Senior Program Officer for Infrastructure Finance Africa

Job description

VACANCY TITLE Senior Program Officer for Infrastructure Finance Africa

LOCATION Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire or Rotterdam, The Netherlands

INTENSITY Full time 

ANTICIPATED START DATE As soon as possible



The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) is an international organization that works as a solutions broker to catalyze action and support for adaptation solutions, from the international to the local, in partnership with the public and private sector, to ensure we learn from each other and work together for a climate resilient future. Adapting to impacts of climate change provides a “win-win” for health, livelihoods, food security, water supply, human security and economic growth. The work of the GCA elevates the visibility and political importance of climate adaptation and facilitates solutions, such as smarter investments, new technologies and better planning to become more resilient to climate-related threats. GCA is a rapidly growing organization with offices in Abidjan, Beijing, Dhaka, Groningen, and Rotterdam.

The GCA has an ambitious 2020-2025 business plan with three pillars:

  • Programs and Action: Food Security; Using Nature for more resilient infrastructure; Water for Urban Growth and Resilience; Climate Finance; Youth Leadership
  • Knowledge Acceleration: Building adaptation knowledge globally through cutting edge products such as the State and Trends in Adaptation Report and the Knowledge Exchange Platform
  • Agenda Setting and Advocacy: Formulating policy messages to move the global, regional, and local adaptation agendas forward.

GCA’s work program in Africa is of paramount importance. All the components of GCA’s Business Plan must succeed to support changing the momentum and pace of adaptation in Africa. Guiding GCA’s program in Africa is the Africa-owned and Africa-led Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP), co-created with the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) to implement the vision of the Africa Adaptation Initiative to support African countries on key adaptation initiatives.

The AAAP is contributing to closing Africa’s adaptation gap and supporting African countries to make a transformational shift in their development pathways by putting climate adaptation and resilience at the centre of their critical growth-oriented and inclusive policies, programs, and institutions. It is scaling up successful initiatives fundamental to African nations’ economic development, and prosperity for women and men. The four pillars of the AAAP are: Climate Smart Digital Technologies for Agriculture and Food Security, the Africa Infrastructure Resilience Accelerator, Empowering Youth through Jobs and Entrepreneurship, and Innovative Financial Initiatives for Africa.

The Infrastructure and Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) component of the Africa Infrastructure Resilience Accelerator Pillar of the AAAP has as its goal to scale up investment for climate resilient infrastructure in key sectors such as water, transport, energy, and waste management to help the continent close the infrastructure gap and achieve sustainable development in the face of climate change. It will ensure that climate risks and resilience are considered for at least 50% (by value) of new infrastructure projects in Africa



GCA seeks a dynamic individual to fill the role of Senior Program Officer for Infrastructure Finance Africa, working as a core team member to drive forward the Global Center on Adaptation’s role as a solutions broker in the field of adaptation action. The staff will work with the Infrastructure and NBS Program, under the supervision of the Global Program Lead for Infrastructure and NBS, to carry out the objective of helping countries build climate-resilient infrastructure that minimizes ecological impact and leverages NBS.

The Senior Program Officer for Infrastructure Finance Africa will work to specifically support the implementation of the Infrastructure and NBS globally and in Africa. This work program is focused on: 1) mainstreaming resilience to climate-proof public and private infrastructure investments, particularly through climate stress testing of infrastructure systems, 2) quantifying the costs and benefits of NBS for adaptation of infrastructure, including through the structuring investment models and development of tools to prioritize NBS interventions, and 3) unlocking climate finance for resilient infrastructure and NBS projects.

