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Job Description
Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation
Job ID
Vacancy End Date
(Midnight New York, USA)
Time Left
8d 9h 31m
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Education & Work Experience
I-Master’s Level Degree – 5 year(s) experience
French, Portuguese
Vacancy Type
FTA International
Posting Type
Development Policy
Contract Duration
1 Year with possibility for extension


UNDP recognizes that the growing risks and impacts of climate change and the accompanying loss of ecosystem services requires the world to urgently invest in a new green development paradigm. Based in UNDP’s Bureau of Policy and Programme Support (BPPS) and its Sustainable Development Cluster, the UNDP Global Environmental Finance (UNDP-GEF) unit helps developing countries make green, low emission and climate resilient development not only possible, but also economically attractive. To achieve this, it works closely with UNDP country offices to help countries develop and implement programmes and projects which advance their capacity to put in place the right mix of regulatory and financial incentives, remove institutional and policy barriers, and create enabling environments that attract and drive private sector investment into green development.

UNDP-GEF staff assist partner countries to develop and implement programmes and projects that combine and sequence resources from a wide range of global environment and climate funds, financial mechanisms, and instruments including, but not limited to: the GEF managed family of vertical funds such as the GEF Trust Fund, the Special Climate Change Fund and the Least Developed Countries Fund, the Adaptation Fund, the Green Climate Fund, as well as, a variety of multilateral, bilateral, national, sub-national and private sector sources.

Staff are organized into thematic teams of technical specialists led by Principal or Senior Technical Advisors (PTAs/STAs). Each team leader supports, guides, and supervises a team of Region based Technical Advisors (RTAs) and Specialists (RTSs). RTAs and RTSs work in close collaboration with other technical specialists at both global and regional levels. While RTAs and RTSs have global responsibilities in their area of specialized technical expertise, they are deployed from Regional Hubs, normally close to the countries to which they provide most support, and have a secondary line of reporting to the Regional Practice or Team Leaders on the countries they support.

The strategic objective of the Green Low Emission and Climate Resilient Development Strategies (GLECRDS) Team is to develop the capacity of national and sub-national Governments to conduct long-term integrated planning exercises to transition to green, low-emission and climate-resilient (LECR) development. To achieve this, the team focuses its efforts into the following signature programmes:

Supporting Integrated Climate Change Strategies: Supports national and sub-national governments (with focus on Ministries of Finance and planning bodies) to develop and strengthen policies, institutions, capacities and knowledge for integrated green, low-emission and climate resilient development (Green LECRD), and to make use of the full range of public and private financing mechanisms to support Green LECRD investment;

Advancing Cross-sectoral Climate Resilient Livelihoods: Supports climate resilient economic development and sustainable livelihoods, especially for vulnerable populations – the poor, women, and indigenous peoples. UNDP-GEF provides assistance to country-led efforts on climate change risk management in the context of food security, water resources, coastal zone development, public health, and climate change-related disaster risks;

Strengthening Climate Information and Early Warning Systems for Climate Resilient Development: Supports the development of climate information and Early Warning Systems (EWS) across a range of countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific in order to help them respond to both short-term/rapid onset climatic hazards (e.g. cyclones, floods and storms), as well as long-term/slow onset hazards (e.g. drought and long-term climate change).

The RTS for Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) works under the overall supervision of the UNDP-GEF STA on Climate Change Adaptation. The RTS will be part of the UNDP-GEF team located in UNDP’s Regional Hub in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia supporting country offices in the Africa region and is expected to travel frequently. RTSs may be periodically redeployed, in accordance with capability, consent, and due process, to a different regional hub as needed.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation is primarily responsible for providing high quality technical policy, programming, implementation support and oversight, and knowledge and capacity development services, to UNDP country offices in the region. Secondary clients might include other UN agencies, governments and inter-governmental organizations, NGO’s, donors, and the like. Specific results are expected in the areas of:
Innovation, Strategic Leadership, Dialogue and Advocacy

Provide support to establishing and maintaining a strategic understanding of, and engagement with, the substantive technical issues, institutions, and processes within the region, including establishing contact with and developing strategic partnerships with other agencies, donors, NGO’s, the private sector, scientific institutions and the like;
Contributing to identification, development and implementation of new strategic programming opportunities and partnerships in the area of climate change adaptation, green, low-emission and climate resilient development, and resilient economic development and sustainable livelihood;
Participating in global retreats, focal area retreats, regional strategic planning, pipeline management exercises, etc.;
Participating in cross-substantive area technical dialogue, common strategic visioning, mainstreaming, programming, and other collaboration within the regional team;
Assist in keeping the Regional Team informed of trends and issues with respect to the substantive technical area.

Key result: New strategic opportunities for UNDP are realized, UNDP’s technical focus is leading edge and innovative, UNDP has strong partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders, UNDP has a trusted leadership role in the technical area of expertise.

