Senior Technical Manager

New York, NY, 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- ECR

The Europe and Central Asia Regional Office (ECR) supports UNOPS offices throughout the region through: management, financial and programmatic oversight of global and country-specific portfolios, clusters and operations centres, including hosting services; fund and management advisory services; project implementation; procuring goods and services; and managing human resources.

ECR ensures that projects are executed to the highest standards, providing a shared knowledge base and ensuring that best practices and lessons learned are disseminated between business units and projects across the entire region.

ECR strategy is to:

  • Strengthen UNOPS role in operationalizing the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Strengthen the implementation of ECR global and regional programmes, with revitalized partnerships in infrastructure, procurement and project management.

ECR operates global portfolios from offices in Geneva, Brussels and New York, and country-specific programmes from its operations and project centres located in Eastern Europe and Central Asian countries.

Background Information – Development Group Cluster

Based in the New York, the UNOPS Development Group Cluster supports diverse partners with their peacebuilding, humanitarian and development operations. For example, within the United Nations Development Programme, the Cluster works with the Bureau for Policy and Programme Support and the Office of South-South Cooperation.

The cluster also supports the United Nations Secretariat, as well as a broadening community of other New York-based United Nations organizations in the delivery of project management and implementation services.

Background Information – Job-specific

The Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS) has corporate 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 UNDP corporate messages, represents UNDP at multi-stakeholder fora including public-private dialogues, government and civil society dialogue initiatives, South-South and Triangular cooperation initiatives and engages in UN inter-agency coordination in specific thematic areas.

The Cluster on Sustainable Development focuses on integrating UNDP’s economic, social and environmental work into a coherent sustainable development policy and programming framework. It seeks to provide an integrated package of services covering all strands of sustainable development, including on integrated development planning and inclusive and sustainable growth, sustainable livelihoods and economic recovery in post crisis situations and natural capital and the environment.

Based in UNDP’s Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, Sustainable Development Cluster, the Biodiversity Global Programme has the objective to help countries accelerate the Sustainable Development Goals by taking local and national actions related to the protection, restoration, sustainable use, equitable benefit sharing and financing of biodiversity and ecosystems.  

Working under the overall supervision of the head of UNDP’s Sustainable Development Cluster and on a day to day basis under the Head of the Ecosystem and Biodiversity Team within the Global Environmental Finance unit, the program manager will be based in New York, USA and is expected to travel frequently. The incumbent will be responsible for developing and managing a comprehensive program targeted at supporting local and national actions to recognize and accelerate the Sustainable Development Goals through the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.  S/he will ensure complementarity and synergies between the Biodiversity Global Programme and UNDP’s $ 1.5 billion ecosystems and biodiversity portfolio financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and other vertical funds, and managed by the UNDP Global Environmental Finance Unit.

This objective is achieved through six inter-related areas of work:

  • Support to implementation of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs), National Reporting to the Convention on Biological Diversity and other enabling activities
    • The NBSAP Global Support Partnership is a global partnership aiming to support NBSAP revisions. It is hosted by the Secretariat of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The purpose of the NBSAP Forum web portal is to support countries in finding the information they need to develop and implement effective National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs). The partnership includes leadership on key topics, such as
    • Other enabling activities may include National Reporting to CBD, including the development of guidance documents, national support and grant administration.
  • Equator Initiative;
    • The Equator Initiative brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, businesses and grassroots organizations to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities
  •  Indigenous Peoples Forest Initiative;
    • The Indigenous Peoples Forest Initiative is an initiative that recognizes and supports the role of indigenous peoples in conserving and sustainably using forests that are essential for climate change adaptation and mitigation.
  •  Support to mainstreaming and implementation of biodiversity into national SDGs;
    • This project aims to provide guidance and showcase success on how countries are integrating biodiversity into national SDGs, development plans, national budgets and sectoral plans and practices.

Management and coordination of other global and regional programmes and projects as appropriate

These areas of work are fully aligned with the environmental outputs of the UNDP Strategic Plan, and with UNDP’s Ecosystem and Biodiversity Framework 2012-2020.

The Manager of the Biodiversity Global Programme will be responsible for the overall vision and strategy for the program, to develop and manage the team, resources and networks, to provide technical leadership, to build and maintain partnerships, and to mobilize financial resources.

For all dimensions of the Biodiversity Global Programme, the Manager will work to:

  • Ensure full collaboration of all UNDP practice areas, especially the Head of the Ecosystem and Biodiversity Team;
  • Ensure full collaboration with the Regional Bureaux and the Global and Regional Policy Centers;
  • Build a broad constituency of external partner organizations to support implementation of the program.

The core functions of the Manager will include:

  • Shared responsibility with the Head of Ecosystem and Biodiversity Team, for UNDP’s engagement in the topic of biodiversity, including with the Secretariat of the CBD;
  • Provide strategic leadership, direction and coordination of the day-to-day operations and activities of a team of about 10 professionals and support staff and consultants;;
  • Undertake partnership development and an intensive resource mobilization effort to support the overall Biodiversity Global Programme and related initiatives at all levels; and
  • Oversee financial aspects of the portfolio.
*UNOPS is the partner of UNDP providing logistic and administrative support to the activities of the programme.
Functional Responsibilities

The role of Biodiversity Global Programme Manager is to:

  • Provide technical guidance and team management;
  • Develop and advocate innovative policy mechanisms and approaches;
  • Identify and develop cutting-edge strategic programmes, projects and activities;
  • Produce development impacts and results for key partners;
  • Ensure learning, knowledge management and self-development.

The key results expected from the Programme Manager are:

1.      Guidance, Management and Coordination (20%)

Guidance, management and technical and programmatic oversight of the Biodiversity team. This includes the provision of strategic direction, management oversight, and development of both the program and the team supporting it.

