Team Leader (Earth Observation and Remote Sensing)

Pacific Community (SPC)

Suva, , FJ


The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 26 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our organisation works across more than 20 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The Geoscience Energy and Maritime Division (GEM) provides advice, technical assistance, research and training support to Pacific Island countries and territories. There are three (3) areas of scientific programming and two areas of focus within this division:

  1. Oceans and Maritime Programme (OMP) – assists member countries with services that provide applied ocean science and knowledge for evidence-based policy-making and technical solutions for improved ocean and maritime governance, management and capacity development.
  2. Georesources and Energy Programme (GEP) – assists member countries by applying technical knowledge in the areas of geoscience and sustainable energy use.
  3. Disaster and Community Resilience Programme (DCRP) – assists member countries to demonstrate strengthened resilience through integrated action on disaster risk management, climate change adaptation, natural resource management and increased access to water and sanitation.

The other two focus areas within this division are Programming and Operations, which is responsible for driving integrated programming excellence and operational support across the division, and Earth and Marine Observation, which is responsible for providing diverse, integrated, and unique and demand-driven services across SPC work programmes, projects and countries.

The role – Team Leader – Earth Observation and Remote Sensing will manage a team and provide expert earth observation advice, technical support and coordinate the earth observation activities as part of the portfolio of GEM services offered across GEM and SPC to ensure that goals and agreed outcomes of programmes and projects are effectively achieved.

The key responsibilities of the role include:

  • Management and Leadership
  • GIS, Remote Sensing Advice and Technical Support
  • Project and Funding Management
  • Capacity Building and Training
  • Information and Database Management

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the job description provided.

Key selection criteria


  • Postgraduate qualification in earth observation or remote sensing science

Knowledge and experience

  • At least 10 years of experience in earth observation or remote sensing
  • Detailed understanding of earth observation data and satellites and sensors covering the Pacific region
  • Project management experience, including financial budget management and reporting
  • Leadership and management experience, including staff performance management       

Essential skills

  • Experience in integrating multiple streams of earth observation data into decision ready products
  • Ability to provide expert technical and scientific advice
  • Working knowledge and familiarity with Microsoft Suite of Programs, earth observation and remote sensing related software with specific knowledge of ENVI and ERDAS
  • Analytical skills
  • Ability to multi-task

Language skills

  • Excellent English communication skills (oral and written) with a working knowledge of French being an advantage

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  • Ability to work in a multicultural, inclusive and equitable environment
  • Cultural sensitivity and awareness, with the ability to effectively work with team members from different cultural backgrounds

Salary, terms and conditions

Approximate Start Date – July 2020

Contract Duration – Three years

Remuneration – The Team Leader – Earth Observation and Remote Sensing is a Band 12 position in SPC’s 2020 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,478‒4,348 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 10,365–12,956 (USD 4,800–6,000; EUR 4,278–5,348). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be based on annual performance reviews. Remuneration of expatriate SPC staff members is not subject to income tax in Fiji; Fiji nationals employed by SPC in Fiji will be subject to income tax.

Benefits for international employees based in Fiji – SPC provides a housing allowance of FJD 1,353–3,025 per month. Establishment and relocation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave, medical and life insurance and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their recognised dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 days of annual leave and 30 days of sick leave per annum, and access to SPC’s Provident Fund (contributing 8% of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

Languages – SPC’s working languages are English and French.

Equal opportunity – SPC is an equal opportunity employer. Recruitment is based entirely on merit; in cases where two short-listed candidates are judged to be of equal rank by the selection committee, preference will be given to Pacific Island nationals.

Child protection – SPC is committed to child protection, irrespective of whether any specific area of work involves direct contact with children. SPC’s Child Protection Policy is written in accordance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Police clearance – Successful candidates will be required to provide a police clearance certificate.

Application procedure 

Closing Date 29 April 2020

Applicants must apply online at

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

  • an updated resume
  • contact details for three professional referees
  • a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
  • responses to all screening questions

Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference. These documents may be requested at a later stage.

For international staff in Fiji, only one foreign national per family can be employed with an entity operating in Fiji at any one given time. The Pacific Community does not support dual spouse employment.

Please ensure that you respond to all the screening questions.  If you do not respond to the screening questions, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage.

Screening Questions:

  1. Based on your understanding of earth observation data and satellite sensors covering the Pacific region, please outline some of the technical challenges that could arise in developing decision-ready products for national governments in the region, and how you could overcome these challenges.
  2. Please detail an example of when you developed an integrated Earth Observation platform or solution, specially including if or how it incorporated or built upon existing models, and the impact that platform or solution had for stakeholders.
  3. Outline your experience in ensuring that Earth Observation and other geospatial data are utilised by non-technical teams in decision making across a range of sectors, preferably in a developing country context.

JD Team Leader – Earth Observation and Remote Sensing.docx