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The Nature Conservancy: South Africa Oceans Program Manager

Who We Are

Founded in 1951, the Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. One of our core values is our commitment to diversity. Therefore, we strive for a globally diverse and culturally competent workforce. Working in 72 countries, including all 50 United States, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Since establishing the Africa Program in 2007, The Nature Conservancy’s vision in Africa is to work towards fostering a sustainable future for people and nature, partnering with indigenous communities across 55 million acres on the continent. Our efforts are firmly rooted in people, leveraging scientific and technical expertise as we collaborate with governments and organizations to conserve and enhance Africa’s shared resources in the 9 countries we operate.

TNC’s work in Africa transcends three key pillars: securing ownership rights to lands and resources for indigenous people, strengthening leadership and resource management and helping communities value nature through a holistic appreciation of its benefits while increasing revenue streams for conservation efforts and socio-economic development. Together with our partners, we are witnessing critical milestones in integrated land and fisheries management, ocean and source water protection, energy development and sustainable food production, working together and strengthening our resolve in tackling global challenges such as climate change, habitat and biodiversity loss that stand to adversely impact the nearly 1.4 billion people that share Africa.

The Nature Conservancy’s (TNC) Africa Oceans Strategy focuses on securing large scale ocean protection by supporting effective marine spatial planning and community-based conservation approaches. Our work seeks to establish sustainable financing (e.g. through Blue Bonds - debt conversion-based instruments) to enable conservation outcomes at large marine ecosystem scale, by supporting policy and regulatory frameworks, as well as local capacity, with emphasis on linking science and communities to habitat protection and management. TNC’s work on fisheries aims to safeguard productive marine and freshwater fisheries for ecosystem health and as important foundations of food and livelihood security. TNC has established partnerships with several non-government and government agencies to support fisheries and coastal community-based conservation throughout Africa.

YOUR POSITION WITH TNC

The South Africa Oceans Program Manager will lead design, development, and implementation of TNC’s activities in support of protection, science, stewardship, and community relations for the coastal and marine areas of South Africa. This includes advancing the role of marine spatial planning at EEZ scale, strengthening opportunities for and commitments to expansion of marine protected areas, and helping connect activities in South Africa to regional conservation outcomes within the relevant large marine ecosystems. The role will also advance TNC’s work in support of livelihood resilience through key engagements with coastal fishing communities. Working closely with TNC’s Africa and Global Oceans Teams, this position will report to the Africa Oceans Strategy Director and will be based at the TNC office in Cape Town, South Africa. This is an initial one-year contract with possibility for extension dependent on funding. No employment visas or assistance is being offered with this position except for the local labor employment requirements.

Essential Functions

The South Africa Oceans Program Manager will lead design, development, and implementation of TNC’s activities in support of protection, science, stewardship, and community relations for the coastal and marine areas of South Africa. This includes advancing the role of marine spatial planning at EEZ scale, strengthening opportunities for and commitments to expansion of marine protected areas, and helping connect activities in South Africa to regional conservation outcomes within the relevant large marine ecosystems. The role will also advance TNC’s work in support of livelihood resilience through key engagements with coastal fishing communities. Working closely with TNC’s Africa and Global Oceans Teams, this position will report to the Africa Oceans Strategy Director and will be based at the TNC office in Cape Town, South Africa. This is an initial one-year contract with possibility for extension dependent on funding. No employment visas or assistance is being offered with this position except for the local labor employment requirements.

Responsibilities And Scope

  • Manage the establishment and elaboration of the Oceans Program for South Africa, consistent with the Africa Oceans Strategy.
  • Lead TNC’s support for and relationship with national government with aim to assist national ocean conservation priorities and objectives.
  • Advancing national level planning efforts that increase ocean conservation outcomes, including climate mitigation and resilience plans, marine spatial plans, and coastal zone plans.
  • Supports efforts to create and advance community-based strategies for better managed coastal fisheries and marine areas.
  • Assists in developing reports, presentations, and assessments on related topics, as well as internal and external communications materials that reflect the program’s objectives and priorities.
  • Leads and manages local project team to support and improve marine conservation efforts.
  • Works within a budget to complete projects, negotiates and contracts with vendors and assists with budget development.
  • Supports fundraising by contributing to proposals and representing the Africa Ocean Program where/when needed.
  • Responsible for ensuring that public and private funds are raised to meet program needs.
  • Builds cooperation from outside parties and strategic partnerships to accomplish program goals.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances.
  • Frequently makes independent decision based on analysis, experience, and context.

Minimum Qualifications

  • BA/BS degree and 5 years’ experience in marine conservation practice or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience managing complex or multiple projects, including staffing, workloads, and finances under deadlines.
  • Supervisory experience, including motivating, leading, setting objectives and managing performance.
  • Experience in partnership development with non-profit partners, community groups and/or government agencies
  • The ideal candidate will have experience in conservation, policy and sustainable programs for oceans and/or coasts. Experience facilitating and leading multiple objective planning processes and working across matrix organizations in the region will also be valuable.

Desired Qualifications

  • Multi-lingual and multi-cultural or cross-cultural experience appreciated.
  • MSc degree in relevant field and 7+ years’ experience in marine conservation practice or related field.
  • Experience with marine spatial planning, including stakeholder engagements and implementation of ocean protection initiatives.
  • Familiarity with South Africa’s coastal and marine ecosystems, communities, and related governance systems.
  • Demonstrated experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation policy and plans.
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in marine conservation, especially within the region.
  • Knowledge of methods and standards of biodiversity information systems and initiatives or related field.
  • Communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English.
  • Demonstrated experience in fundraising.
  • Experience negotiating and politically savvy

APPLY NOW

To apply for job ID 51654, submit your materials online by using the Apply Now button at https://careers.nature.org/. Need help applying? Visit our recruitment page or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with Request for Accommodation in the subject line.

Where legally permissible, TNC requires all new employees to be fully vaccinated and willing to keep up to date with vaccines that protect against COVID-19. By accepting an offer of employment, you agree to comply with this requirement, unless you are entitled to a legally mandated exemption.


 




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