Policy Specialist (Energy and Climate Change)

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Istanbul, Turkey 🇹🇷

The Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS) has the responsibility for developing all relevant policy and guidance to support the results of UNDP’s Strategic Plan.  BPPS’s staff provides technical advice to Country Offices; advocates for UNDP corporate messages, represents UNDP at multi-stakeholder fora including public-private dialogues, government and civil society dialogues, South-South and Triangular cooperation initiatives, and engages in UN inter-agency coordination in specific thematic areas.  BPPS works closely with UNDP’s Crisis Response Unit (CRU) to support emergency and crisis response.  BPPS ensures that issues of risk are fully integrated into UNDP’s development programmes. BPPS assists UNDP and partners to achieve higher quality development results through an integrated approach that links results based management and performance monitoring with more effective and new ways of working.  BPPS supports UNDP and partners to be more innovative, knowledge and data driven including in its programme support efforts. 
Reporting to the Head of the Global Energy Policy Team, with a secondary report to the Regional Team Leaders for CDT in both Istanbul and Bangkok, the Energy and Climate Change Policy Specialist based in Istanbul is the lead expert in the thematic area of sustainable energy covering both the RBEC and RBAP regions. S/he is responsible for providing policy and programme advisory services to Country Offices on sustainable energy as well as political and technical engagement with governments and development partners. S/he does this in response to requests from country offices. In alignment with the Strategic Plan, the Energy and Climate Change Policy Specialist advances the credibility and recognition of the organization’s programmes in this thematic area. S/he works closely with energy and climate colleagues across the global energy policy team, RBEC and RBAP Country Offices, the GEF EITT team and RBEC/RBAP, guiding and providing policy and programming services in the area of sustainable energy. Conceptual guidance is informed by the empirical perspectives of country partners as well as UNDP’s energy and climate mitigation approaches and policies. The Policy Specialist advances results, the credibility and recognition of the organization’s policies and programmes in this thematic area. S/he is responsible for performing and contributing to the following:
  • Programme Support and Policy Implementation;
  • Policy Advice; 
  • Resource Mobilization; 
  • Partnerships, Representation and Advocacy; 
  • Knowledge Management.
Duties and Responsibilities
1. Programme Support and Policy Implementation:
  • Guide the implementation of UNDP’s policies and approaches to sustainable energy including the identification of programming opportunities and support to ongoing sustainable energy programmes;
  • Develop linkages with other UNDP thematic areas, in particular climate change mitigation, to maximize synergies, optimize results on the ground, and promote a coherent approach of UNDP’s work;
  • Ensure coherence in terms of messaging and conceptual positioning of UNDP in the sustainable energy space vis a vis partners and clients;
  • Design and implement initiatives on key emerging policy agendas such as decentralized, small scale, off-grid energy solutions at regional, national and sub-national levels;
  • Provide inputs and insights into other relevant energy policy partnerships and frameworks such as SE4ALL, GEF, etc; and
  • Coordinate the production and dissemination of relevant policy guidance, analysis, and tools in close collaboration with RBEC and RBAP, the global energy policy team UNDP, other UN bodies, Multilateral Development Banks and other relevant partners.
2. Policy Advice:
  • Provide guidance and input to Country Offices supporting them in providing policy advice and programme support on sustainable energy, including development of institutional, policy and budgetary frameworks, mainstreaming energy into development planning and budgeting, and strengthening capacities;
  • Engage in policy dialogue with country partners, represent UNDP at conferences, workshops and technical meetings and ensure that the programmatic experience from the ground informs corporate policy;
  • Ensure thematic linkages between global policy development and sustainable energy/ climate mitigation programming including, on topics such as energy access, renewable energy and energy efficiency; and
  • Apply integrated multi-disciplinary approaches, including Development Solutions Teams (DSTs), to meet policy and programming needs in line with corporate guidance and standards.
3. Resource Mobilization:
  • Mobilize financial resources from relevant donors and partners for implementing sustainable energy programmes and projects;
  • Develop substantive work plans in line with corporate guidance and programmes ensuring alignment with other UNDP energy and climate mitigation programmes and initiatives in ECIS and Asia;
  • Formulation of funding proposals, donor briefings and presentations in support of UNDP resource mobilization efforts for ECIS and Asia; 
  • Engage in negotiations with counterparts in multilateral and bilateral agencies to promote UNDP’s experience and expertise; 
  • Establish and maintain professional working relationships with colleagues in other teams and partners, by promoting consistent and constructive communication, and open information sharing; and
  • Ensure that the work on energy policy is conducted in accordance with relevant business processes and that high-quality outputs are delivered on time.
4. Partnerships, Representation and Advocacy:
  • Position UNDP as a leader on decentralized, sustainable energy solutions in ECIS and Asia;  
  • Mobilize, foster and strengthen strategic partnerships with regional bodies, UN entities, vertical funds such as GEF and GCF, development banks and bilateral partners providing substantive inputs to those partnerships in support of UNDP initiatives;
  • Represent BPPS/RBEC-RBAP/UNDP and engage in UN inter-agency coordination and international regional meetings and other fora to develop partnerships and advance UNDP’s strategic agenda; 
  • Provide high-level technical advice to support UNDP’s contribution to key regional policy processes; and
  • Advocate policy and positioning of this thematic area with civil society partners, including academia and the private sector.
5. Knowledge Management:
  • Advance policy dialogue through regional exchange of knowledge and share knowledge products, tools and guidance to help influence/advance policy dialogue in the thematic area and present such material at various fora;
  • Oversee the ECIS and Asia specific knowledge extraction, analysis, documentation, codification of results/lessons learned ensuring that knowledge sharing and content management is in line with guidelines and performed using corporate tools; and
  • Develop specific knowledge products to increase visibility of UNDP’s energy work in ECIS and Asia.
Corporate Competencies:
  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work.
  • Ability to persuade others to follow.
People Management:
  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction.
  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform


  • Ability to get things done.
Energy Access:
  • Knowledge of energy access concepts and/or issues and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations
Energy efficiency:
  • Knowledge of energy efficiency concepts and/or technologies and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.
Energy Financing (Market based):
  • Knowledge of market based energy financing and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.
Climate Change Mitigation:
  • Knowledge of climate change mitigation concepts and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations
Climate Finance:
  • Knowledge of climate finance concepts and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.
Climate Change (General):
  • Knowledge of climate change mitigation, adaptation and finance, linkages to development and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.
Project and Programme Management:
  • Ability to plan, organize, and control resources, procedures and protocols to achieve specific goals.
  • Ability to engage with other agencies, donors, and other development stakeholders and forge productive working relationships.
Knowledge Management:
  • Ability to capture, develop, share and effectively use information and knowledge.
Resource Mobilization:
  • Ability to identify and organize programmes  and projects to implement solutions and generate resources.
  • Ability to manage complex relationships through pathways of knowledge exchange, capacity development, funding relationships and strategic engagement.
Trends and emerging areas analytics:
  • Ability to scan the horizon and identify approaches and initiatives to bring into policy and programme design.
Required Skills and Experience
  • Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) in energy, economics, business administration, environmental studies, social sciences or related disciplines.
  • At least 7 years of professional work experience providing policy advice and programme support in the general area of sustainable energy and climate change, in different development contexts; 
  • Experience working in the RBEC and/or RBAP setting is required and experience in crisis contexts is an asset.
Language Requirements:
  • Fluency in English, both written and oral.
  • Working knowledge of another UN language is an asset.

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