GEF STAP Panel Member – Climate Change Adaptation

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    negotiable / YEAR
  • Job type:
  • Posted:
    1 month ago
  • Category:
    Climate and Disaster Resilience, Environment and Natural Resources
  • Deadline:



This Vacancy Announcement is being published by UNOPS Water, Environment and Climate (WEC) on behalf of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) to the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The selection process and further communication will be made directly STAP.

Background information: WEC

The Water, Environment and Climate (WEC) portfolio under the UNOPS Austria Multi-Country Office has built strong partnerships and has effectively been managing a portfolio of 490 million USD over the last 15 years to support key initiatives with fund management, project implementation and administrative support.

WEC effectively operationalizes partners’ agendas with global approaches, as well as regional and country specific activities focused on climate action, protection and conservation of the environment. Partners profit from WEC’s ability to operationalize and/or scale up their important substantive agendas, including in support of key multilateral environmental and climate agreements, such as the Paris Agreement, the Cartagena Convention as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.

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 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 to 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 way.

STAP Secretariat

The Panel is supported by a small, dedicated Secretariat, which provides substantive and operational assistance in the delivery of Panel Members’ responsibilities.

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. UNEP’s Science Division, which hosts the STAP Secretariat, 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. UNEP is an equal opportunity employer.

Background information: job-specific

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) to the Global Environment Facility (GEF) is seeking a new Panel Member to take the lead on Climate Change Adaptation. This position requires an understanding of the GEF-8 climate adaptation strategy and of country interventions to prepare for rising seas, higher temperatures, worsening droughts, intensifying floods, and other impacts that can affect water resources, crop yields, and the health of people and the ecosystems. Adaptation measures are urgently needed to safeguard development gains and to address the needs of developing countries which are especially exposed to climate change impacts.

Candidates should have outstanding academic and technical credentials, a passion for tackling global environmental and sustainable development challenges and should demonstrate the ability to work in a transdisciplinary manner that integrates environmental science, social science, and policy to address complex socio-ecological problems.

STAP ( was established by UNEP and is hosted by UNEP’s Early Warning and Assessment Division on behalf of the GEF. STAP reports directly to the GEF Council and provides independent scientific and technical advice on the GEF’s policies, strategies, programs, and projects. STAP comprises a Chair and six Panel Members for climate mitigation, climate adaptation, biodiversity, land degradation, international waters, and chemicals and waste. The roles and responsibilities of the Chair, Panel Members and STAP Secretariat are set out in STAP’s Terms of Reference (March 2012).

Panel Members provide intellectual leadership in their particular area of expertise, and they are expected to work effectively across the GEF’s focal areas, including advising on cross-cutting issues and integrated programming outside their area of expertise.



Panel Members provide intellectual leadership, innovate and formulate advice at the highest-level that may challenge conventional thinking, and bring scientific rigor on strategic, thematic, and operational issues of the GEF. They undertake their individual activities and responsibilities proactively, and as part of a team, to advise the GEF about scientific and technical issues across its entire portfolio. They steer STAP advice towards analyses of contemporary environmental challenges and formulation of strategic options for consideration by the GEF Council. Panel Members are responsible for contributing to the development and implementation of STAP’s annual Work Plan, which is adjusted periodically to reflect changing priorities and new tasks. Below is a summary of Panel Members’ responsibilities:

1. Ensure STAP provides the best available relevant scientific and technical advice through demonstrated leadership and initiative.

2. Mobilize scientific and technical networks and partnerships.

3. Develop and implement STAP’s Work Plan, including drafting analytical papers and reports, making presentations, convening and participating in expert meetings.

4. Screen all full-sized projects (above $2 million) and program framework documents, for technical and scientific soundness, in biannual GEF and Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF)/ Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) work programs.

5. Actively participate in two STAP meetings per 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 the GEF’s corporate activities, including responding to ad hoc requests for advice and participating in workshops and meetings.

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:


  1. PhD in a relevant field, e.g., environmental science, environmental policy, systems analysis, environmental law, political science, institutional analysis, or sustainability studies is required.
  2. A minimum of 12 years of experience in research in the field of climate change adaptation, along with field experience in developing countries is required.
  3. Peer-reviewed publication record on issues of relevance to the GEF is required.
  4. Demonstrated ability to work in an integrated, interdisciplinary manner across the GEF’s focal areas, with strong experience in systems thinking is required.
  5. Capability of bridging scientific, technological, economic, social and policy issues in the public and private sectors is required.
  6. Active engagement with scientific networks and partnerships on environmentally sustainable development in developed and developing countries is required.
  7. Exceptional analytical, research, writing, and communication skills are required.
  8. Experience working in developing countries, including applied research, design and implementation of programs involving MEAs, ideally in coordination with multilateral and bilateral agencies, is required.
  9. Familiarity with, and understanding of, multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) is desirable.
  10. Demonstrated experience in facilitating learning and knowledge management is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this consultancy, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another UN language is desirable.


  1. Demonstrated expertise and leadership in global environmental issues and sustainable development, supported by a peer-reviewed publication record is required.
  2. Demonstrated ability to initiate and manage scientific research with multiple stakeholders in different geographical settings is required.
  3. Knowledge of the scientific processes required for the implementation of MEAs in developing countries is desirable.

In addition, the following will also be considered:

  1. Enthusiasm and commitment to dealing with global environmental issues, sustainable development, and transformational change.
  2. Ability to collaborate effectively and remotely in a multicultural team and share responsibilities.
  3. Ability and willingness to travel globally.
  4. A good sense of humor.



Contract type: Individual Contractor Agreement

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: Rate determined as per United Nations policy on consultants and individual contractors. Quarterly payments based on actual days reported and approved.

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, in addition to monthly teleconferences. As well, Panel Members may undertake two or three trips per year, for example, workshops or meetings related to the Work Plan, and MEA expert body meetings. Moreover, Panel Members may also be invited to join meetings with colleagues from the GEF partnerships and others, as needed. Most STAP business is transacted online and by teleconference.

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


Applications by candidates from developing countries, particularly qualified women candidates, are strongly encouraged.

Travel will be organized by UNEP 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.