Technical Specialist (Disaster Risk Management)

Location : HANOI, VIET NAM
Application Deadline :31-May-10 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :P-4
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :One year

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.


Post Category: Development Project Funded (DPF)

The Technical Specialist (TS) will implement his/her main functions under the supervision of the Head of Sustainable Development Cluster. The TS will be based in the project: “Strengthening institutional capacity for disaster risk management in Viet Nam, including climate change related disasters”. Specific tasks will be agreed with the National Project Director (NPD) in the National Disaster Management Centre of the General Department of Water Resources, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

In line with UNDP Staff rules, the TS’s annual performance will be measured by a full Results and Competency Assessment (RCA). The RCA by the Supervisor, with self-assessment of the TS, will be based on inputs from the NPD, and will be reviewed by UNDP’s Competency Review Group set up by the UNDP Resident Representative. As such, the TS is fully accountable to UNDP as the funding agency for the project.

The TS supports the building of capacities of the Government of Viet Nam MARD and its relevant departments – principally the National Disaster Management Centre and other departments of the General Department of Water Resources - as well other members of the central and provincial Committee for Storm and Flood Control (CFSC), training institutions and of agencies and communities in pilot provinces, and advises on appropriate institutional arrangements, especially based on international experience and (national and international) research; plays an important role in formulation of research, partnerships and other activities under the project as well as monitoring and conclusion thereof; and is a important advisor to MARD and other project partners as well as the UNDP on technical and policy aspects of disaster risk reduction, including the effects of climate change.  

In exercising his/her role, the incumbent supports the planning, management and monitoring of the project. He/she works in close collaboration with national counterparts as well as with the programme Staff in the UNDP Country Office and relevant HQs units, ensuring knowledge sharing and the highest possible quality of project outputs. He/she ensures the alignment of the project outputs with intented outcomes, benefits and impacts of the UNDP’s Sustainable Development Programme (SDP) in Viet Nam. He/she also contributes to capacity building for Country Office Staff in the area of disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.

Duties and Responsibilities

Key Functions

  1. Support and advise on the: strengthening of capacities of MARD - principally the National Disaster Management Centre and other departments of the General Department of Water Resources - as well other members of the central and provincial CFSC; Project planning, management and quality assurance, and documentation of project results and lesson learned for sharing; and implementation of the Prime Minister’s decision on the national Community Based Disaster Risk Management Programme (CBDRM).
  2. Undertake and support further analysis of the DRM institutional framework and make recommendations for adjustments and areas for improvements of the current coordinating bodies for DRM in Viet Nam, building on available analyses on strengths and in close dialogue with proponents working on climate change adaptation. Promote institutional innovations for DRM, both at central and in pilot provinces including the development and strengthening of the National DRM Centre and DRM centres in three provinces. Based on the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA), other international agreements, related global policy frameworks and the application in Viet Nam of international lessons learned. Support activities relevant to UNDP as outlined in the five priority areas of the HFA – particularly the establishment of a National Platform for disaster risk reduction (DRR). Advocate for a multi-hazard approach and for incorporated DRM concepts, the mainstreaming of DRR and integration of climate change adaptation (CCA) in Viet Nam.
  3. Work and advise on DRM legislation and policy formulation and integration of DRM concerns into the Social Economic Development plans for 2011-2015 and full implementation of the National Strategy for Natural Disaster Prevention, Response and Mitigation to 2020. Support to the formulation of disaster risk management (DRM) legislation and policies for (DRM); Support the improvement and issuance of guidelines for emergency response and early recovery standards.
  4. Contribute to the development and implementation of the UNDP’s SDP in Viet Nam. This includes ensuring the alignment of the project outputs with intended outcomes of the SDP. Support UNDP’s lead role as convener of the Programme Coordination Group (6) on Natural Disasters and Emergencies (PCG NDE) and as co-lead of the Early Recovery cluster (in the event of a major disaster).
Expected Results

