Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultant: Science Policy Interface
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 18 February 2021 - 08 March 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-United Nations Environment Programme-150277-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The following will be the expected deliverables of this consultancy duly completed and submitted in high quality. The same will also serve as indicators for delivery:
1. A scan and compilation of emerging coastal and marine issues in the Western Indian Ocean necessary to inform policy and decision making
2. Policy oriented technical briefs (policy briefs) demonstrating a clear link between scientific evidence and policymaking and aspects of integrated ecosystem assessments and studies.
3. Communication on progress of implementation of the 2018 Decisions of the Ninth Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention (COP9) with potential further decisions for implementation of the Convention.
4. Draft decisions proposed for the 10th Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention

Work Location


Expected duration

The contract duration will be six (6) months.

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment. The Secretariat for the Nairobi Convention for the Protection, Management and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Western Indian Ocean region, within the Ecosystems Division of UNEP is implementing the third phase of the European Union (EU) funded programme on Capacity building related to Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEA) in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Countries (EU-ACP-MEAs 3) in line with the ninth Conference of Contracting Parties to the Nairobi Convention Decision CP.9/7 on Developing and supporting implementation of projects.

The overall priority of the EU-ACP-MEAs 3 programme is to support ACP countries in better managing their coastal areas and oceans; carrying out measures for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity; and effectively implementing the related Regional Seas Conventions. The Nairobi Convention component of the EU-ACP-MEAs 3 programme address the review of its biodiversity protocol, ocean governance, marine spatial planning, marine protected areas, science-policy dialogues, and marine litter and raising the awareness required to combat marine pollution. The programme will benefit Governments of Comoros, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, Somalia, South Africa and Tanzania.

In order to carry out measures for the conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, the Nairobi Convention in collaboration with WIOMSA and other partners will convene a Science to Policy Platform meeting to foster an interaction of policy and decision-making authorities, the scientific community, and other relevant stakeholders and partners in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO). The science to policy dialogue will promote the link between science and policy for evidence-based decision making and provide the decision makers with timely technical advice and policy recommendations for consideration in the formulation of decisions of the Convention in preparation for the 10th Conference of Parties.

The Secretariat of the Nairobi Convention is seeking the services of an expert in science, policy and governance analysis to undertake specific tasks related to the planned science to policy dialogue and preparation of the tenth Conference of Parties (COP 10) to the Nairobi Convention. A contract will be awarded to a qualified expert with experience in engaging with national, regional and/or inter- governmental and non-governmental organisations, and science – policy dialogues, preferably in the Western Indian Ocean region. The expert (hereinafter referred to as “Consultant”) will support policy and governance analysis of the scientific submissions by stakeholders in preparation for the science – policy dialogue.

At the fourth Conference of the Parties (COP4) to the Nairobi Convention, the Secretariat of the Convention was directed to establish a network of academic and research institutions in the Convention area for the assessment and science-based management of marine and coastal environment and to link the network with decision-making processes at the regional level. The secretariat established the Forum for Academic and Research Institutions (FARI) in 2004 and the Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSA) has since served as the Secretariat of the forum. Subsequent COPs, such as COP7 (2012), COP8 (2015 and COP9 (2018) have adopted decisions to strengthen the link between science, policy and action including the need to convene regular science-policy dialogues. The Convention has been inviting policy makers and FARI members to support science-policy dialogues, with many recommendations from these dialogues informing COP Decisions.

The regional science to policy forum will investigate science-policy interactions in several strategic and thematic areas as defined by the stakeholders. Government officials and decision makers will be made aware of existing and emerging issues by providing evidence and guidance material, so that they can use it as part of policy formation, implementation and evaluation. The science – policy forum will generate an enabling environment for science and policy to grow and build visibility, awareness, credibility, legitimacy, and confidence around thematic and emerging issues to be discussed. The forum will foster commitment, participation, exchanges, synergies and cooperation for the coastal and marine environment in the WIO region. The forum may explore mapping of the outstanding scientific knowledge and lay emphasis on the importance of institutionalizing the interaction between scientists and policymakers, communication between the scientific and the political communities, and of addressing the issue of the vested interests in the private sector in the context of financing of science. The outcome of the science -policy forum will inform the review and the updating of policy documents in preparation of the tenth Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention (COP10) to be held mid-2021.

The purpose of the consultancy will be to provide policy and governance analysis of the technical briefs/papers submitted by the science to policy stakeholders to ensure they are well designed, are of high standard, fully capture input by the institutions responsible, and clearly link scientific evidence to policy-making. The review, analysis will lead to an update of policy documents as inputs in preparation of the tenth Conference of Parties (COP 10) to the Nairobi Convention.

Duties and Responsibilities
Under the general supervision of the Head, Nairobi Convention Secretariat, and the direct supervision of the Project Manager- EU funded project, the consultant will be responsible for the following:
• Review the technical briefs/papers submitted by stakeholders to ensure they are well designed, are of high standard, fully documents input by the institutions responsible, and clearly link scientific evidence to policymaking.
• Provide substantive input to ensure the technical briefs/papers have an increased consistency of selection and use of indicators and reference points to guide the interpretation of status and trends.
• Identify and highlight elements of technical papers that integrate ecosystem assessments and can inform on the state of systems from ecosystem, social and economic aspects.
• Review the extent to which technical papers submitted provide effective mechanisms for the efficient transfer of knowledge on the coastal and marine environment, and the effectiveness with which the scientific community uses them to communicate to policy advisers and decision makers.
• Identify potential inputs from indigenous and local knowledge, how this knowledge could be integrated into decision-making processes and management plans, and where improvements can be made with respect to future scientific assessments.
• Identify gaps in the interface of science and policy, including inputs and participation of the private sector.
• Facilitate a regional multi-stakeholder science-policy dialogue and follow-up on policy briefs on separate thematic studies emanating from the forum for further review by the Nairobi Convention focal points.
• Prepare a policy-oriented report linked to the implementation of the 2018 Decisions of the Ninth Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention (COP9) and key lessons learnt at national and regional level.
• Prepare a succinct report on the implementation of the Work Programme of the Nairobi Convention and identify appropriate linkages with ongoing projects and pinpoint potential new projects to support implementation of the work programme.
• Compile inputs and draft potential decisions resulting from the science-policy forum, program of work implementation report, and other national inputs as recommended by policy makers at the 10th Conference of Parties to the Nairobi Convention (COP10).

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: An advanced university degree (Masters or PhD.) is required in ecology, natural resources management, environmental sciences, or ocean governance.
Experience: Minimum of 5 years of relevant professional experience is required in natural resources management, including marine and coastal resources. Proven track record of engaging with national, regional and/or inter - governmental and non-governmental organisations and science – policy dialogues and extensive international publication record in the fields of natural resources management, ocean governance, coastal and marine resources and climate change policies is desired. Proven track record of research on natural resources management, coastal and marine areas in the Western Indian Ocean region. Excellent drafting skills is also desired.
Language: English and French are the official working languages of the United Nations. For this position fluency in both oral and written English is required.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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