United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

National Project Officer (Tonle Sap Biosphere Reserve Project)

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

Job Description



Parent Sector : Natural Sciences Sector (SC)

Duty Station: Phnom Penh

Job Family: Natural Sciences

Type of contract : Non Staff

Level :

Duration of contract : 1 year

Recruitment open to : External candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 21-Jun-2020

UNESCO Core Values: Commitment to the Organization, Integrity, Respect for Diversity, Professionalism


As the only United Nations specialized agency with a specific mandate for science, UNESCO works to advance and promote science in the interests of peace, sustainable development and human livelihoods, in close collaboration with its Member States and a wide variety of partners. Recognizing the urgent need to address cross-cutting global issues such as Climate Change and natural disaster reduction, UNESCO has acted as a catalyst for many initiatives with far-reaching implications for sustainable human security and well-being.

Launched in 1971, UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB) is an Intergovernmental Scientific Programme that aims to establish a scientific basis for the improvement of relationships between people and their environments. Biosphere Reserves (BR) are the main tool to implement the MAB Programme, which are areas comprising terrestrial, marine and coastal ecosystems. Each reserve promotes solutions reconciling the conservation of Biodiversity with its sustainable use. There are 669 biosphere reserves in 120 countries, including 20 transboundary sites.

The Tonle Sap Biosphere Reserve (TSBR) project, implemented by the UNESCO Phnom Penh Office, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, and relevant stakeholders and partners, aims to provide a robust coordination architecture for the TSBR, to preserve the lake’s resources and sustainably improve livelihoods of local communities, by strengthening functions of the TSBR, which include conservation, livelihoods development, and knowledge-exchange, as outlined globally through UNESCO’s MAB Programme. The project is being implemented as part of the “Complementary Support to the Cambodia Programme for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth in the Fisheries Sector – Capture Component (CAPFISH-Capture program)”, in partnership with FAO, and with overall support from the European Union.


Under the overall authority of the UNESCO Representative to Cambodia, and direct supervision of Assistant Project Officer (Science), and in close consultation with the TSBR project team, the incumbent shall assist with the day-to-day coordination and management of the Tonle Sap Biosphere Reserve (TSBR) project implemented in Cambodia.

Specifically, the incumbent will perform the following duties:

  1. Coordinate and contribute to the design and implementation of the TSBR project activities in Cambodia in consultation with relevant Ministries and local partners, including:

    1. Preparation of correspondence and follow-up with the relevant line Ministries and other partners;

    2. Identifying appropriate local implementing partners to assist in the execution of project activities;

    3. Monitoring and backstopping activities, as required.

  1. Provide technical assistance, including Mapping of stakeholders, research and data-Analysis, designing and developing assessments and studies, and preparing policy-briefs and reports, in relation to the project, including environment and biodiversity conservation, ecosystem services, biosphere reserve management, in the Cambodia context;

3. Assist in organizing and conducting meetings, workshops and trainings, and field-level missions, including logistical, administrative and programmatic support, by developing necessary material and actively participating, for the implementation of activities related to the project.

4. Contribute to the development of Terms of Reference, and identifying and facilitating missions of international and national consultants, experts and service providers, and ensure close supervision for quality delivery of products and services to implement the programme activities;

5. Facilitate communication between international experts and national counterparts, and pro-actively explore and strengthen partnerships in relation to project activities;

6. Prepare project progress reports and communication products in English and Khmer language in consultation with the project team;

7. Attend and report back on project-related meetings and activities arranged both by Government counterparts, NGOs and other partners as required;

8. Carry out other work or responsibilities as assigned by the Country Representative and in coordination with the project team.


Proficiency in both spoken and written English and Khmer language is required.

COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)Accountability (C)Communication (C)Innovation (C)Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)Planning and organizing (C)Results focus (C)Teamwork (C)-For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS


Advanced university degree (Masters or equivalent and above) in environment and biodiversity conservation, environmental policy, natural Resource Management, environmental sciences, ecosystem services, or related fields.

Work Experience

At least 2 years professional experience in the field of environmental conservation, biodiversity, natural resource management, ecosystem services, and project management.


Work Experience

3-4 years of relevant professional experience in the field of environmental conservation, biodiversity, natural resource management, ecosystem services, and project management is strongly preferred.

Demonstrated experience working within the UN System or international organizations.

Knowledge of UNESCO/UN rules and procedures, and UNESCO’s Natural Sciences programme.

Contract Modality

Note on Contract Duration: The contract will have a 3-month probationary period, and issued initially for a period of 6 months, with possibility of extension subject to satisfactory performance, and availability of funds.

Type of Contract: Service Contract

Level of Contract: SB-4 level salary scales in Cambodia (subject to experience and educational qualifications)

Recruitment Open for: Only nationals of Cambodia can apply for this post


Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application and provide complete and accurate information. To apply, please visit the UNESCO careers website. No modifications can be made to the application submitted.

The evaluation of candidates is based on the criteria in the vacancy notice, and may include tests and/or assessments, as well as a competency-based interview.

UNESCO uses communication technologies such as video or teleconference, e-mail correspondence, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates.

Please note that only selected candidates will be further contacted and candidates in the final selection step will be subject to reference checks based on the information provided.


UNESCO applies a zero tolerance policy against all forms of harassment.

UNESCO is committed to achieve and sustain gender parity among its staff members in all categories and at all grades. Furthermore, UNESCO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities, as well as nationals from non-and under-represented Member States (last update here) are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the highest level of confidentiality. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts.

UNESCO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process.

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