Ethiopia nationals: Programme Specialist (Global Environment Facility (GEF))

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 🇪🇹


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.Job Purpose and Organizational Context

UNDP’s environment and climate change activities in Ethiopia include biodiversity, climate change (adaptation and Mitigation), natural resources management, resilience building and disaster risk reduction, among others. Within these areas, UNDP Ethiopia CO is helping to assess and develop policy options, strengthen implementation capacities and mobilize finance, to support efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and meet obligations under Multilateral Environmental Agreements. In particular, UNDP seeks to ensure that environmental considerations are integrated into national development strategies and frameworks (mainstreaming). Globally, UNDP has been a leader in developing and helping apply economic and market-based approaches to address environmental management challenges, through a range of programmes and facilities including the Global Environment Facility (GEF). UNDP Ethiopia has become a key partner for the government in developing and implementing environment programmes. A sizable portfolio of projects and programmes has been developed since GEF4 over the past14 years.

Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Team Leader, Climate Resilience and Environmental Sustainability (CRES) Unit, the Programme Specialist is responsible for supporting the implementation of GEF Programme portfolio through UNDP. The Programme Specialist leads on and directly administers programme implementation of GEF Programmes through UNDP Ethiopia. He/She provides support to portfolio in the areas of monitoring, review and supervision of UNDP GEF Programmes in the CO, and the planning and conducts of periodic reviews on the status and progress of the GEF Programmes, and oversees the identification of implementation problems, formulate and execute corrective actions to address these and improve performance of GEF Programme through UNDP.

The Programme Specialist analyzes the global and national political, social, economic, and environmental trends that impact the formulation, implementation, management, and evaluation of programme activities within his/her portfolio. He/she provides policy and technical advisor services to government counterparts as well as UNCT, UNDP HQs staff and other partners, including donors and civil society.  He/She advocates for UN’s and UNDP’s global mandates and priorities related to environment, biodiversity conservation and climate change issues. The programme Specialist  works as Programme Manager for all GEF funded projects  and provides strategic oversight on interventions based on the GEF/UNDP rules and guidelines aimed at promoting Climate Resilience sustainable development as well as to promote green growth strategies in a manner that  ensures greater program coherence between interventions aimed at advancing Climate Resilient Green Economy transformation and those promoting Climate Resilient Environmental Sustainability, in line with the Country Program Document (CPD) and the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF).

The Programme Specialist coordinates and provides technical support and oversight programme/projects implemented via the financial support of the GEF. He/She works in close collaboration with the different programme and Operations Teams, Programme staff in other UN agencies, UNDP HQs staff and Government officials, technical advisors and experts, multi-lateral and bi-lateral donors and civil society institutions to ensure the successful integration of GEF supported programmes/projects into the CPD, effective resource mobilization and optimal harmonization and alignment.Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of Key Functions:

  1. The conceptualization, development, implementation and monitoring of GEF projects and the achievement of desired results
  2. Management of the country office GEF programme and projects, consolidates the overall GEF program budget, monitor variances against budget and provide explanations in accordance with UNDP rules.
  3. Creation and sustenance of strategic partnership and implementation of the resource mobilization.
  4. Provision of top-quality policy advice and technical support to the Government and UNDP Senior Management and  
  5. Facilitation and contribution to knowledge building and management.

1. Ensure the implementation of UNDP – GEF strategies, programmes and projects focusing on the achievement of the following results:

  • To identify areas for support and interventions within GEF focus areas.
  • Lead the preparation of project ideas/concept note as part of country programme in collaboration with GEF focal point.
  • Facilitate the formation of Project Identification Form (PIF) and development of full flagged programme, approval, LOAC, co-financing and commencement of programme in collaboration with relevant stakeholders.
  • Champion the GEF initiatives and strengthen integration to the CO programmes/Projects to the access resources, share good practice and promote innovation for best results.
  • Support to Head Cluster in coordinating and monitoring implementation of UNDAF (2010 – 2016) outcomes on environment and sustainable development in partnership with other UN agencies.

2. Management of the country office GEF programme and projects focusing on quality control from formulation to implementation and evaluation phases, achieving the following results:

  • Effective application of RBM tools, establishment of management targets (BSC) and monitoring achievement of results.
  • Design and formulation of CO programme within the area of responsibility, translating UNDP’s priorities into local interventions. Coordination of programme implementation with the executing agencies. Introduction of performance indicators/ success criteria, cost recovery, targets, and milestones.
  • Initiation of a project, presentation of the project to appraisal committee, entering project in to Atlas; finalization of contribution agreements; determination of required revisions, coordination of the mandatory and budget re-phasing exercises, closure of projects through review. Programme Analyst can perform functions of Manager Level 1 in Atlas for POs and vouchers approval. Participates in recruitment process for projects.
  • Develop and implement a robust monitoring and evaluation system for project that meets the requirements of the CO, GEF and partners.
  • Issuance of AWP, monitor implementation of the work plan and timetable, budget revisions as necessary.
  • Financial management – conducting budget revisions, verifying expenditures, advancing funds, issuing combined delivery reports, ensuring no over-expenditure of budget,
  • Financial and substantive monitoring and evaluation of the projects, identification of operational and financial problems, design and implement solutions, participation in audit of NEX projects.
  • Aggregate reports including donor reports are regularly prepared on activities, outputs and outcomes.
  • Organize project review, such as steering committee meetings, joint monitoring as outlined in project document and agreed with UNDP, implementing partners and GEF.
  • Facilitate mid-term and final evaluations -Prepare TOR, hire personnel, plan and facilitate mission /Meetings/ debriefing, circulate draft and final reports.

