Programme Specialist

United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF)
  • Location
    Thimphu, Bhutan
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Oct 08

Position description

UNCDF is seeking to hire a Technical/Programme Specialist to contribute to the strategic direction of LoCAL programme activities in Bhutan from programme design through implementation and ensure the effective delivery of LoCAL Bhutan and its knowledge management and reporting activities.

This position will be based in Thimpu, Bhutan and will report directly to the LoCAL Programme Manager,P-5 based in Kampala, Uganda, in coordination with the Regional Technical Advisor (RTA) of UNCDF’s Local Development Finance Practice, based in Nepal. The incumbent is expected to work closely with the UNCDF programme associate (G6) in Bhutan and the LoCAL programme colleagues located in the region. The incumbent will further ensure regular consultation and coordination for programmatic synergies with UNDP and the wider UN system in Bhutan in the areas of environment and climate change, local government finance, governance and decentralization, and related innovative finance.

Duties and Responsibilities

Within the delegated authority and under the supervision of the LoCAL Programme Manager or his/her designated mandated representative(s), and in coordination with the UNCDF RTA, based in Nepal, UNDP and UNRCO, the Programme Specialist, LoCALwill be responsible for the following:

Provision of technical assistance and capacity building support (35%)

  • Ensure adequate provision of technical, policy and regulatory assistance and advice to national and subnational governments in the field of public financial management, good governance, decentralization, adaptation planning/programming, climate finance, climate change issues and environmental sustainability, climate change mainstreaming into planning, budgeting, investment plans, implementation, and monitoring of adaptation measures (performance assessments);
  • Monitor and make recommendations to revise or improve as appropriate the key elements of the LoCAL mechanism (e.g. minimum conditions, performance measures, triggers for fund transfers, investment menu, roles of partners and stakeholders, financial circuit used for the LoCAL grant transfer);
  • Support the strengthening of capacities, institutions and systems with a focus on local level adaptation mainstreaming and the strengthening of public financial management systems for climate change (e.g. by facilitating and undertaking capacity needs assessments; the development of capacity building programmes; the organization of training workshops; and on-the-job learning);
  • Promote LoCAL as standard mechanism to channel climate finance and implement climate change responses at the subnational level (e.g. through revisions to local development planning and budgeting manuals and guidelines; performance assessment manuals for PBCRGs to inform/be integrated in the national inter-governmental fiscal transfer systems/performance-based grants system as applicable; creation of budget codes; integration of climate change in tendering, procurement and delivery processes, monitoring and reporting practices);
  • Strengthen the quality of the monitoring and evaluation and reporting of LoCAL Bhutan in line with the ‘Assessing Climate Change Adaptation Framework’ (e.g. preparation and monitoring of the annual work plan, organization and participation in M&E field missions, proposing corrective measures, contribution to the preparation of annual reports);Ensure adequate support to local government and local communities in target LoCAL areas in ensuring a participatory and gender-responsive approach throughout the LoCAL planning, budgeting, implementation and monitoring processes.
  • Contribute to the provision of technical assistance for LoCAL in Bhutan (e.g. writing terms of reference, recruitment and management of national consultants);
  • Support the Royal Government of Bhutan in the organization and regular functionning of the LoCAL-Bhutan steering committee;
  • Any other related tasks as may be required or assigned by the supervisor.

Policy outreach, partnership and resource mobilization (35%)

  • Represent LoCAL in the country;
  • Work closely with the designated government units including but not limited to GNHC, DGL, BTFEC on LoCAL programme development and delivery, while ensuring synergies and coordination of theUNCDF LoCAL , withUNDP and UNRCO in Bhutan;
  • Support identification of potential climate finance sources and support the Royal government of Bhutan in accessing additional climate finance for the scale up of LoCAL with a specific focus on direct access, following the accreditation of BTFEC to the Green Climate Fund and the accreditation to the Adaptation Fund, in close dialogue with GNHC as National Designated Authority to the Green Climate Fund;
  • Ensure the regular integration of LoCAL related considerations into Government’s agendas (e.g. development goals, SDGs, NAP process and NDCs), including by participating to internal meetings and workshops organized by the Government;
  • Serve as the UNCDF focal point in working groups and steering committees on issues of decentralization, local government finance, environment and climate change and related sectors and provide inputs for conducive policy and regulatory environment;
  • Support overall resource mobilization for LoCAL mechanism for Bhutan, collect intelligence on technical and financial partners, identify opportunities for collaboration with key actors and support the development of partnerships for LoCAL Bhutan;
  • Support development of proposals related to LoCAL;
  • Support negotiations on co-operation with Government, UNDP, the UN system, technical partners, bilateral donors and other financing institutions in order to identify and mobilize resources for LoCAL;
  • Coordinates and provides substantive contributions from UNCDF on LoCAL mechanism in the CCA and UNDAF, promotes thematic and sectoral synergies and coordination of programme activities and execution with UNRCO in Bhutan;
  • Support co-operation with Government, UNDP, the UN system, bilateral development agencies, and other technical partners to identify and develop synergies with relevant in-country projects and technical partnerships for LoCAL with a focus on policy and capacity development for climate change mainstreaming and climate finance;
  • Coordinate closely with UNRCO on LoCAL development and delivery, identifies approaches and modalities to achieve development targets by ensuring synergies, coordination between UNCDF LoCAL global programme and UNRCO in Bhutan, as well as provide technical, policy and programmatic advice to the UNRCO on relevant themes;
  • Actively participate in outcome working groups and discussions on the UNSDPF (i..e. outcome 2 on governance and outcome 4 on climate change and livelihoods);
  • Ensure regular communication and consultation with UNDP for coordination of programmatic synergies in the areas of environment and climate change, government finance, governance and decentralization, and related innovative finance.

