Climate Change Consultant

Washington, DC, US

Background Information – UNOPS

UNOPS supports the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Working in some of the world’s most challenging environments, our vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices, always satisfying or surpassing our partners’ expectations.

With over 7,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, wherever they need it.

A flexible structure and global reach means that we can quickly respond to our partners’ needs, while offering the benefits of economies of scale. 

Background Information – WEC

Water and Energy Cluster

Based in Copenhagen, the UNOPS Water and Energy Cluster provides specialized project management services to partners such as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Bank. Together with partners, the cluster executes projects that support sustainable development by:

  • promoting international cooperation to prevent and reverse environmental degradation of international water systems
  • enhancing the resilience of communities and eco-systems to climate change
  • lowering emissions by bridging renewable energy solutions
  • developing Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions to strengthen climate-resilient development

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel of the Global Environment Facility (STAP/GEF) is responsible for providing strategic advice on projects and policies to the GEF. In 2012, the Council approved STAP as its advisory body for the GEF’s Least Developing Countries Fund (LDCF) and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF). In this capacity, STAP also is responsible for overseeing the scientific and technical soundness of GEF projects and policies. For more information on STAP, please see

The work of the STAP in the area of climate change requires substantial specialized knowledge in this domain. The climate change consultant will strengthen the STAP Secretariat and help concerned Panel members and the STAP Chair in enhancing the scientific content of STAP products across focal areas. The individual is also expected to provide technical assistance to the STAP Chair on an as needed basis.

The objective of the consultancy is to assist STAP in advancing its work in the area of climate change, in particular with regards to the ambition of the GEF to mainstrean climate risk screening. The individual also is expected to provide technical support to the STAP Chair on a number of technical subjects. These responsibilities and outputs are described below.

The ultimate results of the services will be knowledge products addressing scientific challenges in climate change relevant to the SCCF / LDCF portfolios as well as for the GEF portfolio more broadly. The specialist will also participate in the screening and quality assurance process of LDCF/SCCF climate change adaptation projects, and any other projects within their realm of expertise entering the project cycle. Additionally, the consultant will render a number of outputs (e.g. short reports) for the STAP Chair.

Some travel may be required as necessary in delivery of tasks, yet to be determined.

Specific Tasks and Responsibilities

The consultant will be responsible for the general tasks outlined below:

1. Support the day-to-day functioning of the STAP in assisting with the management, coordination, and administrative support to the Panel and being specifically responsible for the climate change adaptation portfolio of the GEF for the development and delivery of the STAP programme of work:

a. Provide high-quality services to the Panel member on climate change adaptation and the STAP Chair in the delivery of STAP’s Programme of Work;
b. Regularly screen GEF adaptation projects entering the LDCF/SCCF project cycle for scientific and technical quality and overall rationale, as well as any other projects in the GEF Work Programs within the realm of their scientific expertise.
c. Assist in organizing and preparing STAP thematic workshops, documents and communicating them to the GEF partnership and beyond, including at UNFCCC COPs;
d. Supervising the editing, publication and dissemination of STAP papers, reports and other products;
e. Assist in providing support for STAP, through helping identify STAP expertise, and relevant scientific and professional networks.

2. Help to organize and oversee the interaction between STAP and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council, GEF Secretariat, GEF Evaluation Office, GEF Agencies, and respective Multilateral Environmental Agreements by:
a. Following-up on STAP’s contribution to GEF strategies and policies to assure that they are informed by best available scientific and technical advice;
b. Organizing and overseeing the distribution of project documentation, and recommending revisions to STAP’s procedures for project screening as necessary;
c. Ensuring that there is adequate consultation between STAP and the GEF Secretariat and Agencies on their respective work on strategic scientific and technical issues;
d. Maintaining adequate liaison arrangements between the Secretariat of the UNFCCC and its subsidiary bodies for scientific and technological advice and related technical bodies.

3. Perform other related duties as assigned. The consultant will also be responsible for the following specific deliverables of the STAP Programme of Work:

1. Examine the utility and applicability of the range of climate risk screening tools currently available (e.g. who uses these tools, how are they being used, how are the results being reported) through a qualitative analysis. A short report to present those results to the GEF partnership will be delivered.
2. Examine how climate information is being used to design climate adaptation projects, through a qualitative analysis using NVivo. A comprehensive report of the findings will be prepared.
3. Based on the analyses performed earlier, prepare a set of recommendations to help the GEF mainstream climate risk screening effectively across its portfolio.


• A PhD, or in the process of obtaining a PhD, in one of the physical, social or natural sciences which relate to one or several GEF focal areas: climate change, land degradation, sustainable forest management, biological diversity, international waters, and chemicals and waste.

• Excellent written and oral communication skills. Extensive knowledge of qualitative analysis tools and research methods.

Work Experience:
• At least three years of relevant work and research experience, preferably at international level with exposure to multilateral environmental agreements is required. Experience in working with the scientific and technical community essential. Experience working with STAP is highly desirable. Knowledge and experience in working on thematic areas such as climate change adaptation and mitigation, community forest management, resilience, and land degradation is essential. Project management experience in at least one of the areas above is desired.

Competencies Communication:

Effective written and oral skills; Ability to prepare a variety of written reports in English; Ability to establish and maintain good working relationships with a broad range of people to implement organizational objectives.

Teamwork: Good interpersonal skills, works collaboratively to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; willing to learn from others, and able to work in multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment, working with transparency and building trust and confidence with colleagues and staff members.

Professionalism: Ability to advise senior management and other senior officials on approaches and techniques to address highly complex issues; strong programme management, monitoring skills; ability to work under pressure.

Planning and Organizing: Proven ability to plan, organize, and report regularly on a programme of work, requiring an in-depth understanding of the strategic direction of the GEF and ability to integrate the work of STAP into the GEF work programme ensuring timely delivery of results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; Accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches tasks to skills.

• Fluency in both written and oral English.

Contract type: International ICA monthly
Contract level: International ICA 1
Contract duration: 6  months

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: 

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns.
Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.