Regional Technical Specialist (Climate Change Adaptation)

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Bangkok, Thailand 🇹🇭

Background

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

UNDP is the knowledge frontier organization for sustainable development in the UN Development System and serves as the integrator for collective action to realize the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). UNDP’s policy work carried out at HQ, Regional and Country Office levels, forms a contiguous spectrum of deep local knowledge to cutting-edge global perspectives and advocacy. In this context, UNDP invests in the Global Policy Network (GPN), a network of field-based and global technical expertise across a wide range of knowledge domains and in support of the signature solutions and organizational capabilities envisioned in the Strategic Plan. 

Within the GPN, the Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS) has the responsibility for developing all relevant policy and guidance to support the results of UNDP’s Strategic Plan.  BPPS’s staff provides technical advice to Country Offices; advocates for UNDP corporate messages, represents UNDP at multi-stakeholder fora including public-private dialogues, government and civil society dialogues, and engages in UN inter-agency coordination in specific thematic areas.  BPPS works closely with UNDP’s Crisis Bureau (CB) to support emergency and crisis response.  BPPS ensures that issues of risk are fully integrated into UNDP’s development programmes. BPPS assists UNDP and partners to achieve higher quality development results through an integrated approach that links results-based management and performance monitoring with more effective and new ways of working.  BPPS supports UNDP and partners to be more innovative, knowledge and data driven including in its programme support efforts. 

UNDP’s 2018-2021 Strategic Plan emphasizes the critical links between environmental sustainability, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and broader efforts to achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda and Paris Agreement. As part of the Global Policy Network in the Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, UNDP’s Nature, Climate Change, and Energy (NCE) Team promotes and scales up integrated whole-of-governance approaches and nature-based solutions that reduce poverty and inequalities, strengthen livelihoods and inclusive growth, mitigate conflict, forced migration and displacement, and promote more resilient governance systems that advance linked peace and security agendas.  

The NCE Team works with governments, civil society, and private sector partners to integrate natural capital, environment and climate concerns into national and sector planning and inclusive growth policies; support country obligations under Multilateral Environmental Agreements; and implement the UN’s largest portfolio of in-country programming on environment, climate change, and energy. This multi-billion dollar portfolio encompasses: Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services including forests; Sustainable Land Management and Desertification including food and commodity systems; Water and Ocean Governance including SIDS; Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation; Renewable and Modern Energy; Extractive Industries; Chemicals and Waste Management; Environmental Governance and Green/Circular Economy and SCP approaches. This work advances crosscutting themes on innovative finance, digital transformation, capacity development, human rights, gender equality, health, technology, and South-South learning. 

In addition to UNDP’s bilateral partnerships on natural capital, environment and climate, UNDP is an accredited multilateral implementing agency of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the Multilateral Fund (MLF), the Adaptation Fund (AF) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) which  includes the Global Environment Facility Trust Fund (GEF Trust Fund); the Nagoya Protocol Implementation Fund (NPIF); the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF); and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF)). As part of UNDP’s partnership with these vertical funds, UNDP provides countries specialized integrated technical services for eligibility assessment, programme formulation, capacity development, policy advice, technical assistance, training and technology transfer, mobilization of co-financing, implementation oversight, results management and evaluation, performance-based payments and knowledge management services. 

Climate Change Adaptation Programme

UNDP advances a ‘whole-of-society’ approach to climate change adaptation focusing on developing country capacities for climate-resilient economic development and sustainable livelihoods, especially for the vulnerable populations. UNDP assists government partners to scale up the integration of climate change adaptation into policy, planning, and investments at both national and local levels through the support to the National Adaptation Planning (NAP) process and the NDCs. UNDP supports climate change adaptation action in the context of agriculture and food security, water resources, coastal zone management, ecosystems protection, public health, resilient infrastructure, urban resilience, and climate information/early warnings. UNDP works with governments, private sector, academia, and civil society to build capacities to implement transformative approaches to securing resilient lives, livelihoods, ecosystems, and markets, particularly focusing on the most vulnerable and marginalized. With a portfolio of adaptation projects and programmes across 100+ countries, UNDP is a key actor within the UN System in supporting countries to access and catalyze public and private finance to implement their adaptation priorities in the context of the SDG agenda. 

