Wetland Biodiversity Conservation and Strategic Planning Specialist – Hainan Project – UNDP

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The target areas under the provincial projects are: 

  • Altai mountains and wetland landscape (Xinjiang); Daxiang’anling forest and wetland Landscape (Heilongjiang and Inner Mongolia); Hainan mangrove PAs (Hainan)
  • The PA clusters around three lakes along the Yangtze, namely Poyang Lake (Hunan), Honghu (Hubei) and Shenjinghu (Anhui) river All the seven projects under the Programme are expected to be developed and approved by the GEF Council by May 2013. 

Most of these projects are expected to be developed in the same period, to maximise the concerted impacts and cost effectiveness.  In order to ensure the timely and effective delivery of this programme during the planning and formulating period, UNDP China requires the service of an experienced International Specialist for Wetland Biodiversity Conservation and Strategic Planning to lead the formulation of the “CBPF-MSL–Strengthening the management effectiveness of the wetland protected area system in Hainan for conservation of globally significant biodiversity (hereafter Hainan Project), by working closely with the lead national consultant, appointed Chinese experts, the State Forestry Administration (Government Executing Agency), Hainan Forestry Department, Dongzhaigang Nature Reserve and UNDP (GEF Implementing Agency).


Duties and Responsibilities

Closely supported by the lead national consultant (Protected Area Planning and Management Specialist), the international specialist will serve as the overall team leader of the project preparation process.  S/he will provide technical guidance and direction to the PPG work and ensure all necessary information is collated and required analysis, assessments, baseline establishment and project plans development are undertaken by the national specialists. S/he will collate inputs of different team specialists and take the lead in collaboration with key stakeholders, implementing and executing agencies in designing the full project document.

The specialist will closely liaise with the team leaders and consultants working under the PPGs in other projects, in order to ensure cross-fertilisation of the PPG work and to ensure coordination and programmatic coherence between the projects. The work involves facilitating the following processes:

  • Evaluate current levels of management effectiveness of stakeholder agencies and evaluate budget levels and sustainability of funding for core operations essential for good governance and management of key wetland PAs – using METT score sheets and financial sustainability score sheets to establish baselines and targets for the project.
  • Review policy and legal framework in relation to the establishment, mainstreaming and management of a system of wetland protected areas within a broader landscape and development context, identifying contradictions or critical gaps which may hamper the progress of implementation, and suggest measures to remove the barriers.
  • Assess staffing levels and current levels of competence; identify staff recruitment needs and additional training required under the project, and assess needs for revision of existing draft competence standards vis-à-vis wetland PA management.
  • Recommend priority activities to be covered under the project in support of strengthening the law enforcement system, and suggest appropriate indicators with baseline information.
  • Determine key equipment or infrastructure that should be provided under co-financing.

During the process, the specialist will:

  • Ensure full stakeholder consultation including communities in the target landscape so as to ensure project ownership and full participation in implementation through generating buy-in on the project contents.
  • Review baseline information delivered by the local experts.
  • Develop the threats and root causes matrix, and the description of the barriers to the effective management of the wetland PAs.
  • Carry out an incremental analysis and cost effectiveness analysis of the project strategy.
  • Assess the sustainability of suggested project outcomes and outputs.
  • Assess global environmental benefits sought from the project.
  • Propose a project monitoring and evaluation framework with a set of measurable impact and progress indicators;
    m)develop budget plans for the project.
  • Address comments on the project PIF by the GEF Secretariat, GEF Council members and the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP).
  • Ensure linkages with other government, donor and GEF PA and wetland  Biodiversity projects in the region.
  • Prepare necessary ToRs for the project staff and  key consultancies.
  • Take the lead in collating the inputs of different team specialists and draft the full project document and CEO request.
  • Revise as necessary to obtain SFA and UNDP technical clearance.
  • Provide response to GEF review comments and make necessary revision to the documents.
  • Any other tasks as may be jointly agreed.



  • Coordinate and facilitate the Chinese specialists’ substantive technical input and guidance to the formulation of a full project proposal for Hainan Project.
  • Produce technically cleared Project Documents and a CEO endorsement request for the project in a timely fashion.
  • Demonstrated strategic technical and intellectual skills in the substantive area.
  • Demonstrated leadership, facilitation and coordination skills, ability to manage technical team and long term strategic partnership.
  • Demonstrated entrepreneurial abilities and ability to work in an independent manner.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a team, ability for managing timely and effective delivery of both quantity and quality before the deadlines.


Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s Degree or equivalent in natural sciences, environmental management or related fields.


  • Minimum of 15 years of demonstrable experience and knowledge  in the field of ecosystems and biodiversity management, in particular, experience working on wetland management and conservation and protected areas management issues.
  • Extensive experience with project development, implementation and management (direct project formulation and management experience is preferable).
  • Working experience with international organizations or having worked as a CTA or consultant is an advantage as is knowledge of GEF, UNDP policies, procedures and practices.
  • Excellent communication (both oral and written) and partnership building skills with multi-dimension partners, people skills for conflict resolution and negotiation.
  • Experience in project formulation that addresses technical assistance and capacity development for implementing partners (IPs).
  • Experience in working in the relevant field in China and its government, experiences working in international organizations in China or abroad is another strong assets.
  • Computer proficiency, especially related to professional office software packages (Microsoft Office).


  • Excellent English language skills, particularly in the preparation of written documents.