National Project Manager

UNDP - United Nations Development Programme, Lilongwe, Malawi

Skill Required:, Project/ Programme Management
Preferred Experience: 
5 years
Closing Date for Applications: 
14th September, 2018

Job Description


The implementation of the Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals is starting on 1st September 2018. EPD, UNDP and the UNDP-UN Environment PEA are seeking a national project manager to ensure that the activities related to the project will be fulfilled in a timely manner in accordance with the PEA workplan

The majority of the population in Malawi depends on natural resources for subsistence and income. Thus, unsustainable use of these resources makes it harder to achieve food security, poverty reduction and other national development priorities. This also compromises the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Consistent with this, the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS) III includes ‘Agriculture, Water Development and Climate Change Management’ as one of the key priority areas as well as Environment and Natural Resources Management’ as another development area of focus.

The UNDP/UN Environment/FAO/UN Women supported Malawi Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals (PEA) aims to enhance the contribution of the sustainable management of natural resources to poverty reduction, sustainable economic growth, food security and broader achievement of the SDGs. The PEA is led by the Department for Economic Planning and Development (EPD) in collaboration with Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining (MoNREM), UNDP Malawi, FAO Malawi, UN Women Malawi and the Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals. Other key partners include Ministry of Finance (MOF), Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC), Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD), Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MOLGRD) and other relevant sector ministries.

The intended outcome of the Malawi PEA is the sustainable and inclusive natural resource management to improve agricultural productivity for poverty reduction, strengthened gender equality and expanded climate resilience. The impact will help to improve soil fertility, agricultural and fisheries productivity, ecosystem health, and food security for women and men through catalyzing investments in more sustainable practices, and thereby improve people’s livelihoods and climate resilience.

The Project Manager’s (PM) prime responsibility is to ensure that the project produces, the results specified in the Poverty Actions for SDGs (PEA) project document meet the required standard of quality and within the specified constraints of time and cost. As such, the PM will be responsible for the overall management of the project, including the implementation of all project inputs; supervision over project staff, consultants and sub-contractors; and acting as a liaison with the Government, UNDP, private sector partners and other stakeholders, and maintaining close collaboration with any donor agencies providing co-financing. The PM will report to the Project Steering Committee (PSC) on overall progress of project activities. For on-going administrative and reporting functions, the PM will be responsible to the Director of Planning in EPD for administrative, financial and technical matters. The Project Manager will be based at the offices of the Economic Planning and Development in Lilongwe, Malawi. The Project Manager also will be supported by an international Technical Advisor, UNDP Malawi and the UNDP-UN Environment PEA staff in Nairobi, as well as by national and international experts and organisations taking the lead in the implementation of the specific technical assistance components of the project. These services, either of individual consultants or under sub-contacts with consulting companies, will be procured in accordance with applicable UNDP/UNEP/PEF guidelines.

Duties and Responsibilities

Project Management and Implementation

  • Supervise and coordinate the production of project outputs, as per the project document;
  • Mobilise all project inputs in accordance with procedures for nationally implemented projects;
  • Lead the preparation of consultants’ and sub-contractors’ terms of reference, identification and selection of national and international sub-contractors/consultants, cost estimation, time scheduling, contracting, and reporting on project activities and budget, and supervise and coordinate the work of all consultants and sub-contractors;
  • In close liaison with the project coordinator at EP&D, prepare and revise project work and financial plans;
  • Liaise with relevant government agencies, private sector partners, and all other partners for effective coordination of all project activities;
  • Report progress of project to the PSC, and ensure the fulfilment of PSC directives.
  • Oversee the exchange and sharing of experiences and lessons learned with relevant projects nationally and internationally;
  • Ensure the timely and effective implementation of all components of the project;
  • Assist relevant government agencies and implementing partners with development of essential skills through training workshops and on the job training, thereby upgrading their institutional capabilities;
  • Ensure that monitoring and evaluation of project activities takes place, including organisation of reporting meetings;
  • Ensure engagement and collaboration with development partners and ensure donor reporting requirements are met.
  • Produce quarterly progress and annual reports to EPD and the UNDP-UN Environment PEA focused on capturing results, learning lessons and documenting best practices in order to improve project performances.
  • Keep in close contact with UNDP Malawi and the UNDP-UN Environment Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals focal point in Nairobi to ensure that the UNDP-UN Environment PEA is kept up-to-date on project progress and problems encountered.
  • Collaborative skills and open communication including contributing to papers, briefs, and various reports related to the project;
  • Play the lead role in coordinating expert inputs that are provided by international and national consultants for project implementation, in coordinating technical inputs for major project events in developing partnerships with relevant parties as well as in building information/knowledge networks
  • Provide technical inputs to improve the integration of environment in the existing development planning processes in the country to accelerate attainment of ENR related SDGs.
  • Provide financial oversight and undertake day-to-day supervision of the Finance and Administrative Assistant;
  • Perform other duties related to the project that may be requested
  • Take lead in initiating new partnerships with private sector and CSOs

Maintain links with the UNCT donor partners and international poverty and environment community in collaboration with Technical Advisor

  • Facilitate linkages between Malawi PEA and PEA programmes in other countries to identify opportunities for lesson learning between countries;
  • Ensure that the Malawi PEA participates in activities of the global UNDP-UN Environment PEA;
  • Ensure that the Malawi PEA is informed by international best practice and identify opportunities for Malawi PEA Management Team to participate in international fora on poverty and environment;
  • Present the Malawi PEA project to other donors with a view to mobilizing additional funds.
  • Engagement and collaboration with Development Partners
  • Engagement with large programmes and initiatives (NAIP, NRS, MNSSP II, etc)


Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in degree with specialisation in development, agriculture, or natural resource economics, planning or environmental management
  • Minimum of 5 years working experience in the area of development, including poverty reduction.
  • Proven experience in project management.
  • Proven experience in national or sectoral development planning processes or environmental policy and management;
  • Knowledge and working experience in Malawi related to environment, poverty and development issues and processes;
  • Strong background in planning and budgeting; knowledge of UNDP project management systems is an advantage;
  • Strong financial oversight management skills
  • Strong team working skills and willingness to travel;
  • Excellent communication skills with ability to express ideas clearly, logically and effectively, both orally and in writing.
  • Demonstrable collaborative and open communication skills with strong written and verbal communication skills in English;
  • Experience in the use of computer and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc)


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