The RTS for Climate Change Adaptation Team works under the overall supervision of the Principal Technical Advisor on Climate Change Adaptation and of the NCE Regional Team Leader for Asia & Pacific, and in close collaboration with other technical specialists at both global and regional levels. The RTS will be part of the NCE/Vertical Fund Unit located in UNDP’s Regional Hub in Bangkok, Thailand supporting country offices in the Asia Pacific region and is expected to travel frequently.  RTSs may be periodically redeployed, in accordance with capability, consent, and due process, to a different duty station as needed.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation Team is primarily responsible for providing technical, policy, and programming implementation support and oversight, and knowledge and capacity development services pertaining to the work of the Climate Change Adaptation Team signature programmes to UNDP country offices, working with other UN agencies, governments and inter-governmental organizations, NGO’s, donors, the private sector and many others.  Specific results are expected in the areas of:

Innovation, Strategic Leadership, Policy Dialogue and Advocacy

  • Contributing to a strategic understanding of, and engagement with, the substantive technical issues, institutions, and processes within the region, including establishing contact and developing strategic partnerships with other agencies, donors, NGOs, the private sector, scientific institutions and the like; 
  • Participating in the development and implementation of UNDP’s global and regional strategies on environment and sustainable development within the BPPS and beyond; engagement in policy and advocacy work with external partners where relevant
  • Providing policy development support and guidance; 
  • Supporting the development of strategic UNDP policy position papers and internal briefing notes; 
  • Facilitating policy analysis and the development of technical tools and guidance; 
  • Maintain a trusted leadership role within the region; 
  • Keeping the Regional Team informed of trends and issues with respect to the substantive technical area; 
  • Keeping the Principal/Senior Technical Advisors informed of trends and issues in the region;
  • Contributing to identification, development and implementation of new strategic programming opportunities and partnerships in the area of climate change adaptation, climate resilient development and sustainable livelihoods.

Portfolio Management 

  • Assisting in the maintenance of programme/project and portfolio information and corporate information systems;
  • Facilitating the identification, and sourcing of technical expertise and support including assisting with the preparation of TORs, identification and evaluation of experts and reviewing reports;
  • Supporting the development of strategic policy and guidance for strengthening UNDP Country Offices with climate change adaptation project design and implementation including alignment with national priorities;
  • Assisting the development of and advocacy for specific policy analysis and development tools and guidance in support of programming and finance for climate change adaptation;
  • Supporting the establishment of a trusted leadership role for NCE/Vertical Fund Unit within the region;
  • Sourcing of technical expertise and support including assisting with the preparation of TORs, identification and evaluation of experts and reviewing reports;
  • Contributing to regional retreats, focal area retreats, regional strategic planning, pipeline management exercises, etc.;
  • Promoting gender equity/empowerment in programming opportunities;
  • Helping to ensure that strategies and projects are aligned to country outcomes and UNDP corporate environment results in internal UNDP project tracking systems (e.g. ERBM);
  • Maintaining quality/accuracy in data and project management (UNDP EF systems such as PIMS), management of ATLAS Risks logs, and portfolio delivery rates;
  • Monitoring to ensure expected quality standards are maintained in project implementation reviews; 
  • Supporting the RCU to internalize lessons from evaluations in programming in the region.

Resource Mobilization 

  • Supporting programme and project identification and development, including on integrated approaches and multifocal area projects
  • Providing timely and quality information and technical advice on sources of funds, policies, priorities and activities – including the Global Environment Facility funds, the Green Climate Fund, other multilateral donors, bilateral donors and foundations;
  • Identifying and suggesting to the PTA priorities and entry-points for UNDP assistance;
  • Facilitating the process of preparation, design, submission and approval of programme/project concepts and full-fledged proposals for financing;
  • Providing guidance and support in the identification and sourcing of technical expertise and support including assisting with the preparation of TORs, identification and evaluation of experts and reviewing reports;
  • Facilitating liaisons with potential financing agencies and institutions.

