Natural Resource Economist

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 Land Resources Division (LRD) provides advice, technical assistance, research and training support to Pacific Island countries and territories on all aspects of agriculture and forestry. This includes plant protection, conservation, plant genetic resources, animal health and production, agroforestry, biosecurity and trade facilitation, and sustainable systems for agriculture, forestry and land management. This work has two objectives: improved food and nutritional security, and resilient communities. The division’s services are provided through seven technical/thematic teams: Animal Health and Production; Plant Health; Biosecurity and Trade Facilitation; Forest and Agriculture Diversification; Crop Production and Extension; Genetic Resources; and Forests and Trees.

The role – Natural Resource Economist role will provide leadership and support for projects in the Pacific region that deal with the inherent economic uncertainty and unpredictability of the evolving interaction between human agricultural activities, the natural environment, and sustainable use of resources.

The key responsibilities of the role include:

  • Policy and technical advisory services – provide policy and advisory services to internal and external partners and countries on matters related to understanding of economic, ecological, and institutional systems
  • Current projects and new project proposals – identify, initiate, and contribute to the development of new proposals and also strengthen and enhance data for current projects. Using economic principles and statistical techniques, evaluate and quantify the ex-ante benefits, costs, incentives, and the ex-post impacts of human economic activity, resource management, and environmental protection
  • Promote natural resource economics awareness – be the source of advice and reference for a science-based approach to support internal and external partners on the importance of managing the interaction between natural systems and sustainable and efficient agricultural economies

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

Key selection criteria


  • Master’s degree in natural resource management, economics or other similar field with strengths in statistical analysis

Knowledge and experience

  • At least 10 years of experience in a similar role at a senior level
  • Experience in natural resource economics, including ex-ante and ex-post statistics
  • Understanding of national and regional issues related to natural resource economics and agriculture in the Pacific region                                                                                                                                                                

Essential skills

  • Strong negotiation and relationship building skills, including maintaining professional, client-focused relationships and mutually beneficial partnerships
  • Innovative thinker with ability to take initiative
  • Report writing, planning and organising skills
  • Research and analysis skills

Language skills

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

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  • Strong interpersonal skills with ability to work as part of a multi-cultural, inclusive and equitable environment

Salary, terms and conditions

Approximate Start Date – July 2020

Contract Duration – Three years

Remuneration – The Natural Resource Economist is a Band 11 position in SPC’s 2020 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,015‒3,769 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 8,986–11,233 (USD 4,161–5,202; EUR 3,709–4,636). 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 – 3 May 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. The position of Natural Resource Economist would be essential in the program design work of the Land Resources Division. How would you see natural resource management advisory services playing a role in the development and implementation of a project or program, and tell us about a successful proposal you have prepared?
  2. This role would contribute to data collection, analysis and policy development in the Pacific Region. Within that context, what approaches would you use to ensure you are working effectively with our member countries?
  3. Please share your experience of an effective approach when dealing with a large amount of data from multiple sources? How did you manage the data and determine which information was relevant?

JD Natural Resource Economist.docx