3. Ensures strategic partnership and implementation of the resource mobilization strategy in collaboration with other unit in the CO, focusing on the achievement of the following results:

  • Strengthen partnership with UN Agencies, IFI’s, government institutions, bi-lateral and multilateral donors, private sector, civil society organization in the priority thematic areas based on strategic goas of UNDP, country needs and GEF priorities.
  • Secure funding to support activities, events and programmes that promote and support GEF focus areas.
  • Develop close working relationship with GEF and other partner and ensure close engagement in initiatives that enhance the global impacts of GEF programmes and contributes towards common goals.
  • Organize meetings, seminars, training and public events to support information exchange across different sectors and among partners.
  • Analysis information on donors, preparation of substantive briefs on possible area of cooperation identification of opportunities for initiation of new projects.
  •  Actively contribute to the overall office effort in resource mobilization.

4. Ensures provision of top-quality advisory services and policy support, focusing on the achievement of the following result:

  • Provide high level technical support and advise to implementing partners (Government) and other partners of the successful implementation of programmes/projects.
  • Identification of sources of information related to policy-driven issues. Identification and synthesis of best practices and lessons learnt directly linked to country policy goals.
  • Spearhead the provision of policy advisory services on GEF programme management.
  • Advocate and support for the design policies and institutions that will address the country problems and needs in collaboration with the Governmental and other strategic partners.
  • Coordinate internal and external reviews of policies and strategies and support the implementation of recommendations.  

5. Facilitation and contribution to knowledge building and management:

  • Sound contribution to knowledge forums and communities of practice.
  • Systematic recording of best practices and lessons learnt in the areas of engagement
  • Participate in national and international networks and events related to his/her portfolio.
  • Facilitate and prepare policy, briefs programme analysis and research.
  • Organize and facilitate training for CP and partners staff on Environment, GEF programme.

CompetenciesCore behavioral competencies

  • Achieve Results: LEVEL 1: Plans and monitors own work, pays attention to details, delivers quality work by deadline
  • Think Innovatively: LEVEL 1: Open to creative ideas/known risks, is pragmatic problem solver, makes improvements
  • Learn Continuously: LEVEL 1: Open minded and curious, shares knowledge, learns from mistakes, asks for feedback
  • Adapt with Agility: LEVEL 1: Adapts to change, constructively handles ambiguity/uncertainty, is flexible
  • Act with Determination: LEVEL 1: Shows drive and motivation, able to deliver calmly in face of adversity, confident
  • Engage and Partner: LEVEL 1: Demonstrates compassion/understanding towards others, forms positive relationships
  • Enable Diversity and Inclusion: LEVEL 1: Appreciate/respect differences, aware of unconscious bias, confront discrimination 

Cross-Functional & Technical competenciesBusiness Direction & Strategy: System Thinking

  • Ability to use objective problem analysis and judgement to understand how interrelated elements coexist within an overall process or system, and to consider how altering one element can impact on other parts of the system

Business Development: Knowledge Generation:

  • Ability to research and turn information into useful knowledge, relevant for context, or responsive to a stated need

Business Management: Project Management

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

Business Management: Partnerships Management

  • Ability to build and maintain partnerships with wide networks of stakeholders, Governments, civil society and private sector partners, experts and others in line with UNDP strategy and policies

Business Management: Risk Management:

  • Ability to identify and organize action around mitigating and proactively managing risk

Business Management: Working with Evidence and Data

  • Ability to inspect, cleanse, transform and model data with the goal of discovering useful information, informing conclusions and supporting decision-making

Required Skills and ExperienceEducation:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in Ecology, Natural Resources Management, Environment Management, Environment Sciences, Agricultural economics, Development Studies/Development Management with environment specialization; or any related field of study.


  • Five years of experience in programme and project design and management, with specialized experience in environment, natural resources management, climate change adaptation and mitigation; policy analysis and development programming at the national/international level; resources mobilization. 
  • Knowledge and experience of UN/UNDP’s policies. Procedures, rules and regulations a national implementation experience is an asset.

Language requirements:

  • Fluency in English and the national language of the duty station.

Important Notice

Please note that continuance of appointment beyond the initial 12 months is contingent upon the successful completion of a probationary period.


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. 

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