Ahmed Sidahmed
Agricultural investment and resilience, strategic planning, evaluation

Ahmed Sidahmed is a senior international agricultural development expert with more than 35 years of technical experience, particularly in pastoral systems and drought resilience. He has worked in more than 70 countries in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Latin and North America, advising on livestock and crop agriculture for rural development, food security and poverty reduction.

Across his career, Ahmed has assumed various senior management roles with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the International Livestock Research Institute, and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA).

More recently, Ahmed has been honorary Associate Director for Development and Partnership at the College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at the University of California, Davis. While holding this honorary assignment, Ahmed also undertook a range of consultancy work (senior adviser, team leader, quality assurance and enhancement expert) with the FAO Investment Center, IFAD, the African Union, the Bill & Malinda Gates Foundation, the European Union, the World Bank and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Ahmed is experienced in management; strategic planning; research and policy coordination; agriculture sector strategy and policy analysis; the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme’s national and regional agriculture investment planning; value chain analysis; competitiveness, marketing and agribusiness promotion; food security and post-harvest loss and waste analysis; and project design, implementation and evaluation.

Ahmed has extensive experience in natural resource management for conserving biodiversity, restoring rangelands, and adapting to climate change. He has played a significant role in Horn of Africa drought resilience initiatives, and was director of knowledge management and dissemination research programming at ICARDA. He also led or participated in evaluation and quality control of innovation mainstreaming with IFAD, the USAID-supported Global Livestock Collaborative Research Support Program (CRSP), and more recently the USAID Feed the Future Assets and Market Access Innovation Lab.

Ahmed has practical experience in project evaluation, as well as corporate-level evaluation of donor support to fragile and conflict-affected countries, and organizational strategic plans. He led an evaluation of the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources Strategic Plan 2014–2017, and also developed its new plan for 2018–2023.

Ahmed has been associated with a significant number of committees and boards. He was:

  • member/chair (for over a decade) of the External Program Advisory Council of the USAID-supported Global Livestock CRSP
  • chair of the external evaluation panel for Global Livestock CRSP projects in South America and Central Asia
  • the focal point for Central and West Asia and North Africa’s participation in International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development
  • the representative of ICARDA in developing the Agricultural Open Curriculum and e-Learning Initiative (AGROCURI), which was supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and CGIAR
  • a member of the International Standards Committee of the Rainforest Alliance’s Sustainable Agriculture Network — the committee developed the Rainforest Alliance Sustainable Agriculture Standard.
Ahmed earned his doctoral degree in ecology and master’s degree in animal science from the University of California, Davis. He also holds a bachelor’s degree with honours in agriculture from the University of Khartoum. Ahmed was a postdoctoral fellow with the University of California, Davis and the US Meat Animal Research Center. He is fluent in English and Arabic.