Senior Programme Manager (Corporate Ambition and Accountability)


Background Information – Job-specific

New York Service Cluster (NYSC) supports the United Nations Secretariat, as well as other New York-based United Nations organizations, bilateral and multilateral partners in the delivery of UNOPS mandate in project management, infrastructure management, and procurement management.

Sustainable Development Cluster (SDC) supports diverse partners with their peacebuilding, humanitarian and development operations. It was formed by combining the following portfolios: Grants Management Services (GMS), UN Technology Support Services (UNTSS), Development and Special Initiatives Portfolio (DSIP) It provides Services to partners’ programmes that are designed, structured, and managed with a global perspective and primarily serving partners that are headquartered in New York. The SDC has a footprint of approximately 125 countries.

UNOPS has signed an agreement with the Executive Office of the Secretary-General (EOSG) of the United Nations to implement the activities of the Climate Action Team (CAT) Project.

Following COP26 in Glasgow and COP27 in Sharm el-Sheik, there is less than a decade to prevent a climate breakdown. Without deep emissions cuts, the world is heading towards 2.4-degrees Celsius of warming with catastrophic consequences. At current levels of warming the world is experiencing unprecedented climate impacts.

An increase in global average temperature above 1.5˚C would mean extreme weather and climate disasters increasing in frequency and intensity, putting billions of people at immediate risk with significant parts of Africa becoming unlivable and whole countries ceasing to exist. The Secretary-General’s call to all countries, cities, companies and institutions to go into emergency mode on climate is needed more than ever.

While climate change risks undermining the 2030 Agenda, as well as the social, economic, and environmental pillars of sustainable development, climate action also presents an opportunity. Green investments boost growth and jobs; just transitions are inclusive and help to eradicate poverty; and enhancing carbon sinks strengthen biodiversity and resilience. It will be essential to ensure that the transformation of economies and societies takes place to enable accelerated climate action in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The objective of the Secretary-General’s climate action strategy throughout his second term will be to accelerate this decade, the transition towards a resilient, net zero world, that keeps the 1.5˚C goal alive, to secure the alignment of public and private finance, of technological transfers and capacity building to enable the necessary cooperation and support needed by developing countries, to significantly enhance the credibility and accountability of commitments taken by governments and non-state actors to reach the Paris Agreement goals.

It will be critical to build on progress made at COP26 and COP27. The two-year period from Glasgow in November 2021 to the Global Stocktake in November 2023 will be essential to meeting this goal and is aligned with the complementary push for accelerated efforts during the Decade of Action to deliver the SDGs by 2030. This will require enhanced coordination and collaboration across the United Nations System especially at the country level.

The Secretary- General’s Climate Action Team will focus on the following:

  • Raising ambition levels and concrete mitigation commitments by the major emitters, particularly the G20.
  • Contributing to the reform of the international climate finance architecture and the multilateral development banks including through the design and operationalization of the Loss and Damage Fund decided at COP27.
  • Delivering tangible results to scale up adaptation and resilience finance and projects in developing countries including through cooperative initiatives.
  • Developing and implementing targeted strategies for fossil fuel phase-out and renewable energy scale-up including through the Just Energy Transition Partnerships and other cooperative initiatives.
  • Strengthening and verifying short-term and longer-term commitments made by non-state actors to reach net zero by 2050 through the implementation of the guidelines recommended to the Secretary-General at COP27 by the High-Level Group of Experts on Net Zero pledges
  • Enhancing UN system support to countries to deliver on the climate and environment-related Sustainable Development Goals this decade.
  • Providing up-to-date analytics and policy guidance for the Secretary-General, Deputy Secretary-General, UN leadership and Member States.
  • Designing and executing a cross-UN global communications campaign and movement focused on SG and UN leadership on climate action at all levels, and messaging and storytelling to build political will, elevate local solutions and mobilize individual actions.

The incumbent of this position will be a staff member of UNOPS under its full responsibility.

Functional Responsibilities

Under the overall supervision and guidance of the Director, the incumbent will provide substantive senior-level support on member state engagement and results on ambition, the responsibilities of the Senior Advisor on corporate ambition and accountability include:

  • Working with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Secretariat (UNFCCC) supports implementation of the recommendations of the High-Level Expert Group on the credibility and accountability of net zero pledges by non-state entities with a focus on individual and collective voluntary corporate initiatives.
  • Conceive strategies to support ambitious and credible outcomes for key 2023 milestones, with particular focus on the Secretary-General’s 2023 Summit as well as events led by the UN Global Compact, the High-Level Climate Champions and SG Envoys, the World Economic Forum, Mission Innovation, and others.
  • Working with the Finance lead, design a strategy to track voluntary carbon markets and ensure they respect high environmental integrity principles and that voluntary carbon credits users are held accountable through full transparency and disclosure.
  • Monitor trends and innovations in high-emitting sectors, including high-emitting industries (cement, steel, aluminum, chemicals, transportation (road, aviation, shipping).
  • Support the development of recommendations, briefing notes, key messages and inputs into speeches for SG and DSG engagements with the private sector, with a focus on raising the ambition and accountability in high-emitting sectors.
  • Perform other duties as may be reasonably required and in line with the incumbent’s scope of services above.

Impact of Results

The effective and successful achievement of results by the incumbent directly impacts on the development and performance of the Climate Action Team, visibility and image of CAT, ensuring that the project is aligned with the overall priorities on the UN agenda.

Education/Experience/Language requirements



  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree) in a relevant field is required.
  • Two (2) additional years of relevant work experience, in combination with a relevant first-level university (bachelor’s degree or equivalent), may substitute for the requirement of a master’s degree



  • At least seven (7) years of relevant professional experience in programme/ project management.
  • Experience in identifying, strengthening and/or leveraging relationships with Member States, the UN system and non-State actors to help advance policy objectives.
  • Experience coordinating climate initiatives and/or coalition building.

Desirable (The following experience is optional. Candidates who do not have it are welcome to apply)

  • Experience working directly with private sector organisations.
  • Experience developing standards for measuring climate ambition of non-state actors.
  • Experience effectively synthesizing and communicating technical and policy findings in a clear and concise manner to colleagues internally and to external non-technical audiences, including through producing briefing, speeches and strategy papers for seniors.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English.


Strategic Perspective: Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.(for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)

Integrity & Inclusion: Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.

Leading self & Others: Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.

Partnering: Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).

Results Orientation: Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.

Agility: Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.

Solution Focused: Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.

Effective Communication: Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Contract type, level and duration

  1. Contract type: Fixed -Term Staff Contract
  2. Contract level: P3
  3. Contract duration: ‘One year initially, renewable subject to satisfactory performance and funding availability’

For more details about United Nations staff contracts, please follow this link*:*

Additional Information

  • Please note that UNOPS does not accept unsolicited resumes.
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process, which involves various assessments.
  • UNOPS embraces diversity and is committed to equal employment opportunity. Our workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages, races, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities. UNOPS seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce.
  • Qualified women and candidates from groups which are underrepresented in the UNOPS workforce are encouraged to apply. These include in particular candidates from racialized and/or indigenous groups, members of minority gender identities and sexual orientations, and people with disabilities.
  • We would like to ensure all candidates perform at their best during the assessment process. If you are shortlisted and require additional assistance to complete any assessment, including reasonable accommodation, please inform our human resources team when you receive an invitation.

Terms and Conditions

  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post.
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (they take around 4 hours to complete) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS. For more information on a retainer contract here.
  • All UNOPS personnel are responsible for performing their duties in accordance with the UN Charter and UNOPS Policies and Instructions, as well as other relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, all personnel must demonstrate an understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a manner consistent with UN core values and the UN Common Agenda.
  • It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential personnel. Recruitment in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

How to apply

To apply for the position, please access the link:

Closing date: 12 Jan 2023