Sustainability and Engagement Regional Specialist

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Institute for Global Environmental Strategies


Terms of Reference

Title: Sustainability and Engagement Regional Specialist

Duty station: Bangkok, Thailand

Duration: 1 July 2024 to 30 June 2025

Sustainability and Engagement Regional Specialist – Supporting the Acceleration of Climate Action in the Asia Pacific Region

Background

Implementing countries’ NDCs and LT-LEDS constitutes the bulk of climate action, which will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and enhance resilience. At the twenty-first session of the Conference of Parties (COP) in 2015, in accordance with Article 4.9 of the Paris Agreement, Parties were asked to communicate an NDC every five years in accordance with decision 1/CP.21, and other relevant decisions of the CMA, as well as be informed by the outcomes of the Global Stocktake (GST).

In 2018, COP 24 launched the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action, outlining how the fashion stakeholders identified ways for the textile, clothing and manufacturing industry to move towards a holistic commitment to climate action.

Central to the Fashion Charter is the vision to achieve net-zero Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions in the sector by no later than 2050. As the third-largest manufacturing sector in the world, scaling climate action across the fashion value chain is key to aligning the industry with a 1.5ºC pathway.

The Fashion Charter complements existing environmental and sustainability-related initiatives in the industry through its clear focus on climate. Through collaborative efforts, information sharing, partnerships and shared principles and goals, it works to accelerate decarbonization efforts in the sector with its broad set of signatories and supporting organizations.

In this unique opportunity, the UNFCCC-IGES Regional Collaboration Centre for Asia and the Pacific, based in Bangkok, is seeking a Sustainability and Engagement Regional Specialist to support this work on climate action implementation in the region.

The UN Climate Change Regional Collaboration Centers (RCCs) support national climate action through capacity-building, technical assistance, and strategic networking – sourcing know-how and resources to help developing countries cope with climate change. Since the adoption of the Paris Climate Change Agreement in December 2015, the RCCs facilitate the preparation and implementation of countries’ Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and long-term low GHG emission development strategies (LT-LEDS), conduct capacity building activities on Article 6 and Carbon markets, and support countries on other workstreams in pursuit of accelerated climate action at the regional level.

The Communication and Engagement (C&E) division serves multiple cross-cutting objectives, including communicating authoritative, relevant and timely information to Parties, non-Party stakeholders and the public regarding the secretariat’s process and action on climate change, with emphasis on proactively building support among all stakeholders to facilitate climate action and increase ambition. It ensures that the outcomes of all processes and bodies drive the communications work and engagement activities of the secretariat.

Within the C&E division, the Engagement Unit is leading efforts to engage and catalyse climate action among new stakeholders from the private sector, civil society, subnational authorities and the public at large. This includes collaboration initiatives within sectors that are significant to climate action but which are not yet sufficiently activated to align their activities with the 1.5 degree C objective of the Paris Agreement. This includes Fashion, Sports, Tourism, Food etc.

Purpose of the Position The Sustainability and Engagement regional expert will be based at RCC Asia Pacific in Bangkok and will coordinate the regional activities of the Engagement unit to facilitate the elaboration and implementation of the shared vision and set of workstreams for the charter. The role will focus on establishing and sustaining good working relationships between the different stakeholders in the region, with a goal of promoting the Charter’s primary mission to drive the fashion industry to net-zero GHG emissions no later than 2050.

The work will be conducted in accordance with the Climate Action Engagement Unit workplan 2024, RCC workplan 2024 and its M&E Framework and in close collaboration with the Mitigation Division and other partners in the region.

Articulation – Identify, design, deliver, including through match-making activities, support to the Fashion Charter stakeholders in the region.

Engagement – Engage with diverse stakeholders especially policymakers and sectoral experts in countries, development organizations, businesses, private sectors and other non-party stakeholders in driving the implementation of climate action.

Communication – Convert strategic objectives into clear short-term operating objectives that can be contextually delivered in the region. Gather information/key insights on commitments and pledges regarding implementing climate action in the region.

