Technical Officer (GEF Climate Change Adaptation Thematic Advisor)

United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

Rome, Italy 🇮🇹

Job Posting: 27/Apr/2022
Closure Date: 19/May/2022, 6:59:00 AM
Organizational Unit: Office of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Environment (OCB)
Job Type: Staff position
Type of Requisition: Professional Project
Grade Level: P-4
Primary Location: Italy-Rome
Duration: Fixed-term: 1 year with the possibility of extension
Post Number: 2009024
CCOG Code: 1R

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Please note that Closure Date and Time displayed above are based on date and time settings of your personal device
The length of appointment for internal FAO candidates will be established in accordance with applicable policies pertaining to the extension of appointments

• FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background and culture
• Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented Members and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply
• Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct, and to uphold FAO’s values
• FAO, as a Specialized Agency of the United Nations, has a zero-tolerance policy for conduct that is incompatible with its status, objectives and mandate, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination  

• All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks
• All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality
• FAO staff are subject to the authority of the Director-General, who may assign them to any of the activities or offices of the Organization.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) contributes to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through the FAO Strategic Framework by supporting the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems, for better productionbetter nutritionbetter environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind.

Organizational Setting
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) contributes to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through FAO Strategic Framework by supporting the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems, for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind.

FAO is a specialized technical UN Agency, bringing unique technical knowledge, information and capacity to bear on one of the world’s great challenges: feeding 9 billion people while conserving the environment. FAO has been an implementing agency of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) since 2006. The FAO-GEF portfolio – currently comprised of over 200 projects worth over USD 1 billion in GEF investments – is growing steadily as countries demand more of what FAO has to offer. As a GEF Agency, FAO works with Member Nations and partners to access GEF financing for strategic projects that help countries to adapt to climate change and strengthen their climate resilience while improving agriculture production, accessing value chains, reducing hunger and improving nutrition.

The GEF-8 Programme is aligned more than ever with FAO’s core competencies and strategic priorities in the areas, including sustainable agriculture, fisheries, forestry and land and water management. FAO’s GEF portfolio extends across all five of GEF’s focal areas (Biodiversity, Climate Change, Land Degradation, International Waters, and Chemicals and Waste) as well as the Least Developed Countries Fund and the Special Climate Change Fund (LDCF/SCCF), also administered by the GEF.
Since 2015, FAO has mobilized nearly USD 240 million in resources for Member Countries under the LCDF and the SCCF, two funds dedicated to climate change adaptation. In the GEF-7 funding cycle, FAO has mobilized early 30 percent of all resources in LDCF for eligible Member Countries, and the opportunities for FAO to provide climate change adaptation solutions for least developed countries will likely grow under GEF-8.

The OCB-GEF Unit provides thematic advice and guidance to FAO in the key priority programming areas of the GEF and works closely with colleagues from across FAO to help Member Nations in developing projects for GEF financing. This position will serve as the FAO-GEF Thematic Advisor on Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) and will provide high quality thematic guidance and specific technical knowledge to the OCB-GEF team, the FAO-GEF team, countries and partners to support project development and implementation. The position will also serve as a Funding Liaison Officer for a portfolio of projects.

The post is located in the GEF Unit in the Office of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Environment (OCB) at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy.

Reporting Lines
The Technical Officer (GEF Climate Change Adaptation Thematic Advisor) reports to the Senior Coordinator, GEF Unit, and works in close coordination with the respective OCB-GEF Regional Lead.

Technical Focus
A) Strategic thematic advice and guidance on GEF CCA programming priorities and approaches as they relate to FAO’s comparative advantages and strategic framework;
B) Identification, design, implementation support and monitoring of FAO-GEF projects and programmes. It includes strategic and policy work, with a focus on the nexus of agriculture, climate change and resilience, biological diversity mainstreaming, land, water, fisheries, forestry, natural capital and ecosystem services.
Key Results
Provision of technical expertise for the development, approval and delivery of environmental investment projects for FAO Member Countries in accordance with FAO Strategic Framework, GEF Programming Directions and country priorities. 

Key Functions

  • Provides technical expertise and project design guidance to project proponents in the identification, development and implementation of natural resource/environmental project proposals that address country priorities and further FAO and GEF (or other environmental funds) strategic objectives, programme priorities and operational policies and procedures.
  • Contributes to the strategic programming of FAO’s GEF work, and assists in coordinating GEF team work for respective region.
  • Participates in, and potentially leads, multidisciplinary teams to assist governments and Decentralized Offices in the identification and formulation of natural resource and environmental management projects for financing by the GEF Trust Fund, Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) or other environmental funds.
  • Ensures quality control at all stages of the GEF project cycle in line with GEF eligibility criteria and alignment with GEF Programming Directions.
  • Coordinates the preparation and approval of project proposals and as required takes a lead role in drafting proposals.
  • Assists in the management of the FAO-GEF portfolio, monitors and supervises implementation of assigned projects and makes recommendations for improvement.
  • Keeps abreast of new developments and requirements in the GEF-managed and other environmental funds.
  • Contributes to the preparation of the annual Project Implementation Reviews (PIR) and to FAO’s reporting to the GEF Secretariat and GEF Council.
  • Participates in the design and delivery of capacity development activities to FAO technical staff in headquarters and Decentralized Offices on the strategies, priorities and procedures, trends and issues related to GEF, adaptation and other environmental funds.
  • Performs other related duties as required.

