SENIOR PROJECT OFFICER - COMMUNITY MOBILIZATION: Moldova Energy and Biomass

Vacancy Number: 027 /Pr-2011

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Location: Chisinau, MOLDOVA
Deadline for applications: 19-Feb-11
Type of Contract: Service Contract
Post Level: SC-9
Languages Required: English   Russian
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
14-Mar-2011
Duration of Initial Contract : 9 (nine) months
Expected Duration of Assignment : 4 (four) years

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Background

The Moldova Energy and Biomass Project, a 4 year 14.56 million EUR project, funded by the European Union and UNDP and implemented by UNDP aims to contribute to a more secure, competitive and sustainable energy production in the Republic of Moldova through targeted support to the most viable and readily available local source of renewable energy, namely biomass from agricultural wastes.

The project purpose is to increase the use of renewable energy technology significantly through fuel switching and energy efficiency. It primarily focuses on improving heating comfort levels in rural public sector buildings including schools and community centres by using readily available waste straw supplied from local agricultural enterprises. The project will also stimulate local markets for improved household heating, industrial cogeneration, and biomass-based briquetting, as well as raise local capacity in the biomass sector, and promote the benefits of biomass energy and the project.

The project consists of four inter-related components as follows:
1. “Municipal biomass heating and establishment of fuel supply markets” aims to improve municipal heating of public buildings in rural areas and establish related fuel supply markets. Under this output 130 thermal heating systems primarily burning straw will be installed.
2. “Foundations laid for establishment of efficient household heating, industrial cogeneration and biomass briquetting markets” will focus on three emerging technology options for biomass energy in Moldova, which will be assessed, developed, and piloted.
3. “Building capacity for growth of biomass markets at regional and local levels in Moldova” aims to ensure that the benefits of biomass energy demonstrated and deployed under outputs 1 and 2 are delivered in a lasting and long-term way and that local capacities for further replication is ensured.
4. “The opportunities and benefits of biomass energy for Moldova are well known, and visibility of project results promoted” will facilitate widespread dissemination on the general and specific advantages and impacts of using biomass energy in Moldova. During the inception phase of the project, a communication and visibility plan will be elaborated.

 

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Project Manager and UNDP Portfolio Manager, the Senior Project Officer – Community Mobilizations contributes to the effective and efficient management of the Moldova Energy and Biomass project. The incumbent applies and promotes the principles of results-based management (RBM), as well as a client-oriented approach consistent with UNDP rules and regulations. 

The Senior Project Officer works in close collaboration with the Project Team, Programme, Operations, Communications and other project teams in the Country Office (CO), as well as the National Coordinator for effective achievement of results, anticipating and resolving complex programme/project-related issues and information delivery.

The incumbent is expected to exercise full compliance with UNDP programming, financial, procurement and administrative rules, regulations, policies and strategies, as well as implementation of the effective internal control systems.

Summary of Key Functions:

The Senior Project Officer for Community Mobilization will be part of the Project Management Team (PMT), under the overall supervision of the Project Manager. The main role of the Community Mobilization Officer is to ensure that appropriate communities are identified in which investments in municipal biomass energy systems can be made, that key stakeholders from these communities are committed to the project and that development services and products of highest quality and standards are provided to national counterparts. The Senior Project Officer will be coordinating the implementation of component 1.1 (Installation of 130 heating systems in public buildings).

The incumbent will ensure the provision of development services and products (commensurate with the scope of the programme/project) of the highest quality and standards to national counterparts and clients. More specifically:

