Africa Manager, Blue Nature Alliance
Conservation International protects nature for the benefit of humanity. Through science, policy, fieldwork, and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, biodiversity, and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples, and local communities to help people and nature thrive together.
POSITION SUMMARY – This position is based in South Africa, Nairobi – Kenya, or Monrovia – Liberia
The International Union for Conservation of Nature recommends that countries strongly protect 30% of every habitat by 2030. The Pew Charitable Trusts, Conservation International, the Global Environment Facility, Minderoo Foundation, and the Rob and Melanie Walton Foundation have partnered to form the Blue Nature Alliance, with the aim to catalyze the conservation of 18 million square kilometers of the ocean (approximately 5 percent of the global ocean). Working alongside partners, the Alliance’s scope of work is truly global and aims to protect global ocean biodiversity, build resilience to climate change, promote human wellbeing, and enhance ecosystem connectivity and function. In addition to partnering with local champions to secure the designation of new and expanded ocean conservation areas, the Alliance works to strengthen the management and durability of existing ocean conservation areas and upgrade their protections where needed. The Blue Nature Alliance Africa Manager will be part of a collaborative, dynamic global team comprised of staff from both The Pew Charitable Trusts and Conservation International, that aims to make an outsized impact on the ocean.
The Africa Manager, Blue Nature Alliance will support Regional Officers to conduct scoping for potential new site engagements and provide management oversight for approved investments in implementation. The Africa Manager will be the primary conduit for the Alliance communication with partners in potential and approved site engagements across Africa, initially backstopping the contractors that have led Alliance engagements in Africa to date as they transition to a new role. The Africa Manager will conduct desktop assessments and cultivate new relationships and opportunities in the Africa region. They will conduct scoping of these opportunities and develop engagement strategies for Alliance investment. The Africa Manager will maintain updated records and documents throughout scoping, grant-making, and implementation of Alliance site engagements and facilitate the provision of technical support to grantees from the Alliance team and partners to ensure success for assigned engagements. The Africa Manager will manage select partner relationships and provide technical oversight of grantees and contractors to ensure success for assigned engagements. The Manager may also provide technical expertise and guidance to other site engagements and partners as needed.
Cultivation of New Relationships and Scope Site Engagement Opportunities:
- In partnership with Regional Officers, develop and nurture strong relationships with key government staff, community and civil society leadership in the African region.
- In partnership with these leaders, generate ideas for area-based ocean conservation at scale within target countries in the region, including the creation of new marine protected areas; catalytic investments in existing marine protected areas to improve effectiveness, design, and trialing of innovative models for area-based ocean conservation.
- Conduct desktop assessments for potential new engagements, including documenting publicly available information on the biological, economic, and cultural significance of sites; threats to biodiversity; existing governance systems and use, partner dynamics, etc.
- Develop and maintain (updating as necessary) scoping documents for target sites, detailing opportunities for potential investments, political will, significance, achievability, leverage potential, and local engagement based on notes from scoping meetings and workshops conducted by Regional Officers.
- Regularly communicate with the Blue Nature Alliance site engagements team and leadership on emerging opportunities and changing priorities to inform the identification of sites for engagement design.
Support the Development of Engagement Frameworks and Grant Agreements:
- Maintain documentation of Alliance scoping, engagement framework endorsement, and grant agreement processes for assigned engagements.
- Support identified partners to prepare grant-making documents (work plan, budget, safeguards packet) as needed.
- Facilitate grant agreement development and finalization with grantees and Alliance Grants Manager.
Site engagement implementation and grant management:
- Drive implementation of engagement frameworks and ensure success for assigned site engagements.
- Maintain regular contact with select partners to ensure effective delivery of site engagements.
- Conduct periodic site visits to monitor the implementation progress of the grants.
- Review grantee reports and make adjustment recommendations to implementing partners and Regional Officers as appropriate.
- Work with Blue Nature Alliance site engagement team to identify technical gaps and troubleshoot challenges, and coordinate the provision of technical support from Alliance team members and partners as needed.
- Provide direct technical support as needed to advance site-based objectives and to build local capacity.
- Provide updates for assigned sites for Alliance newsletters, communications materials, and reports.
Other duties as assigned by supervisor.
- Frequent international travel anticipated, including to remote locations. Travel may cross weekends and, on occasion, holidays to accommodate meeting schedules. Work hours may be irregular.
- Guidance on flexible work arrangements will be shared during the interview process.
- Bachelor’s degree and 4 to 6 years of professional experience in the African region.
- Strong written and verbal communication skills.
- Project management experience
- Demonstrated ability to work effectively in diverse cultural contexts
- Comfortable managing multiple duties and adapting to changing priorities in a fast-paced teamwork environment.
- Ability to work under general supervision and take initiative to solve problems under supervision
- Highly organized with solid attention to detail
- Passion for nature and preferably the ocean.
- Demonstrated experience in developing partnerships and strategies to deliver greater impact.
- Technical knowledge of ocean policy, science, and/or Marine Protected Areas.
- Experience working internationally with a diverse set of stakeholders, including government and communities, in collaborative and respectful ways.
- Strong interpersonal skills. Able to develop and manage productive relationships with colleagues, consultants, partners, and others who contribute to the Alliance.
- Expertise relating to Indigenous perspectives.
- Fluency in Portuguese and/or French.
To apply for this position please submit a resume and cover letter.
See all Conservation International Career Opportunities HERE
Conservation International is an equal opportunity, affirmative action, and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility-committed employer. We are proud to have a diverse, global workforce where employment decisions are based on qualifications, experience, position requirements, business needs, market conditions, merit, and other legitimate nondiscriminatory factors.