Junior Professional Associate

International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

Cambridge, , GB

The IUCN Global Species Programme is seeking an intern to help with the implementation of projects assessing the conservation status (IUCN Red List status) and distribution of freshwater species and to provide general support to the Freshwater Biodiversity Unit. Some of the intern’s time will be spent assisting in checking large data sets, compiling GIS species distribution maps, and liaising with partners and consultants.
This position is ideally suited to a postgraduate or young professional, who seeks to gain further experience in conservation at the international level. The position also provides an opportunity to learn new technical skills. Some international travel may be required.

Freshwater systems contain the greatest concentration of biodiversity on Earth, and provide valuable ecosystem services to humanity. However, this diversity faces a catalogue of threats which is leading to an extinction crisis that has implications that are deadly serious. A Global Freshwater Biodiversity Assessment is being undertaken to document the status of our planet’s freshwaters according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™. The priority taxa being assessed are freshwater fishes, molluscs, dragonflies and damselflies, freshwater crabs, crayfish and shrimps, and turtles worldwide, adding these to existing assessments of freshwater mammals, birds, crocodiles, and amphibians to provide a comprehensive picture of the state of life in the planet’s freshwaters. The global assessment is being completed through a combination of regional assessments.

The salary on offer for this position is £17,000 per annum (this would be pro rata for the contract and is subject to statutory deductions) and the costs of 75% of a return economy class airfare will also be covered, if necessary.

The intern will provide assistance to staff in the Freshwater Biodiversity Unit to implement a project to complete the global assessment of the world’s freshwater fishes and a number of other regional projects focused on the identification of Key Biodiversity Areas. The intern will also provide general support to other activities in the Freshwater Biodiversity Unit. Specifically, the intern will:
(as a contribution to implementation of ongoing projects)
• Contribute to species distribution mapping through production, editing, and checking of GIS maps.
• Edit and quality check text in species Red List assessments in the Red List database (SIS).
• Liaise with the SSC network and with other experts to produce draft Red List assessments for selected freshwater species.
• Assist in the editing of reports.

(as a contribution to the general work of the Unit)
• Provide general assistance with the everyday running of the Unit.
• Assist in the implementation of other ongoing or new projects.
• Source photographs for use in publications and obtain permission for use.
• Update the Unit website.

  • Applicants should have, as minimum:
• At least a first degree in an environmental/ecological science.
• Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.
• Excellent attention to detail.
• Proficiency in the use of computer software programmes, particularly spreadsheets and databases.
• Good GIS skills.
• Excellent editing and writing skills in English.
• Strong written and oral communication skills.

In addition to the above requirements, the following skills and attributes would be advantageous:
• Knowledge of freshwater ecology.
• Prior knowledge of the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria.
• Fluency in French and/or Spanish.

• This position is only available for those who are eligible to live and work in the UK without the support of a sponsored visa.


Applicants are requested to apply online through the HR Management System, by opening the vacancy announcement and pressing the “Apply” button.

Applicants will be asked to create an account and submit their profile information. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date. The vacancy closes at midnight, Swiss time (GMT+1 / GMT+2 during Daylight Saving Time, DST). Please note that only selected applicants will be personally contacted for interviews.

Other job opportunities are published in the IUCN website: http://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

About IUCN

IUCN is a membership Union uniquely composed of both government and civil society organisations. It provides public, private and non-governmental organisations with the knowledge and tools that enable human progress, economic development and nature conservation to take place together.

Created in 1948, IUCN is now the world’s largest and most diverse environmental network, harnessing the knowledge, resources and reach of 1,300 Member organisations and some 15,000 experts. It is a leading provider of conservation data, assessments and analysis. Its broad membership enables IUCN to fill the role of incubator and trusted repository of best practices, tools and international standards.

IUCN provides a neutral space in which diverse stakeholders including governments, NGOs, scientists, businesses, local communities, indigenous peoples organisations and others can work together to forge and implement solutions to environmental challenges and achieve sustainable development.

Working with many partners and supporters, IUCN implements a large and diverse portfolio of conservation projects worldwide. Combining the latest science with the traditional knowledge of local communities, these projects work to reverse habitat loss, restore ecosystems and improve people’s well-being.