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Chief Technical Advisor – Ghana and Malawi National Adaptation Plan - Retainer

Home Based - May require travel (Home Based)

  • Organization: UNOPS - United Nations Office for Project Services
  • Location: Home Based - May require travel (Home Based)
  • Grade: IICA-2, International Individual Contractors Agreement - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Environment
    • Climate Change
    • Project and Programme Management
    • Documentation and Information Management
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2021-09-19

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Background Information - Job-specific

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 UNEP/Ecosystems Division works with international and national partners, providing technical assistance and advisory services for the implementation of environmental policy, and strengthening the environmental management capacity of developing countries and countries with economies in transition. The Government of Ghana, through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, has successfully obtained a grant of USD 2,950,634 from the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for a three-year project entitled “Enhancing multi-sector planning and capacity for effective adaptation in Ghana” to build capacity to advance the National Adaptation Planning (NAP) process in Ghana. Additionally, the Government of Malawi, through the Environmental Affairs Department (EAD), Ministry of Forestry and Natural Resources, has successfully obtained a grant of USD 2,849,018 from the GCF for a three-year project entitled “Advancing the NAP process: climate resilience for sustainable development in Malawi” to build capacity to advance National Adaptation Plan (NAP) process in Malawi. 

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) is the Delivery Partner for the above-mentioned projects, with the role of supporting and overseeing the project implementation.

Both projects are being implemented by a small project team headed by a National Coordinator, based at EPA and EAD respectively. The NAP projects will support multi-sectoral, medium- to long-term adaptation planning and budgeting and promote the integration of climate change adaptation aspects into development planning processes and policies. Systems for developing and sharing climate risk and vulnerability information will be reinforced, and sustainable financing mechanisms for climate change adaptation initiatives are set to be developed.

UNEP, on behalf of the EPA and the EAD, is seeking to recruit a part-time Chief Technical Advisor (CTA) to provide periodic inputs to support the NAP Project Coordinator in the successful implementation of the NAP Ghana project and the NAP Malawi project.  

Functional Responsibilities

Within the delegated authority and under the supervision of UNEP Head, Climate Change Adaptation Unit or his/her designated mandated representative(s) as well as the NAP project Coordinator within the Environmental Protection Agency and Environmental Affairs Department. Specifically, the CTA will:

Project Management:
  • Provide overall technical backstopping, operational guidance and support to the National Project teams to ensure that project objectives are being met and that activities are carried out within agreed deadline and under high technical standards.
  •  Assist the Project Coordinators in planning the implementation of project activities, and in any  adjustment to the projects Results Framework, Work Plans and Budgets that might be required and in line with corporate requirement and GCF rules.
  • Provide quality assurance and technical review of projects outputs such as technical reports, studies, assessments, training materials, and knowledge products.
  • Draft or review, as requested, ToRs for technical consultancies and sub-contracts, and assist in the selection and recruitment process.
  • Provide  technical guidance and supervisory function to the work carried out by national and international consultants hired by the projects.
  • Assist the Project Managers and coordinate the preparation of the six monthly GCF Interim Progress Reports (IPRs), other M&E reports and reviews required by UNEP, the GCF and Government departments.
  • Conduct technical supervision missions to Accra and Lilongwe to meet with project team, EPA/EAD and key NAP stakeholders to review progress and plan for NAP project inputs and activities to achieve deliverables and outputs in support of the Ghana and Malawi NAP process.

Adaptation Planning:

