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  • Posted: Jan 26, 2021
    Deadline: Feb 1, 2021
  • The World Bank Group (WBG) is a family of five international organizations that make leveraged loans to developing countries. It is the largest and most famous development bank in the world and is an observer at the United Nations Development Group. The bank is based in Washington, D.C. and provided around $61 billion in loans and assistance to "develop...
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    Senior Environmental Specialist

    Eastern and Southern Africa (E AFR) Region

    Home to about 700 million of Africa’s people, Eastern and Southern Africa is a geographically, culturally and economically diverse region of 26 countries stretching from the Red Sea in the North to the Cape of Good Hope in the South. Children under 18 make up almost half of the total population. The sub-region boasts of some of the world’s richest human and natural resources and, apart from South Africa, the countries are predominantly raw material exporters.

    The sub-region harbors some of Africa’s protracted conflicts, rendering many of its countries fragile, while significant gaps in education, health, and skills development continues to keep people from reaching their full potential. This creates a huge development challenge, impacts heavily on the lives and livelihoods of people, and hinders regional integration and trade. But it also creates an opportunity to work closely with country leaders, civil society, development partners, and young people to chart a brighter course for the future.

    The World Bank’s Eastern and Southern Africa Region, comprised of approximately 1,207 staff, mostly based in 26 country offices, has been helping countries realize their considerable development potential by focusing on the following priorities:

    • Creating Jobs and Transforming Economies: We are working with countries across Africa to stimulate job creation and economic transformation by leveraging all sources of finance, expertise, and solutions to promote investment.
    • Building up the Digital Economy: We are supporting Africa’s vision to ensure that every African individual, business, and government is connected by 2030 – a vision that, if realized, can boost growth by up to 2 percentage points per year, and reduce poverty by 1 percentage point per year in Sub-Saharan Africa alone.
    • Institutions more Efficient and Accountable: Our support is helping governments strengthen public policy processes, manage resources effectively, and reinforce fair and reliable delivery of public services.
    • Investing in People: We are at the forefront of helping African countries accelerate human capital gains and empower women by improving their access to education and skills acquisition, sexual and reproductive health services, and employment opportunities. With the influx COVID-19, we are mobilizing financial support and timely analysis and advice to countries across the sub-region deal with the pandemic.
    • Supporting Climate Change Mitigation and Adaption: In the face of increasing climate-related risks, we are working with African countries to advance efforts to adopt renewable energy, climate-smart agriculture, and green infrastructure. A number of East African countries are currently facing a debilitating Desert Locust infestation, threatening the already precarious food security situation. The Bank has put together a program to help affected countries deal with the scourge.
    • Addressing the Drivers of Fragility, Conflict, and Violence: Given the cross-border nature of conflicts in Africa, we are employing an approach that simultaneously focuses on the drivers of fragility while also supporting well-targeted regional initiatives to create opportunities for peace and shared prosperity.
    • Building Partnerships and Working across the African Continent: We are scaling up our work on regional integration, taking a holistic view of the continent that covers both North and Sub-Saharan Africa.

    Eastern and Southern Africa (E AFR) Region:

    The Sustainable Development Practice Group

    The Sustainable Development (SD) Practice Group (PG) helps countries tackle their most complex challenges in the areas of Agriculture and Food, Climate Change, Environment, Natural Resources & Blue Economy, Environmental and Social Framework, Urban, Disaster Risk Management, Resilience & Land, Social Sustainability and Inclusion, and Water.

    Environment Natural Resources & Blue Economy Global Practice

    The sustainable management of the environment and natural resources is vital for economic growth and human wellbeing. When managed well, renewable natural resources, watersheds, productive landscapes and seascapes can provide the foundation for sustained inclusive growth, food security and poverty reduction. For more information:

    Unit and Country Context

    The Environment, Natural Resources and Blue Economy Unit for Africa East and Southern Region (one of four Environment units in Africa) has about 40 staff. Half of these staff work on environmental safeguards/environmental risk management. The other 50 percent work primarily on lending and knowledge products in client countries. About 50 percent are based in the field. The balance is based in Washington DC and travel to the region frequently. The skills of these staff include, economics, pollution management, forestry, fisheries management, landscapes management, watershed management, and natural areas protection.

    The position

    This position will be based in Nairobi, Kenya and will focus on the environmental risk management, and a small amount of environmental project management, analytical and policy work. Kenya has very large infrastructure shortfall. As a result, the Bank has been investing heavily in infrastructure in the country, and the associated risk management requirements. This position would focus on implementing the Bank’s environmental risk management policies (including the Safeguard Policies and the new Environmental and Social Framework, or ESF). All World Bank-supported investment projects must meet ambitious environmental management standards. The Environment and Natural Resources Global Practice is responsible for providing technical support and oversight to all investment projects to meet these obligations. In addition, the World Bank has an increasing portfolio of environment related loans. While the primary responsibility of this position is on environmental risk management (at least 80 percent), there an expectation that the position may include management and technical support of World Bank financed projects in the area of environment.

    Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. External candidates will be offered a 3-year term appointment.

    This is a locally recruited position, not an internationally recruited position. As a result the conditions of employment will be in line with the employment market in the country.

    The Senior Environmental Specialist – will have the following key responsibilities: Environmental Risk Management

    • Ensure the effective integration of environmental due diligence as defined by World Bank Group (WBG) Environmental and Social Management Framework, safeguards policies as well as international good practice documents (e.g. Equator Principles) into the design, appraisal and implementation of WBG supported projects (environmental lending portfolio and analytical work).
    • Provide experienced advice to client and counterpart organizations, project teams and WBG management with regard to the preparation of environmental impact assessments, including regional, strategic and cumulative assessments; environmental management frameworks and plans, including plan for monitoring, reporting and evaluation; public consultation plans; and specific plans related to natural habitats conservation, natural resource management, pest management, forest management, dam safety and international waterways management; such advice will be based on a detailed analysis of baseline conditions, project scope and impacts, requirements from national legal and institutional frameworks and, and compliance with the WBG’s operational policies.
    • Provide experienced mentorship to clients in the preparation of project cycle documentation including terms of reference (ToR) for environmental safeguard instruments, such as environmental and social assessments (incl. strategic, regional and cumulative); environmental and social management frameworks and plans, Pest Management Plans, and supervising their implementation. Contract specifications related to environmental safeguards and risks management, particularly for large dams and water projects. Provide technical training for the domestic EA practitioners on the WBG safeguard policies and requirements.
    • Provide environmental input in project documents in accordance with the Bank operational policies including Project Concept Note (PCN), Integrated Safeguards Data Sheet (ISDS), Project Appraisal Document (PAD) and Decision/Negotiations Packages, and assist with handling timely and accurate disclosure procedures and public consultation requirements for all required environmental assessment and management instruments.
    • Work closely with the Regional Safeguards Coordinators in the Africa region who are responsible for assigning safeguards tasks and ensuring the quality of the safeguards work and environmental risk management in the Region.

    Project Operations and Analytical Work

    • Participate in and/or lead natural resource or environmental management projects and the policy dialog with the government and other stakeholders on environment or natural resources. This includes coordination with other financiers, review of sector policies, strategies, and legislation. A particular focus will be to build a portfolio of environment projects, which could include waste management, flood management, forestry and land restoration, and protected areas management.
    • Participate as team member or team leader in the development and/or supervision of implementation of environment or natural resources activities or components in projects, including participation in identification missions; seeking and developing opportunities to integrate sound environmental management and policies in investment project operations; maintaining dialog with the client and enhancing their capacity for understanding and compliance with on environmental policies; and contributing to mission outputs such as back to office reports (BTORs) and Aide Memoires.
    • Facilitate and maintain effective communication with relevant communities of practice, including NGOs, academia, civil society, the private sector as well as specialized international organizations in line with the Bank’s Disclosure Policy and need to harmonize with clients and other international financial institutions in the region. In particular, active participation in communities of practice and global level technical innovation and knowledge sharing in the area of pollution management will be an important component of this position.
    • Actively seek to learn World Bank Group procedures, and contribute to their improvement, by participating in training offered, by developing a personal training program, keeping abreast of research and development knowledge in the environment and natural resources sector, and relevant safeguard management process.
    • Coordinate and carry out other tasks as requested by the relevant Manager such as for example, contribute to the organization of training or knowledge sharing events.


    Selection Criteria


    General requirements:

    • Advanced degree (PhD or Masters) degree in environmental engineering, civil engineering or natural sciences is required.
    • A minimum of 8 years of full-time relevant professional experience in the engineering or environmental management sector is required.
    • Fluency in English is required (writing, speaking, listening and reading).
    • Fluency in Swahili is required (writing, speaking, listening and reading).
    • Knowledge and experience in environmental assessment and management of environmental compliance in investment projects involving large scale civil works, extractive or industrial activities is required.
    • Technical experience in environmental assessment and compliance related to large infrastructure projects is required.
    • Confirmed collaboration and successful experience working with multi-disciplinary teams.
    • A strong sense of partnership and ability to work independently with limited supervision.
    • Strong interpersonal and communication skills.
    • Experience working in different developing countries.
    • Willingness to travel extensively in country and in the Africa region and possibly globally is vital, including to remote rural areas.

