Coastal Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) specialist

United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment)

Panama City, Panama 🇵🇦

Result of Service


The coastal EbA specialist consultant will be Provide Technical Support for the overall management and coordination of the corresponding CBC activities, including elaborating and compiling key baseline information on climate vulnerability, resilient livelihoods and adaptation planning in the region. It will also be responsible for the planning, and implementation of stakeholder dialogues as well as to carry out project monitoring, and financial and administrative aspects to ensure project´s objectives and results fulfilment, according to the requirements of UNEP and the Embassy of Norway.

She/he will also be responsible for the technical supervision of the proposal development process for the following projects:

  • Coastal resilience in Dominica – Green Climate Fund
  • Resilient livelihoods in coastal communities in Costa Rica and Panama – Adaptation Fund

In addition, the specialist will ensure synergies of these proposals with other adaptation projects ongoing or in preparation, such as National Adaptation Plans and Nature 4 Cities.

The coastal EbA specialist consultant will perform the following tasks:

  1. Support for, organize and assist in monitoring of the day-to-day implementation of the CBC project and other UNEP activities.
  2. Provide technical insights for hiring processes associated to the three initiatives (CBC, Coastal resilience in Dominica GCF, Resilient livelihoods in coastal communities in Costa Rica and Panamá AF), coordinate the activities of UNEP’s consultants hired for the projects, and provide technical guidance in their supervision and evaluation process.
  3. Define, in coordination with UNEP and relevant government counterparts the overall project implementation strategy ensuring that project activities are aligned to the national strategies and regulations, Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) and adaptation regulations, and integrated to national and subnational programmes, as relevant.
  4. Collaborate with the corresponding teams on planning, budgeting, monitoring and accountability, in close coordination with UNEP.
  5. Identify and advise on opportunities and implement actions to improve the overall management of the projects.
  6. Ensure coordination of project activities with the CBC Secretariat, the relevant Ministries, relevant Institutions, other UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes, and NGOs,
  7. Provide technical inputs to the studies and processes for the formulation of project proposals to be submitted to GCF and AF.
  8. Provide technical support and collaborate with the implementation of output 1.3 in the “Strengthening Ocean management project in the CBC” particularly by developing baseline assessments for climate change adaptation in key marine-coastal communities including the compilation of climate vulnerability assessments of the region.
  9. Prepare a baseline study of resilient livelihoods in the region (in alignment and collaboration with existing initiatives/projects), compiling adaptation planning experiences at local level.
  10. Carry out a workshop with local stakeholders and ongoing projects in the region to review and discuss results from vulnerability assessments, and local planning experiences.
  11. Collaborate with the Preparation of Simplified Legal Agreements (SLA) with UNDP and other UN Agencies, UN to UN Agreements, Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) and cooperation agreements with different partners and stakeholders according to the project implementation/development strategy.
  12. Identify new relevant partners for the implementation and sustainability of the project, maintain the relationship and ensure synergies with the current and new partners and relevant initiatives.
  13. Guarantee the accomplishment of environmental and social safeguards, and that gender and vulnerable communities’ policies are duly implemented in all project activities.
  14. Collaborate with the supervision of the monthly planning of activities.
  15. Assist in the preparation of work, travel, and procurements plans, in accordance with the guidelines and requirements of UNEP for the corresponding consultative processes
  16. Assist in the supervision of the procurement processes and contract, services and goods, including the quality control of terms of reference or other bidding documents, ensuring that the specifications and procedures are according to UNEP requirements, and to the procedure duly approved.
  17. Identify implementation´s bottlenecks and advice, in close consultation with UNEP on how to overcome them and improve the overall management of the project.
  18. Prepare technical and administrative reports of the projects for UNEP and the donors (Norway, GCF and AF)
  19. Identify and extract the lessons learnt from the projects to share through UNEP´s communications channels
  20. Other activities relevant for the fulfillment of the position’s objectives.

Work Location

UNEP LACO Office, Panama City, Panama

Expected duration


Duties and Responsibilities


The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global Environment.

UNEP Latin America and the Caribbean Office (LACO), located in Panama City, works closely with the 33 countries of the region -with a population of about 588 million people- and its activities are integrated into the Medium-Term Strategy and the Programme of Work approved by the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA).

The office works towards the implementation of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the new Paris Agreement and the priority actions defined in the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) and National Adaptation Plans (NAP) of the region.

In terms of supporting countries in the region attain the global commitments signed within the framework of the Paris Agreement, the Latin America and the Caribbean UNEP Sub-programme on Climate Change aims at strengthening the ability of countries to move towards climate-resilient and low emission strategies for sustainable development and human well-being. In this framework, the UNEP Sub-programme on Climate Change, through its Climate Change Unit, leads and supports several initiatives oriented at designing, promoting and implementing innovative mitigation and adaptation solutions at the national and subnational level, and strengthening the transparency framework of the countries.

