Job Opening

Posting Title: UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) – Consultant for UNEP FI pilots in support of TNFD framework
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 14 September 2022 - 21 September 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-United Nations Environment Programme-190918-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

- Research and identify information sources for existing disclosure metrics, current levels of disclosure, and availability of third-party data against proposed TNFD beta framework, for each subsector or pilot group.
- For each of the pilot sector, create a matrix of financial institutions, asset managers and corporations, and hold interviews with relevant stakeholders to understand the actual and potential impacts and dependencies they have on nature, and the processes whereby they manage these risks. With this info, produce a document explaining the scope, purpose and participating actors for each pilot to be used while the pilot groups are testing the beta framework.
- Design and test a disclosure framework template for each sector or pilot group, detailing ‘sector-focused disclosure and reporting for each supply chain,’ and ‘financial disclosures based on corporate disclosure and third-party data.’
- Produce a summary report detailing all key findings from the pilot studies.
- Provide the TNFD Secretariat with high-level information on experiences and key lessons learned from the pilots, including on methodological limitations and current landscape of nature reporting.
- Active participation in all relevant meetings, webinars and events hosted by the TNFD Alliance.

Work Location

Working remotely

Expected duration

The duration of the contract is 7.5 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 overall objective of the UNEP’s Economy Division is to encourage decision makers in government, local authorities and industry to develop and adopt policies, strategies and practices and technologies that promote sustainable patterns of consumption and production, make efficient use of natural resources, ensure safe management of chemicals and contribute to making trade and environment policies mutually supportive. It promotes the development, use and transfer of policies, technologies, economic instruments, managerial practices and other tools that assist in environmentally sound decision making and the building of corresponding activities.

The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) is the strategic partnership between the United Nations and over 400 banks, insurers and investors. For over 28 years UNEP FI has been shaping and driving the international sustainable finance agenda, setting global standards and growing a global network of leading financial institutions. Through its work-streams and regional activities, peer learning, methodology development, training and research, UNEP FI carries out its mission to help the financial industry align with and contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and with that take on the crucial role it must play in achieving a sustainable future.

The Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD), a G7-endorsed body established in June, will provide, by 2023, a framework for organizations to report and act on evolving nature risks and opportunities with an intended vision to work toward a nature-positive economy. The work of TNFD builds on a model developed by the Taskforce on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). Its mission is to provide a framework for how organizations can address environmental risks and opportunities with the ultimate goal of channeling capital flows into positive action.

UNEP FI is a founding member and implementation partner of the TNFD. Part of UNEP FI’s role is testing and piloting the draft TNFD framework with financial institutions to help strengthen disclosure of nature- related risks and opportunities in specific countries and sectors.

This assignment supports the pilot and testing of the framework. The TNFD released a TNFD pilot testing plan in May 2022. This assignment aims to provide a practical example of what a Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosure (TNFD) framework could look like for specific targeted sub-sectors. Narrow sector-specific proof of concept pilots will enable greater awareness and capacity amongst TNFD supporters on what TNFD is aiming for, what is currently possible, and what the challenges are, before building the overarching framework. The results will inform the full TNFD piloting phase and other supportive milestones on the broader environment and build momentum for the TNFD.

The consultant will join to piloting team to deliver six pilots in support of the TNFD framework for the full duration of the contract. The pilots will consider high-risk sectors. In each pilot a minimum of 5 financial institutions will be involved, which are a combination of banks, insurance and investors and in each pilot at least 1 FI from an emerging market economy will participate. The pilots will develop a minimum framework for the six aforementioned sub-sectors based on the proposed scope of the full TNFD framework, as proposed by the TNFD secretariat. The overarching goal is to test how it might be possible to determine, if a given sub-sector within an investment or lending portfolio, can report on whether it is nature-negative or nature-positive using a draft TNFD Framework. As a result of this assignment, a publication will be developed highlighting the overall lessons and the specific outcomes per pilot project, as has been done by the UNEP FI TCFD piloting program.

Consultant is required to plan and deliver pilot programmes for the purpose of testing the TNFD beta framework. The pilots will be on six high nature-risk sectors (TBC) and will involve a variety of financial institutions, including investors, insurers, and banks. For each pilot, a minimum framework will be developed, based on the full TNFD framework. The main aim is to assess how each sub-sector in a FI’s invest or lending portfolio might be able to report on its nature-related risks/impacts using the TNFD framework. The consultant will then write a report detailing the key findings from the pilots, including the current state of nature reporting within the sub-sectors, and any discovered methodological issues.

The main objective of the consultancy is to assist UNEP FI in testing the TNFD beta framework with financial institutions and real economy companies and refining the TNFD beta framework as published by the TNFD secretariat.

