Lead Energy Specialist

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Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? The World Bank Group is one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries; a unique global partnership of five institutions dedicated to ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity. With 189 member countries and more than 120 offices worldwide, we work with public and private sector partners, investing in groundbreaking projects and using data, research, and technology to develop solutions to the most urgent global challenges.

Western and Central Africa (AFW) Region

  • We need the best and brightest talent focused on Sub-Saharan African countries in order to harness the potential and innovation happening across the continent. Africa is a continent on the move, with a young population and a growing market of nearly 1.2bn people. We are committed to making the Africa regional teams into leading innovation hubs.
  • Yet, these vast opportunities are tempered by persistent gaps in education, health, and skills, which have Africa only reaching forty percent of its estimated potential. Moreover, conflict, food insecurity, population growth, and the disruptive forces of climate change threaten to curtail or even reverse the progress that has been made over the past decades.
  • In West and Central Africa, the World Bank is a leading partner with a growing portfolio of 349 projects totaling more than $60 billion in areas such as agriculture, trade and transport, energy, education, health, water and sanitation- all to support job creation, gender equality, poverty reduction, and better lives. Across the continent, the World Bank’s program has nearly doubled over the last 10 years. By 2030, about 87% of the world’s extreme poor are projected to live in Sub-Saharan Africa, so this is where our mission to end extreme poverty and to promote shared prosperity will be achieved.
  • Are you ready to make an impact? We are looking for dedicated professionals to join our innovative and diverse team to improve people’s lives and help countries build back better after COVID.

UNIT CONTEXT

The World Bank Group (WBG) supports the Sustainable Energy for All initiative and is committed to working towards accomplishing the initiative’s three goals by 2030: i) universal access to electricity and clean cooking fuels; ii) doubling the share of the world’s energy supplied by renewable sources from 18 percent to 36 percent, and iii) doubling the rate of improvement in energy efficiency.

  • The Infrastructure Practice Group is charged with developing sustainable solutions to help close infrastructure gaps in developing and emerging economies. As part of the Infrastructure Practice Group, the Energy & Extractives (EEX) Global Practice (GP) focuses on providing affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy to meet the needs of fast-growing economies, ensure universal access to modern energy services for people in client countries, strengthen policy and institutional frameworks to promote transparent and equitable growth of the extractives sectors for public benefit. There is a strong emphasis on private sector resource mobilization and catalyzing financing from commercial and other sources of development and climate finance.
  • The Africa energy sector grouping consists of four units across two regions of Eastern and Southern Africa (AFE) and Western and Central Africa (AFW), each managed by a Practice Manager. The units together total over 120 staff of which 58% (over 70) are based outside the US, and more than half of the operational and advisory activities are managed /led by field-based staff.  The Bank is engaged in all aspects of the electricity sector – generation, transmission, distribution, rural electrification and off-grid.
  • The Africa Energy Program in Western and Central Africa currently comprises about 41 projects with a value of over US$9 billion, covering reforms (sector and corporate governance, energy security and the environment, regional energy trade, public-private partnerships, energy efficiency, etc.) and investment support in power generation, power and gas transmission and distribution, regional connectivity, rural energy services, renewable energy development, low-carbon and climate friendly initiatives. The Program uses a variety of instruments, including investment lending, guarantees for public private partnerships, and development policy lending. In addition, the Bank manages a strong knowledge agenda to inform the policy dialogue in the sector. 
  • The AFW Energy Program is now at a turning point since the Bank has embraced the objective to provide electricity access to additional 250 million people by 2030. As a result, all Units are gearing up efforts and new lending is expected to reach approximately US$2 billion per annum. 
  • The IAWE2 (West Africa) unit seeks a Lead Energy Specialist to be based in Niamey, Niger, to contribute to the Unit’s strategic, advisory, and operational work on the energy program in the Mali Country Management Unit (CMU), which covers Niger, Burkina Faso, Mali, and Chad. He/she will coordinate the overall energy policy dialogue in the Mali CMU (including the coordination of the Sahel Alliance Energy Engagement) while contributing to leading strategic dialogue and business development. The Mali CMU covers the three countries of the Alliance des Etats du Sahel (AES), which are seeking to develop new partnerships and are looking for innovative ways to address their energy challenges. He/she will lead complex operations, advisory services and analytics (ASA) and technical assistance (TA) activities and contribute to the goals of sustainable energy for all, transition towards renewable energy, and improved performance of the sector.  Operations would likely include investment project financing (IPF), program for results (PforR), private-public partnership approaches, and development policy lending (DPF).
  • In Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad, the World Bank energy program aims to boost electricity access, develop regional power trade, make the power sector financially sustainable, and strengthen institutions such as power utilities, regulators, rural electrification agencies. In Mali, the program now comprises five national and regional investment operations, in Burkina Faso, the program consists of three national and regional operations, in Niger, the program now comprises seven national and regional investment operations, and TA/ASA spanning the entire value chain in the power sector. In Chad, the current program comprises two investment projects and technical assistance. Across all these countries, the energy investment programs may be complemented by development policy operations.
  • In coordination with the Senior Energy Specialists working in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad, the Lead Energy Specialist will: i) lead policy dialogue on energy sector issues with the Government; ii) support the implementation to the ongoing investment projects and address any bottlenecks; iii) deliver technical assistance program, supported by technical experts; iv) prepare new projects, including development policy financing; and v) coordinate with other Global Practices of the Bank and with other donors. 

