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Temporary Communications Officer

Vacancy #:   128
Unit:   Ramsar Convention Secretariat
Organization:   The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar)
Location:   Headquarters, Gland, Switzerland
Reporting to:   Head of Communications - Convention on Wetlands
Work percentage:   100%
Grade:   P1
Expected start date:   01 October 2013
Type of contract:   Fixed-term (5 months)
Closing date:   09 October 2009
The Convention on Wetlands, signed in Ramsar, Iran, in 1971, is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. The Ramsar Convention is independent of the United Nations system of environmental treaties and reports only to its own Contracting Parties, or Member States, but the Secretariat operations are administered by IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature.


While the Convention on Wetlands is fully recognized by the international community as an intergovernmental agreement, its secretariat is under the special circumstance of being administered by IUCN in Gland (near Geneva), Switzerland. However, the Ramsar Secretariat is under the authority of the Standing Committee of the Convention and ultimately of its Conference of the Parties.

Legally, Ramsar Secretariat staff (currently comprising 21 employees) is IUCN employees, and their contracts are governed by the IUCN Global Human Resources Policy, Conditions of Service for Switzerland, and Swiss labour law. IUCN does not have the status of an intergovernmental organization under a host country agreement in Switzerland and IUCN and Ramsar staff do not have diplomatic immunity or international civil servant (UN) status.

This temporary assignment is to replace the incumbent during her maternity leave and as such is open only to local candidates and/or valid permit holders.

The temporary Communications Officer will be offered a fixed-term contract, subject to a one-month probation period.

The gross annual salary (100%) is CHF 93,000 and is subject to deductions for social security contributions and second-pillar pension and tax. Annual leave (100%): 200 hours per year. For an 80% working week (32 hours) for 20 weeks, salary and leave will be calculated on a pro rata basis. Leave must be taken during the contract period.

1. Web

• Prepare web announcements
• Revise and update web content when appropriate
• Oversee all content prepared for the Web site and key list-servers by other members of the Secretariat
• Write statements/messages for international days, etc.
• Liaise with Documentation Officer about the preparation and posting of the Convention’s official documents

2. Other tasks

• Check Ramsar mailbox, respond to some requests, and route specific requests to appropriate staff members
• Respond to subscription requests to the Ramsar Forum
• Animate the Ramsar Forum and the web news as appropriate
• Oversee the Biosphere Connections partnership
  • - University degree or equivalent academic qualifications in areas such as communications, journalism, or related fields.

• - Proven web site management experience, with at least two years of active use of a CMS (Drupal preferred, or similar)

• - Proven experience of writing for the public.

• - English mother tongue (or excellent English language writing skills).

• - Experience in an international work environment would be an advantage.

• - Working knowledge of either French or Spanish is essential; working knowledge of both will be an advantage.

• - A knowledge of, and interest in environmental issues would be an advantage.

• - Swiss work permit – B or C
The gross annual salary for this position is in the range from CHF 86'330 to CHF 107'913, subject to deductions for social security contributions and second-pillar pension, and before tax.

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: http://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

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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 1,300 Member organisations and some 10,000 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.

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