1.    Undertake and advise on and inputs into capacity building and project management quality assurance.
  • Capacity assessment and training: Provide advice in addressing capacity and knowledge gaps on DRM that exist in MARD, other Government agencies, members of the Committee for Storm and Flood Control and within UNDP; suggest measures to mainstream lessons and best practices learned elsewhere into capacity building activities under the project and give guidance in organizing such capacity building activities. Draft and facilitate the development of ToRs (including for study tours/fellowships), review implementation plans, training curricula and materials for capacity building and training events; assist in identifying appropriate training partners/organisations; and as required lead, deliver and provide on-the-job training on relevant aspects of DRM.
  • Project management, monitoring and evaluation: Provide advice to the National Project Director (NPD), the National Disaster Management Centre and to the MARD/UNDP Project Management Unit (PMU) on the preparation of high quality annual and quarterly project work plans and budgets, and provide comments on the substantive aspects before approval of work plans by the NPD and UNDP. Provide guidance in developing a project M&E framework, including indicators and baseline as well as inputs in preparing (quarterly and annual progress) project reports - focusing on results, learning lessons and documenting best practices in order to improve project performance. Provide comments on the substantive aspects of those reports before approval by the NPD and UNDP. Prepare an end-of-assignment report which focuses on lessons learned and best practices drawn from project management and capacity building processes as well as major substantive issues that have merged and that would require further assistance from UNDP in the future.
2.    Undertake and support analysis and make recommendations regarding institutional development in DRM
  • DRM Centres: based on existing analysis, international experience, and needs assessment in Viet Nam and specifically pilot provinces, make recommendations for adjustments and areas for improvements of the current DRM coordination and information management and sharing bodies, in dialogue with national, sub-national and international proponents working on DRM and on climate change adaptation. Support the development and strengthening of capacities of the National DRM Centre and of DRM Centres in the pilot provinces.
  • Support to international-national coordination: The TS is expected to work closely with the National DMC and other departments within the General Department of Water Resources within MARD and with colleagues involved with UNDP supported projects within the Ministries of Natural Resources and the Environment (MoNRE) and in Planning and Investment as well as with CFSC members at provincial level. Advise UNDP, MARD, and Provincial People’s Committees (PPCs) through the NPD, on opportunities to enhance partnership with donors, INGOs and the Red Cross Movement; help ensuring that donors with interest in the area of DRM - notably the World Bank, AusAID, the European Commission and embassies - are kept informed of the programme/projects progress, results and lessons learned and endeavour to ensure synergy, coherence and complementarities in programme activities; advise the Government and UNDP on areas of possible cooperation with other donors in the field of DRM, community based disaster risk management and climate change adaptation. Support to the establishment and operation of National Platform for disaster risk reduction (DRR).
3.    Work and advise on DRM policy and guideline formulation
  • Policy advice: Proactively engage in policy discussions and work on the formulation of concrete (nation-wide) legislations, policies and guidelines on DRM and CBDRM (Government, ministerial, provincial and local levels; national-international forums). Provide substantive inputs to the Government and provinces in order to prepare statements for important events (e.g. national conferences) and help formulate UNDP’s policy positions on substantive issues (e.g. for Consultative Group Meetings, donor forums). Provide pro-active policy and practice briefs on themes addressed by the DRM programme to the Government (MARD/PPC) and UNDP, focusing on learning from experiences elsewhere with applicability in Viet Nam. Serve as an advocate for UNDP’s policy sustainable development and human development concepts in the areas of crisis prevention and recovery/DRM.
  • Technical advice:  Facilitate the provision of specialized technical inputs and advising services for some project areas and review technical reports submitted to the project by the experts/agencies and sub-contracts and work with NPD/PMU/UNDP to ensure that these reports meet standards specified in the respective ToRs.
  • Knowledge sharing: Participate in events to share knowledge/information acquired from the project and join UNDP and other international knowledge networks to extract good practices learned elsewhere in DRM, CBDRM, DRR and CCA and share those in Viet Nam.
4.    Advise UNDP’s SDP development and impacts and support the role of UNDP as convenor of PCG NDE and as Early Recovery cluster co- lead
  • Technical inputs: Actively contribute to the development and implementation of the UNDP’s SDP in Viet Nam. Ensure synergies and coherence between the responsible project and other projects and related activities in order to materialize benefits and impacts of the UNDP’s Sustainable Development Programme in Viet Nam. Provide inputs to the preparation of the one UN Programme 3 in Viet Nam, through PCGNDE.
  • Coordination inputs: Support the role of UNDP as convenor of PCG NDE, through active participation in PCG NDE meetings/other activities that promote synergies and harmonization of UN One Programme activities amongst UN system member agencies; particularly ensure that MARD DMC are engaged fully as co-chair through briefing and support and as co-lead of the Early Recovery cluster (following activation in the aftermath of a major disaster).  
Impact of Results:
Overall performance/impact of the TS will be assessed based on the following criteria:
  • Provided high quality advice on capacity building needs and plans
  • Provided effective training, with excellent facilitation skills and appropriate delivery skills and styles
  • High quality inputs into project progress reports and work plans, and review-comments of high quality and relevance
  • Project management advice (planning, monitoring, evaluation) of high quality and relevance
  • Appropriate international and national consultants recruited and research-partnerships established by the project, and effectively coordinated and used in project implementation
  • Appropriate and high quality research proposals formulated and implemented and assured high quality of research results
  • Provided effective communication, with appropriate styles in different situations
  • Policy and technical advice of high quality and relevance
  • Significant contributions to the development and operation of the UNDP’s SDP in Viet Nam.
  • Effective and active (knowledge, coordination relevant) networking.