The expected accomplishment regarding climate change adaptation is that adaptation approaches, including the Nature-based Solutions (NbS) , are implemented and integrated into key sectoral and national development strategies to reduce vulnerability and strengthen resilience to climate change risks. Furthermore, the UNEP’s Sub-programme on Climate Change is also committed to ensure that cross-cutting issues such as gender equity, women empowerment and social inclusion are effectively integrated in the development of its tasks to guarantee an equitable development in line with its adaptation objectives.

The adaptation team of the Climate Change Unit is implementing a portfolio of projects and continuously developing a pipeline of new projects, both for adaptation planning and for implementation of concrete measures, in the three subregions of the region: Central America, South America and the Caribbean. The adaptation team works in close coordination with the rest of the Climate Change Unit and regional office, UNEP regional, sub-regional and national offices in the region and worldwide, including Headquarters; other UN System Agencies, Programmes and Funds; Regional and Subregional Organizations, countries’ institutions, and national and local organizations; and donors and financing institutions such as the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the Global Environment Facility (GEF) or the Adaptation Fund (AF).

As part of this support to countries in the region, during the last 15 years, UNEP has provided technical and administrative support to the Caribbean Biological Corridor Initiative, a regional cooperation platform conformed by Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. In the context of this support, a new project entitled “Strengthening Ocean Management in the Caribbean Biological Corridor” is being implemented to kickstart the CBC’s work in the marine realm and implement the Strategic plan of the CBC towards 2030, with a special focus in the marine realm. This project funded by the Kingdom of Norway through its embassy for the Caribbean in Cuba, has a specific component aimed to improved knowledge and baseline information on marine-coastal issues so that it guides research design within the CBC Initiative.

In this matter, the project has a special focus on establishing baseline assessments for climate change adaptation in key marine-coastal communities in specific areas of the Caribbean Biological Corridor.

In addition, UNEP is also developing several proposals that will be presented to the Adaptation Fund (AF) and the Green Climate Fund (GCF) focused on increasing resilience of coastal areas to the impacts of climate change.

The coastal EbA specialist consultant will be responsible for the technical supervision and elaboration of the adaptation the adaptation assessments under the “Strengthening Ocean Management in the CBC Initiative” project and for the technical supervision of the proposals to be developed for the GCF and the Adaptation Fund working in close collaboration with the regional adaptation team based in Panama.

The coastal EbA specialist consultant will operate under the overall supervision of the Adaptation Programme Officer of UNEP’s Office for Latin America and the Caribbean. She/he will work in UNEP LACO Office Panama City, Panama, from Monday to Friday, 40 hours per week, full time and exclusive dedication.

Qualifications/special skills

Qualifications Required


  • Master’s degree in marine/coastal resources, climate change adaptation, development studies, project management or a closely related field is required.
  • Additional studies or specific training in coastal management and planning would be an asset


  • 5 years of relevant work experience in the area of climate change/environment,. including demonstrated experience in project coordination/management is required.
  • 3 years of specific work experience in marine/coastal projects is required
  • Demonstrated experience and knowledge of marine/coastal resources management is required.
  • Demonstrated experience and knowledge of climate change adaptation, resilience and ecosystem-based adaptation in coastal ecosystems is required.
  • Knowledge of biodiversity, conservation and ecosystem management is an asset.
  • Proven experience in working and collaborating with public and private institutions is desirable.
  • Proven experience in the entire project cycle, from design to implementation and monitoring is required.
  • Relevant experience leading, organizing, and supervising work teams is desirable.
  • Relevant experience with vulnerable communities is an asset.
  • Relevant experience with regional and national projects in the Caribbean is an asset.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of development and adaptation policies and planning processes at the national and subnational levels in the Caribbean, as well as familiarity with national agencies and other relevant institutions involved in adaptation processes is desirable.
  • Experience in facilitating multi-stakeholder negotiations and engagement is an asset.
  • Relevant expertise in integrating gender considerations into policy processes or project formulation, planning and implementation is an asset.
  • Relevant experience in the compliance of social and environmental safeguards is an asset.


  • Fluent in Spanish is required.
  • Confident in English is required.


  • Strong analytical skills to understand complex situations and solve problems.
  • Excellent organizational abilities to set priorities.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills as well as active listening.
  • Capacity to gather, analyze and synthesize data and generate relevant information.
  • Innovation, creativity and critical thinking.
  • Ability to pick up new terminology and concepts easily.
  • Strong leadership skills.

No Fee







IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development