Outputs:

Deliverable 1:
- Follow up communication with the participants to ensure they are comfortable with the materials presented and the work required;
- Regular group calls for each of the six pilots to ensure coordinated and collaborative approach across the FIs

Deliverable 2:
- Designing data sets to ensure a baseline on nature impact from which participants can work from;
- Deliver an internal document and communication materials that summarize specific learnings for the TNFD team, and support consolidation

Deliverable 3:
- Host a webinar engaging selected stakeholders involved in this specific subsector (including FIs, investors, insurance companies etc.) to engender a discussion and find a way to convene the above in piloting opportunities

Deliverable 4:
- Collect feedback from various departments within the FIs to receive a comprehensive view of TNFD obstacles and challenges

Deliverable 5:
- Bring the materials from each of the six pilots together to form a broad overview of the learnings achieved from the pilots;
- Develop a final external document incorporating views and discussions from the above to summarize lessons that will help inform TNFD working group discussions and highlight valuable considerations for future testing and pilots

Deliverable 6:
- Work towards a report on the findings to help inform TNFD of how FIs are viewing the topic and how they intend to approach it in the future;
- Develop a final external document incorporating summary of views and discussions from the above pilots including high level lessons learned and suggestions for future testing of pilots;
Host a webinar about the piloting and the findings for the public.

Deliverable 7:
- Work towards a report on the findings to help inform TNFD of how FIs are viewing the topic and how they intend to approach it in the future;
- Develop a final external document incorporating summary of views and discussions from the above pilots including high level lessons learned and suggestions for future testing of pilots

Deliverable 8:
- Host a webinar about the piloting and the findings for the public.

Specific tasks and responsibilities:

1. Identify key information sources to assess existing disclosure metrics, the current level of corporate disclosure, and the availability of relevant third-party data and gaps against the proposed TNFD beta framework for the six identified sub-sectors, including: literature, project documents, policy statements, practitioners' discussion fora, meeting reports, key informants for the theme

2. Explore the TNFD framework and identify the components that will be tested -
a. TNFD Draft Disclosure Recommendations
b. The TNFD LEAP Process
c. TNFD additional Guidance Documents (to be developed after first beta release)

3. Create a banking matrix comprising financial institutions, asset managers, and corporations for each identified subsector, and conduct interviews with the relevant market players, stakeholders and development partners to understand:
a. The actual and potential effect of organizations’ impacts and dependencies on nature and associated risks and opportunities on its business, strategy, and financial planning.
b. the processes used by the organization to identify, assess and manage its impacts and dependencies on nature and associated risks and opportunities.
c. organization governance around impacts, dependencies, risks, and opportunities.

4. With the above information, develop a document defining the scope, purpose, and participating organizations for each of the pilots

5. Classify the pilots and fill out the pilot classification form for each one

6. Design and test a disclosure framework with metrics for:
a. sector-focused disclosure and reporting for different supply chains.
b. financial disclosure based on corporate disclosure & data from third-party channels
c. This will be coordinated by UNEP FI on finance sector engagement. The stakeholders involved in this stage should be leaders in terms of their capacity to engage in the proof-of-concept pilot and report on the focus area and cover different types (e.g. producer, trader, manufacturer, retailer, bank, asset manager)

7. Provide practical experience and critical lessons delineating the learnings through the pilot projects for the TNFD Secretariat. The data and methodological limitations and the current landscape of resources on nature will be highly informative.

8. Support further articulation and definition of the proposed ‘nature information system’ - exemplifying a data stack and the use of multiple data sources

9. Prepare a Consolidated Summary Report highlighting results of the stakeholder consultations. The structure and content of the report should be determined by agreement with UNEP FI

10. Participate and engage in relevant meetings, webinars and other events hosted in the TNFD Forum

The consultant will report to the Head of UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP FI). The consultant will be hosted by UNEP FI Nature team, the Programme Officer, Ecosystems/Nature is the Direct Supervisor.

Qualifications/special skills

Skills: Project management and/or accounting qualification would be valuable. Exceptional writing and editing skills and attention to detail are essential. Pro-active with independent working ability, combined with good problem-solving skills and personal resilience to work effectively in a complex setting.

Academic Qualifications: Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in project management, international relations, economics, business, environmental studies, finance, social sciences, accounting or a related discipline. A First degree with could be taken in lieu of advanced degree provided the selected candidate has 9 years of relevant experience.

Experience: A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible work experience related to project coordination, working in banks with a focus on sustainable finance. Practical experience of working with DFIs/IFIs/ specialized ministries/departments of the countries / with relevant national / international organizations related to the development of the green financing.

Language: English is the working language of UNEP FI. Other United Nations languages particularly French would be an asset.

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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