British High Commission Jobs in South Africa - Policy and Programme Officer Vacancies

British High Commission Jobs in South Africa - Policy and Programme Officer Vacancies

Main purpose of job:

South Africa is the world’s 14th largest Greenhouse gas emitter and its state electricity provider, Eskom, is one of the top emitting power companies.

The South African Government’s and Eskom’s leadership opened the door to the launch of the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) at COP26 in November 2021 by the governments of South Africa, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, along with the European Union (International Partners Group-IPG).

The Partnership aims to accelerate the decarbonisation of South Africa’s economy to help it achieve the ambitious goals set out in South Africa’s updated Nationally Determined Contribution.

All of which makes this an exciting opportunity to contribute to a top international priority that will have real world impact and address a major contributor to climate change.

It is a massive endeavour – following the publication at COP27 of South Africa’s Just Energy Transition Investment Plan, work is now underway on the technical design and content of a South Africa Implementation Plan, helping ensure the $8.5bn of funding committed by the IPG is able to flow.

With the UK acting as the co-ordinator of the International Partners Group, we have a key role to play in ensuring strong, coherent and coordinated engagement with our South African partners and more broadly to sustain political and technical momentum.

We are looking for a brilliant and enthusiastic Officer (HEO level) to be part of a small team in BHC Pretoria. The role will be line managed by the Policy Adviser (Grade 7) in the team. The post holder will work to that position, as well as the Head of Team (Grade 6). The post holder will work with colleagues in the UK including technical specialists, colleagues across the High Commission, and liaise with wider Africa Directorate and teams across the UK government with interests in South Africa and the climate change agenda. Your role will primarily focus on:

  • Ensuring targeted and effective delivery of the UK’s bilateral Official Development Assistance funding

  • Enabling effective coordination across the UK government and between the International Partners Group

  • Engaging with external partners and identifying communications opportunities

    Roles and responsibilities:

    UK in South Africa is committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace – our vision statement is that ‘We are a diverse and inclusive workplace where all are respected, trusted, appreciated and empowered’. We hope you will play your part in delivering this inclusive culture.

    In this role you will be responsible for:

  • Management of the UK’s overall JETP contribution but also our bilateral £5m official development assistance funding. This will require working with the Programme Responsible Officer and the Senior Responsible Officer to ensure delivery in line with the business case and best practice for programme management. In practice this means delivering, monitoring and evaluating projects and close work with external implementing partners and robust contract management.

  • Set direction and deliver key meetings on the JETP, including with the South African government. This will require a strong network of contacts and include supporting management of the UK’s role as chair of the International Partners Group to ensure the IPG and friends are
    kept up to date with information and coordination of technical working groups, setting direction and managing Director led meetings across the FCDO, and setting meetings, agendas, keeping minutes, and distribution lists for various liaison groups.

  • Provide written briefings and policy advice to a wide range of stakeholders in the UK government, based in both South Africa and the UK, ahead of visits by Ministers and senior officials. This involves ensuring political engagement by Ministers and senior officials are shaped to deliver UK priorities through impactful briefing and visit programmes, and working with teams in the UK to ensure the UK Minister for Africa and Minister for Environment is kept up to speed through briefings and liaising with Private Office on priorities. You will also lead on and own core scripts and help to deliver presentations.

  • Developing our communications approach to enable clear and effective inward HMG facing, and outward facing information about JETP. Similarly, developing our approach to stakeholder engagement, e.g. public and parliamentary groups by working closely with the communications team, colleagues in the UK and teams across the High Commission to identify communications activities, and proactively engage with external stakeholders.

  • Maintaining information management systems. This will require you to work across government to collect and share information on the progress of the JETP to ensure information management systems are kept up to date.

    Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

    No staff. Role will include programme management of the £5m JETP programme.

    Essential qualifications, skills and experience

  • Familiarity with Excel, Word and Microsoft Teams

  • Experience managing information systems to a high standard and sharing information across a number of stakeholders

  • Excellent written and verbal communications

  • Ability to explain complex political and technical issues in an accessible and concise manner

  • Proven record of effective written communication

  • Excellent English language skills including excellent writing and drafting skills

  • Proven ability to quickly get to grips with new issues, and juggle and prioritise competing priorities, consistently delivering quality results at pace

  • An inclusive and collaborative attitude that shows respect for different backgrounds, approaches, inputs and levels of seniority

  • A positive “can do” attitude, enthusiastic proactivity and pragmatic willingness to proactively get stuck into a complicated agenda with lots of relationships. Ability to look beyond potentially mundane daily actions to understand their criticality, and how they enable our ability to deliver a larger HMG and international priority

    Desirable qualifications, skills and experience

  • Experience of programme management and oversight

  • Experience dealing with climate change related issues

  • Knowledge of causes and impacts of climate change

  • Experience working with a diverse range stakeholders and across multiple countries

    How to Apply

    For more information and job application details, see; British High Commission Jobs in South Africa - Policy and Programme Officer Vacancies

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