United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Technical Specialist (Disaster Risk Reduction)

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Job Description

One of the poorest and most environmentally degraded regions in the world, the West African Sahel region is also considered one of the world’s most vulnerable regions to climate change, with temperature increases projected to be 1.5 times higher than the rest of the world. Climate vulnerability is compounded by the region’s high dependence on rain-fed agriculture and its natural resources to support food security and livelihoods, high population growth, rapid and unplanned urbanization, environmental degradation, deepening poverty levels, governance challenges and low socio-economic development, and chronic humanitarian crises due to recurrent drought, flooding, food insecurity, epidemics and violent conflict. These factors increase the fragility of communities while recurrent disasters have been causing a continuous deterioration of livelihoods, exposing people to deeper poverty and food insecurity and undermining their resilience to future shocks and stresses, with varying impacts on different social groups such as women, children, the elderly, people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups. The cumulative impacts of these events have been eroding hard-earned development gains, while undermining recovery from the various crises as well as the resilience to future crises. The development challenge presented above highlights the unique opportunity for supporting the Western Sahel through African Union (AU), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and its member states to take integrated and holistic approaches to disaster and climate risk-informed development that contributes to building resilience of the whole region. UNDP has sought to strengthen the policy and institutional capacities of Western Sahel countries in understanding the multi-dimensional risks that the region face and devising mechanisms that anticipate and respond to these challenges. In this regard, UNDP Regional Service Centre of Africa developed a regional project Strengthening capacities for disaster risk reduction and adaptation for Resilience in the Sahel Region: fostering risk-informed solutions for sustainable development, which is anchored in the Regional Programme. The main objective of this regional initiative is that regional institutions and national governments have institutionalized and domesticated risk-informed development planning, programming and investment for resilience building. With funding from the Swedish Government (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency – SIDA), the Sahel Resilience Project proposes to strengthen the Sahel regional capacity in fostering risk-informed development through a multi-country approach. The change expected to be achieved through this Project is that Sahel regional institutions and national governments have institutionalized and domesticated risk-informed development planning, programming and investment for gender-responsive resilience building. The project focuses on seven Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal, Mauritania, Chad, Niger and Nigeria). The Regional Project will be implemented in partnership with the African Union, Regional Economic Commissions and Institutions (ECOWAS, Lake Chad Basin Commission, CILLS/AGRHYMET), UN Women and academia/research-based institutions (Peri-Peri U). The Project Team will be housed within the Humanitarian Division of the ECOWAS Directorate of Humanitarian and Social Affairs in Abuja. The Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Specialist will work under the guidance of the Project Manager and in close collaboration with the ECOWAS Humanitarian Division. The DRR Specialist will report directly to the Project Manager. Duties and Responsibilities The DRR Specialist will be responsible for providing key technical support for the effective and efficient achievement of the five Project Outputs. Specifically, the DRR Specialist will be responsible for the following four key result areas: 1) Capacity Development and Technical Advisory Support:
  • Support the delivery of project outcomes and outputs dealing with the development of technical systems, tools and processes for enhanced risk-informed development and recovery in the Sahel region;

  • Provide technical support and advice to various counterparts, including member states of the region, UN agencies and key national and regional institutions for the effective institutionalization of project outcome and outputs at country and regional levels;

  • Provide high quality technical and advisory inputs in data collection, analysis and reporting systems for monitoring the Sendai Framework;

  • Provide technical support to ECOWAS and project supported countries on policy, institutional frameworks and budgetary processes for risk-informed development;

  • Deliver technical support to ECOWAS and project supported countries on post-disaster recovery processes, resilient urban development, and in any other area related to disaster risk reduction (DRR);

  • Provide technical support in the development and adoption of integrated tools for conflict sensitive and gender responsive disaster and climate risk assessment;

  • Review of technical reports and assessments undertaken by the project responsible parties as part of project delivery;

  • Technical support, coordination and facilitation of trainings undertaken by UNDP and project responsible parties;

  • Promote ECOWAS ownership, institutionalization and sustainability of DRR initiatives supported.

2) Policy Support:
  • Advocate, promote awareness and understanding of disaster risk reduction and recovery as well as of the links and mutually supportive goals of sustainable development;

  • In collaboration with disaster management agencies and other stakeholders in the Sahel region, support the development of national and regional DRR policy and regulatory frameworks in alignment with the Sendai Framework;

  • Lead the development and adoption of recovery policy and institutional frameworks as part of preparedness for post-disaster recovery;

  • Support ECOWAS and Africa Union Commission in policy advocacy efforts on disaster risk financing.