Areas of responsibility

The areas of responsibility of the Senior Program Officer for Infrastructure Finance Africa include:

  • Manage the development of public and private infrastructure projects under the Infrastructure and NBS workstream of the Africa Infrastructure Resilience Accelerator of the AAAP, ensuring that adaptation and resilience options to address climate hazards are translated into viable infrastructure investments.
  • Coordinate the preparation of the pipeline of projects under the Infrastructure and NBS Program, promoting creative solutions that allow for systemic innovation, adopt robust tools and date-driven information, and build on best practices to deliver impact on-the-ground.
  • Participate in the preliminary evaluation of project proposals to assess their feasibility for financial support and/or technical assistance by GCA. This involves the initial screening of projects, carrying out desk reviews, preparing preliminary evaluation notes for presentation to the Workstream Lead and the Regional Director for Africa.
  • Participate in relevant missions with project partners to prepare project appraisal reports, including various financial and risk analysis, development outcome analysis, strategic alignment with GCA goals.
  • Support the day-to-day implementation of the Infrastructure and NBS Program, including but not limited to the preparation of project concepts, procurement documents, contract management, planning tools, and progress monitoring and reporting.
  • Develop and review reports, presentations, and project briefs, among others, as well as support to overall outputs of the Infrastructure and NBS Program, ensuring technically robust outputs with a clear narrative.
  • Participate in the implementation of projects.
  • · Support the preparation of knowledge products – e.g. policy briefs, news stories, reports – on GCA’s activities and the Infrastructure and NBS Program, as well as capacity building activities.
  • Overall support to the implementation of the AAAP Program.
  • Perform any additional tasks as assigned.

Job requirements


    • Master’s degree or PhD in economics, civil engineering, development studies, environmental studies, or other relevant fields.
    • Minimum of 10 years’ experience in the development and implementation of large-scale public and private infrastructure projects, such as in the Transport, Energy and Water sectors, with particular focus on project finance and investment. Experience working with a multilateral development bank, development agency or infrastructure company is considered to be an added advantage.
    • Previous experience working in multilateral financial institutions, international organizations or development agencies and performing such roles as project preparing, appraising, supervising or implementing donor funded projects;.
    • Understanding of physical climate risks to infrastructure assets, services and people, with strong ability to translate and apply climate hazard assessments into viable solutions and investments that integrate adaptation and resilience.
    • Understanding of project screening, preparation and finance, and investment structuring for infrastructure projects, such as Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), to evaluate the feasibility of investments, including through cash-flow modelling and Value for Money analysis.
    • Knowledge of Nature-Based Solutions to address climate hazards across different landscapes and how to quantify and prioritize adaptation investment options to enhance the resilience of infrastructure.
    • Strong management skills to effectively coordinate projects, contracts, and implementation partners, as well as to provide rapid and strategic inputs, ensuring the achievement of technically robust and timely outputs.
    • Ability to effectively collaborate with diverse stakeholders at different technical and strategic levels– senior government officials and other authorities, representatives of multilateral development banks, implementation partners, and so on.
    • Outstanding interpersonal skills, with proven ability to function effectively and collaboratively as an empowering team leader or team member of multi-disciplinary and multicultural teams, working in multiple locations, and to resolve conflicts constructively.
    • Excellent report writing, presentation and communication skills, backed by an ability to articulate complex ideas into clear outputs with a coherent narrative to a diverse audience of stakeholders at technical and strategic levels.
    • Excellent spoken and written English. Strong skills in French and other languages will be an added advantage.
    • Excellent computer skills (Microsoft Office suite). Strong knowledge in geospatial analysis software (QGIS and ArcGIS) will be an added advantage.


With our global headquarters in Rotterdam on the world’s largest floating office, and regional offices around the globe, the GCA offers a dynamic, high-profile and international working environment in a growing organisation. You will be contributing to our global mission on climate adaptation. You will have the opportunity to draw upon the substantial expertise available at the GCA and its partner organizations across the world and you will be given an opportunity to support the shaping of international policies and global action on climate change, working at the highest governmental levels and collaborating with governments on all continents.

Subject to Covid-19 pandemic travel restrictions, this staff post will be located either at GCA’s Africa Regional Office in Abidjan, Ivory Coast or in the Head Office in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.


Please apply at by submitting your CV and cover letter in English before 31 January 2022, 5 pm CET. Kindly mention the date as of which you would be available to start.


The GCA celebrates diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. GCA does not discriminate in any of its programs or activities on the basis of race, colour, religion, sex, nationality, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.


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