Conservation International protects nature for the benefit of humanity. Through science, policy, fieldwork, and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, biodiversity, and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples, and local communities to help people and nature thrive together.
POSITION SUMMARY – This position is based in Nairobi-Kenya or Capetown-South Africa
Across Africa, Conservation International (CI) works to strengthen the conservation and sustainable management of natural resources to alleviate poverty, address climate change and reduce biodiversity loss. CI is supporting countries in Africa that have contributed the least to climate change but are among the most affected by its impacts. CI has been implementing an increasing number of large climate change projects that leverage nature benefits to help people adapt to the impacts of climate change while reducing its causes (e.g. GCF projects in Madagascar, Botswana, Kenya, Herding for Health Program in 7 African countries). Because of the increasing impacts of climate change and vulnerabilities in the region, there is an urgent need to share and scale up successful approaches to build a climate-resilient and low-carbon development in African countries.
The Africa Regional Climate Change Fellow will lead efforts of the Africa Field Division to build a coherent climate change strategy, supporting its implementation and sharing successes. The Fellow will i) lead the climate change strategy work in Africa, including goals setting, tracking, and coordination of progress; ii) build capacities of CI staff in Africa to implement the climate change strategy; and iii) develop internal positions for emerging priorities and innovative approaches related to climate change adaptation in Africa.
The Fellowship program hosts conservation Fellows who work to create dynamic and unconventional approaches to address barriers to sustainability and contribute to a shift in how nature is valued and protected. These fellowships provide unparalleled opportunities for intensive focus and achievement at the intersection of climate, conservation, business and technology.
As a member of CI’s Fellows Program, the selected candidate will have opportunities to expand the breadth of their professional skills and experience through collaboration with a cohort of exceptional conservation scholars, practitioners, and policymakers, working throughout the institution, with opportunities for co-learning across new areas of study and practice, and personal development.
- Lead CI Africa Field Division’s climate strategy, target settings, and the coordination of implementation and amplification efforts in alignment with the institutional climate priorities.
- Act as the central focal point and expert for climate change-related matters in Africa, connecting CI Country Programs (Liberia, Kenya, Madagascar, Botswana, and South Africa), Africa regional climate work and global divisions climate work (e.g., Center for NCS, Policy Center, Moore Center for Science, Conservation Finance, Center for Communities and Conservation)
- Work closely with country offices and regional programs to assist in the implementation of Africa climate change priorities by developing implementation plans, identifying gaps and capacity needs, and providing expert advice to country programs.
- Support climate change adaptation in Africa by mainstreaming climate change adaptation and integrating climate risks in projects and other strategies (e.g. identifying climate risks and developing adaptation plans) and exploring innovative approaches relevant for African countries (e.g. role of nature in losses and damages due to climate change, private sector’s role in providing climate resilience services, options to accelerate implementation of national and sub-national adaptation plans).
- Track Africa Field Division impacts and contributions to climate change adaptation and mitigation goals for accurate evaluation and reporting together with M&E teams and develop knowledge products to share successes and lessons learned.
- Actively participate in Africa Field Division meetings.
- Attend coordination meetings and liaise closely with CI’s Climate Star Management Team, Climate Strategy Team and partners.
- Harness and manage external government relations regarding nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation and mitigation.
- Participate in all Fellowship cohort activities, including quarterly check-ins with the Fellowship Director.
- Provide written updates as needed for donor check-ins and an end-of-year report.
- Other climate-related tasks in Africa, as relevant.
People and Resource Management Responsibilities
- Does not have direct supervisory authority but provides feedback on team member and/or contract/partner staff and support personnel performance.
- Act as a technical or subject matter expert to peers and other staff.
- Manage project budget but decisions that bind or commit CI are approved by immediate supervisor.
- Manage public or private funds, monitor results, and recommend follow-up action. Review for compliance with donor agreements.
- Frequent travel to the project site and/or other office locations.
- Ability to work extended work hours to meet project deadlines.
- Fellows will serve 1-2-year contracts, with an annual review to assess progress. Upon placement, each Fellow will work with their Manager to create a work plan outlining Fellowship goals, activities, outputs, and a timeframe to track and measure progress and impact. Each Fellow will produce 2-3 tangible outputs relating to their specific area of expertise – proposals, publications, guidelines, etc. Fellows will have quarterly check-ins with the Fellowship Director, provide written updates as needed for donor check-ins and formal reporting requirements, and submit an end-of-year report.
- Guidance on flexible work arrangements will be shared during the interview process.
- Bachelor’s Degree and 7 years or more years of related experience.
- Expertise in climate adaptation, climate change mitigation, nature restoration, avoided deforestation, loss, and damages related to climate change.
- Direct project management experience, preferably in the conservation, NGO, advocacy or related arena.
- Excellent technical and analytical skills in the climate change space, specifically in nature-based solutions for adaptation and mitigation.
- Excellent organization and time management skills.
- Team player and able to work effectively with diverse works groups in a multicultural environment.
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
- A record of success in influencing and partnering with key stakeholders and raising funds.
- Ability to work well under pressure, multitask, set priorities, and deliver quality results.
- Comfortable working in a fast-paced environment with changing priorities and under minimal supervision.
- Master’s degree in conservation science, climate, policy, economics, or development-related field.
- Proven track record of successful work in managing climate change projects or programmes in Africa.
- Experience with climate change policy and planning at different levels (local, regional, global UNFCCC).
- Proven knowledge of identifying and managing climate change-related risks.
- Experience in defining and building monitoring and evaluation frameworks related to climate change.
- Fluency in a second language would be beneficial (e.g., French, Portuguese).
To apply for this position please submit a resume and cover letter.
See all Conservation International Career Opportunities HERE
Application Deadline: September 18, 2023
Conservation International is an equal opportunity, affirmative action, and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility-committed employer. We are proud to have a diverse, global workforce where employment decisions are based on qualifications, experience, position requirements, business needs, market conditions, merit, and other legitimate nondiscriminatory factors.