Skip to content

40-006 | (Senior) Economist, Climate Change Adaptation

  • Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
€500 - €500 per month40 I Research

Job description

VACANCY TITLE: Climate Change Adaptation Economist / Senior Economist


LOCATION: Netherlands or Kenya


START DATE: As soon as possible



The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) is seeking an innovative and multi skilled candidate to join its offices in Groningen or Rotterdam in The Netherlands or in Nairobi, Kenya as a Climate Change Adaptation Economist.

GCA is a leading international organization dedicated to addressing climate change and promoting adaptation action for resilient development. We collaborate with governments, International Financial Institutions (IFIs), businesses, and communities to develop and implement innovative solutions that strengthen resilience and support adaptation to climate change impacts.


Join us as we grow our Research for Impact team, offering a pivotal role for experienced, creative, and highly motivated Climate Change Adaptation Economist. This role presents a unique opportunity to shape the future of climate adaptation, driving transformative change and making a lasting impact on global climate resilience. At GCA, you will have the freedom to innovate and the support to bring your ideas to life. We are on a mission to enhance global climate resilience. If you are excited about contributing to something impactful and building a sustainable future, we would love to have you on board.

GCA’s strategy in Africa is implemented under the flagship Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP), launched by GCA and the African Development Bank (AfDB) to scale up adaptation efforts and mobilize finance for climate-resilient development in Africa. To date, GCA has integrated adaptation solutions into $9 billion worth of investments funded by IFIs across Africa. GCA’s work under the AAAP focuses on four pillars where investments in adaptation and resilience building can yield high economic dividends for African nations, including: Food security; Infrastructure and Nature-based Solutions; Youth entrepreneurship and adaptation jobs; and Adaptation finance.

The Climate Change Adaptation Economist will play a key role in leading GCA's Research for Impact (R4I) work to pursue a high-quality research agenda in one or several areas pertinent to GCA, such as food security, resilient infrastructure, adaptation jobs, and/or structural economic transformation for climate prosperity. Furthermore, you will also provide intellectual leadership to the rest of the organization, including by providing input to strengthen GCA’s project design, provide inputs into policy dialogue and briefing notes, and to serve as a senior in-house advisor on technical issues pertinent to the economics of adaptation.

One area of focus in the first year will be on developing systems-based methodologies and tools for sustainable and resilient infrastructure development (from systems to asset level) in response to climate adaptation needs and support related finance program work. You will delve into the critical linkages between infrastructure disruption and broader societal dimensions such as food security, livelihoods, and overall wellbeing. Your expertise will be key in identifying how infrastructure resilience directly affects community resilience, uncovering complex interdependencies and providing actionable insights for resilience strategies. Through your research you will play a significant role in comprehending and articulating the effects that infrastructure disruption or development can have on societal stability and progress with respect to climate adaptation.


We are seeking a Climate Change Adaptation Economist to undertake critical economic and environmental modeling related to climate change, its impacts, and the effectiveness of adaptation policies. This role demands a special focus on Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) and Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) models, applied in the analysis of climate policy implications and macroeconomic climate strategies. Ideal candidates will possess an advanced degree in economics, environmental or climate economics, finance, or a related field, combined with a solid foundation in CGE or DSGE modeling.

As the Climate Change Adaptation Economist, you will lead projects assessing and enhancing the robustness of adaptation investments in food, infrastructure, cities, and other sectors in the face of natural hazards and climate risks. Your work will inform climate policies and adaptation strategies, and you will collaborate with internal teams and external partners to accelerate adaptation in Africa, Asia, and Small Island Developments (SIDSs). You will provide technical expertise, guidance and support to project developers, governments, and other stakeholders in accessing and mobilizing finance for adaptation activities.

Additionally, you will also mentor other GCA staff, promoting the creation of innovative models, tools, and scientific outputs, nurturing an environment that values knowledge exchange and pioneering thought.