**Monitoring—**Monitor the progress in delivering the strategic objectives of the Climate Action Engagement unit’s work plan in the region.

Outputs The below list includes the deliverables to be met by the Sustainability and Engagement Regional Specialist. Specific deliverables and dates will be discussed with the incumbent upon commencement of the assignment and a workplan for the year will be drawn up which may include inter alia :

Liaison and Support

  • Designing a “support package” for Asia and Pacific region with initial priority for the following countries: Bangladesh, India, China, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia.
  • Under the supervision of the RCC Team lead and the Sectoral Engagement lead, function as the entry point of the Engagement Unit in countries, liaising with Fashion Charter signatories in the region, RCC Partner organizations, and implementing partners as appropriate.
  • Drive work in the Policy Engagement work of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action to support the working group’s key functions: to connect and inform and to convene policy-related conversations with policymakers, industry, and financial institutions.
  • Identify and engage with implementing partners with presence and interest in the region countries and coordinate closely with them to generate alliances around RCC activities including, but not restricted to, (i) mobilizing resources for implementation, (ii) supporting knowledge and learning activities.

Engagement and knowledge management

  • Developing a regional engagement strategy and plan to advocate meeting the net-zero commitments among non-Party stakeholders;
  • Maintaining a database and network of relevant regional and national stakeholders relevant to climate action engagement;
  • Keeping abreast of the various regional convenings on sustainability and climate action of businesses and other non-party stakeholders.

Coordination and Collaboration

  • Developing and implementing an action plan to integrate and leverage synergies with other relevant initiatives, projects, and events from both Parties and non-Party stakeholders.
  • Launching joint initiatives, including coordination with other plans and programs, particularly with the UN system.
  • Organizing workshops and consultations in the Asia and Pacific region on climate action engagement.
  • Participate in and support key meetings and prepare analysis of their results, as needed.

Location and Duration

The assignment is for a period of one year with the possibility of an extension. The expert is expected to be based in Bangkok at the start of the contract. Travel in the region and beyond will be required as deemed necessary to deliver the outputs.

Supervision

The expert will work under the direct supervision of the RCC Asia Pacific Regional Lead including for performance and administrative issues, and under the substantive guidance of the Team Lead of the Climate Action Engagement Uniti of the UN Climate Change secretariat in Bonn, Germany. The expert will be under United Nations employment terms and conditions; and hence he/she will not be an employee of the UN Climate Change secretariat. The expert will receive the required ICT, office, and administrative support from the RCC Asia Pacific.

Requirements

Education: An advanced university degree (Master’s) in development studies, economics, energy, engineering, business administration, international relations, environmental studies, or a related discipline. A combination of a university degree plus substantial professional experience in the field may be accepted in lieu of an advanced degree in the relevant discipline.

Experience:

  • At least five (5) years of relevant professional experience in climate change /environment, development cooperation, relationship management at an institutional level, stakeholder engagement, sustainability, and/or capacity building.
  • Knowledge and experience of climate change, energy systems and policies are essential.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, especially with technical experts and policymakers.
  • Experience in an entrepreneurial environment and familiarity with process-based working methods (e.g. product development processes)
  • Familiar with framework-based standards (e.g. UN SDG, ISO 26000, Global Reporting, ISO 14001 & 14009) and essential sustainability topics (e.g. Science Based Targets, Planetary Boundaries)

Language: Fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Fluency or a good knowledge of other languages is an asset.

How to apply

Interested candidates who wish to undertake this work should submit the following to Ms. Ariel Yu ([email protected]) at RCC AP by copying Ms. Julie Amoroso-Garbin ([email protected]).

Please indicate “Sustainability and Engagement Specialist” in your email subject:

  • P11 or CVs of the expert/s to be engaged for the assignment, if possible highlighting only relevant experience/expertise;
  • A cover letter, including the motivation for applying for the post.

Only candidates under serious consideration will be invited for a technical assessment and interview via teleconference. Qualified women candidates are especially encouraged to apply.

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