Programme Management Specialist Water Programme

Center for Mediterranean Integration (CMI)

Marseille, France 🇫🇷

Hosted Entities: Center for Mediterranean Integration
Job categories: Programme Management
Vacancy code: VA/2021/B5007/22661
Level: ICS-10
Department/office: ECR, GVA, Geneva
Duty station: Marseille , France
Contract type: International ICA
Contract level: IICA-2
Duration: RETAINER (see details below)
Application period: 12-Oct-2021 to 26-Oct-2021

Applications to vacancies must be received before midnight Copenhagen time (CET) on the closing date of the announcement.

Background Information – Job-specific

CMI Regional knowledge programme on water fits under the CMI’s second thematic pillar: “Resilience: mitigation and adaptation to external shocks, mainly climate change and response to the effects of conflicts”.

The CMI currently has three active programmes aimed at mitigating and adapting to climate change. It is managing, in cooperation with DG EU, the â€śMediterranean Forum on Electricity and Climate Change” to promote energy transition, renewable energy and energy efficiency. It is also coordinating the “Territorial resilience to climate change” to reduce territorial inequalities and increase resilience to stresses and shocks. And finally, CMI is leading the Regional knowledge program on water.

The Mediterranean region is the most water scarce region in the world and one of the most vulnerable to climate change and extreme weather events, which are fuelling regional instability and migration. However, the region also has considerable potential for climate change mitigation and adaptation, which are a common concern for its future.

Combating water scarcity and supporting climate change adaptation and mitigation in the Mediterranean region could be conducive to job creation and entrepreneurship, particularly among Mediterranean youth, with clear knock-on effects on regional instability deriving from unemployment, disenfranchisement and migration.

The main goals of the upcoming phase of this program are to (i) enhance water security through better informed governance and management, (ii) prevent water scarcity and support adaptation to and mitigation of climate change and (iii) empower youth and improve conditions for youth employment in the water sector by supporting green entrepreneurship initiatives

 Functional Responsibilities

The incumbent will contribute to the CMI pillar on resilience to climate change, defined as the capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses, and systems within a territory to survive, adapt, and grow, no matter what kind of climatic or environmental stresses and shocks they experience. The incumbent  will work more specifically on the regional knowledge programme on water. The incumbent will work under the supervision of a CMI Senior staff and overall leadership of the CMI Director. Travel might be required to Mediterranean countries.

In particular, the incumbent will focus on the following tasks:

Project management of the water programme

  • Implement programme plans and tasks as assigned.
  • Monitor and follow up on required actions in line with deadlines and reporting, to contribute to the effective implementation of the project steps. Support monitoring of the budget, activity, results and risk frameworks;
  • Act as Officer-in-Charge in Team Leader’s absence. Coordinate and be directly responsible for specific programme’s tasks and activities implementation
  • Technically responsible Responsible for quality delivery of specific programme’s tasks and activities Practical and technical support to team leader to strengthen the operational capacity and efficiency during project implementation.  
  • Liaise and coordinate with partners and stakeholders for regular reporting on a monthly and quarterly y basis, including providing quality assurance regarding project applications and reports
  • Lead and/or contribute to analytical reports with regards to water management, sustainable agriculture and land uses that can contribute to water and food security as well as drought management while alleviating the pressures associated to water scarcity-migration-climate change;
  • Identify, compile and share sustainable good practices and innovations to alleviate drought risk and support drought management and enhanced water security in the context of climate change 
  • Lead and/or contribute to  drafting a multi-partner analytical report on the water security nexus and solutions identified in the project’s target countries.
  • Provide project management support to other projects/programmes at the CMI as directed

Capacity building and collaboration

  • Coordinate with water stakeholders in North Africa and  when appropriate Egypt and Jordan to build greater capacity to improve awareness, understanding and targeting of policies and programmes to address water scarcity and drought management challenges
  • Facilitate and support peer learning and policy dialogue among policy makers, academia, refugee and host municipality networks, NGOs and civil society
  • Develop and support implementation of practice workshops for key public, civil society, private stakeholders
  • Facilitate knowledge exchange and networking among young water professionals in selected countries by leveraging CMI’s already well established MedYWat program on Youth and Water and further strengthen it. 
  • Maintain good coordination with and provide support to other CMI programs on climatic, environmental resilience and disaster risk management.

