About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps exists to alleviate poverty, suffering, and oppression and works to build secure, productive, and just communities. Mercy Corps implements a variety of programming throughout the Middle East in response to the diverse humanitarian and long-term development needs of the region. Mercy Corps has ongoing programs in Syria,Yemen, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Palestine. Mercy Corps is committed to delivering high quality, high impact programming that reaches communities or individuals in need, wherever they are.
The Middle East region has established a regional technical team to provide sound, timely and contextualized technical support both operationally and strategically to country teams while developing and cross-regional learning and strengthening a regional cohesion in line with our global and countries strategies. The Middle East region is closely connected with Mercy Corps’ Global Technical Support Unit (TSU) which along with the Regional Advisors is a key part of the Program Department. TSU subject-matter experts help set agency and regional strategy and provide consultation – from assessment and design through project implementation and results measurement – to field offices worldwide, in some of the world’s toughest places. Regional Technical Advisers are a vital part of this wider network of technical specialists, providing regionally-focused support services in close coordination with the global team while working more intensively with a small number of strategic programs in the region under the direction of the regional leadership team.
General Position Summary
Mercy Corps is seeking to recruit a dynamic individual, who has a broad range of experiences working across relevant water approaches including: integrated water resources management, water governance, water service provisioning, ecosystem services, irrigation and climate change adaptation. The Regional Water and Climate Advisor is a key position within the Middle East regional team who will provide technical leadership in the subject matter expertise and is a key thought partner and collaborator within our global Technical Support Unit (TSU). They will engage and support programs in the region to mitigate water security risks and integrate climate and water resilience through sector interventions that focus on enhancing community understanding, participation and advocacy for improved surface and groundwater management and governance, widespread adoption of water saving technologies, and approaches. They will also leverage existing knowledge and expertise in the region from past and ongoing programming in the water and climate field to influence donors, peers, and national or local authorities on the importance of water resource management in the Middle East. As a key part of their role, the Middle East Water and Climate Advisor will initiate, write and support the design, development, and review of new proposals while supporting the design of the new regional and countries strategies, in line with our new global strategy where water security is a core pillar and climate a cross-cutting organization commitment. They will keep abreast of regional and global trends and work in close collaboration with Mercy Corps’ regional and country teams to identify and support opportunities to integrate water security outcomes in Mercy Corps programming.
Essential Job Responsibilities
STRATEGIC GROWTH OBJECTIVES
- Develop a unified regional vision for water security programming, including in supporting and integrating countries-specific water strategies and vision
- Establish and drive a new business development strategy to build the water security (quality, management, governance, utilization etc..) portfolio in the region
- In collaboration with country teams, develop country level strategies for addressing water security
- Develop country- and regional-level strategic partnerships, integrating Mercy Corps into existing and new consortia, in order to address them
- Grow Mercy Corps voice and visibility in the water sector regionally through engaging influential stakeholders and building partnerships
- Feed into the Mercy Corps global water security strategy using Middle East expertise and generated evidence
- Identify in-country talent and expertise for future staffing positions
- Review and monitor existing water and climate-related programming in the region and address program quality needs
- Help develop strategies and plans to address regional program quality needs together with the Deputy Regional Director and Regional PaQ Specialist
- Build capacity with Mercy Corps staff and partners to better design and implement programs.
PROGRAM AND PROPOSAL DEVELOPMENT
- Write/review proposals and concept notes for funding from donors including foundations, corporations, and US, European, and UN agencies, and other less traditional donors focusing on water security and climate
- Establish a network with donor community, mainly donors working in the water and environmental sectors
- Gather/analyze data and complete assessments to determine program needs and priorities and Mercy Corps’ competitive advantage for funding in the region.
- Run quick desk research and assessments that can help different country programs to preposition for future water programs
- Work with programs, country/regional teams, and global technical support unit on prepositioning and development of program strategies.
- Work with other members of the regional technical team and global TSU on the design and support of multi-sectoral programs that encompass elements of broader agency goals such as resilience, food security, economic opportunities, social cohesion and governance.
- Keep up to date on relevant strategies being developed or applied by significant governmental, academic, and non-profit groups. Work with Mercy Corps to determine how the agency can best work with and/or influence such materials.