    The following would be an advantage but not required:

    • Experience working in developing countries, understanding the institutional and political context and exposure to the national environmental policy challenges would be an advantage.
    • Experience in the preparation of environmental safeguard/risk management documents of the lending projects of the WBG or other international organizations is beneficial but not required.
    • Demonstrated project management / operational skills, including occupational health and safety management would be an advantage.
    • Experience working with contractors that have weak implementation capacity in the area of environmental risk management would be an advantage.
    • Competencies Level GG, Senior Environmental Specialist:

    Integrative skills: demonstrates ability to think and work across WBG, practices and sectors • Integrates divergent viewpoints of multiple external and internal stakeholders into a coherent project/program/ strategy • Considers corporate commitments (e.g., MFD, climate, gender) in project approach.

    Policy Dialogue skills: possesses political judgment, diplomatic acumen, and negotiating skills • Builds and sustains key stakeholder relationships with government and other key stakeholders • Guides clients and/or development partners in identifying key operational issues and optional solutions with a demonstrated ability to bring together different perspectives • Leads task teams, participates in formal negotiations, and assists government in establishing priorities.

    Knowledge and Experience in Development arena: demonstrates sound knowledge of World Bank Group’s Twin Goals and the complementarities among different World Bank Group member institutions • Demonstrates deep understanding of policy making process and the role of own sector of expertise in that process • Fully understands Bank’s development initiatives and policies and practices related to l ending and non-lending operations • Guides research efforts and translates technical and cross-country knowledge into practical applications and contributions to country and sector strategies and for discussions with clients and development partners • Anticipates client needs and requests and guides the development/ offering of relevant tools to clients.

    Communication and Influencing Skills: demonstrates the ability to influence and persuade others to accept ideas and suggestions (such as counterparts in government, international partner organizations, academia, and Bank colleagues, senior staff and managers). Has ability to communicate and defend, orally and in writing, challenges and positions to colleagues and management.

    Specialized Knowledge & Technical Skills:

    Environment & Natural Resources Management Technical Skills & Knowledge (Specialist / Engineer)

    • Demonstrates solid understanding of environmental/NRM/climate change policies, technologies or strategies, and institutions needed to support development and for the success of project and analytic work.
    • Demonstrates solid understanding of the roles of each WBG institution and its relationship to environment/NRM/climate change.
    • Demonstrates strong knowledge of at least one relevant thematic business line, namely “blue”, “brown”, “green”, climate change, and environmental risk management.
    • Translates technical analyses into policies, operations and/or research as they relate to any of the following thematic business lines: “blue”, “brown”, “green”, climate change, and environmental risk management. • Provides guidance and coaching to others on technical and operational matters.

    For information about WBG Core Competencies, please visit:

    Poverty has no borders. Neither does excellence. This is why we continually search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe. We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce.


    Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.

    go to method of application »

    Organizational Ombudsman

    Required Language(s):    
    For Asia position - English is required
    For Africa position - French & English required


    Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? Working at the World Bank Group provides a unique opportunity for you to help our clients solve their greatest development challenges. 

    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, increasing shared prosperity and promoting sustainable development. 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. 

    For more information, visit 

    The World Bank Group's Organizational Ombudsman Function
    The Ombuds Services Office is governed by WBG Staff Rule 9.02 and operates in accord with the Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics of the International Ombudsman Association.   

    The Office has a broad mandate to look into staff-related issues, to consider conflicts of any nature related to employment by the WBG, and to assist in their informal resolution.  The WBG’s administrative regulations provide for the Ombudsman to be independent of any group or official of the WBG.  Except for medical records, documents covered by attorney-client privilege or records of on-going investigations, the Ombudsman has access to records concerning staff.  The Ombudsman may consult with anyone relevant to a matter, and give whatever advice and opinion is deemed to be appropriate.  The Ombudsman have direct access to the President of the WBG as needed for the performance of their duties. 

    The WBG’s Ombuds Services Office performs three principal functions:  (i) it provides assistance in the informal resolution of conflicts and other issues brought to the attention of the Office; (ii) it monitors trends and emerging issues, and provides guidance and advice on ways to improve the workplace environment in the WBG; and (iii) it manages the Respectful Workplace Advisors (RWA) Program.

    The WBG has several other units and services which provide advice and assistance in resolving conflict, grievances and ethical issues (including Human Resources, Mediation Services, Peer Review Services, the Administrative Tribunal, Ethics and Business Conduct, Legal, Personal and Work Stress Counseling, and the Staff Association).  The Ombuds Services Office collaborates with these units, as appropriate, while maintaining the confidentiality of specific matters.

