International Governance, Policy and Legal Specialist

Asian Development Bank (ADB)

Indonesia 🇮🇩

Viet Nam 🇻🇳

Expertise: International Governance, Policy and Legal Specialist
Expertise Group: Legal/ Policy Advice

Consultant Source: International
TOR Keywords: environmental policy, law, marine conservation, circular economy, marine/ocean sciences, environmental/natural resources management

Objective and Purpose of the Assignment

Marine plastic pollution is an enormous and growing problem. About 150 million tons of plastic is
already in the ocean, and this amount increases every year by about 8 million to 12 million tons. Asia
is at the epicenter of this crisis and is the source of over 80% of all marine plastic pollution, while
also being highly vulnerable to its impacts. Addressing marine pollution in the region is necessary to
secure long-term economic growth, restore critical coastal and marine ecosystems, and deliver ocean-
climate action.

In May 2019, ADB launched the Action Plan for Healthy Oceans and Sustainable Blue Economies (Action
Plan) which aims to scale up investments and technical assistance to $5 billion between 2019-2024. As
part of the Action Plan, ADB has approved a knowledge and support technical assistance (KSTA) cluster
called “Promoting Action on Plastic Pollution from Source to Sea in Asia and the Pacific” (TA) to help
developing member countries (DMCs) deliver their commitments to reduce marine plastic pollution and
support their initiatives towards healthy oceans.

In the aftermath of COVID-19, DMCs are increasingly looking into sustainable economic recovery that also
directs investments into pollution control and resource efficiency. The transboundary nature of marine
plastic pollution also requires response at the international level and would thus benefit from a robust
international governance framework. Globally, UN Member States are now negotiating a legally binding
instrument on plastic pollution covering measures along the entire life cycle of plastics, including
extraction of feedstocks, production, transport, use, disposal, and remediation. The momentum to manage
plastic waste is rising. ADB can provide additional support to DMCs to align with the new international
rules and targets across the whole plastic value chain, and relevant growth sectors such as the circular

ADB will need to engage an International Governance, Policy, and Legal Specialist to support DMCs on
policy response, development, and reforms in line with reducing plastic waste and ocean health
initiatives, and more broadly, on aligning to a global plastics treaty, and circular economy development.

Scope of Work

The expert will be responsible for policy guidance and advice, peer review, and technical inputs to DMCs
and ADB operations on plastic pollution reduction, coastal and marine sectors and issues, and promoting
regional cooperation and integration on transboundary environmental issues.

With particular reference to COVID-19, any need for international and national travel shall be assessed
by ADB and the Consultant using ADB’s advice at the time of travel. Subject to ADB’s approval, the
Consultant may use remote video technology meetings to replace face-to-face meetings as considered

Detailed Tasks and/or Expected Output

The International Governance, Policy and Legal Specialist will perform the following tasks:

  1. Develop a strategy and work plan to guide ADB staff in supporting DMCs’ preparations to align to the
    new global plastics treaty. The strategy and work plan can include:
    a) Stakeholder mapping and treaty process review – identify major partners involved in the UN
    Intergovernmental negotiating committee (INC) on Plastic Pollution, including DMCs leading or preparing
    for the treaty process, timelines, and process review, including how the UN aims to ensure transparency
    and inclusivity in the approach. Shortlist key stakeholders that ADB can work with, and rationale for
    the potential collaboration.
    b) Policy measures (based on initial assessment of the specialist) which can be prioritized to enhance
    regional cooperation (including identifying opportunities to align with and build on current policy
    initiatives across the region), upscale and redirect investments towards aligning to the treaty, uptake
    of sustainable solutions based on scientific knowledge and appropriate technology, etc.
    c) Recommended modalities for delivering support to DMCs (e.g., capacity building program, technical
    studies, regional consultation workshop, knowledge sharing through an article or conference, policy
    dialogue, policy brief, technical assistance to support actual development and reform) based on initial
    identified needs around policy response, reform, or development.
    d) Terms of reference (TORs) for key specialist/s needed to implement above recommendations.
  2. Co-design a concept note and support implementation of a ministerial level conference in 1Q 2023 (to
    be confirmed by TASU officer) based on outcomes of the first INC (INC-1) on plastic pollution and
    priority support needed by participating DMCs.
  3. Attend the second UN Intergovernmental negotiating committee (INC-2) in-person or online (to be
    confirmed by TASU officer) and provide the background note and talking points on ADB’s possible
    intervention, taking into consideration the outcomes from task 2.
  4. Lead on preparation of a concept note and support the implementation for a capacity building workshop
    or DMC officials in Q3 2023 (to be confirmed) based on outcomes of INC-2, inputs from task 2, and
    recommendations in task 1. The workshop can be scheduled in preparation for INC-3.
  5. Participate as speaker/moderator in at least 5 internal or external seminars/webinars on multilateral
    agreements, regional cooperation and integration (especially on the global plastic treaty), ghost gear,
    initiatives on plastic waste; including the Second TA Implementation Workshop at the ADB Headquarters on
    17-18 January 2023.
  6. Prepare and publish 4 knowledge products with inputs focusing on the plastic treaty (based on
    strategy and work plan), including finalizing and publishing the ongoing study on emerging co-investment
    opportunities for plastic pollution reduction and climate change mitigation.
  7. Author/Co-author at least 2 ADB blogs or articles on key ocean health or circular plastics economy
    issues (e.g., climate change, biodiversity, ocean finance, plastic pollution, global plastics treaty).
  8. Advise ADB project teams, who request or require perspectives on policies relevant to plastic waste
    reduction and coastal and marine conservation and provide peer review on relevant project documents
    circulated for interdepartmental review.
  9. Support knowledge activities of the TA, as determined by the TASU officer, including those with
    COBSEA and other key regional partners.
  10. Share knowledge and inputs on ongoing studies on policy and financing investments emerging from the
    global plastics treaty.
  11. Coordinate with relevant ADB departments (including operational departments, sector and thematic
    groups, and DOC), to accomplish above tasks.
  12. Accomplish any other related tasks within reasonable scope, as requested by the TASU Officer.

Expected outputs from this assignment are as follows:

  1. Draft strategy and workplan to support DMCs on preparations to align to international governance
  2. Concept note on proposed conference or workshop on the global plastics treaty
  3. Concept note on proposed capacity building workshop for DMCs
  4. At least 4 knowledge products, including one on emerging co-investment opportunities for plastic
    pollution reduction and climate change mitigation
  5. At least 2 ADB blogs or digital articles on key ocean health and circular plastics economy issues
  6. TOR/s for required specialists
  7. Speaker/Moderator in at least 5 seminars/webinars

Minimum Qualification Requirements

The specialist must have at least a master’s degree in marine sciences, marine conservation,
environment, sustainable development, natural resources management, environmental policy, law, or other
related fields and at least five years demonstrated professional experience in these fields. S/he must
have technical expertise in coastal and marine management or conservation and demonstrated skills in
research and analysis, communications, environmental law and policy, and project development. Specialist
knowledge of marine issues and broad knowledge of environmental issues is required. S/he must be an
effective coordinator and excellent communicator. Working experience within the region and familiarity
with ADB operations is highly preferred.

Minimum General Experience: 7 Years
Minimum Specific Experience (relevant to assignment): 5 Years





IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development