Programming and Management

Supporting the development of strategic policy and guidance for strengthening UNDP Country Offices with climate change adaptation, green, low-emission and climate resilient development, resilient economic development and sustainable livelihood, and green climate fund project design and implementation including alignment with national priorities;
Assisting the development of and advocacy for specific policy analysis and development tools and guidance in support of programming and finance for climate change adaptation;
Supporting the establishment of a trusted leadership role for UNDP-GEF within the region;
Sourcing of technical expertise and support including assisting with the preparation of TORs, identification and evaluation of experts and reviewing reports;
Contributing to regional retreats, focal area retreats, regional strategic planning, pipeline management exercises, etc.;
Promoting gender equity/empowerment in programming opportunities;
Helping to ensure that strategies and projects are aligned to country outcomes and UNDP corporate environment results in internal UNDP project tracking systems (e.g. ERBM);
Maintaining quality/accuracy in data and project management (UNDP EF systems like PIMS), management of ATLAS Risks logs, and portfolio delivery rates;
Monitoring to ensure expected quality standards are maintained in project implementation reviews;
Supporting the RCU to internalize lessons from evaluations in programming in the region.

Key result: Portfolio of programmes/projects managed efficiently and effectively. UNDP recognized as providing outstanding programme and project oversight and supervision support.

Programming and Resource Mobilization

Assisting the provision of timely quality information and technical advice on source of funds policies, priorities and activities;
Draft, revise, finalize and help editing concepts and project documents for submission to donors;
Supporting the coordination of design, preparation, submission and approval of project proposals and requests for project development financing;
Support the liaison with potential (co)financing agencies and institutions.

Key result: Resources are mobilized in support of developing country clients as a consequence of the identification, development and funding of high technical quality and results based programmes and projects in line with country priorities and UNDP strategic priorities.

Development Impact

Assisting with inception, contracting and startup of projects including establishment of indicators, benchmarks and work plans;
Supporting UNDP country offices in the supervision, implementation, monitoring, evaluation, troubleshooting and adaptive management of approved projects, including preparing and reviewing annual reports and work plans;
Maintaining project and portfolio information and corporate information systems;
Developing guidance and tools for country offices to utilize in operationalizing projects inception, contracting and startup of projects including establishment of indicators, benchmarks and work plans;
Functioning as surge capacity to COs, supporting EFP with urgent, pressing, complex and /or specific tasks in the context of climate change adaptation.

Key result: UNDP programmes and projects consistently deliver high quality, high impact development results.

Learning, Knowledge Management and Self Development

Evaluating, capturing, codifying, synthesizing lessons and stimulating the uptake of best practices and knowledge, including the development of resource kits and other knowledge materials;
Peer reviewing, commenting on, and seeking to improve, the technical quality of projects, policies, practices, guidelines, advisory notes, publications and the like;
Assisting with preparation of regional Community of Practice meetings;
Preparing and delivering training courses, as needed;
Developing knowledge products of relevance to UNDP-GEF’s support to countries on low emission climate resilient development in the area of climate change adaptation;
Developing and carrying out a personal learning plan (5%).

Key result: UNDP recognized as a learning and knowledge management organization.




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 get things done while exercising good judgement.


Environmental Issues

Knowledge of environment issues, concept and principles and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Climate Change Adaptation

Knowledge of climate change adaptation concepts, principles and policies and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations. Ability to provide guidance on climate change adaptation especially as it relates to livelihoods, early warning systems, and coastal risk management.


Knowledge of economics concepts, principles and policies and ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Development Planning

Knowledge of development planning processes and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations.

Program Planning and Design

Develop programmes through a process.

Resource Mobilization

Ability to identify and organize programmes and projects to implement solutions and generate resources.

Results Based Management

Ability to manage programmes and projects with a strategy aimed at improved performance and demonstrable results.

Advocacy and Representation

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

Monitoring and Evaluation

Knowledge of methodologies, tools, systems and apply practical experience in planning, monitoring, evaluating and reporting.

Knowledge Management

Ability to efficiently handle and share information and knowledge.

Project Management

Ability to plan, organize, motivate, and control resources, procedures and protocols to achieve specific goals. Ability to guide the design and implementation of multi-sectoral and sectoral programmes and projects at different scales.

Collaboration and Partnership

Ability to develop, maintain, and strengthen partnerships with others inside (programmes/ projects) or outside the organization and across a wide range of disciplines who can provide information, assistance, and support. Sets overall direction for the formation and management of strategic relationships contributing to the overall positioning of UNDP.

Required Skills and Experience


Master’s degree or higher in environmental economics, development economics environmental law, business administration with a specialization in environment and development, or other closely related field.


Minimum of 5 years’ experience working with developing countries on climate change adaptation, community-level finance (e.g. microfinance), and development;
Experience with project development, implementation and management (direct project management experience is preferable);
Experience in the policy development processes in climate change risk management;
Demonstrated technical and intellectual skills in substantive area;
Demonstrated facilitation and coordination skills;
Full computer literacy;
Experience working in Africa is strongly desired;
Working experience in an international organization is an advantage as is knowledge of UNDP policies, procedures and practices.

Language Requirements

Excellent knowledge of the English language, with exceptional writing, presentation and communication skills;
Fluency in French or Portuguese, including excellent writing skills is an asset;
Competency in other UN languages is an asset.


Important information for US Permanent Residents (‘Green Card’ holders)

Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment. For more information please click here and here.

UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

This vacancy announcement will be used to populate a roster of qualified candidates from which future Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation assignments will be drawn. Kindly note that the Roster will consist of internal and external candidates found suitable for Regional Technical Specialist for Climate Change Adaptation Fixed Term Appointments (FTA) at P3 levels. These candidates will have to be endorsed by the UNDP Compliance Review Board (CRB) after having successfully undergone a competitive recruitment process including a thorough technical assessment and a competency based interview. These individuals will be required to complete an application and, if successful, will be considered as “pre-approved” candidates for a duration of up to 3 years.

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