Regional Specialist for Social Environmental Standard


Location : Home based with Occasional travel
Application Deadline :01-Dec-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :IPSA (Short-Term)
Post Level :IPSA-11
Languages Required :
Arabic   English  
Expected Duration of Assignment :1 year (max. 130 working days) possibility of an annual extension does not exceed 36 months

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.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Background

Instructions to Applicants: Click on the "Apply now" button. Input your information in the appropriate Sections: personal information, language proficiency, education, resume and motivation. Upon completion of the first page, please hit "submit application" tab at the end of the page. Please ensure that CV or P11 and the Cover letter are combined in one file.

The following documents shall be required from the applicants:

Personal CV or P11, indicating all past positions held and their main underlying functions, their durations (month/year), the qualifications, as well as the contact details (email and telephone number) of the Candidate, and at least three (3) the most recent professional references of previous supervisors. References may also include peers.

A cover letter (maximum length: 1 page) indicating why the candidate considers him-/herself to be suitable for the position.

Travel: 

• Travel will be undertaken on as needed basis and subject to COVDI-19 restrictions. Missions are estimated to cover about 8 countries/year with and estimated duration of 5 working days per mission might be required

• Such travel shall be at UNDP’s expense and the candidate shall receive a per diem not to exceed United Nations daily subsistence allowance. The mission travel costs will be excluded at this time from the price proposal

• Any necessary mission travel must be approved in advance and writing by the Supervisor;

• The BSAFE course must be completed before the commencement of travel

• Selected candidate are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when traveling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director

• Selected candidate are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under https://dss.un.org/dssweb/

• The selected candidate will be responsible for making his/her mission travel arrangements in line with UNDP travel policies

• All travel expenses related to mission travels will be supported by the project travel fund and will be reimbursed as per UNDP rules and regulations for consultants. Costs for mission airfares, terminal expenses, and living allowances should not be included in financial proposal

Office/Unit/Project Description: Regional Bureau for the Arab States (RBAS)

The Regional Bureau for Arab States (RBAS) leads the work of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in its quest to sustainably eliminate poverty and significantly reduce inequalities and exclusion across the Arab region, with strong emphasis placed on addressing the main impediments to human development - freedom and good governance, knowledge, and women’s empowerment. It implements development programmes in 16 Arab countries  and the Occupied Palestinian Territory, ensuring quality programming, results-based management and effective resource mobilization strategies.

RBAS provides policy guidance, programmatic and operational oversight, as well as administrative support and policy advisory services to Country Offices (COs) to ensure the provision of strategic and high-quality programmatic support to countries in the region. RBAS is organized in teams, based in New York, USA and a Regional Hub in Amman, Jordan.

The Social and Environmental Standards (SES) underpin UNDP’s support for sustainable development. The objectives of the standards are to:

• Strengthen the social and environmental outcomes of Programmes and Projects

• Avoid adverse impacts to people and the environment 

• Minimize, mitigate, and manage adverse impacts where avoidance is not possible 

• Strengthen UNDP and partner capacities for managing social and environmental risks

• Ensure full and effective stakeholder engagement, including through a mechanism to respond to complaints from project-affected people 

The starting point to ensure these standards are applied is through UNDP’s project-level Social and Environmental Screening Procedure (SESP), which is a requirement for proposed projects. The objectives of the SESP are to: (a) integrate the SES Overarching Principles (human rights, gender equality and environmental sustainability); (b) identify potential social and environmental risks and their significance; (c) determine the Project's SES risk category; and (d) determine the level of assessment and management required to address potential social and environmental risks and impacts. All guidance on UNDPs Social and Environmental Standards can be found in the SES Toolkit.

Institutional Arrangements

The selected candidate will report to the Senior Risk Management Adviser, based in the Regional Hub in Amman, Jordan and will respond to needs for support as expressed by UNDP Country Offices in the Arab States region.

•The selected candidate will work remotely with mission travel on as needed basis

•The Selected candidate will report to Risk Management Adviser, RBAS

•The selected candidate will be given access to relevant information necessary for execution of the tasks under this assignment

•Given the regional consultations to be undertaken during this assignment, the consultant is expected to be reasonably flexible with his/her availability for such consultations taking into consideration different time zones

•Payments will be made upon submission of a detailed time sheet and authorization/certification of payment form, and acceptance and confirmation by the Supervisor on days worked (with a “day” calculated as 8 hours of work) and outputs delivered. If the quality does not meet standards or requirements, the candidate will be asked to rewrite or revise (as necessary) the document before proceeding to payment  


Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work

The selected candidate will support the implementation of SES requirements, from project design through implementation, in high-priority and “High Risk” projects (e.g. Global Environment Facility/GEF, Green Climate Fund/GCF, crisis, others) in the Arab States region. This will include quality assurance, spot-checking, and advising on measures to be taken to ensure effective implementation of and compliance with the SES. The consultant will also facilitate learning across the region and beyond, tracking and sharing lessons learned. 
The selected candidate will also work closely with programme colleagues in the Regional Hub, and the safeguards experts of the Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS. For matters pertaining to Nature, Climate and Energy (NCE) pogrammes and projects, the consultant will coordinate with the Regional Team Leader, Regional Technical Advisers and the BPPS NCE safeguards team in HQ.
The expected tasks shall more specifically include:

a)Support implementation of regional SES action plan
•Ensure a regional baseline is established to assess overall SES implementation and quality (applying corporate methodology and indicators). Regularly scan available data on SES implementation across the region to identify emerging risks or “High Risk” projects that may require additional oversight and support
•Ensure that new projects prepare the SESP or appropriately claim the exemption 
•Conduct quality review of draft SESPs to ensure they meet technical standards and requirements, verify proper risk categorization, and to build internal capacity on SES
•Identify common risks, capacity needs, challenges across the region and support the development of strategies to address these issues
•Regularly monitor and report on the number of High-and Substantial risk projects, emerging issues, capacity needs and demand for support to ensure issues are escalated and additional support mobilized when needed 
•Support SES capacity development and trainings in the region and in COs
•Provide adhoc support as needed to address SES capacities and emerging issues in the region, and other aspects of the regional SES action plan

b)Targeted technical oversight and quality assurance for high risk and high priority projects
•Identify high risk/priority projects and advise on SES considerations as early as possible
•Review draft and final SES documentation for projects (e.g. SESP, ESIA, ESMP, ESMF, IPP, RAP, SEP, relevant ToRs, etc) to ensure they meet technical standards and requirements
•Advise regional and/or CO colleagues on new social and environmental risks or changes to project risk categorization
•Identify issues on which additional technical support may be needed through the Global Policy Network or external consultants (e.g. through ExpRess roster)
•Undertake safeguards oversight missions, as needed
•Track progress of high risk/priority projects’ implementation of required SES elements (ESIA, GRM, etc.)

c)Support corporate accountability, reporting, coordination and learning across regions
•Engage and coordinate with SES experts in Headquarters (Nature, Climate, Energy team and Effectiveness Group) and other regions to ensure consistency in policy interpretation and advice and share lessons learned and avoid duplication of efforts
•Prepare an annual report on SES implementation in the region (applying corporate methodology and indicators)
•Convene regional and CO colleagues, and escalate issues as needed to the RBx and BPPS to ensure decisions are taken at the appropriate levels
•Document lessons learned, including from cases where things went wrong as well as good models of SES implementation


Competencies

Corporate :
•Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards
•Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP
•Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
•Treats all people fairly without favouritism

Technical:
•Demonstrated expertise in the development and quality assurance of safeguards instruments (e.g. ESIAs, ESMPs, ESMFs, IPPs, GRMs, RAPs)
•Excellent skills related to stakeholder engagement
•Experience implementing social and environmental safeguards at the project level and providing technical support to implementing partners

Functional:

Communications
•Able to communicate effectively in writing to a varied and broad audience in a simple and concise manner

Professionalism
•Capable of working in a high- pressure environment with sharp and frequent deadlines, managing many tasks simultaneously
•Excellent analytical and organizational skills
•Exercises the highest level of responsibility and be able to handle confidential and politically sensitive issues in a responsible and mature manner

Teamwork 
•Works well in a team
•Projects a positive image and is ready to take on a wide range of tasks
•Focuses on results for the client
•Welcomes constructive feedback


Required Skills and Experience

Min. Academic Education

Master’s degree in field related to international development, environmental science, anthropology or similar field

Min. years of relevant Work experience

At least 7 years of experience related to social and environmental safeguards, including impact assessment

Required  skills and competencies

At least half of the years of experience is in applying social and environmental due diligence in project level implementation and management

Desired skills and competencies

 

Additional relevant years of experience will be an added value.

Solid experience in the Arab States region.

Required Language(s) (at working level)

Fluency in English & Arabic. A working knowledge of French is an important asset

Remuneration

The pay range will vary with the qualifications of the selected candidate:

  1. Daily rate: between $ 358.62 - $ 517.24
  2. Hourly rate: between $ 44.82 – $ 64.65

This retainer/short-term agreement remuneration does not include any other benefits than the above pay ranges.

DISCLAIMER:UNDP Regional Bureau for the Arab States (RBAS) has the rights to change the IPSA scale level settings and;or post adjustment rates with no prior notice, but the remuneration paid to for this position will not be affected.



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