Areas of responsibility:

  • Interdisciplinary Research and Synthesis: Conducting policy-relevant research on macro-climate issues for developing adaptation strategies, specifically focusing on resilient infrastructure development at various scales, and assessing their impact at scale.
  • Developing economic models (CGE or DSGE) with a focus on climate change, environmental economics, and policy impacts.
  • Engaging in climate risk analysis, stress testing, and the economic evaluation of climate resilience and adaptation measures.
  • Collaborating on interdisciplinary research projects, providing expertise in climate impact assessment, sustainable infrastructure development, and adaptation strategy evaluation and financing.
  • Contributing to the creation and implementation of climate policies.
  • Impact Assessment and Quantification: Undertaking sophisticated analyses that link the technical and financial aspects of infrastructure projects, quantifying vulnerabilities and risks to guide mitigation and adaptation strategies, thus enabling GCA’s strategic priorities and actions.
  • Integration and Implementation Advisory for Program Support: Building and enhancing strategic partnerships with internal and external stakeholders, synthesizing insights from infrastructure and economic resilience to support to influence international financial strategies for climate adaptation. Providing multifaceted expertise to GCA’s program teams, ensuring that infrastructure projects incorporate robust economic resilience measures and adaptation strategies.
  • Policy Interface and Advisory: Generating high-quality knowledge products, synthesizing research findings into actionable insights for both technical and non-technical audiences. Providing expert scientific advice to policymakers and stakeholders, translating complex scientific findings into actionable climate policy and adaptation strategies. Engaging in high-level policy discussions and contributing to key reports such as GCA’s flagship report on State and Trends in Adaptation, adaptation gap reports, and IPCC assessments.
  • Technical Quality Assurance: Assessing the technical quality of both internal and external reports, as well as thoroughly review Requests for Proposals (RfPs) to ensure accuracy, comprehensiveness, and adherence to GCA's high standards. Through meticulous evaluation and detailed feedback, you will play a crucial role in upholding and enhancing GCA's reputation for delivering research and proposals that are impactful and of the highest quality.

Job requirements

  • An advanced degree (Master’s/PhD) in economics, environmental or climate economics, finance, urban planning, civil engineering, or related fields with a strong focus on sustainability and resilience.
  • Bring at least 10 years of professional experience in climate research and advisory.
  • Profound knowledge of climate impact assessment, sustainable infrastructure development, and adaptation strategy evaluation.
  • Experience with economic modeling and cost-benefit analysis in relation to infrastructure and environmental change.
  • A solid foundation in statistical analysis, particularly as applied to large data sets concerning environmental, social, and economic variables.
  • A distinguished publication record demonstrating thought leadership in climate adaptation and resilience research.
  • A history of engagement with policy development processes, providing evidence-based recommendations for climate resilience.
  • Adept in both academic and policy dialogue, with a proven record of influential presentations and reports. Exhibit the capability to distill and communicate complex scientific information to audiences without specialized knowledge.
  • Excellent communication skills, with the ability to work across teams and multi-stakeholder initiatives.
  • Fluent in English; proficiency in French or other African languages preferred
  • Willingness to travel domestically and internationally as required


The successful candidate will have the flexibility to be based in GCA's Research for Impact (R4I) hub in Groningen, or the global headquarters in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. These locations offer vibrant, interdisciplinary settings for collaborative research and innovation.

GCA provides a dynamic, high-profile, and international work environment within a rapidly growing organization. While the global headquarters in Rotterdam boasts the groundbreaking Floating Office Rotterdam, an award-winning and sustainable workspace, our regional offices across the globe ensure a supportive network and a culturally rich experience. The chosen candidate will benefit from GCA's commitment to a cutting-edge, connected, and inspiring work atmosphere.

Joining our team means contributing to our global mission on climate adaptation. You will have the opportunity to tap into the extensive expertise available at GCA and its partner organizations worldwide. Furthermore, you will play a role in shaping international policies and global action on climate change, working at the highest governmental levels, and collaborating with governments on all continents.

At GCA, we believe that the best solutions come from diverse perspectives. We are committed to creating an inclusive and welcoming environment for all.


Interested candidates are encouraged to submit a detailed CV and cover letter demonstrating their relevant experience. The cover letter should avoid generalizations and focus on presenting your technical depth and understanding of climate analytics and assessments in data poor environments. It shall display specific examples of past work or projects that align with the job's key responsibilities.

Applications should be submitted via before 30 May 2024.

The recruitment process is composed of three rounds of interviews.

All offers of employment will be subject to satisfactory references and appropriate screening checks. GCA also participates in the Inter Agency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. In line with this Scheme, we will request information from job applicants’ previous employers about any findings of sexual exploitation, sexual abuse and/or sexual harassment during employment, or incidents under investigation when the applicant left employment. By submitting an application, the job applicant confirms his/her understanding of these recruitment procedures.


Thank you for sharing this vacancy with suitable candidates.