POLICY ADVISOR FOR ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
||New York, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
|Application Deadline :||18-Jun-12|
|Type of Contract :||FTA International|
|Post Level :||P-6|
|Languages Required :||
|Starting Date :|
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
|Duration of Initial Contract :||1 year|
|Expected Duration of Assignment :||1 year|
UNDP’s development efforts for the period 2008-2013 are defined by the Strategic Plan, which has established four development focus areas: (i) poverty reduction and the achievement of the MDGs, (ii) democratic governance, (iii) crisis prevention and post-conflict recovery, and (iv) environment and sustainable development. The environment and sustainable development focus area consists of three key result areas, which are to assist countries to: (i) mainstream environmental considerations into national development planning, (ii) catalyze environment finance, and (iii) support climate change adaptation and expand access to environmental and energy services for the poor.
UNDP seeks to develop country capacities to manage the environment and natural resources in a way that leads to long term sustainability and enhanced human wellbeing and integrate environmental and energy dimensions into poverty reduction strategies and national development frameworks. Energy and environment are essential for sustainable development. The poor are disproportionately affected by environment degradation and lack of access to clean, affordable energy services. UNDP helps countries strengthen their capacity to address these challenges at the global, national and community levels, seeking out and sharing best practices, providing innovative policy advice and linking partners through pilot projects that help poor people build sustainable livelihoods.
The Bureau for Development Policy (BDP) is responsible for articulating UNDP’s global development policy using evidence gathered at the national, regional and global level. Driven by demand, and working through the Regional Bureaus and its Regional Service Centres, BDP provides global tools, analysis and capacities to support UNDP’s policy advice and programming on the ground.
The Environment and Energy Group (EEG) within BDP is composed of several units including the Global Environment Facility Unit, the Montreal Protocol Unit, and the Drylands Development Centre in Nairobi, Kenya. Specialized technical teams work in the areas of climate change, ecosystems and biodiversity, water governance and access, energy access, sustainable land management, ozone and chemicals management, among others. All together the group has more than 300 staff and is responsible for disbursements in the area of environment and sustainable development in the order to $ 400 million per year.
EEG is led by a Director who reports to the head of BDP and collaborates extensively with other Practice Directors within BDP, Regional Bureau Directors and their staff. EEG staff work with other headquarters units, Regional Bureaus and regional programmes, as well as with environmental focal points in over 140 UNDP Country Offices and approximately 2,000 members of the global Environment and Energy Knowledge Network.
Outside of UNDP, these staff work with a wide variety of development partners including other UN agencies, donors, trust funds, foundations, civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, educational institutions and the media as well as international conventions, such as the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, the UN Convention to Combat Desertification and the Montreal Protocol.
In partnership with BERA, EEG engages with other UN agencies and the Bretton Woods Institutions on issues pertaining to the environment. This includes UNDP’s strategic partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and UNDP’s engagement in UN inter-agency coordination mechanisms, such as the Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB), the High-level Committee for Programming (HLCP), the United Nations Development Group (UNDG), the Environment Management Group (EMG), the Executive Committee of Economic and Social Affairs (ECESA), the Secretary-General’s Policy Committee (PC), UN-Energy and UN-Water. The overall objective for EEG to engage in these mechanisms is to contribute to UN system-wide coherence at the global, regional and national levels, horizontally as well as vertically to ultimately ensure that UN delivers sustainable development on the ground is consistent and responds to countries’ needs.
Duties and Responsibilities
The Senior Advisor on Environment and Sustainable Development, will play a key role in supporting EEG policy development, and promote its implementation throughout UNDP and the UN, particularly in the area of strengthening overall coherence in UNDP’s positioning with regard to new and more sustainable approaches to development including in response to RIO + 20 and the global move to the further integration of the three strands of sustainable development. In this context, a role of the Senior Advisor on Environment and Sustainable Development is to support UNDP in developing its policy, positioning and internal coordination (EEG, BERA, RBxs) with regard to the follow up to Rio+20, including as they relate to inclusive green economy/growth within the framework of sustainable development and poverty eradication, and UN inter-agency coordination, particularly as it relates to UNDPs partnership with UNEP.
