plan. Table A3.4 and A3.5 give examples of activity charts. Similar charts can be prepared for each important specific study, team activity and for the activities of each team member.

Table A3.4: Planning Main Activities: an Example

Table A3.5: Human Resources Planning: an Example

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