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Programme Officer - Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning

Vacancy #:   6734
Unit:   Ecosystem Programme
Organisation:   International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
Location:   Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation, Malaga, Spain
Reporting to:   Programme Manager - Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning
Work percentage:   100%
Grade:   P1
Expected start date:   01 March 2024
Type of contract:   Indefinite
Closing date:   18 February 2024
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) was founded in 1948 and brings together over 1,2400 members (States, government agencies, NGOs and affiliates) and some more than 15,000 scientists and experts from over 160 countries in a unique worldwide partnership. Its mission is to influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable. IUCN has approximately 1,000 staff, most of whom are located in its regional and country offices, and at its Headquarters in Gland, Switzerland. IUCN is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from qualified women and men.

The IUCN Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation (IUCN Med) was established in 20021 in Málaga, Spain, bridging gaps between science, policy, management and action in order to conserve nature and accelerate the transition towards sustainable development in the Mediterranean. IUCN Med is responsible for implementing the North Africa and Mediterranean Programmes of IUCN, which aim to address biodiversity loss and climate change impacts. It is structured in six strategic lines, among which the Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning strategic line (ER&SP). IUCN Med operates in a matrix structure,; therefore the strategic line interacts with other teams within IUCN Med and across other teams in HQ and within EUCANA hub (Europe, Central Asia and North Africa Hub).

The ER&SP strategic line aims to safeguard and enhance ecosystem multi-functionality and integrity by promoting biodiversity conservation, integrating into spatial planning, changing practices and influencing decision-making. The strategic line covers primarily terrestrial and coastal ecosystems, with special areas of focus includeing protected areas, forests and urban areas, and is responsible for:

Area based conservation, including governance, planning and management of Protected and Conserved Areas, OECMs;

Mainstreaming of Nature-based Solutions, in particular ecosystem restoration approaches, in terrestrial and coastal ecosystems.

Informing sectoral policies and practices in urban and spatial planning, tourism, and forestry, among others;
Under the supervision of the Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning Manager, the Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning Programme Officer will support the implementation of the strategic line projects and initiatives, being responsible for the following:

- Manage the InterregEURO MED NaTour4ClimateChange project, which aimes in applying Nature-based Solutions as part of Climate Action plans in coastal tourism destinations. IUCN Med is responsible for the coordination of Work Package 3 on piloting Nature-based Solutions, and participating in other WP of the project. This is a major role of the Ecosystems Programme Officer and amounts to around 60-80% of his/her time.

- Manage the Blue Tourism Initiative project, funded by FFEM, a global project aimed at improving the governance of the Blue Tourism sector and improving its impacts in the Caribbean, Western Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean. IUCN Med is responsible for the coordination of the activities in the Mediterranean basin, including the management of three pilot actions, as well as participating in other activities of the project. This is a major role of the Ecosystems Programme Officer and amounts to around 20-40% of his/her time.

- Project management and technical support for IUCN Med in other projects and initiatives within the scope of the strategic line. This is a secondary role of the Ecosystems Programme Officer and amounts to around 10-30% of his/her time dedication.

- Conducting the above technical responsibilities in full collaboration and cooperation with the other IUCN-Med strategic lines, IUCN Mediterranean Members, IUCN Commission experts’ groups, in particular, the World Commission of Protected Areas (WCPA) and the Commission on Ecosystem Management (CEM).


In pursuing the above objectives, the Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning Programme Officer is responsible for supporting implementation, monitoring performance, and ensuring efficiency, effectiveness and quality outputs and will undertake the following duties:

- Contribute to the implementation and efficient technical and financial management of the above-mentioned projects as well as any other new associated initiative that might arise.

- Develop and administer project work plans, budgets, internal agreements, contracts and progress reports as required by collaborating partners, steering committees and donors, and be accountable for portfolio-related expenditures in accordance with IUCN procurement procedures.

- In collaboration with the IUCN-Med senior staff, support the fundraising effort from national and international donors to ensure the sustainability of the Ecosystem Programme portfolio

- Support the development of performance indicators to assess the success of the programme component in meeting its objectives and results.

- Assist the Programme Manager in developing and maintaining local, national, regional and global working relationships with key partners and donors.

- Identify opportunities to mainstream biodiversity and NbS in policy and practices, capitalising on project results.

The projects should be managed in a way that will ensure the sustainability of the Ecosystem Resilience and Spatial Planning strategic line, and contribute to the overall IUCN Mediterranean and North-Africa Programme, as well as IUCN goals at the global level.
  • Education

Postgraduate University degree in environmental science, engineering, economics or policy, or other relevant disciplines related to natural resources management and governance.

• Experience & Technical Skills

At least 5 years of experience in a similar role, preferably in an international context;

Competent understanding of natural resource management, ecosystem restoration, climate adaptation and Nature-based Solutions.

Demonstrated experience in managing international projects, ideally from EU funding programmes, including the management of consultants and sub-grantees;

Proven track record in successful fundraising, proposal development, and grant management;

Analytical and communications skills in the context of projects, programmes and policy influencing;

Knowledge of global and Mediterranean environmental and sustainability issues, ideally on terrestrial and coastal ecosystems, including the tourism sector;

Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English. Knowledge of French and Spanish, and other Mediterranean languages will be valued.

Experience in designing and delivering capacity-building for a wide of targeted stakeholders, including community members, practitioners and policy-makers;

Knowledge of GIS, biodiversity indicators and standards, biodiversity finance, natural capital protocol, ecosystem services valuation or other tools and approaches will be valued;

• Other Skills

Team player, with ability to work collaboratively in a multicultural environment;

Strong relationship-building skills / demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships with donors, partners, and stakeholders;

Ability to work in a fast-paced and changing environment, adapting to changing priorities;

Openness to learning and incorporating feedback.
The minimum gross annual salary for this position is EUR 40'480. While this is an indicative amount effective as of the current date, changes may occur as per IUCN's compensation practices without prior notice. The same applies to other organisations hosted by IUCN.

Applicants are requested to apply online through the HR Management System, by opening the vacancy announcement and pressing the "Apply" button.

Applicants will be asked to create an account and submit their profile information. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date. The vacancy closes at midnight, Swiss time (GMT+1 / GMT+2 during Daylight Saving Time, DST). Please note that only selected applicants will be personally contacted for interviews.

Other job opportunities are published in the IUCN website: https://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

About IUCN

IUCN is a membership Union uniquely composed of both government and civil society organisations. It provides public, private and non-governmental organisations with the knowledge and tools that enable human progress, economic development and nature conservation to take place together.

Created in 1948, IUCN is now the world’s largest and most diverse environmental network, harnessing the knowledge, resources and reach of more than 1,400 Member organisations and some 15,000 experts. It is a leading provider of conservation data, assessments and analysis. Its broad membership enables IUCN to fill the role of incubator and trusted repository of best practices, tools and international standards.

IUCN provides a neutral space in which diverse stakeholders including governments, NGOs, scientists, businesses, local communities, indigenous peoples organisations and others can work together to forge and implement solutions to environmental challenges and achieve sustainable development.

Working with many partners and supporters, IUCN implements a large and diverse portfolio of conservation projects worldwide. Combining the latest science with the traditional knowledge of local communities, these projects work to reverse habitat loss, restore ecosystems and improve people’s well-being.