E-mail Archive

Vacancy for (OBIS) biodiversity database manager

Post title

Programme specialist



Organizational unit

UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC)



Duty station

IOC Project Office for IODE/OBIS, New Brunswick, NJ, USA







Main responsibilities

Under the general supervision of the Executive Secretary IOC, and under the particular supervision of the Head of the IOC Project Office for IODE (Oostende, Belgium), the incumbent will manage the “Ocean Biogeographic Information System” (OBIS) and its IOC Project Office for IODE/OBIS located at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, United States of America.
The incumbent will specifically:

  1. Coordinate the planning and implementation of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) including oversight of the OBIS database and related products/services, administration, organization of meetings and training courses, drafting of contracts and agreements, preparation of financial and technical reports as required by UNESCO/IOC and donors/sponsors;
  2. Actively promote OBIS through up-to-date web sites, brochures as well as participation in relevant scientific and technical events, representing UNESCO/IOC;
  3. Closely liaise and coordinate with other IOC programmes and projects, as well as with other organizations and bodies, as relevant to OBIS;
  4. Seek extra-budgetary funding to complement available UNESCO and extra-budgetary resources.



Qualification and experience

  1. Advanced university degree (equivalent of a Masters degree) in earth science (preferably marine science);
  2. Not less than 7-10 years of progressively responsible relevant experience, of which preferably 3-5 years has been acquired at the international level;
  3. Excellent inter-personal skills;
  4. Proven experience in planning, implementation and evaluation of projects/programmes;
  5. Aptitude to work under pressure and tight deadlines, as well as flexibility to adjust work schedules according to needs;
  6. Proven coordination, communication and interpersonal skills including the ability to constructively interact with the scientific community as well as government representatives and other officials;
  7. Proven experience in resource mobilization;
  8. Excellent command of the English language. Knowledge of a second UNESCO/IOC working language (French, Spanish, Russian) will be an asset;
  9. Skills and effectiveness in written and oral communication and presentation.
  10. Familiarity with UNESCO administrative procedures is desirable.




The successful candidate should be able to demonstrate the following competencies:

  1. Ability to work on multiple activities;
  2. Capacity to work in team and in a multicultural environment;
  3. Ability to take initiatives and maintain effective working relationships with partners of different nationalities and cultural backgrounds;
  4. Ability to communicate effectively and persuasively, orally and in writing;
  5. Organizational skills with an ability to implement work plans.



Conditions of employment

The post is an Assignment of Limited Duration (ALD) of, initially 1 (one) year at grade P-4A, and may be extended for a continuous period not exceeding 3 years subject to renewal, exceptionally, for a final period of one year, which may not be extended. Extensions are subject to project funds availability. The ALD does not carry any expectancy of renewal or conversion to any other type of appointment common to the United Nations system, with a salary composed of base salary, service allowance  and post adjustment which, at the present dollar exchange rate, totals approximately US$102 000 (without dependants) or US$110 000 (with dependants) per annum before deductions to Pension and Medical Benefits Fund, exempt from taxation. In addition, UNESCO offers an attractive benefits package, including 30 days’ annual vacation, pension plan and medical insurance. Please note that UNESCO is a non-smoking Organization. The post is expected to start in January 2012.



How to apply

Candidates wishing to apply for this post should apply by email, sending a full curriculum vitae in English or French, preferably on the official attached, showing their nationality, date/place of birth and gender, and a letter or application to: Peter Pissierssens; Email: p.pissierssens@unesco.org
UNESCO/IOC Project Office for IODE, Wandelaarkaai 7/61, 8400 Oostende, Belgium


1 November 2011


UNESCO is committed to gender equality in its programming and to gender parity within the Secretariat.
Therefore, women candidates are strongly encouraged to apply, as well as nationals from non- and under-represented Member States. Persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply.



Back to Main E-mail Archive Page