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Chemicals and Waste Panel Member

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-3, International Individual Contractors Agreement - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Environment
    • Biology and Chemistry
    • Waste Management
  • Closing Date: 2022-02-01

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Background Information - Job-specific

This Vacancy Announcement is being published by the Water & Energy Cluster, UNOPS on behalf of the GEF STAP

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel, hosted by UNEP (STAP), is seeking a Chemicals and Waste Panel Member with outstanding academic and technical credentials; a passion for tackling global environmental and sustainable development challenges; expertise in chemicals and waste management; and the ability to work in an interdisciplinary, integrated manner to bridge scientific, technological, economic, social, and policy issues. 
STAP ( is a corporate body of the Global Environmental Facility (GEF). It provides independent scientific and technical advice to the GEF on its policies, strategies, programs, and projects. The Panel comprises a Chairperson, and six Panel Members for climate mitigation, climate adaptation, biodiversity, land degradation, international waters, and chemicals and waste respectively. Panel Members are expected to be able to work effectively across the GEF’s focal areas, and not just in their area of special expertise.

The roles and responsibilities of the Chairperson, Panel Members and STAP Secretariat are set out in STAP’s Terms of Reference (March 2012). Each Panel Member is responsible for the STAP advice provided for their assigned focal areas and cross-cutting issues, under the direction of the Chairperson.  Panel Members will deliver their advice showing evidence that they are calling upon the best available expertise. Panel Members will engage, as appropriate, qualified experts drawn from scientific and technical networks, and will lead and facilitate task forces, working groups and meetings, in order to enable the provision of the best available advice to the GEF.
This consultancy is managed by the STAP Secretariat hosted by UNEP’s Science Division. The consultant will report to the Secretary of STAP administratively, and work under the leadership of the STAP Chair on all substantive issues. The specific duties and responsibilities of this position is outlined  in the functional responsibilities 

Time Commitment 

Panel Members are expected to provide a minimum contribution of 65 days per 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. 

STAP Secretariat 

The Panel is supported by a small, dedicated Secretariat. 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.

Background information: UNEP

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) 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. Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action. This consultancy is managed by the STAP Secretariat hosted by UNEP’s Science Division. The Science Division is responsible for analyzing the state of the global environment, providing early warning information, and assessing global and regional environmental trends to catalyze and promote international cooperation and action on the environment. 

Background information: GEF

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) ( was established 30 years ago on the eve of the Rio Earth Summit to tackle our planet’s most pressing environmental problems. They have 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 sectoral responsibilities are often mutually supportive, which enables the synergies between them to be harnessed in a more holistic, systems approach.

Functional Responsibilities

The main objectives of individual Panel Members will be their ability to provide intellectual leadership, to innovate and to formulate at the highest-level advice that challenges conventional thinking and to bring intellectual rigor to their advice on strategic, thematic, and operational issues of the GEF.  The Panel Members will deliver their individual roles and responsibilities pro-actively, and also as a team to advise the GEF regarding scientific and technical issues across its entire portfolio.  They will also direct STAP advice towards the analysis of contemporary environmental change and the formulation of strategic options for GEF Council consideration.  Panel Members will also be responsible for contributing to the development of STAP’s annual Work Plan and assisting in coordinating the STAP Secretariat’s support to the Work Plan. The STAP Work Plan is a rolling document, which is adjusted periodically to reflect changing priorities and new tasks. Panel Members will be asked to deliver on specific tasks in the Work Plan, based on the main components below. 1. Ensure best available relevant scientific and technical advice through demonstrated leadership and initiative.  
2. Mobilize scientific and technical networks and partnerships as needed. 
3. Develop and implement STAP’s work plan, including drafting analytical papers, reports, and making presentations, and attending and convening meetings of experts. 
4. Screen Agency submissions for full-sized projects and program framework documents in biannual GEF work programs for technical and scientific quality. 
5. Actively participate in two STAP meetings a year, and monthly STAP teleconferences. 
6. Contribute to the Chair’s report and presentations to twice-yearly GEF Council meetings, and STAP’s quadrennial report to the GEF Assembly.
7. Contribute to GEF corporate activities, as requested, in support of the Panel and GEF, including attending GEF Council meetings, responding to ad hoc requests for advice, and participating in workshops and meetings related to deliverables.
8. Prepare quarterly indicative work plans based on the annual STAP Work Plan, and submit quarterly timesheets.

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;
  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the consultancy, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another UN Language is desirable. 
  • Demonstrated experience in the facilitation of learning and knowledge management, desirable.
  • Demonstrated analytical, research, writing and communication skills are required.


  • 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: International ICA Retainer  Contract level: IICA-3 (ICS-11) 
Duration: The initial mandate is for a period of two years and may be extended for a further two years. 
Remuneration: quarterly, based on actual days as reflected in an activity report.

Additional Considerations

  • Travel will be organized by UNOPS or substantive office as per UN official travel rules (ST/AI/2013/3).
    The screening of your application will be conducted based on the information in your profile. Before applying, we strongly suggest that you review your UNOPS Jobs profile ( to ensure completeness, especially the education and experience sections.
    To avoid any potential conflicts of interest, members who hold positions in Government, non-governmental organizations, or who are working in, or have any contractual arrangement, as consultants or otherwise, with an Implementing or Executing Agency or the GEF Secretariat, shall disclose this information to the Executive Director of UNEP.
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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