This support will require unique and strong leadership skills in the areas of strategic partnership, oversight and positioning as well as strong knowledge and expertise of the different aspects of inclusive green economy/growth and the UN system.
The Senior Advisor on Environment and Sustainable Development will report to the Director of EEG in performing all duties.
Policy Dialogue, External Relations and Partnerships:
- Support and represent UNDP in high-level environmental and/or sustainable development meetings, presenting coherent and consistent messaging on UNDP’s environment and energy work with a view to strengthening UNDP’s role and positioning UNDP as a global leader in promoting environmental sustainability in developing countries and in various inter -UN and intergovernmental processes.
Act as the EEG focal point for inter-agency collaboration:
- Forge and/or strengthen partnerships with relevant UN inter-agency coordination mechanisms in the area of environment and sustainable development with the overall aim to contribute to UN system-wide coherence at the global, regional and national levels, horizontally as well as vertically. This includes: supporting, coordinating or representing UNDP as appropriate in the High-level Committee for Programming (HLCP), including through the HLCP Working Group on Climate Change and in other HLCP processes such as greener, fairer, sustainable globalization; in UNDG, including through the Task Team on Environmental Sustainability, Climate Change and Rio+20 and its field outreach through the United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks (UNDAFs); in the Environment Management Group (EMG), including through the Issues Management Groups on Green Economy and Social and Environmental Safeguards; and in the Executive Committee of Economic and Social Affairs (ECESA) on Rio+20, G20, OECD, GGGI, etc.
Act as the EEG focal point for collaboration with UNEP:
- Forge and/or strengthen UNDP’s strategic partnership with UNEP. This includes support for taking the partnership forward through the Joint Working Group under the 2008 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), for further developing the partnership in follow up to Rio+20, support for overseeing and advising other parts of EEG with regard to their specific partnerships with UNEP, for linking-up with UNDP’s Nairobi-based representative to UNEP and UN-Habitat; and providing guidance major cooperative programmes with UNEP including PEI, PEF, UN REDD and others to ensure policy coherence and efficient and effective cooperation.
Strategic Advice and Guidance:
Act as EEG ’s focal point for post Rio+20 processes:
- Contribute to the development and strengthening of UNDP’s policy and position and engagement following up the Rio+20 conference. This include developing a coherent UNDP approach and policy to SDG’s development, post 2015 development framework, inclusive green economy within the framework of sustainable development and poverty eradication involving all EEG relevant programmes as well as relevant programmes across practices and within UNDP. The SM will also keep the necessary overview and oversight of UNDP follow up on the Conference and be the focal point for the SG high level panel on post 2015.
Provide advice to the Director of EEG:
- Contribute to UNDPs strategic vision in its work in environment and sustainable development, strengthening overall coherence of the organization and ensuring that the vision is closely aligned with UNDP’s core mandate and evolving strategic priorities, particularly in light of the strategic plan 2014-2017. As such follow up and participate, as appropriate, in the Quadrennial Comprehensive Policy Review (QCPR) of the UN systems development cooperation and the discussions on UNDPs Strategic Plan 2014-2017. Follow up on Delivering as One experiences UN harmonization efforts. Ensure policy coherence between the global, regional and country level work of UNDP.
Provide high level technical advice on international environmental negotiations and MEAs, internally in UNDP as well to external stakeholders.
- Further the mainstreaming of environmental and climate change considerations into national development processes, including through ensuring oversight and/or representing EEG in OECD/DAC/Environet and its subsidiary working groups and through contributing to the deliberations of the Poverty Environment Partnership.
- The Senior Policy Advisor will produce and/or oversee the publication of discussion papers, policy documents, programming kits, and other knowledge products and ensure that these products are disseminated with key partners as an input to policy discussions. Ensure that knowledge management products are distributed through the digital workspace, in particular providing policy inputs to UNDP Country Offices.
