Job Description

This Vacancy Announcement is being published by the Water & Energy Cluster, UNOPS on behalf of the GEF STAP The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP - http:// of the GEF provides independent advice to the GEF: it has 7 members – a Chair, and 6 individual members. The roles and responsibilities of the Chair, Panel members and STAP Secretariat are set out in STAP’s Terms of Reference ( (March 2012). STAP’s role is to provide objective scientific and technical advice on the GEF’s policies, strategies, programs, and projects. It does so by executing a program of work developed in collaboration with the GEF Secretariat, and by screening GEF projects. Its advice takes a variety of forms, including formal guidance, advice, information notes, policy briefs, and assessments. The STAP is seeking a new Panel member for Biodiversity, and is currently accepting applications from highly qualified candidates with:
  • outstanding academic and technical credentials;

  • a passion for tackling global environmental and sustainable development challenges;

  • strong expertise in biodiversity, and preferably with crosscutting expertise across the GEF’s focal areas;

  • the ability to work in an interdisciplinary, integrated manner across the focal areas; and

  • capable of bridging scientific, technological, economic, social, and policy issues.

STAP Secretariat The Panel is supported by a small, dedicated Secretariat of six persons. The STAP Secretariat provides substantive and operational assistance in the delivery of Panel Members’ responsibilities. The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel is hosted by UNEP, on behalf of the GEF network. UNEP is an equal opportunity employer. Interested qualified candidates are requested to provide a letter of motivation, and a completed personal history profile, together with a CV. Background information: GEF The GEF ( has a unique mandate as a financing mechanism for a number of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs): the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD); the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD); the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC); the Minamata convention on mercury; and the Stockholm convention on persistent organic pollutants. The GEF also supports global and regional agreements on international waters, and transboundary water management. The GEF’s mission is to safeguard the global environment by supporting developing countries meet their commitments under these agreements. The GEF’s responsibilities are often mutually supportive, which enables the synergies between them to be harnessed in a more holistic, systems approach. (For more details please refer to the Biodiversity TORs document attached.) Functional Responsibilities Panel members contribute substantively to delivering STAP’s work programme. The Panel Members should perform their duties and provide intellectual and innovative leadership in formulating high quality advice, which challenges conventional thinking, and brings intellectual rigor to strategic and operational issues. Specific Responsibilities
  • Demonstrate leadership and initiative in delivering the best available relevant scientific and technical advice in a timely manner;

  • Mobilize scientific and technical networks and partnerships;

  • Take an active part in developing and implementing STAP’s work programme, including drafting analytical papers, reports, and making presentations, and attending and convening meetings of experts;

  • Undertake screens of projects and programs in biannual GEF work programs;

  • Participate in two face-to-face STAP meetings a year, and in STAP teleconferences; and

  • Provide contributions to the Chair’s report to twice-yearly GEF Council meetings.

Time Commitment Panel Members are expected to provide a minimum contribution of 65 days a year, up to a maximum of 90 days, if required, under exceptional circumstances, and by mutual agreement. The Panel usually meets in person twice a year, with monthly teleconferences. In addition, Panel Members usually undertake two or three trips a year, for example, workshops or meetings related to work programme deliverables, MEA expert body meetings. In addition, Panel members may also be invited to join GEF discussions. Most STAP business is transacted by email and teleconference. Education/Experience/Language requirements Specific qualifications and experience:
  • Advanced degree, preferably a PhD, in a relevant area, e.g., environmental science, required;

  • Minimum 15 years of experience in scientific research, and in the application of results to real world issues in developing countries, required;

  • Peer-reviewed publication record on issues of relevance to the GEF, desirable;

  • Demonstrated ability to work in an integrated, interdisciplinary manner across GEF focal areas, with experience of systems thinking, required;

  • Capable of bridging scientific, technological, economic, social and policy issues in the public and private sector, required;

  • Familiarity with and understanding of multilateral environmental agreements, desirable;

  • Experience of working in developing countries, including applied research; Design and implementation of programs involving multilateral environmental agreements, ideally in Coordination with multilateral and bilateral agencies, desirable;

  • Access to, and ability to engage with, and tap into, extensive scientific networks and partnerships globally, in both developed and developing countries, in environmentally sustainable development, and GEF focal areas, required;

  • Fluency in oral and written English, and a demonstrated ability to communicate, orally and in writing, in a clear, concise, and structured manner, required; and

  • Demonstrated experience in the facilitation of learning and Knowledge Management, desirable.

  • Demonstrated expertise and leadership in global environmental issues and sustainable development, supported by the candidate’s peer-reviewed publication record, required;

  • Demonstrated ability to initiate and manage scientific research with multiple stakeholders in multiple geographical settings, required; and

  • Knowledge of the scientific processes required for the implementation of MEAs in developing countries, desirable.

In addition, the following competences will also be considered:
  • Enthusiasm and commitment to dealing with global environmental issues, sustainable development, and transformational change;

  • Team work – ability to collaborate effectively and remotely in a multicultural team and share responsibilities;

  • Able and willing to travel globally to attend meetings and events; and

  • A good sense of humour.

Contract type, level and duration Contract type: Retainer, International Individual Contract Agreement (IICA) Contract level: ICS-11/IICA-3 Contract duration: Two years with possibility of extension for another two years Additional Considerations
  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time

  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.

  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.

  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.

  • Work life harmonization - UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types

  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by Security Policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns. Recruitment/Internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks. Additional information Biodiveristy TORs.docx (16 KB)
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