3) Project implementation:
  • Support the identification of clear and achievable physical and financial targets, a realistic plan to reach them and in establishing and maintaining a monitoring and reporting system;

  • Provide support in the planning, budgeting, implementing and monitoring of relevant project activities, tracking the use of financial resources in accordance with UNDP rules and regulation;

  • Prepare monitoring and progress reports, work plans, budget and expenditure statements for review by the Project Manager;

  • Assist with coordination of operations, resources, and administrative support for project implementation;

  • Provide assistance in all project meetings and annual reviews/reports and support the Project Board by organizing agendas and recording decisions of meetings;

  • Ensure project communication is in accordance with the visibility rules and communication standards of SIDA and UNDP.

4) Knowledge sharing and partnership:
  • Support knowledge management related to DRR and Sendai framework implementation across ECOWAS and the Sahel region, and ensure its reflection in global knowledge management platforms and communities of practice;

  • Support the conduct of studies/research and the capturing of project results in knowledge management products and communicating widely in ECOWAS and Sahel region and at global levels;

  • Support the creation of a learning environment and systematic information and knowledge sharing within the project team and with partners;

  • Facilitate south-south learning and exchange among Sahel countries, within the African Continent and beyond;

  • Assist the project team in the delivery of quality knowledge management products, systems, services, etc. supported under the project and its effective integration and compatibility with other practice areas;

  • Support capacity and knowledge building of project counterparts;

  • Represent UNDP and the project in any relevant global, regional or national forums, meetings, workshops, etc., as delegated by the Project Manager;

  • Perform any additional task as requested by the Project Manager.

Competencies Core: Innovation:
  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work.

Level 4: Adept with complex concepts and challenges convention purposefully. Leadership:
  • Ability to persuade others to follow.

Level 4: Generates commitment, excitement and excellence in others. People Management:
  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction.

Level 4: Models independent thinking and action. Communication:
  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform.

Level 4: Synthesizes information to communicate independent analysis. Delivery:
  • Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement.

Level 4: Meets goals and quality criteria for delivery of products or services. Technical/Functional: DRR and Resilience-Building:
  • Excellent knowledge of Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Building status in Africa and ability to apply in strategic and practical situations.

Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise. Partnership Management:
  • Effectively networks with partners seizing opportunities to build strategic alliance relevant to Project’s agenda.

Level 4: Apply & Adapt: Contributes skills and knowledge with demonstrated ability to advance innovation and continuous improvement, in professional area of expertise. Client Orientation:
  • Anticipate client needs, works toward creating an enabling environment for a smooth relationship between the clients and service provider.

Level 4: Apply & Adapt: Contributes skills and knowledge with demonstrated ability to advance innovation and continuous improvement, in professional area of expertise. Resource Planning and Management:
  • Building and planning efficient workflows, and at improving overall efficiency of Project implementation and performance.

Level 3: Implement & Manage: Exercises skills and knowledge independently, demonstrating ability to manage self and team responsibilities, in area of work. Self-Management / Emotional Intelligence:
  • Managing and responding effectively to stress, situations of ambiguity or crisis. Managing relationships with others to achieve mutual benefits. Building an emotionally intelligent team.

Level 3: Implement & Manage: Exercises skills and knowledge independently, demonstrating ability to manage self and team responsibilities, in area of work. Knowledge Management:
  • Ability to efficiently handle and share information and knowledge.

Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise. Required Skills and Experience Education:
  • Master's degree in management, social policy, public policy, economics, environment, development studies or a related area.

Experience:
  • A minimum of 5 years of progressive and relevant experience in the field of disaster risk reduction, resilience building, climate change, or in very closely related fields or relevant fields in West Africa.

  • Experience in providing regional policy advice, regional technical assistance, and capacity development to support to multi-stakeholder institutions in establishing and coordinating multi-partner interventions.

  • Experience working on the domestication of the Sendai Framework, including Sendai monitoring tools at country and regional levels.

  • Experience working within UN agencies and intergovernmental organizations and field experience in West Africa is preferred.

  • Experience of UN programming modalities, rules and regulations, is preferred.

  • Extensive experience in project development and management.

  • Coordination experience working with government, development partners, and international partners would be an asset.

  • Excellent knowledge of and extensive resilience building experience in West Africa, including conflict-sensitivity, human rights, rights of children, youth and women, is preferred.

Language Requirements:
  • Proficiency in both English and French. Working knowledge of other UN language is desirable.

Others:
  • Qualified female candidates are encouraged to apply.

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