Development Impact 

  • Assisting with inception, contracting and startup of programmes/projects including establishment of indicators, benchmarks and work plans;
  • Supporting UNDP country offices and programme/project implementation partners in supervision, implementation, monitoring, evaluation, troubleshooting and adaptive management. 
  • Preparing reports and communications pieces effectively showcasing socio-economic development benefits as well as environment results.

Learning, Knowledge Management and Self Development 

  • Evaluating, capturing, codifying, synthesizing lessons and stimulating the uptake of best practices and knowledge, including the development of knowledge materials;
  • Peer reviewing, commenting on, and seeking to improve the technical quality of programmes/projects, policies, practices, guidelines, advisory notes, publications and the like; 
  • Contributing to the preparation of regional Community of Practice meetings; 
  • Supporting the preparation and delivering of training courses;
  • Responding to queries on programme/project progress, impacts and lessons;
  • Developing and carrying out a personal learning plan.

Competencies

Core

Innovation

  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work.

Leadership

  • Ability to persuade others to follow.

People Management

  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction.

Communication

  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform.

Delivery

  • Ability to get things done.

Technical/Functional

Climate Change Adaptation programming

  • Ability to provide guidance on climate change adaptation especially as it relates to livelihoods, early warning systems, and coastal risk management.   Ability to guide the design and implementation of multi-sectoral and sectoral programmes and projects at different scales, and to work with multiple stakeholders across a wide range of disciplines.

Environmental Issues

  • Knowledge of environment issues, concept and principles and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Climate Change

  • Knowledge of climate change adaptation concepts, principles and policies and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Economics

  • Knowledge of economics concepts, principles and policies and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Development Planning

  • Knowledge of development planning processes and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Program Planning and Design

  • Develop programmes through a process.

Resource Mobilization

  • Ability to identify and organize programmes and projects to implement solutions and generate resources.

Results Based Management

  • Ability to manage programmes and projects with a strategy aimed at improved performance and demonstrable results.

Advocacy and Representation

  • Ability to productively share UNDP knowledge and activities (at UN and other venues)

Monitoring and Evaluation

  • Knowledge of methodologies, tools, systems and apply practical experience in planning, monitoring, evaluating and reporting.

Knowledge Management

  • Ability to efficiently handle and share information and knowledge.

Project Management

  • Ability to plan, organize, motivate, and control resources, procedures and protocols to achieve specific goals.

Required Skills and Experience

Education

  • Master’s degree or higher in environmental economics, development economics environmental law, business administration with a specialization in environment and development, or other closely related field.

Experience

  • Minimum of 7 years’ experience working with developing countries on climate change adaptation, community-level finance (e.g. microfinance), and development;
  • Experience with project development, implementation and management (direct project management experience is preferable);
  • Experience in the policy development processes in climate change risk management; 
  • Demonstrated technical and intellectual skills in substantive area;
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain strategic partnerships;
  • Demonstrated facilitation and coordination skills;
  • Demonstrated entrepreneurial abilities and demonstrated ability to work in an independent manner;
  • Full computer literacy;
  • Experience working in Asia and/or the Pacific is strongly desired;
  • Working experience in an international organization is an advantage as is knowledge of UNDP policies, procedures and practices.

Language Requirements

  • Excellent knowledge of the English language, with exceptional writing, presentation and communication skills; 
  • Working knowledge of another UN language would be an advantage.

Disclaimer

Important information for US Permanent Residents (‘Green Card’ holders)

Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment. 

UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

This vacancy announcement will be used to populate a roster of qualified candidates from which future Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation  assignments will be drawn. Kindly note that the Roster will consist of internal and external candidates found suitable for Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation  Fixed Term Appointments (FTA) at P4 levels. These candidates will have to be endorsed by the UNDP Compliance Review Board (CRB) after having successfully undergone a competitive recruitment process including a thorough technical assessment and a competency based interview. These individuals will be required to complete an application and, if successful, will be considered as “pre-approved” candidates for a duration of up to 3 years.

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POSITION TYPE

ORGANIZATION TYPE

EXPERIENCE-LEVEL

DEGREE REQUIRED