Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultant : water monitoring and assessment
Department/Office: Economic Commission for Europe
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 01 June 2021 - 21 June 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Economic Commission for Europe-156502-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

Depending on the specific assignment, the consultant shall prepare and submit for example the following deliverables:

· Draft and final chapters for the pan-European environmental assessment
· Draft and final training material including exercises and hand-out material
· Draft training workshop agendas, suggestions for speakers and invitees, presentations
· Evaluation and possible revision of training material after successful completion of training workshops
· Recommendations and guidelines on how to enhance water accounting and water information systems in the target countries
· Substantial input to relevant meetings such as the Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment or the Joint Task Force on Environmental Statistics and Indicators.

In addition, the consultant is expected to prepare a one-page summary of outputs under the contract for each task. The summary should be accompanied by copies of deliverables in emails to the respective UNECE secretariat’s staff.

The outputs should be delivered in a timely manner and with good quality to fit the overall process of the implementation of the activities. The outputs will be reviewed and approved by the UNECE secretariat staff, who should regularly be consulted and updated on the progress in their achievement.

Work Location

Home country

Expected duration

Between 1 and 12 months

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Programme assists member States in working with environmental data and information to ensure their timely flow and adequate assessment. In this way, the programme helps enable informed decision-making processes and sound environmental policy making, both nationally and internationally, in the environmental sector in support of a transition to sustainable development.

The UNECE Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment serves as the environmental knowledge and assessment network for the UNECE region, under the oversight of the Committee on Environmental Policy, to aid informed decision-making in support of the transition to sustainable development and a green and circular economy in the UNECE region.

The Working Group closely engages partners such as the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), its network and other organizations and programmes within the United Nations system, institutions of the European Union, including the European Commission and the European Environment Agency and its European Environment Information and Observation Network, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Group on Earth Observations, among others.

Effective and sound policymaking and informed decision-making require integrated, relevant, timely and easily accessible information and its appropriate assessment. To achieve this, adequate monitoring systems and programmes, data and information management systems, assessment and reporting routines and methods must be in place.

Specific objectives of the programme and the UNECE Working Group on Environmental Monitoring and Assessment include:

· Support to the development of national monitoring and information systems in Europe and Central Asia, and their alignment with the Shared Environmental Information System principles, to aid informed decision-making;

· Enable a regular pan-European environmental assessment and the streamlining of regular state-of-the-environment reporting to support the transition to sustainable development;

· Enable the development of capacity with regard to specific challenges in environmental monitoring and assessment, including the development and improvement of national environmental monitoring systems, their technical specifications and modernization, financing and the collection of environmental knowledge through national monitoring.

The programme is supported by the Joint Task Force on Environmental Statistics and Indicators in the area of statistical capacity development for countries of the Caucasus, Central Asia and Eastern and South-Eastern Europe and in measuring and monitoring progress towards environmental policy implementation.

Several projects and activities in the area of environmental monitoring and assessment and capacity development are implemented under the programme.

To facilitate the timely completion of projects and activities under the programme, UNECE is developing a roster of water experts that would comprise vetted capable and qualified individuals who can be called upon for specific project tasks and activities under the programme as International Consultants. A screening procedure will be applied to select the prospective applicants who will be invited to join the Expert Roster. The roster will be maintained for a period of 5 years. Retention in the roster of selected experts will be contingent on continuous delivery of satisfactory services.

The current generic call aims to build on UNECE`s roster capacity of consultants with relevant experience in Environmental Monitoring and Assessment to support the Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Programme in the UNECE Environment Division. The Experts Roster is a recruitment and deployment mechanism which maintains pre-vetted consultants on a roster and contracts them quickly for specific and short-term support.

Objectives and Targets

The overall purpose of the consultancy is to support the activities under the Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Programme in implementing various activities and projects related to water, among others the regular pan-European environmental assessment jointly implemented with UNEP.

The consultant(s) will work under the overall supervision of the Manager of the Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Programme and will work closely with other partners such as UNEP and regional and national experts among others in countries of Central Asia, the Caucasus and South-Eastern Europe.

The consultant(s) will contribute substantively, depending on the specific assignment, to the work on water related to assessing the state of the environment and trends in the pan-European region, in analyzing and addressing gaps in establishing and implementing national monitoring and information systems in line with the principles of a Shared Environmental Information System (SEIS), to produce water indicators according to relevant international and national indicator frameworks and to enhance water monitoring and assessment capacity in the countries of Central Asia, the Caucasus and South-Eastern Europe. The consultant will also be responsible for preparing training and guidance material and to deliver capacity development activities and training workshops in target countries related to UNECE water indicators, SDG water indicator methodologies and how to enhance monitoring and measurement capacity related to the water indicators at the national and regional level and provide integrated analysis of progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in the area of water. Travel of the consultant(s) may be foreseen to countries inCentral Asia, the Caucasus and South-Eastern Europe and depending on the specific assignment. The consultant will be responsible for specific tasks related to the assignment that may include the following general responsibilities:

General responsibilities:

• Provides substantive support in the implementation of assigned projects, and activities
• Researches, analyzes and presents water data and information gathered from diverse sources, including data visualization and analysis related to the state of the environment in the pan-European region and trends, greening the economy in the pan-European region and working towards sustainable infrastructure
• Reviews relevant documents and reports; identifies problems and issues to be addressed and proposes corrective actions; liaises with relevant parties; identifies and tracks follow-up actions
• Develops training material customized to target countries related to water indicators, monitoring and assessment, SEIS and SDGs based on conducted gap analysis and existing guidelines and material
• Provides capacity development to target countries on the development and production of water indicators and relevant SDG indicators
• Designs, plans and carries out training workshops in target countries for key stakeholders in the area of water and statistics, water accounting and SDGs
• Support target countries in enhancing their water information systems

• Assists in policy development, including the review and analysis of issues and trends, preparation of evaluations or other research activities and studies:
• Prepares various written outputs, e.g. input to the pan-European environmental assessment, training material, workshop concepts, etc.
• Undertakes outreach activities; conducts training workshops and makes presentations on assigned topics/activities.

Detailed Terms of Reference and additional guidance will be provided for each specific assignment and may vary depending on the specificities of the projects being implemented.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: Advanced degree in water or environmental science, geography, water or environmental policy or related field

Experience: Water and environmental monitoring and assessment, SEIS, water data and information, Production of regional/international water indicators, water accounting, use of UNECE set of environmental indicators, EEA core set of indicators, OECD green growth indicators, and water indicators for the SDGs, knowledge related to the state of the environment or of water resources in the pan-European region and trends.

Language: Fluency in English is required. Fluency in Russian is desirable.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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