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WWF in Namibia seeks a Wildlife Advisor

bit2Big > Africa News > WWF in Namibia seeks a Wildlife Advisor

Reports to:          KAZA Team Leader; Country Director, WWF in Namibia
Job Family:          Programme
Career Level:          Mid-level professional 
Location: Namibia, with support to the surrounding countries of Angola, Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe
Supervise: Transboundary technical and administrative support staff, consultants, and grants
FLSA Status : TBD
Duration : 3-5 year position

I. Background:

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has been operating in Namibia for over 25 years.  It works to support the Namibian government, Namibian organisations and Namibian communities to protect the country’s natural resources, while at the same time seeking ways where Namibians can benefit from a sustainable, nature-based economy.  WWF Namibia has a focused on a number of high-level strategies; one of its largest is the Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (KAZA) trans-frontier Conservation (TFCA),  which extends into Angola, Zambia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.

WWF has been contributing to the foundation of effective transboundary conservation in southern Africa for over 15 years, supporting a range of relevant conservation activities especially in KAZA, including: park management and planning, game counts and census methodologies, sustainable use of wildlife, regional and country species management plans, market-based conservation, conservation planning and monitoring, conservation policy reform, and some of the world’s most successful community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) programmes. 

The appointment of a Senior Transboundary Conservation Planning Advisor in 2011 initiated WWF’s formal support and contributions to the then fledgling KAZA TFCA. This support has included the establishment and management of a number of innovative and progressive transboundary wildlife initiatives, including the development and approval of KAZA carnivore and elephant conservation strategies, and the development of the KAZA M&E System, each accompanied by formal sub-working groups within the KAZA structures. During this timeframe, WWF facilitated a number of law enforcement and other species conservation workshops, and supported the planning and organisation of the first KAZA Symposium, all achieved largely via WWF grants successfully managed on the basis of exceptional working relationships with the KAZA Secretariat, KAZA Country representatives, and NGOs that support KAZA.

WWF’s significant and substantial support to KAZA has led to a larger programme of conservation work underpinned by a new WWF Network KAZA Strategy encompassing all three WWF Country Offices, and led by a WWF KAZA Team Leader (KAZA TL) appointed in late 2018. This development has been accompanied by the creation of conservation practices within the WWF Network of which the Wildlife Practice is one among six, the others being Oceans, Freshwater, Food, Forests and Climate. Based upon the growth of KAZA, and the increasing number of ongoing WWF-supported and broad-based transboundary conservation initiatives and activities aligned to the relevant Practices, there is now a need for a specific WWF KAZA Wildlife Advisor, a technical position to co-ordinate, nurture, and manage WWF’s increased role in transboundary conservation efforts focused on wildlife and community conservation, ensuring closely collaboration with other transboundary stakeholders on wildlife and CBNRM activities of common interest. 

  1. Major Functions

The KAZA Wildlife Advisor (KWA) will co-ordinate and liaise with all stakeholders involved with WWF supported transboundary activities relating primarily (but not exclusively) to wildlife, and CBNRM. The KWA will ensure WWF transboundary activities are done in synergy with the KAZA TFCA structures and other related projects, such as the USAID-funded Combatting Wildlife Crime Project (CWCP) thereby allowing WWF-led activities to contribute to the long-term success of other important regional initiatives.  Working closely with the KAZA TL, s/he will provide leadership in WWF’s wildlife contributions to transboundary conservation and large-landscape related planning. Through the KAZA TL, the KWA will be responsible for co-ordinating with WWF National Organisations, e.g. WWF-Germany, Netherland, Norway, US, UK and others, WWF Country Offices in Zambia and Zimbabwe, Regional of Africa (ROA) as appropriate, and other conservation partners. Planning and reporting responsibilities for transboundary activities for which the KWA is responsible will be through the KAZA TL, and in turn, the Namibia Country Director (CD). The KAZA Wildlife Advisor will work closely with the Wildlife Program Coordinator at WWF Namibia and WWF in KAZA focal points in the WWF Zambia  and Zimbabwe offices.

  1. Major Duties & Responsibilities

Conservation Planning for Wildlife:

  • Facilitate and serve as WWF’s primary liaison on matters related to transboundary conservation planning for wildlife.
  • Refine identification of priority biologically significant areas requiring improved conservation of freshwater and terrestrial biodiversity and integrate into conservation planning models with respect to wildlife needs.
  • Work with national government institutions and participating NGOs to identify existing species plans and planning processes, review these plans, and provide advice on how they could be integrated into a larger conservation planning process.
  • Co-ordinate the development of wildlife-based transboundary conservation planning frameworks and strategies (i.e. integration of CBNRM, protected area management, market-led conservation, climate change, etc). 
  • Provide WWF lead and inputs in the development of transboundary species management plans, including implementation of components of the Strategic Planning Framework for the Conservation and Management of Elephants in the KAZA TFCA.
  • Oversee WWF-supported transboundary wildlife research activities, especially those relating to corridor and connectivity studies, ensuring integration of such activities with ongoing programs and policy needs of partner governments in synergy with conservation biology NGOs and CBO organisations.
  • Co-ordinate the logistical organisation and facilitation of WWF-sponsored workshops and meetings related to conservation planning, including identification of attendees, preparation of agendas, development of technical materials, and meeting reports.
  • Assist and advise on the development and implementation of transboundary wildlife census and monitoring methodologies and activities, both ground and aerially based.
  • Work with the KAZA Impact Monitoring cross-cutting Working Group to further refine the KAZA Spatial Monitoring Tool, and in particular ensuring the robustness of data collection and input.
  • Provide general advice and assistance on wildlife related issues as required. 

