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Director Melanesia

Port Vila (Vanuatu)



The Pacific Community (SPC) invites applications for the position of Director Melanesia. The position is located in Port Vila, Vanuatu.

The Pacific Community is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, proudly supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 26 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our organisation works across more than 25 sectors. We are renowned for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The context –The Pacific Community Strategic Plan 2016-2020 includes a strategic objective to strengthen engagement and collaboration with members and partners. The intention is to improve SPC’s understanding of members’ priorities, values, cultures and context, to ensure meaningful engagement and impact. The expected result is strong engagement by members in SPC’s programmes and closer collaboration between SPC and its partners, which enhances the relevance and effectiveness of SPC’s work.

Role – Reporting to the Deputy Director-General in Suva, the Director Melanesia will provide leadership on, and management of SPC’s presence In Melanesia. The position will include the following responsibilities:

  • Country analysis – Provide regular country updates to other SPC offices about the political context, risks and realities, and provide briefings to staff prior to travel.
  • Regular country dialogue and engagement – Develop contacts in the executive and administrative arms of governments and other agencies, and with development partners and sector stakeholders.
  • Country programming – In collaboration with Strategy, Performance & Learning (SPL) and with divisions, assist the country to define and advance its priorities; assist divisions with programme design; help to coordinate SPC projects at country level, including assessing the risks for projects and programmes.
  • Resource mobilisation – Identify opportunities for SPC to partner with other agencies and organisations through ongoing dialogue with key stakeholders, especially for bi-lateral or sub-regional funding opportunities.
  • Assistance to divisions – Manage in-country activities, including assisting divisions to arrange meetings and engagements with key stakeholders; provide finance assistance and country updates; advise on logistics for training and workshops.
  • Monitoring and evaluating SPC work in the country – Assess the impact of projects and apply lessons learned in the design of new projects. Help to share key lessons with member governments at the local level, and increase partnerships with member states to enhance SPC’s service delivery and outcomes at country level.
  • Staff management and leadership support – Advise on coordination of financial, travel and other arrangements, and on security, health and culture.
  • Communication and visibility – Coordinate and oversee events, newsletters and exhibitions, and manage media relations.

Key selection criteria

  1. Qualifications
  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in business, public policy or development.
  1. Technical expertise
  • At least ten years’ experience in programme or development management, with a track record in strategic thinking and policy analysis.
  • Familiarity with donor agencies and their requirements.
  • Extensive leadership and management skills, including experience in financial management.
  • Proven track record in resource mobilisation.
  • Knowledge of monitoring and evaluation tools and systems.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with ability to effectively represent SPC at external meetings and conferences.
  • Effective networking and coordination skills.
  • Excellent advocate, communicator and negotiator.
  • Advanced written and verbal communication skills.
  1. Essential skills
  • Expertise in strategic operational planning and management.
  • Excellent communication and diplomatic skills and ability to successfully engage, influence, and develop working relationships with key internal and external stakeholders across a diverse range of backgrounds. 
  1. Language skills
  • High level of proficiency in English, with a working knowledge of French being an advantage.
  • Proficiency in one or more Pacific languages will also be an advantage.
  1. Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness
  • Good interpersonal skills and a team player with the ability to network and work effectively in a multicultural setting.
  • Cultural sensitivity and a demonstrated understanding of developing country environments.
  • Knowledge of Pacific Island countries and territories will be an advantage.

Salary, terms and conditions

Remuneration – The Director Melanesia is a Band 14 position within SPC’s 2016 salary scale, with a starting salary range of SDR (special drawing rights) 4,464–5,580 per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 13,124–16,405 (USD 5,644–7,055; EUR 6,205–7,756). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration being given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be based on annual performance reviews.

Contract duration – 3 years

Application procedure

Applicants must apply online using SPC’ Recruitment Management System at: 

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

  • an updated resume containing the contact details of three professional referees
  • a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
  • responses to all screening questions (last step when lodging your application online)

Please ensure your documents are in either Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: SPC - Pacific Community
  • Location: Port Vila (Vanuatu)
  • Grade: Mid/Senior
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Management, Administration and Finance
  • Closing Date: 2016-10-26

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