Coaching, mentoring, and team building:
- The Senior Policy Advisor will support EEG and BDP staff in their functions of policy analysis and programme management, knowledge management and capacity development. As appropriate the PTA will liaise with BDP staff in Regional Service Centers.
Internal Relations and Partnerships:
- The PTA will collaborate with the work of environment and sustainable development staff within EEG, 140 UNDP Country Offices, 5 Regional Bureaux, BCPR and other relevant HQ units and programmes, as well as with other UN agencies.
- Communicates effectively with staff at all levels of the organization and is comfortable in handling external relations at all levels;
- Demonstrates sensitivity, tact and diplomacy in internal as well as external relations in his/her role as Adviser;
- Able to draft clearly, concisely, and quickly in English, with the ability to edit and clear correspondence, speeches, briefings, etc.
- Capable of working in a highly pressured environment with extreme deadlines, managing many tasks simultaneously;
- Able to handle a large volume of logistical details, accurately and thoroughly, with great attention to detail;
- Exercises the highest level of responsibility and is able to handle confidential and politically sensitive issues in a responsible and mature manner;
- Ideally versed in conflict mediation skills;
- Provide authoritative advice on the development of policy which will affect a range of programmes and activities.
- Represents the organization in relevant UN inter-agency coordination mechanisms in the area of environment and sustainable development, including representing UNDP as appropriate in HLCP, in UNDG, including through the Task Team on Environmental Sustainability, Climate Change and Rio+20, in EMG; and in ECESA;
- Act as the EEG focal point for collaboration with UNEP, including the Joint Working Group under the 2008 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), for further developing the partnership post Rio+20;
- Builds partnerships with the Executive Secretary of the Climate Change Convention, UNFCC, members of the UN’s Initiative Sustainable Energy for All, among others.
- Strong policy analytical skills in the field of environment and sustainable development;
- Ability to translate environmental information into policy and practical guidance for non-technical audience;
- Understanding of political issues under international environment and climate negotiations;
- Skills and knowledge to build linkages between poverty reduction, MDGs, macroeconomic policies, environment, energy, climate change and sustainable development;
- Able to draft clearly, concisely, and quickly in English, with the ability to edit and clear correspondence, speeches, briefings, etc. French and/or Spanish are distinct assets.
- Ability to advise on problems carefully and logically, leading to fact-based and practical recommendations;
- Ability to produce high-quality outputs in a timely manner while understanding and anticipating the evolving client needs;
- Ability to focus on impact and result for UNDP and/or the recipient country or institution.
Partnerships & Teamwork:
- Strong interpersonal skills, and capacity to build strong relationships with partners;
- Ability to lead, manage complexity and contribute effectively to team work;
- Ability to write and speak clearly and convincingly, including strong presentation skills;
- Projects a positive image and is ready to take on a wide range of tasks to create an enabling environment;
- Focuses on results for the client and responds positively to feedback;
- Demonstrate commitment to the UN’s core values; respect for individual, gender and cultural differences in dealing with others and to achieving the goals of UNDP as a whole.
Required Skills and Experience
- Master's Degree in Environmental or Social Sciences, doctorate strongly preferred.
- Extended specialized experience on sustainable development, green economy and related areas. Experience of international environmental negotiations and Multilateral Environmental Agreements. Experience on UN inter-agency coordination mechanisms. Knowledge on capacity development and policy frameworks in developing countries;
- Proven ability to make policy decisions that concern UNDPs reputation at inter-governmental environmental meetings;
- Proven ability to draft and oversee policy documents, discussion papers and other knowledge management processes;
- Proven ability to work with a team composed of people from a wide range of background and affiliations in a fast-paced and challenging environment.
- Fluent in English and desirable proficiency in at least one of the following languages: French, Spanish.
Click here for important information for US Permanent Residents ('Green Card' holders).
UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.