Job Opening

Posting Title: SENIOR PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT OFFICER, P5 (Temporary Job Opening)
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 30 March 2021 - 12 April 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Programme Management-UNEP-152446-J-Nairobi (X)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

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. UNEP's Ecosystems Division works with international and national partners, providing technical assistance and advisory services for the implementation of environmental policy, and strengthening the environmental management capacity of developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

This position is located in the Ecosystems Division at the Nairobi Duty station. Under the direct supervision of the Coordinator, Secretariat for the Nairobi Convention, the incumbent will be responsible for the following:


A. Project Planning and Execution:
• Takes the lead to develop, implement and evaluate assigned SAPPHIRE (Western Indian Ocean Large Marine Ecosystems Strategic Action Programme Policy Harmonization and Institutional Reforms) project; directs subordinates in SAPPHIRE project implementation, monitoring and assessment; directs review of relevant documents and reports; identifies priorities, problems and issues to be addressed and proposes corrective actions; liaises with the relevant parties; identifies and initiates follow-up actions.
• Prepares an annual work plan and budget on project implementation based on the approved project document and inception report; a procurement/implementation plan; a result-oriented technical progress report (narrative) which will track the progress on project implementation, the project’s contribution to the WIOSAP (Implementation of the Strategic Action Programme for the protection of the Western Indian Ocean from land-based sources and activities) project implementation, gender mainstreaming and Sustainable Development Goals, and monitor risks; and a financial report, for review and approval by Project Steering Committee;
• Directs research related to SAPPHIRE project, evaluation and presents information gathered from diverse sources; Coordinate and monitor the activities described in the SAPPHIRE Work Plan and develop systems and processes necessary for the tracking, planning and execution of the project; Ensure high quality of the project outputs;
• Coordinates policy development; reviews and trends, preparation of evaluations or research activities and studies.
• Alerts the Executing Agency, Implementing Agency, and Steering Committee about emerging risks related to project implementation and proposes risk management/mitigation measures; Addresses and rectify issues raised by Executing Agency, Implementing Agency, and Steering Committee, with respect to project execution in a timely manner; Notify Project Steering Committee, UNDP, GEF and other donors in writing, through the Executing Agency, if there is need for modification to the agreed implementation plan and budget and seeks prior approval at appropriate levels;
• Ensure project compliance with all relevant policies, regulations, procedures, and reporting requirements of the SAPPHIRE project; Ensure both mid-term review and terminal independent evaluation are conducted in a timely, efficient and effective manner;
• Coordinates activities related to budget and funding and ensures preparation of related documents/reports, work plan, project budgets, etc.) including approval of all administrative and financial reports, external communications and travel requests, as well as the acquisition of equipment, goods and services;
• Undertakes survey initiatives; guides design of data collection instruments; reviews, analyzes and interprets responses, identifies problems/issues and prepares conclusions.
• Keeps the Steering Committee informed of project development including through the organization of Steering Committee meetings; Acts as Secretary to the Steering Committee meetings.

B. Preparation of Project-related Documents
• Ensures the preparation of substantive, financial reports and written outputs e.g. background papers, analysis, project reports, substantial sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications etc.; Compiles the required reports; Prepare working documents for discussion at the meetings of task teams and working groups; Prepare the agenda and all technical background documentation in consultation with other partners, for Steering Committee meetings; Coordinate and oversee preparation of the substantive and operational reports from the project.
• Make available to the project the cash and in-kind co-financing from the Donors and ensure that all pledged third-party co-financing materializes or undertake resource mobilization efforts to compensate for any shortfall in co-financing;
• Present the quarterly Cash Advance Request, accompanied by the quarterly financial report, with substantiation for the GEF funds for the Project to the Executing Agency;
• Ensure that all documents and reports to be tabled at a Project Steering Committee (PSC) meeting are circulated at least two weeks prior to each PSC meeting in relevant languages to maximize the effectiveness of the PSC meeting;

C. Staff Recruitment and Oversight:
• Undertakes technical approval of candidates for consultancy contracts with local and international experts and supervision of their work; Prepare Terms of Reference for consultancy contracts and monitor their execution; Directly supervise the day to day work through a team consisting of professional, technical and administrative staff; and
• Manages the Project Coordination Unit, its staff, budget, in line with UN Rules & Regulations, and conduct their performance appraisal;

D. Project Coordination and Communication to partners:
• Directs substantive support to consultative and other meetings, conferences etc., to include proposing agenda topics, identifying participants, preparation of documents and presentation etc.
• Manages outreach activities; designs and conducts training workshops, seminars, etc., makes presentations on assigned topics/activities; Organise and supervise expert meetings, interagency consultations and training workshops or seminars as required; Submits press releases, relevant news items, opinion pieces and interviews, publications and speeches that are directly related to the project to Executing Agency prior to their publication;
• Supports the project midterm review/evaluation as an adaptive management tool and develops a management response to the review; Collaborates with the project terminal evaluation, and provide all information requested by the evaluation team
• Leads field missions, including provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties and drafting mission summaries etc.
• Serves as an effective spokesperson and establishes collaboration and partnerships with key officials at all levels inside and outside the organization on matter related to the SAPPHIRE project.


• PROFESSIONALISM: Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities and risks. Ability to generate and communicate broad and compelling organizational direction. Ability to communicate clearly links between the Organization’s strategy and the work unit’s goals. Demonstrated ability to provide innovative technical leadership by performing and/or overseeing the planning, development, and management of operation. Demonstrated ability to negotiate and apply good judgment Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations.

• COMMUNICATION: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

• PLANNING & ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
• LEADERSHIP: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: Empowers others to translate vision into results. Is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives. Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support. Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions. Drives for change and improvements; does not accept the status quo; Shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work. Demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

• MANAGING PERFORMANCE: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative, actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.


An advanced University degree ((Master's degree or equivalent) in the field of marine sciences, environmental science or related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of ten (10) years of progressively responsible experience in the management of coastal and marine environment is required.
A minimum of eight (8) years’ of progressive experience with ocean governance, policy and regulatory reforms work within the Western Indian Ocean region is required.
Experience at a senior level on regional and international ocean governance policy and regulatory reforms is required.
Work experience in an inter-governmental agency in climate change, fisheries, blue economy, and marine spatial planning within the western Indian Ocean region at policy level is desirable.
Experience in blue economy and marine spatial planning is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another official UN language is an advantage.

NOTE: ''Fluency equals a rating of ''fluent'' in all four areas (read, write, speak, understand) and ''Knowledge of'' equals a rating of ''confident'' in two of the four areas.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This position is open for recruitment for an initial period of one year and may be subject to extension. Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfill the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover letter.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

Internal Applicants – when completing the PHP, ensure ALL fields, ALL professional experience and contact information are completed and up to date. This information is the basis for the hiring manager to assess your eligibility and suitability for the position and to contact you.

Individual contractors and consultants who have worked within the UN Secretariat in the last six months, irrespective of the administering entity, are ineligible to apply for professional and higher, temporary or fixed-term positions and their applications will not be considered.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply on-line as soon as possible after the job opening has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the job opening. On-line applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. In such cases, please resubmit the application, if necessary. If the problem persists, please seek technical assistance through the Inspira "Need Help?" link.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


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