Duties & Accountabilities

  • Lead and guide the overall energy engagement across the Mali CMU countries and the Alliance Sahel energy engagement, in coordination with the energy practice manager based in HQ.  As needed, the Lead Energy Specialist will lead complex operations, monitor portfolio performance, and ensure that lending operations and ASA activities are well coordinated and undertaken in a timely manner.

Specific duties and responsibilities shall include:

  • Lead business development and resulting operations which are part of the Bank’s regional energy program.
  • Lead operational work (policy dialogue, lending and supervision, ASA), including being the Task Team Leader (TTL) for individual projects while also maintaining sufficient knowledge of individual activities not managed by him/her to be able to identify and help resolve project-specific or systemic issues.
  • Contribute to developing strategic partnerships with organizations and individuals so that world-class resources and private capital may be deployed to client countries.
  • Provide guidance and mentoring to junior TTLs.
  • Advise colleagues and clients on global best practices in the energy sector and keep abreast of country sector issues as well as contribute to global energy knowledge by introducing success and lessons learned in the AFR energy sector that may have relevance to other clients.
  • Lead the coordination with development partners at the country level and contribute to the coordination and discussion at the regional level.
  • Support the Practice Manager in shaping the Bank’s energy strategy, developing business, and policy dialogue.

Selection Criteria

  • PhD or Master’s degree level in relevant field/discipline and substantial professional experience (typically the successful candidate will have a minimum of 12 years of experience in positions of increasing complexity and responsibility). Experience in two regions, or in case of one region, a corporate assignment or similar experience that builds global expertise and client facing skills.
  • Demonstrated capacity to be an innovative knowledge disseminator/generator, and collaborative community builder/convenor
  • Demonstrated skills in integrating multi-sectoral inputs into a package of solutions to achieve development results.
  • In-depth knowledge of WBG financing operations as well as analytical and advisory services, including work programming, budgeting, task management, and strong familiarity with WBG instruments.
  • Proven experience in designing and managing/supporting IPF/DPF/ PforR and guarantee operations as well as innovative ASA which has impacted policy dialogues and reform paths.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead discussions at the highest policy levels in the area of energy.
  • Ability to communicate with senior authorities on complex energy policy issues, including the integration of sectoral solutions into the broader the economic framework.
  • Demonstrated client orientation by identifying and evaluating emerging opportunities aligned with WBG strategy, and challenging others to remove barriers and to deliver beyond client expectations.
  • Demonstrated achievement of results – by building a culture that consistently delivers high-quality products and services to clients and by engaging others in implementing strategies that have long-term impact.
  • Demonstrated leadership in teamwork and inclusion to support collaboration and working across boundaries, and ensuring diverse talent and capability is mobilized across Global Practices.
  • Proven ability to work across practice and disciplinary boundaries as well as with multiple stakeholders to build collaborative alliances for results.
  • Demonstrated capacity to understand the political economy and local context, tailoring policy dialogue and operational response to meet client expectations.
  • Excellent inter-personal skills, ability to constructively solve conflict situations and proven ability to lead from behind.
  • Superior communication skills with proven experience in dealing with conflict situations, the media, external constituencies, and expert groups.
  • Demonstrated oral and written communication skills in English and French.
  • Prior experience in fragile, conflict and violence (FCV) countries would be a plus.

To ensure that candidates for promotion to GH have the desirable combination of multi-regional, corporate, and field/FCV experience for appointment to level GH, candidates must meet the following selection criteria:

  • Work in at least two world regions or a combination of region and corporate assignments is required.
  • Field experience is preferred. Promotion directly into a field-based GH position may be considered. Relevant pre-Bank field experience in an international development institution will be considered.

Source: https://worldbankgroup.csod.com/ats/careersite/JobDetails.aspx?id=28023&site=1

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