Specific Functions
CCA Thematic Advisor

  • Advises the OCB-GEF Unit and FAO-GEF community to support the development of a resource mobilization approach for a robust portfolio of projects and programmes under the GEF’s LDCF, SCCF, Challenge Programme and the GEF Trust Fund for multi-trust fund projects.
  • Works with Senior Coordinator and team to strengthen quality assurance and technical coherence for FAO-GEF proposals as related to best practices in LDCF projects.
  • Serves as the primary point of contact in FAO for CCA work and liaise regularly with the GEF LDCF/SCCF team and other key partners to inform a programmatic approach for FAO’s global and regional and national initiatives in the GEF’s climate change adaptation work.
  • Provides regular updates and briefings to the FAO-GEF community on GEF CCA programming priorities, tracks developments on FAO’s engagement with the UNFCCC and advises on best practices and use of tools and approaches for LDCF/SCCF project design and implementation.
  • Engages with the FAO lead experts and divisional focal points on CCA and resilience to ensure synergies with respective FAO strategic priorities, including the FAO Climate Change Strategy, Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture, OCB support for National Adaptation Plans and NDCs and FAO’s Green Climate Fund and Adaptation Fund planning.
  • Engages and establishes working relationships with partners, including government, the private sector and civil society and across FAO in order to build programmes and projects.

FAO-GEF Funding Liaison Officer

  • Serves as a regional technical FAO-GEF Funding Liaison Officer for select projects in Africa, in balance with global Thematic Advisor responsibilities.
  • Leads the formulation and implementation of complex GEF programmes and projects within a regional portfolio, ensuring operational viability and due compliance with the Organization’s policy standards and best practices, as well as convergence with GEF policies and priorities.
  • Collaborates with GEF Unit colleagues to ensure projects within a regional portfolio are prepared effectively and efficiently within the 12-month project preparation phase from concept approval to project document submission and are managed efficiently to achieve key milestones throughout the project cycle in a timely manner, including start up, first disbursement and closure.
  • Provides critical technical inputs to robust regional portfolio management and the maintenance of programme/project and portfolio information and FAO project information systems.
  • Provides high quality products, inputs and support to meet the standards of the Project Implementation Reviews, Mid-term Reviews and Terminal Evaluations.


Minimum Requirements

  • Advanced university degree in natural resources management or related biological sciences, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, social sciences, international policy or related field.
  • Seven years of relevant experience in designing and implementing innovative climate change adaptation programming at the nexus between agriculture and the environment, including providing policy advice and analysis, applying innovative tools and approaches in environmental, and monitoring and evaluation of policies and programmes.
  • Working knowledge of English (proficient – level C) and limited knowledge (intermediate – level B) of one of the other FAO official languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish).


  • Results Focus
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Building effective relationships
  • Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement

Technical/Functional Skills

  • Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions. is desirable;
  • Demonstrated analytical and conceptual skills with proven ability to write project documents and papers in English and ability to analyse and integrate information and insights from multiple sectors.
  • Extent and relevance of experience and success in mobilizing resources and building a portfolio of CCA projects and/or programs.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and ability to apply decision support and knowledge management tools and methods for climate change adaptation, including the priorities of the UNFCCC.
  • Extent and relevance of experience in communicating with a wide range of stakeholders and in providing clear technical and policy advice to project proponents at national, subregional and regional levels about GEF priorities, results-based management and monitoring.
  • Extent and relevance of experience in preparation of innovative resilience-based climate change adaptation investments in the agriculture, forestry, and other land use sectors (particularly GEF projects and programmes) and supervision of multidisciplinary projects.
  • Extent and relevance of experience in one or more of the GEF focal thematic areas (biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, chemicals and waste) that in turn is relevant to FAO’s priorities and comparative advantages.
  • Extent and relevance of experience with and knowledge of the procedures of GEF and other environmental funds.

Please note that all candidates should adhere to FAO Values of Commitment to FAO, Respect for All and Integrity and Transparency.
GENERAL INFORMATION • FAO reserves the right not to make an appointment• Extension of fixed term appointments is based on certification of performance and availability of funds• Appointment will be subject to certification that the candidate is medically fit for appointment, accreditation, any residency or visa requirements, and security clearances. Subject to certain exemptions, vaccination against COVID-19 will in principle be required. Vaccination status will be verified as part of the medical clearance process
CONDITIONS OF SERVICE A competitive compensation and benefits package is offered. For information on UN salaries, allowances and benefits, click on the following link:
Other benefits, subject to eligibility, include:
• Dependency allowances
• Rental subsidy
• Education grant for children
• Home leave travel
• 30 working days of annual leave per year
• Pension fund entitlements under the UN Joint Staff Pension Fund
• International health insurance; optional life insurance
• Disability protection FAO encourages a positive workplace culture to increase inclusivity and diversity within its workforce. FAO applies measures in which all staff members contribute equally and in full to the work and development of the Organization. This includes:
• elements of family-friendly policies
• flexible working arrangements
• standards of conduct ______________________________________________________________________________________________________

HOW TO APPLY • To apply, visit the recruitment website at Jobs at FAO and complete your online profile. We strongly recommend that your profile is accurate, complete and includes your employment records, academic qualifications and language skills;
• Candidates are requested to attach a letter of motivation to the online profile;
• Once your profile is completed, please apply and submit your application;
• Your application will be screened based on the information provided on your online profile;
• Please note that FAO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed at
• Candidates may be requested to provide performance assessments and authorization to conduct verification checks of past and present work, character, education, military and police records to ascertain any and all information which may be pertinent to the employment qualifications;
• Incomplete applications will not be considered;
• Personal information provided on your application may be shared within FAO and with other companies acting on FAO’s behalf to provide employment support services such as pre-screening of applications, assessment tests, background checks and other related services. You will be asked to provide your consent before submitting your application. You may withdraw consent at any time, by withdrawing your application, in such case FAO will no longer be able to consider your application
• Only applications received through the FAO recruitment portal will be considered;
• Your application will be screened based on the information provided in your online profile
• We encourage applicants to submit the application well before the deadline date.

If you need help, or have queries, please contact: [email protected]