- Cultivate and nurture donor relationships and strategic partnerships that positively impact Mercy Corps ability to influence program strategies and proposal design, as well as strategic partnerships that result in stronger and impactful program development efforts.
- Work closely with field leaders to influence their engagement and support of program prepositioning, development and implementation.
LEARNING AND IMPACT
- Work with the regional Program Performance and Quality (PaQ) Team and the Country Offices in the region to ensure that monitoring and evaluation is practical and reflects best practices.
- Develop a deep understanding of the shared incentives and values that will entice partners in the region to connect and work across sectors, both internally and within field projects.
- Support new and ongoing programs with best practice advice and assistance on assessment, implementation, research, and evaluation needs.
- Contribute with the countries and regional team to the newly developed Middle East Research Agenda that will incorporate learnings and adaptations from country programs.
- Collaborate with the relevant countries and regional teams on the Crisis Analytics products to develop further analysis in the field of water and climate in the Middle East.
- Support the nascent “Evidence-Based Hub’’ in the Middle East to use data, evidence and other sources generated to build and demonstrate our technical expertise and excellence in the field of water and climate in the Middle East.
- Conduct assessments; write case studies, learning documents; work with the global TSU to develop internal and external dissemination plans for all products.
- Nurture partnerships with universities, research institutions, and other organizations to produce case studies, assessments, and other learning documentation, as well as enhance program quality.
POLICY, ADVOCACY, REPRESENTATION
- Represent Mercy Corps in regional level forums related to water; lead and/or contribute to thought leadership in this area of expertise.
- Identify and nurture strategic partnerships with other organizations and institutions present in the region.
- Contribute to a strong and regularly updated regional network of technical experts and consultants that can serve as additional resources to be deployed for program support.
- Cultivate buy-in, promote champions, and elevate water security issues as a priority among team members and stakeholders.
Reports Directly To: Deputy Regional Director with double accountability to Global Senior Director for Water and Climate
Works Directly With: Middle East Country Teams, Middle East Regional Team, HQ and Regional Program Performance and Quality (PaQ) Teams, Mercy Corps’ HQ and Regional TSU teams.
Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
Minimum Qualifications & Transferable Skills
- Broad experience in a range of water related technical areas including integrated water resource management, water governance, water service provisioning, ecosystem services, climate change adaptation.
- Bachelor’s degree required. M.A, M.S., M.Sc., or equivalent in a field related to the TSU team specialty and relevant technical certifications are preferred.
- 10 years of experience providing increasingly proficient technical support in the relevant field of expertise that includes:
- Driving the development of new and ambitious agency visions and strategies
- Developing, managing and measuring progress of business development strategies.
- Strategic partnership development
- Preparing writing and analysis on proposal development.
- Producing and publishing influential articles and blogs.
- Demonstrating strong theoretical and applied knowledge of the field of expertise.
- Using integrated approaches and applying systems thinking
- Practical experience, that demonstrates an understanding of the challenges of working in a variety of complex humanitarian and development contexts.
- Excellent communication, coordination, diplomatic and presentation skills, including outstanding soft skills
- Delivering Capacity Building materials or other relevant processes
- Very strong English skills, Arabic skills preferred
The Middle East Water and Climate Advisor position will demonstrate the ability to see connections, and work across a range of technical areas related to water and climate. The position will demonstrate an ability to lead cross-team efforts in developing ambitions strategies and visions, and leading agency level initiatives. The individual will show a strong ability to develop new business strategies through analysis, donor engagement, and concept development. Importantly, the individual must demonstrate an ability to work across teams and institutions, building effective internal and external partnerships. The individual should have the proven ability to influence donors, partners, and peer organizations toward innovative programs and best practices. The Water and Climate Advisor must take a lead role in building and maintaining external relationships as well as demonstrating the drive and initiative to contribute to internal team efforts.The Water and Climate Advisor will demonstrate significant experience with providing technical support and leadership to field programs and country offices. This position requires strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills, and a level of emotional intelligence proficiency that quickly builds and maintains productive relationships across teams. Being aware and sensitive to international development issues and diverse cultures is critical.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
It is expected that this position will travel to Mercy Corps country offices within the Middle East region, including insecure environments, for up to 40% of time, depending on travel restrictions.
In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.
We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.