    Background / General description
    The WBG currently has three Ombudsman, two of whom are based in Washington DC, and a third is based in the field. The two Ombudsman based in Washington DC are filled by one internally selected staff member and one an external candidate with extensive and proven professional expertise in the area of conflict resolution, including as an organizational ombudsman. The two field-based Ombudsman 
    The WBG is recruiting two individuals with extensive and proven professional expertise in conflict resolution processes to fill two new field-based Organizational Ombudsman positions. The positions are local positions that may, for non-nationals, include global mobility benefits. One position will be based in Africa (Kenya or Dakar), and one in Asia (to be determined, preferably Chennai).  The two field-based Ombudsman may be hired either internally or externally.  Successful candidates will be expected to travel on a regular basis to other WBG field offices to provide direct services. 

    The Ombudsman appointment is for a five-year term appointment which may be renewed for an additional five-year term. After serving as Ombudsman, an individual shall be ineligible for any other appointment in the WBG for a period of two years (except for short-term consultant appointments limited to the Offices of the Ombuds Services or Mediation Services).

    Note: We are hiring for 2 positions against the requisition. Job Locations to be determined. 1 position in Africa (Nairobi or Dakar); 1 position in Asia (such as Chennai, Delhi, Bangkok, Jakarta, Beijing, Hanoi or Manila)

    Duties and Accountabilities

    The Ombudsman perform their duties as a team.

    In efforts to help resolve conflicts, depending on the circumstances, an Organizational Ombudsman may help a visitor (individual calling upon Ombuds Services for assistance) analyze the situation brought to his or her attention, advise the visitor of the policy or procedural context of the situation, advise the visitor of options and different avenues open to him or her, and make suggestions about how to exercise options or pursue avenues.  If requested by a visitor, an Ombudsman may contact other parties to informally facilitate a resolution.

    In carrying out their responsibilities, the Ombudsman hold periodic meetings with the President of the WBG and other senior managers, issue periodic reports, and may be consulted on policies where their views and experience may be helpful.

    The Ombudsman are jointly responsible for:

    • Formulating, implementing, managing, and monitoring the programs, plans, goals, and budget of the Ombuds Services office
    • Maintaining an independent data collection, analysis, and reporting process that protects confidentiality, and making regular reports based on anonymous aggregate data
    • Developing and executing a communication plan to promote awareness and understanding of Ombuds Services and the RWA Program, standards of practice, role and responsibilities
    • Monitoring of the Office’s practices and the manner of service delivery, in order to remain confidential, independent, impartial, and informal
    • Managing and promoting the Respectful Workplace Advisor (RWA) program
    • Supervising, developing and supporting Ombuds Services staff
    • Maintaining constructive working relationships with relevant resources within WBG including other offices of the Internal Justice Services (IJS)
    • Staying current in Ombuds practices through participation in the International Ombudsman Association (IOA), UNARIO and other relevant learning programs and conferences.

    Selection Criteria

    • Advanced degree (conflict resolution, law, organization behavior, psychology, counseling, or other social sciences preferred) and a minimum of 12 years of relevant experience required.
    • Expertise in conflict resolution and as a neutral third-party facilitator of conflict resolution processes 
    • Experience handling workplace problems and conflicts involving a wide range of subjects including, performance, discrimination, racism, sexual harassment, misconduct, compensation and benefits, terminations and organizational change
    • Experience tracking and analyzing case issue patterns and trends 
    • Previous experience establishing a new conflict resolution program or office is preferred
    • Experience designing and delivering training in conflict resolution, negotiation, communication and related subjects 
    • At least five years in a multinational organization and/or a multi-cultural environment 
    • Proven ability to promote and contribute to a collaborative team environment, build trust among colleagues, work effectively across disciplines and organizational boundaries including with stakeholder groups and senior officials
    • Demonstrated interpersonal skills with stakeholders and partners; proven ability to work with confidential matters, work sensitively in multicultural environments, and possess an established reputation for integrity, sound judgment, fairness and discretion 
    • Excellent presentation and written communication skills in English; fluency in French mandatory for the Africa-based Ombudsman; fluency in other working languages of the WBG is highly desirable  
    • Managerial experience is highly desired

    Personal Qualities:

    • Ability to maintain confidentiality and inspire trust, and recognized integrity and judgment
    • Respect and compassion for individuals
    • Respect for the mission and objectives of the WBG
    • Commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion, and sensitivity to cross-cultural factors in communications and interpersonal relations
    • Strong active listening skills and ability to deal with multiple open-ended issues and undetermined periods of closure
    • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in teams
    • Should be risk aware and should have the willingness and ability to challenge even the highest levels of the Organization in an effort to foster fair and consistent employment practices

    Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.

    Method of Application

    Use the link(s) below to apply on company website.


    Note: Never pay for any training, certificate, assessment, or testing to the recruiter.

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