Local recruitment: Program Officer - International Panel on Deltas and Coastal Zones

Global Center on Adaptation (GCA)

Rotterdam, Netherlands 🇳🇱

Job description

VACANCY TITLE: Program Officer – International Panel on Deltas and Coastal Zones 

LOCATION: Rotterdam (Netherlands)

TERM: Initial contract duration 1 year with possibility of extension  

INTENSITY: 40 hours per week, 5 days per week 

ANTICIPATED START DATE: As soon as possible 

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Thursday 5th January 2023 (midnight)


The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) is an international organization that works as a solutions broker to catalyze action and support for adaptation solutions, from the international to the local, in partnership with the public and private sector, to ensure we learn from each other and work together for a climate resilient future. Adapting to impacts of climate change provides a “win-win” for health, livelihoods, food security, water supply, human security and economic growth. The work of the GCA elevates the visibility and political importance of climate adaptation and facilitates solutions, such as smarter investments, new technologies and better planning to become more resilient to climate-related threats. GCA is a rapidly growing organization with offices in Abidjan, Beijing, Dhaka, Groningen, and Rotterdam.

About the Role


The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) seeks a dynamic and experienced Program Officer to support the Secretariat of the International Panel on Deltas and Coastal Areas (IPDC) and help drive forward GCA’s role as a solutions broker in the field of climate adaptation. The individual will actively support the IPDC Secretariat and provide leadership on policy advocacy and programs for climate adaptation in deltas, coastal areas, and Large Ocean/Small Island States and provide organizational and technical, content-focused, support to advance GCA’s overall policy and advocacy work. This person is responsible for cultivating and managing relationships with key partners and parties of the IPDC and will act as a liaison between the Secretariate and GCA, in particular the Water Adaptation Community (WAC).

IPDC is an initiative that responds to the urgent and critical need for special leadership to accelerate and scale up climate adaptation in deltas, coastal zones and Large Ocean/Small Island States. The IPDC had a soft launch at the COP 27 on the 14th of Nov. The formal launch will be held at the UN Global Water Conference in New York in 2023. The IPDC brings together the following stakeholder groups:

  • The Champions Group consisting of High-Level Leaders for political and financial commitment and leadership.
  • The International Expert Panel consisting of top-level scientists and adaptation experts linking shared knowledge to local planning and implementation needs.
  • The Action Holders consisting of knowledge networks and implementation agencies working with the international experts to support accelerated actions on the ground.

An IPDC secretariat plays a pivotal role in the IPDC. It primarily supports the International Expert Panel while. maintaining and enhancing the connection with the Champions Group and knowledge networks in the Action Holders. Among the main tasks of the IPDC secretariat are:

  • Project coordination and management of the present project.
  • Supporting the three layers and facilitating full integration of the three-layers approach, being the main contact point, both internally and externally.
  • Preparing the launching of the IPDC at the UN Water Conference.
  • Delivering a first IPDC assessment report.
  • The initial implementation of the three layers and organizational structures.
  • Communication and outreach activities, including maintenance of the website.

The configuration and tasks of the IPDC secretariat are likely to evolve during the coming years.

The WAC will be a supporting knowledge and action network linked to the International Panel on Deltas and Coastal Areas. The WAC has an overarching goal to scale up and to accelerate water adaptation. It addresses key barriers related to fragmentation, understanding and knowledge management. It aims to bridge the cross-sectoral gap and connect sectors at an institutional level as they are connected by water at a physical level. In doing so, it aims to support collaboration, learning and practical action for water adaptation and resilience. The focus is on governance, finance and behavior change. It does this by engaging actors and Communities of Practice (CoP), including NGOs, scientists, experts, policy makers and decision-makers in the most pressing questions and adaptation issues.


Under the oversight of the GCA Water and Urban Lead the Program Officer will be responsible for the following:

Political Mobilization and Administration

  • Take a proactive role in the conceptualization, operationalization, and implementation of the IPDC and work of the Secretariat .
  • Support the development of the IPDC implementation agenda, expanding and strengthening the IPDC network, and proactively identifying opportunities to pursue the objectives of the IPDC.
  • Support the day-to-day operational management of the IPDC Secretariat as per the tasks agreed between GCA and the IPDC Secretariat.

Stakeholder Relations

  • Expand and maintain the network of international, national and local stakeholders in the climate water adaptation sector.
  • Provide timely and insightful reporting, involve GCA stakeholders as appropriate, and leverage GCA’s global network of experts in support of the IPDC.
  • Liaise between the IPDC and the WAC to provide strategic and operational inputs in planning of GCA’s Water Adaptation Community.

Strategic Communications and Events

  • Coordinate and support the production of IPDC publications and support the preparation of knowledge products (e.g. policy briefs, news stories, reports) relating to GCA’s activities supporting the IPDC.
  • Ensure the efficient preparation and delivery of national and international events, through both in-person and hybrid formats, bringing together experts and policymakers in support of action-forcing impactful convenings.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned.

The Program Officer will operate from GCA’s global headquarters in Rotterdam (The Netherlands), on the world’s largest floating office, and will visit the IPDC office in Delft (The Netherlands) as and when needed.

Job requirements


  • Master’s degree in environmental studies, civil engineering, development studies, public administration, or other relevant field.
  • Minimum of seven years of international of relevant work experience in the implementation in the field of water climate adaptation, water management, or international development.
  • Strong conceptual and operational understanding of key subject areas such as climate adaptation, water resource management, and climate change.
  • Proven ability to effectively collaborate with diverse stakeholders at different levels of seniority in a political complex environment.
  • Good understanding of the Dutch and international water and climate adaptation sectors.
  • Strong planning and organization skills and a demonstrable sense of urgency and ability to achieve results under tight deadlines in a team setting while maintaining an empowering and solutions-oriented approach.
  • Strong client and communications skills, backed by an effective ability to communicate in English (both orally and with excellent writing skills).
  • Strong capability in articulating and presenting ideas to a diverse audience of stakeholders at technical and strategic levels.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, with proven ability to function effectively and collaboratively as an empowering and supportive team member of multi-disciplinary and multicultural teams, working in multiple locations, and to resolve conflicts constructively.
  • Strong report writing, presentation and communication skills, backed by an ability to articulate complex ideas into clear outputs with a coherent narrative to a diverse audience of stakeholders at technical and strategic levels.
  • Values: commitment to excellence, bold and honest, a focus on impact and teamwork, and an ability to perform under pressure.
  • Valid work permit for the Netherlands.


With our global headquarters in Rotterdam on the award-winning Floating Office Rotterdam, and regional offices around the globe, GCA offers a dynamic, high-profile and international working environment in a growing organization. You will be contributing to our global mission on climate adaptation. You will have the opportunity to draw upon the substantial expertise available at the GCA and its partner organizations across the world and you will be given an opportunity to support the shaping of international policies and global action on climate change, working at the highest governmental levels and collaborating with governments on all continents.

You will have the opportunity to draw upon the substantial expertise available at GCA and its partner organizations across the world and you will be given an opportunity to support the shaping of international policies and global action on climate change, working at the highest governmental levels and collaborating with governments on all continents. A public transport travel card is provided for free commuting within the Netherlands.

Remuneration is aligned with salary structures in the Netherlands.


Please apply at https://opportunities.gca.org by submitting your CV and cover letter in English. Kindly mention the date as of which you would be available to start. Interviews are planned for the second week of January.


The GCA celebrates diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. GCA does not discriminate in any of its programs or activities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, nationality, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.


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IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development