  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in working on policy development and capacity building. This includes setting technical methods to maximise performance for the Disaster Risk Management in Viet Nam.
  • Strong knowledge/experience in results based management and results oriented approach to project implementation.
  • Strong inter-personal skills, communication, networking and team-building skills; competent in leading teams and creating team spirit, management of inter-group dynamics and conflicting interests of various actors, stimulating team members to produce quality outputs in a timely and transparent fashion.
  • Excellent oral communication skills and excellent written communication skills, with analytic capacity and ability to synthesize project outputs and relevant findings for the preparation of quality papers and reports.
  • Maturity and confidence in dealing with senior and high ranking members of national and international institutions, government and non-government; ability to deal with politically sensitive issues
  • Results driven, ability to work under pressure and to meet strict deadlines; remains calm and in control under pressure.
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude. 
  • Shares knowledge and experience actively, mentors project staff.
  • Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback.
  • Demonstrates commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
Critical Success Factors
Whether the TS will be successful depends partly on external factors, such as the progress with overall implementation of the project by the national partners including recruitment of project personnel and procurement of equipment as per the project document. It is also important that the project and its potential results on disaster risk reduction continue to be fully supported by the national leadership. Success factors that depend directly on the TS include whether the incumbent manages to fully use his/her skills and competencies as per the above, including appropriate self management and effective daily work planning as well as the effective use of practical tools including IT (see also Qualifications, below).

Required Skills and Experience

  • Advanced university degree (Masters or equivalent) in crisis prevention and recovery/disaster risk management, natural resource management, environmental sciences, or a related field.
  • Understanding challenges in development work. Be able to adapt to local environment.
Experience and Skills:
  • At least seven (7) years working experience in the development field, especially in disaster management.
  • Excellent project management skills (management of human and financial resources, team building, and ensure quality of project results as well as strict application of rules, policies and procedures)
  • Knowledge of donor policies and funding modalities.
  • Relevant work experience in developing countries. Previous work experience in Viet Nam or neighboring countries an important asset.
  • Knowledge of UNDP programming practices is an asset;
  • Experience in gender mainstreaming in policies and programmes is an asset
  • Excellent skills in Standard software (Word processing, spreadsheets) are expected
  • Knowledge of GIS and/or experience with the use of relational databases is an asset.
Language Requirements:
  • Proficiency in both spoken and written English is a must, including excellent writing skills.

Click here for important information for US Permanent Residents ('Green Card' holders).

If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact the eRecruit Helpdesk.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme