The International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) is a multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder platform to enable societies to increase their resilience to natural, technological and environmental disasters and to reduce associated environmental, human and economic and social losses. A range of United Nations organizations and international partners participate in cooperation with Governments and civil society organizations. In adopting ISDR, the United Nations General Assembly (Res/54/219) also endorsed the establishment of the ISDR secretariat (UNISDR).
The main functions of the secretariat are policy coordination, advocacy and information/knowledge management, at the international and regional levels, to ensure synergy between disaster reduction strategies and those in the socio-economic and humanitarian fields.
The UNISDR and the ISDR System partners have been working closely with Parties through UNFCCC processes to raise awareness of the role of disaster risk reduction in climate change adaptation and draw attention to the existing mechanisms and tools for disaster risk reduction.
While disaster risk managers have participated and been available for guidance at key UNFCCC meetings, the climate change community has been less active in disaster risk reduction processes.
The Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, which will be held on 15-19 June 2009 in Geneva, Switzerland, represents an opportunity to engage the climate change community directly in the working processes of disaster risk reduction and to seek high level endorsement and commitment from the disaster risk reduction community on ways forward in this critical area of action.
Against this background, an informal high level roundtable is planned during the Global Platform as a special event. It will be a 2.5 hour meeting with about 20 individuals, who will be invited among the most prominent country representatives of both the climate change adaptation community and the disaster risk reduction community, as well as from donors and ISDR partner agencies. The roundtable is planned to be co-organized with UNFCCC Secretariat. It will result in action-oriented recommendations for consideration by the Global Platform as part of the High-Level Plenary on climate change adaptation and as final outcomes of the Global Platform. The outcomes will be further developed into recommendations and form the basis of joint work programming around this issue.
Duties and Responsibilities
As the facilitator of the roundtable and the technical advisor, conduct the following tasks before, during and after the Global Platform:
- In close consultation with UNISDR staff, prepare a set of expected outcomes and detailed agenda of the session.
- Facilitate the 2.5 hour roundtable meeting, including discussions in subgroups.
- Develop the meeting summary of the roundtable, accompanied with action-oriented recommendations for consideration by the Global Platform plenary.
- Provide advice to the Assistance Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction and her staff on implementing the recommendations
- Review and revise related plans and policy papers such as joint work programme of the ISDR
- The consultant will work under the supervision of the Assistance Secretary General, who will chair the roundtable, and the relevant officers in UNISDR Geneva.
Work implies frequent interaction with the following:
Participants to the roundtable, which will be composed of high-level country representatives of climate change adaptation community and the disaster risk reduction community, donors and ISDR partner agencies. Officers in UNISDR and UNFCCC Secretariat.
1. A well-organized 2.5 hour roundtable meeting, based on prescribed agenda and expected outcomes (1 day)
2. A concise meeting summary with action-oriented recommendations (5 days)
3. A set of policy advice to the Assistant Secretary General on the implementation of the recommendations (7 days)
4. Facilitation of dialogue with key stakeholders (via telecons) in the formulation of the joint work programme and additional written technical advice and comments as needed (7 days)
Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
Professionalism: Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities and risks; demonstrated ability to negotiate and apply good judgment; shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns.
Accountability: Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards.
Client Orientation: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.
Advanced degree in political or social science, environment/natural resource management, international studies, economics or other related field or the equivalent combination of academic qualifications and experience in related area.
Minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible professional experience in the areas associated with this post (particularly policy development, UN experience, disaster risk reduction, sustainable development, and humanitarian assistance) or other related area.
Fluency in written and spoken English is essential; knowledge of a second official UN language is an advantage.
Familiarity with climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction, the UNFCCC negotiations and related mechanisms and the Hyogo Framework for Action. Working experience in developing countries. Basic knowledge of institutional mandates, policies, guidelines of the UNFCCC mechanisms.
Duration: 20 days
Start Date: 15 June 2009
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