IIP Internships in Italy
Location: Rome, Italy
About: Bioversity International is a global research-for-development organization. Bioversity International delivers scientific evidence, management practices and policy options to use and safeguard agricultural and tree biodiversity to attain sustainable global food and nutrition security. They work with partners in low-income countries in different regions where agricultural and tree biodiversity can contribute to improved nutrition, resilience, productivity and climate change adaptation. Bioversity staff includes specialists in agriculture, forestry, information science and technology, socioeconomics, law and policy, finance and administration. Through the IIP internship program, Bioversity offers invaluable on-the-job training under the guidance of established experts in genetic resources, communications, and policy and law practices that encourage the production of public goods.
Intern Responsibilities: IIP interns will be assigned to research projects and will learn to work as part of a project team. IIP interns will gain a broad understanding of issues in international agricultural research-for-development, particularly sustainable conservation and use of agricultural biodiversity for food and agriculture. IIP interns will typically gain experience in carrying out desk studies, literature searching, compilation and analysis of information, database work, writing reports and producing public awareness materials and specifically will work on one of the following two projects
PROJECT 1: Assessing the economic value of biodiversity and ecosystem services, Rome, Italy
Project description:Research indicates that decreased plant-species numbers lead to lower ecosystem stability (Hautier et al, 2015). Research also indicates that changes in biodiversity caused by drivers of environmental change may be a major factor determining how global environmental changes affect ecosystem services. Despite these benefits, agricultural biodiversity continues to be eroded as a result of a mismatch over time and space, between costs and benefits incurred to individuals and society in their conservation and use. Costs of maintaining diversity generally are incurred by individual landholders or operators and these are costs which occur in real time. The returns from these activities in contrast may occur over a long period and may not cover the costs of the operator in the short term. In addition, the benefits can likely be enjoyed not just by the land-owner or operator, but also by the community and the whole world. Unless policies and interventions are implemented, there may be little incentive to maintain agricultural diversity at socially optimal levels. Therefore it is important to have a better understanding of different benefits which can result from the maintenance of agricultural biodiversity and be able to estimate these quantitatively in economic terms.
Bioversity International is engaged in bioeconomic modelling of the benefits of maintaining or enhancing agricultural biodiversity at multiple scales: household level, agriculture-sector level and at an economy-wide level. Based on student interests, there are different aspects of this work that can be completed over an 8-week period. For a student with strong economics and mathematics background, the individual can actually engage in some aspects of the technical modelling work. For students with less quantitative skills but with a greater knowledge of biophysical sciences, the 8-weeks can be spent conducting literature review of how agricultural biodiversity affects different aspects of ecosystem services and how these may be captured by a few indicators which can be used in modelling.
PROJECT 2: Communications Intern – Communications Unit, Strategic Partnerships and External Engagement
We are able to take up to TWO interns with the following remit: Project description-The project is improving efficiencies of communication outputs through enhanced campaigns and social media.
- Research on Bioversity International’s recent projects, with a special focus on results. This research will be the basis for developing stories for different communication channels such as the institutional website, and social media channels.
- Assist the communications team in producing communications materials, such as web stories, brochures, photo series or digital communications, including drafting content, picture research, and uploading content into the CMS and the newsletter.
- Help produce regular traffic analysis reports, and carry out daily customer service requests.
- Support the coordination and development of event campaigns, and during and after event reports.
- Add and help maintain the media database and image bank (including sourcing metadata) and assist Communication specialists with media and institutional requests.
- Support the reviewing of relevant reports and other materials as assigned with the goal of sourcing statistics and other usable content for external communication purposes
- Assist in the curation of Bioversity International-specific content for the CGIAR Research Programmes.
- Assist the communications team in social media messaging, monitoring and measurement.
Qualifications: Candidates with interests in economics, agriculture, ecological studies, public relations, journalism, environmental studies and international development are encouraged to apply. For the research position, skills in mathematics and statistical methods is required and knowledge of econometric modeling and programming skills would be an asset. For the communications position, skills in social media and research skills to develop stories would be an asset.
Previous work experiences (in words of past IIP interns): Intern #1: I was a part of the communications team responsible for helping in writing, producing, and managing the brand and the media output of the organization. I worked on several projects in collaboration with team members and on my own, including being able to pursue my own interests and ideas for helping the department and overall organization. I produced a social media report for the previous six months of analytical data, developed an internal survey to strengthen the bonds between Communications and regional offices, and helped plan and execute events, from the 40th Anniversary celebration to others. Intern #2: I wrote a literature review of scientific papers that described and quantified the relationships between biodiversity and its relationships to pest/disease control and pollination in agroecosystems. I began the internship expecting to make a draft, but I ended up sticking with the project until the paper got published. I learned that I like combing through sources and finding important information and learning new things about the world around me. Intern #3: I was responsible for a combination of day-to-day communications tasks (social media posts, PowerPoints, website work, proofreading, Photoshop tasks, launching new strategy, events for expo 2015, flickr), as well as several long term projects. I also worked on rewriting (and coding) pages on the NUS website related to Marketing Diversity and Minor Millets...It was great to be a part of a team- even just participating in regular meetings were really helpful. I learned quite a few practical skills (working in Typo3, html), as well as gained experience working in an organization.
