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Senior environmental economist

World Bank, the (WB)

Job # 082121


Developing countries are facing numerous challenges to improve environmental management systems to protect human health and natural resources. Cross-sectoral approaches with leadership outside environment ministries are increasingly needed to effectively address key environment challenges in many countries. World Bank country program support includes public expenditure reviews, country environmental analysis, environmental management capacity building, and policy advice.

Adding to these challenges are the projected costs to countries for mitigating and adapting to climate change. Bank work is increasingly being evaluated through a climate changes lens which requires strengthened staff skills to help support such analysis.  One of the tools the World Bank uses to assist governments in managing resources and the environment is natural resource accounting linked to the System of National Accounts (SNA). This provides a macro framework for examining resource management issues and helps to link environmental issues to countries’ overall growth and poverty reduction strategies. In addition, these accounts can be combined with Social Accounting Matrices and I/O tables in order to link resource and environment issues to macroeconomic models.

The World Bank is seeking dynamic, experienced economists to lead work on environmental accounting and support wide range of investment programs on project economic analysis, including linkages to macro models, and to lead and support analytical work on the linkages between natural resources, the environment, climate change, growth and poverty reduction.


The Senior Environmental Economist positions are located in the World Bank's central Environment Department (ENV) and Sustainable Development Network Department under each Regional Vice-Presidency (Africa, East Asia and Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, Latin America and Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, and South Asia). The incumbents are expected to:

  • Assist project teams on integration of economic instruments and capacity building for environmental policy improvements in investment program designs
  • Support development of a quantitative framework for decision-making by client countries on cost and prioritization of adaptation measures based on – economic efficiency, environmental effectiveness, social equality and political feasibility;
  • Serve as team leader for sector work on estimating costs and benefits of improvements in environmental management and policies (including climate mitigation and adaptation measures) in different sectors – particularly on infrastructure, environmental health, biodiversity, urban development, and water management, and propose feasible options for economic analyses;
  • Undertake country and/or sector studies to promote cost-effective environmental management and climate resistant investments;
  • Recommend approaches to incorporate improved environmental management practices and policies into Country Partnership and Assistance Strategies, investment loans and development policy loans;
  • Develop intermediate and final reports, guidelines, tools and publications related to methodology and approaches for sound environmental management into the sustainable development plans of countries and targeted cities and regions.

Other tasks may include:

  • Lead environment public expenditure review work;
  • Support to a wide range of investment programs on project economic analysis and provide best practice guidance on cost-benefit analysis, cost effectiveness analysis, and estimation of environmental costs and benefits;
  • Support the dissemination of environmental policy work to audiences within the Bank and to external audiences;
  • Promote capacity development in client countries through policy dialogue and sector work;

In addition to the above duties, the Environmental Economist in the central ENV is expected to:

  • Support the World Bank’s work on environmental accounting, including the development of extended measures of national wealth and saving for publication in the World Development Indicators;
  • Represent the World Bank in international fora dealing with the development of environmental accounting, the economics of environmental management and climate change;
  • Assist with one or more of the following:
  • Incorporating environment and natural resources into SAMs, CGEs, and macroeconomic models;
  • Analysis of household data to examine environmental health and/or poverty-environment relationships.

Selection criteria

  • Ph.D. in Natural Resource Economics, Environmental Economics, or other relevant disciplines or M.A. and equivalent combination of experience.
    • A minimum of 8 years relevant professional experience in environmental issues as they relate to infrastructure sectors, urban and rural development, pollution management, etc.
  • Extensive experience working in developing countries.
  • Strong business development skills;
  • Demonstrated familiarity with Bank procedures, directives and business practices is desirable.
  • Ability to lead and participate on teams and to work effectively in a team-oriented, multi-cultural, matrix management environment.
  • Ability to work flexibly on a range of assignments, and adjust to and prioritize a variety of complex evolving tasks.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to develop effective relations within and outside the Bank.
  • Strong leadership and communication skills, including ability to convey technical material in a simple way to non-technical audiences.
  • Strong writing skills.
  • Fluency in English is essential. Fluency in other languages (e.g., Arabic, Chinese, French, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish) is desirable for those who will work in Regional Vice Presidencies.


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    United States of America

  • Additional location info Washington D.C.
  • Closing Date 18 Nov 2008

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