Landscape Planning for Wildlife

  • Serve as WWF’s wildlife advisor to regional integrated landscape planning processes and stakeholders mandated to promote regional large landscape planning, e.g. KAZA Secretariat, SADC TFCA Network, Peace Parks Foundation (PPF), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), etc.
  • In relation to wildlife, water and people, work with government and other stakeholders to identify and review existing plans and planning processes for the Okavango-Kwandu-Linyanti-Chobe-Zambezi landscapes.
  • Work towards integrating such plans into larger integrated landscape planning processes.
  • Together with the KAZA TL, co-ordinate WWF’s inputs into the development of a landscape planning framework/ strategy, and facilitate the adoption of a framework/strategy by key stakeholders and partners as a guide to the development of a landscape plan.
  • Assess existing information and data and identify gaps. Collaborate with other organisations in the region having relevant databases, e.g. PPF. Work with the KAZA Impact Monitoring (KIM) WG and the WWF Namibia and Germany GIS Specialists on the collection and easy-access storage of data from various entities.
  • Co-ordinate the organisation of WWF workshops and meetings related to landscape planning including identifying attendees, and preparing the agendas, technical materials, and meeting reports.

CBNRM

  • Manage the process of training CBOs and NGOs on harmonised systems for CBO governance and NRM (includes consultant selection and management).
  • Facilitate synergies between identified regional projects, bodies and structures in relation to sharing of regional CBNRM best practices and lessons learned, and promotion of linkages between relevant networks, e.g. the SADC TFCA Network.
  • Co-ordinate with and assist WWF grantees and partners (targeted NGO service providers where appropriate) in Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe with project support on relevant CBNRM practices. 
  • Encourage and facilitate community engagement as the frontline of defence in combatting wildlife crime.
  • Collaborate with KAZA stakeholders to facilitate and support the undertaking of regional study tours and/or sharing of regional CBNRM best practices.

Other

  • Maintain regular communications with KAZA Secretariat, NGO and government partners on regional conservation and landscape planning activities. 
  • Prepare (or supervise) reports and other communication related to WWF investments in relation to transboundary conservation activities. Also maintain regular contact with the WWF in KAZA  Communication Manager. 
  • Oversee the identification, development, management, and implementation of transboundary grant agreements to WWF transboundary NGO partners, KAZA Secretariat, WWF Country Offices and their KAZA Co-ordinators.
  • Co-ordinate and liaise closely, through the KAZA TL on WWF National Organisations on transboundary fund-raising, planning, and reporting.
  • Supervise and train technical staff within the KAZA program, the WWF COs of Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia, the KAZA Secretariat and especially Namibian Government, NGO partners and communities, including training and mentorship with regard to wildlife management, protection and value addition.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the KAZA TL and/or the Country Director, WWF in Namibia.
  • Represent WWF at meetings or on committees as required by the KAZA TL and/or the Country Director, WWF in Namibia.
  • Serve as the WWF KAZA focal point to the Wildlife Practice on behalf of the WWF offices in Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

IV. Minimum Requirements

  1. Education/Experience: A minimum of a Master’s degree (ideally a PhD or equivalent) in a relevant field such as biological sciences, natural resources management, animal health or international development is required. Extensive field experience in Africa is necessary.   Position requires five to 10 years of experience in biological conservation, natural resources management including CBNRM, international development or related field with demonstrated success in developing and managing complex conservation projects, as well as proposal writing for such projects.  Experience in landscape planning process is critical.  Proven ability, experience and interpersonal skill in networking with governments, international conservation organisations, donors and stakeholders is required.  Knowledge of WWF planning and reporting procedures, standards, and fund-raising processes are added value.
  1. Skills and Abilities:
  • Proven ability to direct the formulation of complex conservation projects. 
  • Desirable:  experience and or qualifications in the immobilization of wildlife  and deployment of telemetry equipment
  • Excellent writing abilities and strong organisational skills. 
  • Proposal writing skills for both multilateral and private donors. 
  • Administrative and project management experience is essential, along with diplomatic skills and a desire to work in multi-cultural and national frameworks.
  • Ability to analyse, prioritise, complete work with minimal supervision, and meet deadlines.  
  • Ability to facilitate the work of others, take initiative, use independent judgment, and work effectively as a member of a team.  
  • Proven ability to train professional staff and to provide technical support to the KAZA Secretariat  and especially Namibian Government, NGO partners and communities including training and mentorship with regard to wildlife management, protection and value addition.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English are required; basic understanding of Portuguese and/or Afrikaans would be an added advantage.

Applications can be sent to [email protected] 

Closing date: March 26.

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