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Specialist on Indigenous Peoples (Russia)


  • Organization: FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Location: Moscow
  • Grade: Consultancy - Consultant - Contractors Agreement
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Human Rights
  • Closing Date: 2022-12-08

FAO seeks gender, geographical and linguistic diversity in its staff and international consultants in order to best serve FAO Members in all regions.

  • FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background and culture
  • Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented Members and person with disabilities are encouraged to apply
  • Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct, and to uphold FAO's values
  • FAO, as a Specialized Agency of the United Nations, has a zero-tolerance policy for conduct that is incompatible with its status, objectives and mandate, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination  
  • All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks
  • All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality
  • FAO staff are subject to the authority of the Director-General, who may assign them to any of the activities or offices of the Organization.

Organizational Setting

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) contributes to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through FAO’s Strategic Framework by supporting the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agri-food systems, for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind.

The position is located at FAO’s Liaison Office with the Russian Federation (LOR) in Moscow.

FAO Liaison Office in Russia

The FAO Liaison Office with the Russian Federation (LOR) advises and assists in the development and implementation of FAO policies and programmes by facilitating communication and cooperation between FAO and the Government of the Russian Federation and the private sector, civil society and academia, as well as between FAO and international organizations based in the Russian Federation.

FAO Indigenous Peoples Unit

Within the Partnerships and UN Collaboration Division (PSU), the Indigenous Peoples Unit (PSUI) provides technical support on Indigenous Peoples and ensures the implementation of the FAO Policy on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples at FAO corporate level by liaising with regional and country focal points as well as with other technical divisions in FAO.

Indigenous Peoples are stewards of natural resources and the guardians of 80 percent of global biodiversity and nutritious native foods. (For criteria FAO abides by when considering Indigenous Peoples, please refer to: This conservation of biodiversity occurs in territories they manage through ancestral practices emanating from traditional knowledge transmitted orally from one generation to the next. Indigenous Peoples have a specific approach to biodiversity conservation where the health of the food system, local ecosystem and humans are all intertwined. The management of the natural resources follows a biocentric approach rooted in their cosmogony, beliefs and in the understanding that all living being are important and deserve consideration. Humans are not at the centre of the system, but rather are responsible for ensuring the maintenance of the balance between the different elements in the ecosystem. Indigenous storytelling and collective practices reinforce these beliefs and apply them in the territory.

This way, Indigenous Peoples and their food systems have prevailed for thousands of years until today, adapting to changes in the environment and developing new practices and techniques. Their beliefs, cosmogonies, value systems and principles constitute core elements of their cultural resiliency. Common values such as reciprocity, solidarity, co-responsibility and community are seen throughout Indigenous Peoples globally. These core elements and common values are expressed in the dynamism of their Indigenous Peoples’ food systems, resulting in resilient systems and strong communities. Because of this experience, Indigenous Peoples and their food and knowledge systems could be key to show the world about resilience and climate mitigation and adaptation.

Indigenous Peoples’ food systems can play a significant role in informing the transformation of food systems, making them more sustainable, climate resilient, nutritious and respectful of biodiversity. Indigenous Peoples are gatekeepers of a great cultural and biological diversity; they are key allies for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Indigenous Peoples’ traditional knowledge and customary systems guide their food system practices and have allowed them to ensure continuity of their existence and well-being, sometimes in face of major environmental changes. Indigenous peoples’ knowledge systems have proven to be dynamic, results-oriented, and site-specific to the people and environment. However, the speed at which Indigenous Peoples’ knowledge is being lost needs urgent actions to preserve and learn from it before it completely disappears.

Reporting Lines

The incumbent works under the overall guidance of the Director of the Partnerships and UN Collaboration Division (PSU) and of the Director of the Liaison Office with the Russian Federation (FAOLOR), and under the direct supervision of the Head of the FAO Indigenous Peoples Unit (PSUI) and the Liaison Officer (LOR), and in collaboration with the members of the Indigenous Peoples Unit (PSUI) the Liaison Office for Russian Federation (FAOLOR) and national/regional/local organizations of Indigenous Peoples in Russia. The incumbent operates independently and takes decisions on work priorities. Supervision received is focused on the quality of work outputs, in particular the meeting of timelines and the quality of advice given to clients.

The incumbent works closely with a wide range of colleagues in LOR, in particular the Liaison Officer, providing information, promoting effective and efficient delivery of assigned tasks.

Technical Focus

The Specialist will be responsible for supporting the work of the Liaison Office with Indigenous Peoples organizations in Russia.

Tasks and responsibilities

The incumbent performs the following functions:

• Develops a work plan to work with Indigenous Peoples in the Russian Federation, based on the FAO joint workplan on Indigenous Peoples with seven pillars and two priority areas, the UNPFII recommendations, the FAOLOR strategic plan, the FAO 4 Betters and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).
• Ensures the fulfillment of the Free, Prior and Informed Consent in all the activities and projects developed by the FAO Liaison Office in Russia.
• Provides technical advice and advocates for integrating Indigenous Peoples issues into the work of the FAO Liaison Office in Russia.
• Supports the FAO Liaison Office in Russia in the implementation of the FAO Policy on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples.
• Helps collect data and information and prepare background research on Indigenous Peoples’ Food Systems in the Russian Federation, consulting available secondary literature and associations of Indigenous Peoples.
• Identifies monitors and evaluates research and field activities for the profiling of Indigenous Peoples' food systems with Indigenous Peoples' organizations in Russia.
• Maintains and updates as necessary FAO’ network and contact list of Indigenous Peoples in the Russian Federation, with special attention to grassroots level organizations.
• Supports the preparation of a publication on Indigenous Peoples’ food systems of Russia and their contribution to food security and nutrition.
• Supports the organization of events and conferences involving Indigenous Peoples partners to share visions and knowledge on Indigenous Peoples' Food Systems.
• Contributes to writing agreements with Indigenous Peoples' organizations to conduct profiles and follows up on the implementation of the LOA (providing technical advice at all stages of the implementation, review and clear technical reports).
• Assists in establishing and coordinating a technical committee with Indigenous Peoples in Russia.
• Supports LOR’s work on GIAHS and Indigenous Peoples to liaise and follow up field activities on Indigenous Peoples´ food systems and food security.
• Identifies opportunities of new activities in the frame of the Office’s work on Indigenous Peoples' Food Systems, supports the development of work programmes and coordinates their implementation with PSUI.
• Acts as FAO’s Indigenous Peoples Unit focal point for Indigenous Peoples’ issues in the Russian Federation.
• Performs other related duties as required.


Minimum Requirements

• National or permanent resident of the Russian Federation.
• University degree (Advanced/Masters level is considered an asset) in Agriculture, Social or Political Sciences, Economics, Public Administration, International Relations or a related field relevant to the work of the Organization.
• Three years of relevant experience in cooperation, advocacy, partnerships, project and programme management, multistakeholder processes and/or Indigenous Peoples’ rights.
• Knowledge and previous experience of working with Indigenous Peoples would be an asset.
• Working knowledge of Russian and English.

FAO Core Competencies

• Results Focus
• Teamwork
• Communication
• Building effective relationship
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills

• Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions is desirable.
• Knowledge and previous experience of working with Indigenous Peoples would be an asset.
• Extent and relevance of experience in working with Indigenous Peoples, familiarity with Indigenous issues.
• Depth of knowledge of FAO’s programmes and priorities is considered an asset.

Please note that all candidates should adhere to FAO Values of Commitment to FAO, Respect for All and Integrity and Transparency.

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.