1. Community Mobilisation/Development: 

a) Lead in the development selection criteria, in agreement with the rest of the PMT, for districts and communities wishing to participate in the project and, based on these criteria, make an initial selection of districts with which to work (for approval by the Project Board).
b) Liaise with the District authorities in each of the selected districts to organise district promotional meetings with all relevant stakeholders including mayors, managers of public institutions, and local agricultural / rural entrepreneurs with the aim of ensuring local buy-in.
c) Assist LPAs in formulating and submitting expressions of interest to implement community-based projects.
d) Undertake a preliminary appraisal of the expressions of interest received from communities, and prioritise interested communities for awareness-raising and capacity assessment.
e) Conduct field visits to the priority communities to raise awareness among key stakeholders of the opportunities and risks presented by biomass energy technologies, and to assess the capacities and needs of the priority communities with regard to biomass energy project implementation.
f) Lead the development / adjustment of project operational forms, templates and other operational documents to be used by the project and communities/partners in compliance with project implementation procedures and local legislation.
g) Together with the Project Engineers provide technical assistance to the targeted communities in completing the application forms, and rank the received applications for detailed evaluation.
h) Liaise with the Project Training and Capacity Building Officer to develop appropriately targeted training materials to match the capacities and needs identified during the community field visits; ensure timely and effective delivery of materials and trainings.
i) Undertake a participatory appraisal of the applications received following the established and approved criteria.
j) Based on the capacities of communities to mobilise the necessary resources to successfully implement their respective project, provide input to the prioritisation of projects for investment.
k) Coordinate and provide input for the preparation of bidding documents, procurement and contracting.
l) Assist the LPAs through all stages of community project implementation and closely monitor progress and results; closely monitor the performance of communities in fulfilling their obligations, including financial and in-kind contributions.
m) Together with Project Engineers closely monitor the performance of contractors, closely liaise with the Local Technical Supervisor in monitoring quality of works, and ensure timely preparation and submission of feasibility, evaluation and progress reports, project documentation and carrying out of works.
n) Participate in organizing community project hand over ceremonies and organization of community reporting meetings on project results.
o) Undertake community projects impact assessments.
p) During the period that the initial round of projects is at the implementation stage, solicit further applications by continuing with the above activities on an on-going basis.
q) Work in collaboration with the other Project Team members to develop a strategy for the Annual National Awards component of the project, and to select winning projects.

2. Team Leader Component 1.1

a) In close coordination with the Project Manager, assume full responsibility for and manage effectively and efficiently all project activities and resources (human, financial, physical / material assets, etc) under component 1.1 of the project in order to meet expected results.
b) Build, motivate and lead a high performing team consisting of Project Officers (Project Officer – Community Mobilisation/Training and Project Officer – Engineer) and short term experts.
c) Undertake personnel performance appraisals for the Project Officers supervised.

Additional Responsibilities:

a) Assist the Project Manager in the development of annual activity and procurement work plans as well as budgets based on expected year-end outputs, and assist in the close monitoring of activities and disbursements.
b) Apply UNDP programming tools and policies as explained in the Results Management Guide. Keep abreast of UNDP programming practices and maintain an optimum level of knowledge by continuous learning.
c) Contribute to the wide dissemination and visibility of project achievements. Support mechanisms for exchange of information, experience and lessons learned at the local and national levels.

 

Competencies

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values.
  • Exerts strict adherence to corporate rules, regulations and procedures.  Familiarity with the internal control framework and results-based management tools is a must.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability

Functional Competencies:

Knowledge Management and Learning

  • Shares knowledge and experience
  • Actively works towards continuing personal learning, acts on learning plan and applies newly acquired skills

Development and Operational Effectiveness

  • Ability to establish and maintain contacts with senior-level officials of the host government required. Excellent interpersonal skills are essential part of the job. Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, is required to obtain, evaluate and interpret factual data and to prepare accurate and complete reports and other documents. 
  • Ability to perform a variety of specialized tasks related to Results-Based Management, including support to design, planning and implementation of programme, managing data, reporting.
  • Ability to provide input to business processes, re-engineering, implementation of new system, including new IT based systems.

Leadership and Self-Management

  • Strong leadership skills and proven experience in managing interdisciplinary teams
  • Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
  • Remains calm, in control and good humored even under pressure
  • Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities

 

Required Skills and Experience

Education:

  • University/Master Degree in Social Sciences, Public Administration, Economics, Civil Engineering, or other related areas

Experience:

  • At least 5 years of progressively responsible experience at the national or international level in working in community based development projects or energy/environmental projects
  • Previous experience in development assistance including capacity building in the public sector or related work for a donor organization, governmental institutions, NGO or private sector / consulting firm is a very strong advantage.
  • Technical understanding and practical experience in implementing decentralized energy supply or infrastructure projects will be an advantage.
  • Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc) and advanced knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages, experience in handling of web based management systems.

Language Requirements

  • Fluency in both oral and written English, Russian and Romanian is a must.

 

Application Instructions

Applications should be submitted on line and include Personal History Form (P11)
Please note that only applicants who are short-listed will be contacted.

Application deadline: 19 February 2011

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.