FAO Azerbaijan Partnership and Liaison Office, in close cooperation with the government and its in-line Ministries/Agencies, contributes to the sustainable agri-food systems, and supports the government with addressing issues food security, agriculture and rural development, natural resource management in the country. FAO’s technical assistance, provided mainly through projects, includes institution building, development of knowledge and competencies, and exchange of experience among FAO member countries.
Under the direct supervision of the AFAOR, the technical supervision of the GEF-FAO Project Management team.
The national Conservation Planning Specialist will provide professional and technical support in the development of a landscape-scale Spatial Conservation Plan for Azerbaijan.
Tasks and responsibilities
• Provide ongoing logistical, technical and professional support to the overall process of developing the Spatial Conservation Plan.
• Compile an overview of the current enabling legislative, regulatory and policy framework for the development and implementation of a landscape-scale Spatial Conservation Plan.
• In liaison with the National GIS Specialist, profile the current state of knowledge on the terrestrial, aquatic and marine biodiversity of Azerbaijan (including descriptions of ecosystems, biomes, vegetation types, plant and animal species, habitats and species of conservation concern, etc.).
• In liaison with the National GIS Specialist, profile the current state of knowledge on the primary causes of loss of biodiversity in Azerbaijan (including descriptions of land use pressures, climate change, pollution, over-abstraction of fresh water, over-fishing, etc.).
• In liaison with the National GIS Specialist, profile the current state of land use (including in the marine environment) in Azerbaijan.
• In liaison with the National GIS Specialist, profile the current state of the national network of SPNAs.
• In liaison with the National GIS Specialist, identify and profile the status of other areas that are located outside the SPNA network and are under some form of protection or conservation by the state or other landowners.
• In liaison with the International Conservation Planning Expert and the GIS Specialist, identify and profile the marine, aquatic and terrestrial Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs) in Azerbaijan, using the IUCN Global Standard for the Identification of KBAs.
• In liaison with the International Conservation Planning Expert and the GIS Specialist, consultatively identify and describe a set of ‘conservation landscapes’ that can maintain or restore ecological connectivity at a large scale (including at the transboundary scale) and ‘bridging landscapes’ that can act as corridors for species with large ranges (as described in the Ecoregional Conservation Plan (ECP) for the Caucasus 2020)
• Provide guidance to the GIS Specialist in the development of a consolidated landscape-scale spatial framework (or ‘ecological network’) that could guide the prioritised expansion of the network of protected areas and other conservation areas across the marine, aquatic and terrestrial environments of Azerbaijan.
• Make explicit recommendations on any reforms that may be required to improve the enabling legislative and institutional framework for expanding the current network of protected areas and other conservation areas to achieve biodiversity conservation outcomes at the landscape-scale.
• Implement focused training and capacity building workshops to help strengthen the individual capacities of the MENR staff who would be responsible for the implementation of the Spatial Conservation Plan.
CANDIDATES WILL BE ASSESSED AGAINST THE FOLLOWING
• Postgraduate degree in environment or natural resource planning and management, or equivalent.
• At least 7 years’ experience in the biodiversity conservation sector in Azerbaijan, of which at least 2 years is in the field of landscape-scale conservation planning or management.
• Working knowledge of English.
• National of Azerbaijan or resident of the country with a valid work permit.
FAO Core Competencies
• Results Focus
• Building Effective Relationships
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement
Technical and Functional Skills
• Experience in providing professional support to state, state-owned enterprise, private, funding, public benefit, or non-government organizations in protected area system planning, ecoregional planning, biodiversity sectoral planning, conservation strategy development, or similar.
• Experience in participating in, or leading, multi-disciplinary teams in biodiversity conservation initiatives.
• Proficiency in English and Azerbaijani is required.
• Previous work on similar international donor-funded initiatives would be considered an advantage.