Water and Wetlands Coordinator, GEF Sustainable Management of Peatland Ecosystems in Mekong Countries and the Sustainable Use of Peatlands and Haze Mitigation in ASEAN in Lao PDR

International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)


This position is open for expatriates only.

Under the guidance of the Deputy Head, Indo-Burma Group (IBG), the Water and Wetlands Coordinator (WWC) will manage human and non-human resources to ensure the smooth delivery of the GEF Sustainable Management of Peatland Ecosystems in Mekong Countries Project (Mekong Peatlands), which will operate in Cambodia and Lao PDR (Myanmar was included until April 2022.) and the Sustainable Use of Peatlands and Haze Mitigation in ASEAN (SUPA) project in Lao PDR.

The objective of Mekong Peatlands is to sustainably manage peatland ecosystems in targeted countries and to conserve biodiversity and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, by (1) assessing and documenting peatland ecosystems in the three countries; (2) strengthening the capacity and the enabling policy and legal framework for sustainable peatland management at local, national and sub-regional levels; and (3) demonstrating sustainable peatland management practices that conserve biodiversity, reduce GHG emissions and strengthen sustainable livelihoods for local communities. Similarly, the SUPA project in Lao PDR aims to build capacity of key Lao Government agencies, and is closely linked and integrated with the Mekong Peatlands. SUPA aims to improve the knowledge-base and understanding of the types, functions, and values of peatlands found across Lao PDR, as well as strengthening peatland management by mainstreaming peatlands into existing policies and plans, and though demonstrating best management practice in sustainable use of peatland resources and livelihoods.

IUCN is the GEF Implementing Agency and Executing Partner for Mekong Peatlands, and the Implementing Agency for SUPA acting on behalf of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) in Lao PDR. The Executing Agencies (EAs) for Mekong Peatlands are MONRE and the Ministry of Environment (MOE) in Cambodia.

Mekong Peatlands is delivered through a Regional Coordination Unit (RCU) and a national Project Management Unit (PMU) in Lao PDR and Cambodia. The RCU will be managed on a day-to-day basis by the WWC and the two National Project Directors (NPDs) assigned (on a part-time basis) by the two EAs. SUPA is delivered though a project office at the Department of Water Resources (DWR) under MONRE.

Both projects operate under the guidance of Regional (and/or Project) Steering Committees, to ensure the effective and efficient coordination and delivery of the project. The Mekong Peatlands RCU is not a physical unit since the two NPDs are located in two different countries, whereas the SUPA Project Steering Committee is comprised of key National and Provincial Lao Government stakeholders that meet once a year. Both projects are supported by technical and finance/admin staff based at IUCN Country Office in Vientiane.

The WWC will have experience in managing large regional ecosystem-related projects, and will have strong knowledge, qualifications and experience in peatland, wetland and/or mangrove ecology, as well as climate change adaptation and mitigation.
• Lead the tasks of the Mekong Peatlands RCU and SUPA in Lao PDR.
• Coordinate the implementation of Mekong Peatlands activities with the national PMUs in Lao PDR and Cambodia.
• Lead coordination and liaison with DWR and other major government agencies, as well with external partners as required for delivery of SUPA.
• Maintain working relations with SUPA Implementing Agencies, the ASEAN Secretariat and other regional peatland projects, and participate at regional events on behalf of the two projects as required.
• Manage performance of all project staff and sub-contractors.
• Provide technical guidance and review of all project activities and outputs, including the drafting of technical reports and knowledge products.
• Manage project finances according to the agreed project budgets.
• Monitor, and regularly report on the progress of the projects against annual work plans and identify issues that need urgent attention by the regional and national Project Steering Committees.
• Provide six-monthly and annual written reports on the overall project delivery, including by country, covering issues such as project activities, outputs and outcome delivery, and staffing.
• Maintain linkages with other related regional and national projects and identify opportunities for partnership, technical collaboration and knowledge exchange with other agencies, organizations and donors. This will involve collaboration with other GEF-funded projects on peatland management in the ASEAN countries, as well as other projects relevant to the target sites.

• Represent in external and internal IUCN meetings, at national, regional and international levels, as needed.
• Undertake any other tasks as may be assigned by, and mutually agreed with the line manager.
• University degree qualifications in one of the following fields: natural resource management, environmental science, ecology, soil science, geography, forestry, or international development. Postgraduate qualifications would be advantageous.

• At least 7 years of relevant experience in managing large ecosystem-related projects at national and/or regional levels, and will have strong knowledge, qualifications and experience in wetlands/ peatland ecosystem science and management, as well as climate change adaptation and mitigation.

• Demonstrated knowledge and understanding of:
– Wetland and peatland ecosystem values and functions.
– Research and data collection methods in one or more of the following fields: wetland/ peatland ecosystems; mangrove restoration and rehabilitation; socio-economics and livelihoods; integrated and sustainable management of natural resources.
– Ecosystem-based GHG emissions, climate change adaptation, and mitigation.
– Biodiversity conservation and restoration.
– Mainstreaming ecosystem-based approaches/ principles into policies and planning.

• Skills and experience in:
– Implementing integrated ecosystem-based projects in Mekong countries.
– Design and delivery of capacity development and training programmes.
– Liaising with Government Partner agencies and stakeholders.
– Drafting of scientific, technical reports and knowledge products.
– Project M&E and financial reporting.
– Coordinating and managing contracts and consultants.

• Fluency in written and verbal English.

• Proficient in using computers and software applications such as word, PowerPoint, excel and email.

• Experience in using GIS and mapping applications and tools.

• Willingness and capacity to undertake strenuous and/or extended periods of field-based activities.
Applicants are requested to apply online through the HR Management System, by opening the vacancy announcement and pressing the “Apply” button.

Applicants will be asked to create an account and submit their profile information. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date. The vacancy closes at midnight, Swiss time (GMT+1 / GMT+2 during Daylight Saving Time, DST). Please note that only selected applicants will be personally contacted for interviews.

Other job opportunities are published in the IUCN website: http://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

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