Environmental Engineer

The World Bank
Washington, DC, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
5-7 Years
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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About the World Bank Group:

Established in 1944, the WBG is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. In fiscal year 2018, the WBG committed $67 billion in loans, grants, equity investments and guarantees to its members and private businesses, of which $24 billion was concessional finance to its poorest members. It is governed by 188-member countries and delivers services out of 120 offices with nearly 15,000 staff located globally. 

The WBG consists of five specialized institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). The World Bank is organized into six client-facing Regional Vice-Presidencies, several corporate functions and thirteen Global Practices to bring best-in-class knowledge and solutions to regional and country clients.

Sustainable environment and natural resources management (ENRM) is at the heart of the WBG poverty agenda. Biodiversity and natural resources constitute the social safety net of the poor, representing a food bank and often their only source of livelihood. Sustainable ENRM promotes a green clean, and resilient world where natural resources—from forests to fisheries, freshwater, oceans, coastal zones and ecosystems—are managed to support livelihoods and strong economies. Sustainable ENRM builds a world better prepared for shocks and global challenges, helping countries limit their exposure to resource scarcity, more-volatile weather patterns, and the long-term consequences of climate change.

ENR covers the following business lines:

  • Green: Forests, Watersheds & Sustainable Landscapes - managing renewable natural capital across landscapes;
  • Blue: Marine, Coastal & Aquatic Resources - unlocking the wealth of marine, coastal and fresh water economies;
  • Brown: Pollution Management & Environmental Health - reducing pollution to improve environmental conditions;
  • Clean and Resilient Growth: Fostering economics and institutions for sustainable and sustained growth; and
  • Environmental Risk Management and Sustainability: Managing risks and creating opportunity to advice sustainable development in accordance with the Bank’s Operational Policies and, since October 1, 2018, the Environmental and Social Framework (ESF).

The ENR Global Practice (GP) has close to 300 operations, representing $7 billion, and a growing pipeline of new investments and ASAs under active development.

The ENR GP Global Platform Unit (GENGE) comprises about 30 staff, most of them based in Washington DC. The staff reports to the Practice Manager also based in DC. The Global Platform Unit is primarily responsible for (i) designing and managing the Global programs for the GP whose implementation in country rests with the GP's regional Units, including aligning the Global Programs with the GP's main business lines, other key GPs in the SD Practice group and beyond (e.g., MTI, Poverty) and Cross Cutting Solutions (e.g., Climate Change); (ii) resource mobilization and donor coordination, including TF management, planning and reporting; (iii) conducting key global studies to advance the environmental agenda globally and within the Bank, internally, and analytical work to support the GP's regional units in the implementation of the GP's strategy; and (iv) knowledge management of the Unit's key outputs.

GENGE is promoting the World Bank’s global agenda for promoting a sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods, and jobs while preserving the health of ocean ecosystem, or the Blue Economy.  Building on its expertise in a wide variety of oceanic economic sectors, the Bank is now focused on developing the full potential of the Blue Economy, which is understood as the development of oceanic economic activities in an integrated and sustainable way in healthy oceans.  To that effect, GENGE has established a Multi-Donor Trust Fund named PROBLUE.  PROBLUE supports implementation of the Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG 14) and is fully aligned with the World Bank’s goals of ending extreme poverty and shared prosperity in a sustainable fashion.  PROBLUE supports the World Bank’s overall Blue Economy program, which takes a multi-pronged, coordinated approach to ensuring the protection and sustainable use of marine and coastal resources.  PROBLUE focuses on four key themes, namely:

  • the sustainable management of fisheries and aquaculture
  • the threats posed to ocean health by marine pollution, including litter and plastics
  • the sustainable development of key oceanic sectors such as tourism, maritime transport and off-shore renewable energy
  • building the capacity of governments to manage their marine and coastal resources in an integrated fashion to deliver more and sustainable benefits to countries and communities.

The Blue Economy approach, as defined by the Bank, requires a clear understanding of the various economic activities in marine and coastal areas, their physical as well economic interactions and interdependencies, and calls for innovative approaches to help guide the synergies and tradeoffs that coastal states are required to carry out between these activities. To that end, GENGE seeks to add to its PROBLUE team by hiring an experienced and team-oriented Marine Spatial Planning Specialist.


The Environmental Engineer will work in close cooperation with the PROBLUE team, and in particular the managers of Windows 3 and 4, in order to develop new tools and approaches to allow Bank client countries to develop traditional and emerging oceanic activities in an sustainable fashion, facilitate and support their integrated planning and provide technical assistance to other Bank teams as they implement the new Blue Economy Action Plan (decision making tools, planning tools, etc.). The MSP Specialist will report to the Practice Manager and, working with the Window 2, 3 and 4 managers will be required to undertake the following tasks:

  • Support the overall design and implementation of the PROBLUE workplan, particularly as it relates to Window 3 and 4, and window 2 as it relates to pollution, notably from non-point sources
  • Provide technical support to the PROBLUE team in the fields of Marine Spatial Planning, Integrated Coastal Zone Management and, where appropriate, Marine Protected Areas.
  • In collaboration with the Window 3 and 4 managers, develop new approaches to allow the incorporation of natural capital accounting in decision-making in marine and coastal areas, develop marine spatial planning and decision-making tools, and identify investment and policy interventions.
  • Lead and/or Contribute to the preparation of PROBLUE-financed Advisory Services & Analytics (AAA) and operations.
  • Provide technical advice and support to bank teams and / or client countries, especially in the fields of marine spatial planning, integrated coastal zone management, nature-based infrastructure and marine protected areas.
  • Contribute to the preparation of strategies, in particular the Blue Economy Action Plan, presentations and briefing notes, case studies, and outreach material.
  • Contribute to other knowledge management activities, as requested by supervisor.
  • Help in the mobilization of support from donor funded facilities and trust funds, and direct or parallel co-financing.

Selection Criteria

1. Educational requirements:

  • Master’s degree or higher degree in marine policy, geography or science (or related field), including courses in marine planning, coastal management, coastal processes, and/or marine biodiversity conservation.  Good understanding of GIS as applied to marine ecosystems preferred.

2. Experience:

  • Minimum of 5 years of relevant, technical professional experience with demonstrated focus on marine and coastal ecosystems, preferably in international institution. Knowledge of World Bank operations highly desired, or other ODA-related work.
  • Good knowledge of and demonstrated experience in marine spatial planning, coastal zone management, and/or MPA management. Additional experience in other marine economic sectors (e.g. fisheries, ports and shipping, energy, pollution management, mangroves rehabilitation, nature-based infrastructure) preferred.
  • Excellent organizational skills, and ability to work independently and in teams.
  • Committed team player with demonstrated inter-personal skills and ability to work effectively in a multi-cultural environment.
  • Basic knowledge of World Bank Group organizational structure and its goals (IBRD, IDA, IFC, MIGA, and ICSID).
  • Basic understanding of policy making process and the role of ENR sector of expertise.

3. Skills:

  • Excellent communication skills, oral and written, with a record of peer-reviewed publications preferred.
  • High degree of motivation, flexibility and reliability, and willingness to expand job scope as part of team effort.
  • Ability to contribute to knowledge sharing, analytical work and publications, and direct communication with Bank colleagues, media and others.
  • Able to contribute significantly to unit's knowledge sharing.
  • Effective delivery of information in support of team or workgroup.
  • Excellent English writing ability.
  • Additional languages would be an advantage