  • Provide lead technical support in guiding the Ghana and Malawi National Adaptation Planning processes in accordance with the UNFCCC’s Least Developed Expert Group (LEG) on adaptation released guidelines for National Adaptation Plans (2012) ,  Green Climate Fund (GCF)’s guidance on adaptation planning approaches as well as existing supplementary guidelines including UNEP Ecosystem based Adaptation (EbA) NAP guidelines with particular focus on ensuring that:
  • Climate science informs risk assessments and identification of adaptation options
  • Appraisal of adaptation options are based on economic, social and environmental cost and benefits to guide prioritization and trade-offs
  • Priority adaptation strategies and measures are integrated into national, sub-national plans, sectoral strategies, public budget processes, and national and sectoral monitoring and reporting systems.
  • Closely collaborate with and support the work of the national and international NAP project consultants to deliver quality outputs,
  • Oversight and technical inputs provided toward the specialist consolidating and developing the NAP document
  • Perform any other tasks within the context of the NAP project as may be requested by the Project Team, the Project Steering Committee, and the UNEP Task Manager
Ultimate result of services
  • A NAP Ghana Project successfully executed as per financing proposal to advance the Ghana NAP Process.
  • A Malawi NAP Project successfully executed as per financing proposal to advance the Malawi NAP Process.
  • Timely execution and reporting on project delivery for both Malawi and Ghana.
  •  Malawi and Ghana NAP processes executed in line with UNFCCC LEG NAP technical guidelines.
  • Malawi and Ghana NAP processes that increases climate financing for adaptation and increases integration of adaptation into sector policy, plans and budgets.                   
Deliverables: The CTA will be responsible for the following deliverables for each NAP project (Ghana and Malawi):
  • Annual project workplans and budgets and approval by the EPA /EAD and UNEP
  • Bi-annual summaries (2-3 pages) of observations and lessons learned to be utilized by EPA/EAD, the NAP program officer responsible for communications, UNEP, and other relevant stakeholders.
  • Six-monthly GCF Interim Progress Reports (IPR), drawing on inputs from the project team, submitted to the EPA/EAD and UNEP for onward submission to the GCF.
  • Written comments and technical inputs provided on key project deliverable prepared by project consultants,
  • If applicable: two mission reports per year detailing meetings, outcomes, status of project implementation and next steps


  • An advanced University degree (Master's Degree /Ph.D) in the area of disaster risk reduction such as Environmental planning or management, Natural Resources Management, Public Policy and Management, International Development, Adaptation Planning, Geography and Urban and Regional Planning, or any related fields of study is required.
  • Bachelor's Degree in the area of disaster risk reduction such as Environmental Planning or Management, Natural Resources Management, Public Policy and Management, International Development, Adaptation Planning, Geography and Urban and Regional Planning, or any related fields of study with additional two (2) years of relevant working experience may also be considered in lieu of an advanced University degree.


  • A minimum of 5 years’ work experience in a technical lead or planning position on development/climate/natural resources management programmes, preferably in a developing country context required
  • A minimum of 2 years’ international work experience in programmes required 
  • Skills in programme management, capacity building and stakeholder managed required - 2 years
  • Ability to effectively work in and coordinate with a large, multidisciplinary team of experts and consultants is desired.
  • Strong skills in project monitoring and evaluation is an added advantage 
  • Experience of working and collaborating with developing country governments is an added advantage 


  • Excellent oral and writing skills in both English required


Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.(for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)
Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.
Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

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
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
  • 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.

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: International Individual Contractor Agreement (IICA) Contract level: IICA 2
Contract duration: Home-based Retainer contract with biannual missions to Accra, Ghana/ annual missions to Malawi) - One year initially, renewable over the whole project duration of two (2 years) subject to satisfactory performance and funding availability'

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: 

Background Information - UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.

Kenya Multi-Country Office (KEMCO)

The Kenya Multi-Country Office (KEMCO) is based in Nairobi and is responsible for 15 countries in East and Southern Africa, with ongoing projects in Eritrea, Tanzania, Mozambique, Zambia, Kenya, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

UNOPS has worked in Kenya since 1995, where it manages a growing portfolio of engagements, providing project management, infrastructure, procurement, transactional, and financial management services. From renovations of elementary schools in Kenya to improving maternal and child health, KEMCO works to provide practical solutions to support sustainable growth and development in the region. UNOPS KEMCO helps partners achieve their project goals in sectors including: governance, education, health, the environment, grant management and rural development. UNOPS KEMCO has over twenty years of experience working in the region, including on large scale infrastructure projects. With a flexible and responsive presence throughout the region, UNOPS is able to scale up rapidly, through various mechanisms into high-risk areas which have proven to be beneficial to partners.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
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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