Programme management (20%)

  • Contribute to the day-to-day coordination and the effective, efficient and transparent implementation of the LoCAL initative in Bhutan in line with UNCDF project management regulations and in close collaboration with the LoCAL Programme Manager and the LoCAL Secretariat (global);
  • Lead delivery and achievement of objectives by working with and supporting implementing partners’ project related activities;
  • Ensures the integrity of LoCAL Annual Work Plan, budget, financial resources, review of budget requirements, delivery and the consistent application or rules and regulations;
  • Coordinate, participate in the elaboration, and ensure the timely submission of annual work plans and budgets, quarterly and annual financial and progress reports, while maximizing alignment and integration with national systems;
  • Support the effective and transparent transfer of funds to the (local) governments through the agreed financial circuit, the effective and transparent use of funds, and effective and transparent annual performance assessments in the context of LoCAL;
  • Contribute to the management of the risk log of the project;
  • Manage UNCDF’s commitments within the UNDAF Results Matrix, ensures effective application of results-based management tools, monitors initative work plans, programme effectiveness and achievement of results;
  • Coordinate with the UNCDF programme associate (G6) to ensure effective and transparent operational, administrative, and financial support to LoCAL/LRP, as well as appropriate archiving, recording and accounting documentation as required by UNCDF/UNDP regulations and preparation of required financial reports.

Knowledge management and communication (10%)

  • Identify key knowledge constraints and organize learning, knowledge exchange, training, workshops, etc. to build the awareness and capacities on relevant themes (i.e. climate change, climate risk assessments for subnational adaptation, mainstreaming, climate mainstreaming and finance, performance-based climate resilience grants, etc.);
  • Identify, collect and disseminate best practices and lesson learned from the initative;
  • Contribute to the knowledge and communication efforts of LoCAL Bhutan based on lessons learned and results achieved (e.g. stories from the field, photos/videos, webpage and social media presence, as appropriate);
  • Ensure the initiative is well documented through photos, videos, and field stories;
  • Ensure the timely publication and dissemination of reports and other project outputs at national and local level and with the LoCAL global team;
  • Ensure that experiences, lessons learned and good practices are disseminated at local/national level using a range of means of communication, including press, radio, TV, multimedia and social medias appropriate;
  • Coordinate closely with LoCAL and UNCDF colleagues involved in knowledge management and communication to ensure a common message across countries and regions.


  • Innovation [Ability to make new and useful ideas work] -Level 5: Plans and acts transparently, actively works to removes barriers
  • Leadership [Ability to persuade others to follow]-Level 5: Creates new and relevant ideas and leads others to implement them.
  • People Management [Ability to improve performance and satisfaction]- Level 5: Models high professional standards and motivates excellence in others.
  • Communication & Relationship Management [Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform]-Level 5: Gains trust of peers, partners, clients by presenting complex concepts in practical terms to others.
  • Delivery [Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement]-Level 5: Critically assesses value and relevance of existing policy/practice and contributes to enhanced delivery of products, services, and innovative solutions.
  • Subject Matter Expertise: [Understands more advanced aspects of primary area of specialization as well as the fundamental concepts related to digital innovation and financial inclusion]- Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise.
  • Knowledge Management: [Ability to capture, develop, share and effectively use information and knowledge]
  • Level 5: Originate - Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise.
  • Ability to animate individuals and communities of contributors to participate and share & ability to turn raw information into useful knowledge, relevant for context, or responsive to stated need.
  • Relationship Management: [Ability to engage and foster strategic partnerships with other parties, Inter-Agency Coordination and forge productive working relationships] - Level 5: Originate - Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise.
  • Results Based Programming: [Assesses project performance to identify success factors and incorporates best practices into project work] - Level 5: Originate - Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s or Higher Degree in environmental science and management, climate science, geographic studies, international development, economics, or a related field. Candidates with first university/bachelors degree and two additional years of relevant experience are also considered eligible.


  • A minimum of five years’ experience in implementing/coordinating development projects in the fields of climate change and/or environmental sustainability and decentralization/local governance issues, of which at least three years of management responsibilities of similar size and complexity.;
  • A minimum of three (3) years’ experience working on Bhutan’s policy, regulatory and technical advisory services with national and subnational stakeholders is required;
  • Work experience with Bhutan local governments, local stakeholders, local communities, and addressing gender equality as project objective and/or cross-cutting issue;
  • Strong networking capabilities and ability to associate him/herself with a range of actors (inter alia central and subnational governments; local communities; policy makers; donors; CSOs, NGOs, private sector ) with a view to building relations and facilitating links;
  • Proven experience in leading strategic planning, change processes, results-based management and reporting;
  • Experience managing teams and consultants, including recruiting, hiring and managing and evaluating international and national expertise;
  • Experience with a UN organization/agency is desirable;
  • Experience with ATLAS and UNCDF Procurement Processes is desired, but not a requirement.

Application instructions

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