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Head of Programme, Marine Environment

GRID-Arendal is a Norwegian foundation, established in 1989 to support the United Nations Environment Programme. Our strength is on the translation of complex science to policy action, building global capacity for good environmental management. We are seeking a strong leader to serve as our Head of Programme for the Marine Environment Programme. The Marine Environment Programme is a team of highly qualified and skilled experts, who deliver impactful marine projects across the globe, with a particular focus on building capacity to ensure a healthy marine environment. The Programme works closely with the United Nations Environment Programme and other partners to deliver work that results in:

  • Coastal developing states practice ecosystem-based integrated ocean management within strong regional policy frameworks
  • Nature-based solutions in marine and coastal environments are incorporated into national actions and policy, and
  • National governments adopt a sustainable blue economy approach that leads to enhanced prosperity, increased social equity, and healthy natural ecosystems

As the Head of Programme you will provide strategic leadership and supervision to staff in the Marine Environment Programme. You will be responsible for growing and developing the team to deliver against the strategic goals of the programme, which contribute to the overall GRID-Arendal strategic plan. You will work closely with Norad, Norwegian Government Ministries and UNEP to ensure the strategic alignment of our work. You will foster cooperation with external partners to deliver on our work programme.

You will be responsible for the programme budget and the successful delivery of all projects within the Programme. You will coordinate the development of an annual work plan with your team and be responsible for reporting progress and impact of our work to our key donors. In coordination with the Chief Scientist, you will ensure the high quality of all products produced from your team, and provide peer review of other products from within the organisation.

This is a 100% permanent position based at our Head office in Arendal, Norway.

Qualifications & Skills

  • Minimum of a Master’s degree or equivalent in environmental or natural sciences and minimum 15 years work experience
  • Proven track record in successfully leading teams to deliver large complex projects which have real impact
  • Experience with marine governance related issues, including integrated ocean management, blue economy, and marine policy
  • Demonstrated fundraising skills and experience in the development of successful project proposals
  • Experience in working with the UN system, national government and/or regional agencies, preferably with experience working with developing countries.
  • Excellent language proficiency in English, in particular strong competence in producing and editing high quality written communications.
  • Working knowledge of other UN languages and/or Norwegian is considered an advantage.

Personal qualifications required:

  • Excellent leadership skills to get the best out of everyone in your team
  • Ability to provide strategic leadership in the field of marine and coastal conservation and sustainable development
  • Dedication, creative energy, initiative, innovative thinking
  • Good networking ability and diplomatic skills
  • Ability to work in a multi-lingual, multi-cultural environment
  • Ability to perform multiple tasks in fast-paced situations and consistently meet deadlines
  • High standards of personal and professional integrity


GRID-Arendal’s salary system is linked to the Norwegian Government salary system. It is based on education and experience. Salaries are subject to Norwegian tax regulations. Insurance and personal benefits are provided in addition to salary.

Deadline for applications: 22nd November 2021

Starting date: 1st January 2022 or negotiable

Application should include a cover letter and Curriculum Vitae. Please send your application by email to: hr@grida.no and mark in the subject “Head of Programme – Marine Environment”

For more information, please contact miles.macmillan-lawler@grida.no

Starting date: 2022-01-01

Position type: Permanent

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