Key Results

UNDP is widely recognized for its leadership and the high quality of its programs and staff on Biodiversity for sustainable development. The program operates efficiently.  All UNDP biodiversity work is on the cutting edge of current knowledge and thinking.

2.      Policy Development, Dialogue and Advocacy (20%)

The development of key policy initiatives, advice, support and advocacy on biodiversity both within UNDP and with UNDP’s partners. This includes the development of complex policy positions at the interface of scientific knowledge and social, political and economic feasibility. Wide ranging consultation with key partners and the development of strategic partnerships around positions and initiatives. Dialogue and advocacy to effect change.

Key Results

UNDP is widely recognized for its ability to drive change in the global ecosystems and biodiversity discourse and policy making.

3.      Programme Development (30%)

Development of strategic programs, projects and other initiatives.  Identification of funding opportunities, sources and partners.  Identification of new opportunities.

Key Results

Continued growth in the quality, scope, impact and influence of UNDP’s Biodiversity Global Programme.

4.      Delivery of Results and Impacts (20%)

Effective delivery of results and impacts through high quality oversight and implementation support including technical support, monitoring, troubleshooting, evaluation, reporting, and dissemination of results and impacts.

Key Results:

UNDP is widely recognized for its ability to efficiently deliver timely and responsive high quality, strategic, cutting-edge, results and impacts.

5.      Learning, Knowledge Management and Self Development (10%)

Ensures UNDP work is reflected in UNDP corporate, monitoring and reporting processes/systems (including ABP and ROAR) through evaluating, capturing, codifying, synthesizing lessons and stimulating the uptake of best practices and knowledge, including the development of resource kits and other knowledge materials.  Additionally, develops and carries out a personal learning plan.

Key result:

UNDP recognized as an effective learning and knowledge management organization.


UNOPS Core Values/Competencies

  • Integrity
  • Professionalism
  • Respect for Diversity
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Planning & Organizing
  • Accountability
  • Creativity
  • Client Orientation
  • Commitment to continuous Learning
  • Technological Awareness

UNOPS Managerial Competencies

  • Leadership
  • Vision
  • Empowering Others
  • Building Trust
  • Managing Performance
  • Judgement/Decision-making

Functional 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 write policy and technical documents, briefs, articles, guides and other technical and policy materials
  • Ability to design and execute e-learning modules, open on-line trainings, webinars and other virtual learning tools
  • Ability to support a “community of practice” of practitioners and community members to support the effective dissemination of quality and timely information.
  • Ability to develop a community of practice, including for local, national and international stakeholders, to enhance the ability for effective policy impact and peer-to-peer learning on a wide range of topics related to biodiversity and SDGs
  • Ability to distill, codify, collate and validate community best practices and comparative experiences


  • Ability to get things done directly, and to mobilize others to get things done


  • Advanced technical, scientific, policy, advocacy, communication and networking skills
  • A full understanding of the complexity of both, biodiversity and climate change, on the local and global levels, including issues, policies and negotiations.


Natural Capital and Environment: Biodiversity and Eco-systems Management:

  • Knowledge of conservation, sustainable use and access and benefit sharing of biodiversity, land, forests and oceans and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Natural Capital and Environment: Global Environmental Governance:

  • Knowledge conventions and MEAs (such as CBD and UNCCD) and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation:

  • Knowledge of climate change adaptation and mitigation concepts and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Sustainable Development:

  • Knowledge of sustainable development concepts, principles and issues, their relationship with biodiversity and ecosystems, and the ability to apply these principles to strategic and/or practical situations, covering economic, social and environmental dimensions.

Protected areas:

  • Knowledge of sustainable development concepts, principles and issues, their relationship with biodiversity


  • Ability to productively share UNDP knowledge and activities (at UN and other venues).

Resource Mobilization:

  • Ability to identify potential donors and successfully raise funds for program development

People Management:

  • Ability to inspire others to strive for excellence.
  • Build, maintain and mobilize coalitions of partnerships to provide leadership and guidance to various programs, projects and initiatives


Knowledge Management:

  • Ability to efficiently handle and share large volumes of information and knowledge.
  • Ability to conceptualize and oversee the development, maintenance and updating of web portals


  • Ability to advocate a point of view and influence others.


  • Understanding of the role of gender in sustainable development.
    Education/Experience/Language requirements


    Master’s degree (PhD degree strongly preferred) in ecosystems, biodiversity, environment, natural resources, or closely related field in science, management, economics or policy.


    • 10 years or more of progressively responsible relevant leadership and management experience in the field of ecosystems, biodiversity, capacity building, and sustainable development, with an emphasis on both technical and policy issues;
    • Experience with project development, implementation and management (direct project management experience is preferable);
    • Extensive experience working with national and local stakeholders in multiple regions of the world
    • Full computer literacy;
    • Demonstrated experience working with community, local government, and with civil society in developing countries.
    • Demonstrated experience with program design, resource mobilization and partnership development.
    • Team building and management of a team.
    • Working experience in an international organization is an advantage;
    • On the job direct experience with UNDP policies, procedures and practices an asset.

    Additional Qualifications:

    • Experience at managing major projects and events that require a large number of people to deliver successfully;
    • Highly effective at networking and at securing information and expertise;
    • Motivated and responsive to the needs and interests of peers; and,
    • Able to generate and maintain enthusiasm of large groups.


    • Excellent knowledge of the English language, with exceptional writing, presentation and communication skills;
    • Proficiency in French, Spanish, Russian or Chinese is an asset.
    Contract type, level and duration

    Contract type: Fix Term Agreement
    Contract level: P5
    Contract duration: one year initially, renewable subject to satisfactory performance and funding availability.

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    Additional Considerations
    • 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.