Technical Officer (International Treaty Liaison)

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Location
    Rome, Italy
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
    Apr-30-2018
  • Posted
    Apr 11

Position description

The International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) is a legally binding instrument with the objective to facilitate conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits derived from their use. The Governing Body of the ITPGRFA is composed of all Contracting Parties to the ITPGRFA. The Secretariat of the Governing Body prepares, supports, and follows up on the Governing Body's deliberations and negotiations. The Secretariat enjoys functional autonomy in matters within the mandate of the ITPGRFA and decisions taken by the Governing Body, and be technically accountable to the Governing Body. The Secretariat is hosted by the ADG's office of the Climate, Biodiversity, Land and Water Department (CBD). The post is located in the Secretariat of the ITPGRFA (CBDT).

Reporting Lines

The Treaty Liaison Officer reports to the Secretary of the ITPGRFA.

Technical Focus

Provide legal and policy analysis and inputs on the implementation of the Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-sharing of the ITPGRFA, especially on access to and use of genomic data and operations of bodies that have concluded agreements under Article XV of the International Treaty, in the context of international cooperation.

Key Results

Comprehensive technical and policy expertise to support the planning, development and implementation of Departmental/Division programmes, projects, products and services in accordance with Departmental/Division objectives and FAO Strategic Objectives.

Key Functions

  • Provides technical leadership assistance on the development, the implementation and evaluation of assigned programmes/projects; assists in the review of relevant documents and reports; identifies priorities, liaises with relevant parties; identifies follow-up actions;
  • Assists in the coordination of programmes and reviews the assessments of issues and trends for the implementation of programmes and projects and the preparation of impact evaluation or equivalent studies;
  • Assists/supervises preparation of various written outputs, e.g. background papers, analysis, substantial sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications;
  • Contributes to consultative and other meetings, conferences, to include proposing agenda topics, identifying participants, preparation of documents and presentations;
  • Participate in activities; structures training workshops, seminars, makes presentations on assigned topics/activities;
  • Leads field missions, including provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties;
  • Provides advice to develop policies and strategies as well as national protocols and guide lines for projects with specific domains related to FAO's work.

Specific Functions

  • Reviews information provided by governments, international organizations, natural and legal persons concerning the implementation of the ITPGRFA and its Standard Material Transfer Agreement obligations;
  • Analyses access and use of genomics data on technical, policy and legal issues;
  • Develops and promotes cooperation and engage in policy discussions with other relevant intergovernmental processes, such as the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), on the issue of access and use of genomic data;
  • Provides inputs to documentation for the Scientific Advisory Committee on Article 17 of the ITPGRFA (SAC), in particular in relation to the policy and legal components of the Vision and the Programme of Work on the Global Information System on the PGRFA, and exchange knowledge, best practices and lessons learnt with relevant international institutions;
  • Promotes implementing activities of the Technology Co-development and Transfer Platform, in particular in relation to the Global Information System and the Programme of Work on Sustainable Use;
  • Provides technical advice on the implementation of the agreements concluded under Article XV of the International Treaty;
  • Promotes cooperation with and provides advice on the operations relevant International Agricultural Research Centres, in particular the CGIAR;
  • Provides technical inputs for the strategic development of window 3 of the Benefit-Sharing Fund (Co-development and transfer of technologies), and develop synergies between the Technology Platform and relevant FAO and CGIAR initiatives;
  • Provides inputs to documentation regarding the Compliance issues as well as backstop the Compliance Committee;
  • Reviews information of relevance to the Third Party Beneficiary functions that may be provided by natural and legal persons;
  • Prepares documentation on all the work tracks described above, backstop the relevant meetings, plan for intersessional activities and the Sessions of the Governing Body;
  • Performs other related duties as required.

Minimum Requirements

  • Advanced university degree in natural science, international law, international development or a related field;
  • Seven years of relevant experience in agro-biodiversity or plant genetic resources, and implementation of access and benefit-sharing mechanism at international level;
  • Working knowledge of English, French or Spanish and limited knowledge of one of the other two or Arabic, Chinese, or Russian.

Competencies

  • Results Focus;
  • Teamwork;
  • Communication;
  • Building Effective Relationships;
  • Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement.

Technical/Functional Skills

  • Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions is desirable;
  • Extent and relevance of knowledge and experience related to agro-biodiversity and plant genetic resources, and their importance to sustainable agriculture and food security;
  • Extent and relevance of experience in engaging in policy discussion regarding access and benefit-sharing of plant genetic resources at international level or substantial knowledge about it;
  • Proven analytical ability to formulate technical legal and policy documents on agro-biodiversity issues.

Application instructions

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