Monitoring and Progress Controls

Deliverables for the successful candidate will relate to the “Regional knowledge programme on water” and include :

  • Delivering the agreed water security nexus study results framework including inter alia: 
    • Contributing to finishing the Water security nexus study final report and its annexes, which will help understand the interrelation between water security, climate change (drought) and migration in the region (deadline December 2021). Through the outreach of this project,  the technical and management capabilities of the countries of North Africa will be enriched and strengthened in one of their most critical areas – water scarcity and the growing impacts of climate. The work will build the capacity of institutions and practitioners in North Africa to manage drought, both present and in the future, including through engagement of young water professionals, in developing technical and information solutions for the regional context. It will also bring new insight into the challenges and responses of populations to water scarcity. 
    • leading the organization of at least one regional events (in-presence or virtual) that may take the form of a Regional Forum to help build the capacity of decision-makers and engage stakeholders in regional collaboration (deadline November-December 2021) and 
    • leading organization of a national event in Tunisia and Morocco (in-presence or virtual) (deadline October 2021).
  • Support implementation of the MedYWAT full cycle : The MedYWat (Mediterranean Youth for Water) is a network of young water professionals from across the Mediterranean, supported by the CMI and encompasses young Mediterranean water researchers, entrepreneurs, and activists working on solving the water challenges in the region. It works towards three key objectives: i. to connect and engage Mediterranean youth on water, ii. to become a knowledge-based platform that creates and exchanges best practices and opportunities, iii. to create cross-linkages with key decision-makers in the region. Activities to be delivered include :
    • Engage MedYWat in a discussion on finding solutions for increased Climate Change resilience. This includes organizing the Water Heroes Contest (deadline March 2022)
    • Oversee the researchers producing the CMI-MedYWat Policy Papers (year long, 2021-2022)
    • Supervise the MedYWat Entrepreneurship program (year long, 2021-2022)
  • Others may include knowledge production, organizing events, and contributing to fundraising for the water program.

Main partner and Funder of the Nexus program : Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO, UK Government), Implementing Partner: CMI, Other contributing partners : European Commission (EC), Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), World Bank, International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and others.

Resources mobilized : The successful candidate will cooperate with the CMI Director , CMI Senior staff and other CMI consultants on the Water Programme.  Quality monitoring includes : i. Quarterly reporting on progress of the Nexus program, ii. Providing comments, exchanging regularly with CMI consultants and providing peer-review feedback to improve the quality of knowledge products, iii. Consultations with stakeholders, iv. Day to day follow-up with the CMI Manager and CMI Senior supervisor

 Education/Experience/Language requirements

a. Education

Master’s degree is required with a specialization in the field of urban and regional development, water management, climate change, disaster risk management or sustainable development. 

b. Work Experience 

Minimum of 5 years of professional experience in the field of urban and regional development, and/or water management, climate change, and disaster risk management ;

  • Ability to work as a team member and to prioritize workload.
  • Ability to respond to project-related assignments.
  • Good knowledge of the Mediterranean region and the issues related to climate change, sustainable development, resilience and water management is desirable ;
  • Good knowledge of the climate change and water community in the Mediterranean region is desirable;
  • Working experience in one or more southern and eastern Mediterranean countries is a plus;
  • Proven ability and willingness to interact tactfully with internal and external clients at all levels in a multicultural and team-oriented environment is required
  • Excellent project management and organizational skills are required, 

c. Language 

Fluent in English and French are required. Knowledge of Arabic is a plus. 

 Functional competencies

  • Knowledge of water scarcity issues in the Mediterranean 
  • Excellent analytical and organizational skills 
  • Ability to multitask, manage multiple priorities and meet deadlines with limited supervision
  • Ability to work well independently and with a team
  • Ability to handle sensitive matters with tact and discretion
  • Sense of initiative, discretion, and mature judgment
  • Ability to establish effective working relations in a multicultural team environment
  • High level of attention to detail
  • Strong computer skills: must be competent in the use of Windows MS office programmes (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook) and knowledge of Google Workspace

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA)

Contract level: International ICA – 2 / ICS-10

Contract duration: Retainer with maximum of 120 working days within a period of 12 months, renewable subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance.

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: 

Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • Work life harmonization – UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns.
Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

Background Information – UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.