View PowerPoint presentations by past IIP interns:
Bioversity Italy Intern #1
Bioversity Italy Intern #2
|For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and TO APPLY, click here: Bioversity Italy|
Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations
Location: Rome, Italy
About: Based in Rome, Italy, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Serving both developed and developing countries, FAO acts as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate agreements and debate policy. FAO as a source of knowledge and information, help developing countries and countries in transition modernize and improve agriculture, forestry, and fisheries practices and ensure good nutrition for all.
Intern Responsibilities: In previous years, IIP interns have interned in the Fisheries and Aquaculture section and the Economic and Social section where they have worked on projects related to post-harvest practices and trade, price domain statistics, and topics related to structural adjustment and management of fishing capacity. Interns have also been placed in the Statistics Division.
Qualifications: Candidates with a background or interests in economics and statistics, policy, natural resource management, and sustainable development are encouraged to apply. Working knowledge of French or Spanish would be an asset as would prior experience with agricultural, environmental, or related statistics.
Previous work experiences (in the words of the past IIP interns): Intern #1: Organized side events for the 38th FAO Conference, where representatives from 191 member countries attended; Composed a 50-page handbook on “Setting Up and Running a Co-management Body in Vietnam,” which will be distributed to Vietnamese fishermen to guide them on how to better manage their fish landing sites with local governments; Initiated revisions on the proposal of World Bank's $10M project on "Securing Biodiversity in China's Dongting Lake Protected Areas"; Translated official documents on illegal fishing from English to Chinese. Intern #2: Updated a country-specific index of fisheries, which a previous intern had made. For example, this meant reading all of the published country reports (and in-process reports) for how much they included fisheries, and other social indicators. Intern #3: Developed programs to systematically reformat, analyze and incorporate data from different UN databases into the FAO STAT Database in Pesticides. Developed programs to systematically process questionnaires from member countries. Analyzed past data. Intern #4: Cleaned data sets, generating new variables using STATA to find insight about small family farms. Compiled data from FAO publications, country agricultural surveys and World Bank public expenditure reviews to create charts, graphs and media for use in the main body of the text and the statistical annex. Intern #5: Researched good practices and worked on creating a framework that assessed land tenure in fisheries. I gained a lot of new knowledge about fisheries and aquaculture in general and saw first-hand how a large international organization runs. Intern #6: Reviewed literature and developed a methodology for the measurement of the social, economic, and ecological costs of disasters on fisheries and aquaculture...Secondary projects: developing a conceptual framework of disaster impact on capture fisheries and aquaculture based on value chains and livelihoods; and editing documents (progress reports, terminal statements, back-to-office reports)...I learned the process of economic research, how the organization functions at the branch/division/department level...I contributed to the initial stages of a fishery/aquaculture department project involving future plans for disaster impact data collection...I constructed my work around the draft for notes on information system on damages and losses from disasters in agriculture. Intern #7: I created a database containing data from every country pertaining to fishery contribution to GDP, GVA, imports, exports, and production. Through research and a variety of collection methods, I was able to collect a substantial amount of data and create a database from it using both accounting and programming. Used UN data I converted data to a single currency, which I could then use to compare with other known data and compare across countries. Through this analysis, I assessed the validity, accuracy, and precision of the data. I then calculated statistical trends in the data to explain the trajectories of fishery importance around the world and wrote a report with my results...I have learned how to critically analyze data in a practical setting as well as use my love of computer science to do so (by programming rather than simply accounting, I was extremely efficient and my supervisors were very impressed and amazed). Being able to speak with colleagues from all over the world has also been an eye-opening experience. Intern #8: I worked on fact sheets that summarize work from 7 different areas. I also wrote blog entries on a research vessel voyage...I learned how to communicate with many different people and how to work in communications for a large organization. I presented data that highlights the organization's work without presenting opinions or supporting outside sources. I synthesized data from a variety of sources in a concise document...The sheets will be used at conferences for the next 5 years. The blog is up now.
View a PowerPoint presentation by past IIP interns:
FAO Intern #1
FAO Intern #2
FAO Intern #3
|For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and TO APPLY, click here: Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations|