Job Opening

Posting Title: Nature4Cities National coordinator in Panama
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: PANAMA CITY
Posting Period: 07 February 2022 - 27 February 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-United Nations Environment Programme-174202-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The National Coordinator will report directly to the Head of the Adaptation and Resilience Department of the Ministry of Environment of Panama (NDA) and the UNEP Adaptation to Climate Change Programme Officer and will be primarily responsible for supporting the results of the project in Panama.

The National Coordinator´s main duties and responsibilities will include:
• Support the day-to-day implementation of the project, ensure stakeholder engagement and proper reporting of activities to the country´s NDA, Project Coordinator (RC) and Regional Project Steering Committee (RSPC).
• Oversee and manage project implementation, monitor work progress, and ensure timely delivery of outputs in selected city(ies) according to GCF project’s requirements,
• Provide input for the baseline assessment on the state of Nature-based Solutions (NbS) integration into urban planning in each participant city(ies), including an estimation of the feasibility of NbS integration into urban planning and development processes.
• Provide input to management and technical reports and other documents as described in the project document.
• Facilitate the convening and meetings of the city-level NbS Task groups
• Act as a liaison and promote dialogue between national, provincial and local stakeholders, ensure key actors in the urban planning processes are involved in the project’s development.
• Coordinate work of the local experts and consultants in the respective country.
• Promote the participation of local communities in project activities.
• Participate in training activities, report writing and facilitation of expert activities.
• Support the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) experts in developing and implementing a comprehensive monitoring and reporting system.
• Assist the executing entities for the development of audio-visual material for each of the pilot cities as well as develop awareness-raising material, providing feedback and inputs for revision.
• Collaborate with the website designer to develop the online portal on urban Ecosystem based Adaption (EbA).
• Participate and promote dialogue in the community of practices and/or webinars that will be implemented within the project.
• Systematize national material on shared folders for a common regional use on knowledge management, capacity building and communication activities.
• Support with the dissemination of materials and activities related to the community of practice with key stakeholders in the country.
• Report to the Regional Project Steering Committee regarding project progress.
• Inform the Regional Coordinator immediately and country´s NDA of any issue or risk which might jeopardise the success of the project.
• Provide on-the-ground information for progress reports.
• Coordinate visits to project sites.

Ultimate result of service
• Project activities and deliverables in the target cities are carried out as outlined in the Project Document.
• Proper coordination between the local project management unit, key local stakeholders and the rest of the project team.

Outputs/Work Assignment
• Development of bi-annual work plans
• Budget planning and reporting
• Drafting technical reports, including the development of baselines on NbS integration into urban planning and development processes
• Coordination between different experts involved in the project and local stakeholders
• Support in drafting of communication material
• Organization of meetings and workshops

Work Location

Climate Change Directorate, Ministry of Environment in Panama, Panama.

Expected duration

12 MONTHS

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the United Nations system's designated entity for addressing environmental issues at the global and regional level. Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action.

The UNEP Latin America and the Caribbean Office (ROLAC), located in Panama City, works closely with the 33 countries of the region - including 16 small island developing States - with a population of about 588 million people. The office works to serve the needs of the region and its activities are integrated into the work programs approved by the United Nations Environment Assembly of UNEP (UNEA).

UNEP seeks to support countries in Latin America to implement the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the new Paris Agreement and the priority actions defined in the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) of Latin American countries.
The Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region is the second most urbanized region in the world, with ~80% of its population living in cities. Rapid urbanization, coupled with limited urban planning and the associated expansion of cities, is degrading urban and peri-urban ecosystems that provide vital ecosystem services for urban communities. Ecosystem degradation poses a threat to urban communities and increases their vulnerability to natural disasters and climate change.

To address the vulnerability of urban communities, governments in the LAC region need to develop and implement cost-effective, low-risk solutions, such as Nature-based Solutions (NbS) by protecting, maintaining and rehabilitating priority ecosystems in urban areas. As a result, UNEP is working with the governments of Cuba, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay, and to execute a three-years Readiness project “Nature4Cities - Increasing resilience through Nature based Solutions in Latin-American cities” funded by the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

The aim of the project is to increase the capacity of participating countries to design and implement Nature Based urban development strategies that ensure urban resilience to climate change through five main areas of work: (1) Strengthening the knowledge base of national and local governments to assess the potential for Nature Based Adaptation and Mitigation Solutions in urban areas in the context of broader climate change strategies; (2) Reinforcing enabling policies and institutional frameworks to increase adoption of NBS in urban planning; (3) Strengthening partnerships between key actors to accelerate the adoption of NBS solutions; (4) Defining climate finance strategies through innovative public, private and blended financial mechanisms and facilitating access to climate finance for the sustained implementation of NbS; (5) Accelerating upscaling and replication through a regional Urban NBS platform.

The National Coordinator will be responsible for overall coordination of the execution of the GCF funded project Nature4Cities in Panama. The coordinator will be supervised by the Adaptation to Climate Change Programme Officer and will work in close collaboration with Panama’s National Designated Authority (NDA). He/She will be based in the office of the Ministry of Environment in Panama City, Panama, and will be present in the office during normal working hours, 40 hours per week, from Monday to Friday on a full-time basis. The coordinator will also be required to travel on a regular basis to the project’s targeted cities, as required by the project’s implementation and with costs covered by UNEP.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications:
- Bachelor’s degree in environment, natural resources management, architecture, urban development, economic development, or a closely related field is required.
- Required Master's degree in business management, environment, landscape architecture or urban planning.

Experience:
- A minimum of 5 years relevant work experience in urban planning and design including at least 2 years' experience as a lead project manager in urban planning is required .
- At least 2 years of working experience in Panama or for national or local institutions and/or government, with the correspondent legal suitability to practice in the country is required.
- Experience in meetings organization, higher education, capacity building and/or planning trainings is desired
- Experience in the elaboration of land-use planning schemes in Panama is desirable.
- Extensive national expertise in the planning of more than 5 Public Use Areas is desirable.
- Experience in the public participation development process associated with environment and sustainable development is an asset.
- Experience with GCF projects is an asset.

Language:
- Fluency in Spanish is required
- Working level of English in writing and verbal skills

Skills:
- Knowledge of land use regulations and urban planning regulations.
- Knowledge of energy efficiency projects is desirable.
- Knowledge of ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change, ecological restoration and sustainable use of natural resources is required.
- Knowledge of Panama’s environmental and climate change policies is required.
- Knowledge on urban planification processes, legal framework on adaptation to climate change and of the relevant stakeholders working in these sectors in Panama is also desirable.
- Ability to pick up new terminology and concepts easily and to turn information from various sources into a coherent project document.
- Ability to design and develop technical documents (publications are an asset).
- Ability to read and interpret geographic maps, familiarity with Argis and GIS tools.
- Excellent organization and planning skills.
- Excellent communication and educational skills (written and oral presentations).
- Ability to work independently and as a team.
- Motivated and dynamic to jump-start activities.
- Skills using project and AutoCAD is desired.
- Ability to work under pressure.

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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