Abt Associates Associate / Scientist / Deputy Chief of Party - Clean Power Asia Thailand in Thailand

The International Development Division focuses on improving the lives and economic well-being of people in lower and middle-income countries. We command technical expertise in health, agriculture, climate change, food security and governance—as well as in international evaluation. Our multi-layered health portfolio includes policy, health promotion and disease prevention, health finance, and health systems management. In partnership with government clients and local experts, our high-quality programs in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East are known for impact and innovation.

Opportunity

Abt Associates, a global leader in technical assistance, program implementation, and international development, seeks qualified individuals to fulfill the position of Deputy Chief of Party and Task 4 Lead for the USAID Clean Power Asia program, reporting to the Chief of Party (COP). The Deputy Chief of Party (DCOP) is Key Personnel under Abt’s contract with USAID, awarded in June 2016. The selected candidate is subject to USAID approval and funding obligations; the position is anticipated to remain filled through the end of the contract term in June 2021.

The purpose of USAID Clean Power Asia is to accelerate the regional transition to high performing, low carbon power sector. The program assists the governments of the Lower Mekong and other developing countries in Asia in energy planning and helps establish an effective policy, regulatory, and technical environment for low emissions growth in the power sector, while simultaneously mobilizing public- and private-sector investment in renewable energy (RE) development. USAID Clean Power Asia is focused on solar, wind, small hydro (<15 MW), and biomass from agricultural residues. The program focuses on the Lower Mekong including Lao PDR, Thailand, and Vietnam, and also includes activities on a regional level in support of RE development among ASEAN member states.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

General:

  • Leading major components of program delivery and supporting additional program components, e.g., Technical Task 3 (Investment Mobilization) and Task 4 (Coordination and Learning), as well as supporting activities related to private sector input on policies and regulations, competitive procurement and auctions implemented by Technical Task 2 (Policy and Regulation)
  • Play a key role in supporting the program’s COP to effectively achieve the results defined in USAID’s program objectives, which includes supervising the staff leading implementation of activities related to Investment Mobilization (Task 3) and Coordination and Learning (Task 4). The DCOP will provides strategic direction and technical leadership to produce project results, including $750 M in financing leveraged; 500 MW of RE power projects reaching financial close; and 3.5 M CO2 emissions avoided through projects coming on line, as well as supporting 15 policies and regulations proposed
  • Serves as the project’s key liaison with the private sector, utilities (related to power sector investment decisions and off-taker agreements), and any public sector investments related to the project scope. Supports and works with the COP who is the main liaison with USAID, government counterparts, and other international partners/stakeholders
  • Supports the COP in monitoring program achievements and results. Assures that the full potential of the program in achieving results related to investment mobilization and coordination and learning are realized through the promotion of high quality work and internal controls
  • Supports the COP in ensuring overall compliance with USAID rules and regulations, financial management, international and local personnel recruitment and management, subcontractor management, and project close-out

Task 2 - Policy and Regulation:

  • Supports the Task 2 Lead and team to facilitate private sector input on proposals for at least 15 policies and regulations to support investment in grid-connected RE. Policies and regulations include setting and meeting national RE targets, incentives, competitive procurement, interconnection standards, technical standards, and other relevant policies and regulations related to grid-connected RE
  • Develops and nurtures relationships with private sector actors and others in the region who share the program’s goals

Task 3 - Investment Mobilization:

  • Supervises the Task 3 Lead, and supports the Task 3 team, to facilitate and mobilize investment resulting in financial closure of RE projects in the region
  • Facilitates the Task 3 team in providing support for project developers, financial institutions, investors and others in deployment of grid-connected RE generation in the current policy environment. Anticipated support includes assistance in improving project bankability, facilitating innovative approaches to 100% or high % of equity investments, developing new financing mechanisms, and streamlining the financing approval process for renewable energy projects, defined for USAID Clean Power Asia as solar PV, wind, small hydro (run of river between 1-15 MW) and biomass (from agricultural residue) technologies
  • Supports the Task 3 Lead and team to facilitate a minimum of $750 M invested in RE projects in the region, with 500 MW minimum reaching financial close and projects achieving COD and providing at least 3.5 M tons equivalent of CO2 emissions reduced or avoided during the project period

Task 4 - Coordination and Learning:

The Deputy Chief of Party serves as the lead for Task 4, Coordination and Learning, one of four program technical tasks. Task 4 is comprised of the following areas:

  • Coordination with USG Agencies and Host Country Governments:

  • Regular communication and coordination with designated USG agencies and other local partners/stakeholders in support of technical activates in forward years

  • The COP serves as the key liaison with government counterparts. Presently the program implements activities in, Cambodia, Lao PDR, The Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam
  • Manage the development of MOUs or framework agreements with partner entities as needed, in cooperation with the COP
  • Communications and Outreach:

  • The communications and outreach activity is overseen by the COP. The DCOP will coordinate with the COP, who supervises the Director of Operations and Communications Specialist

  • The DCOP will help identify opportunities for sharing knowledge, lessons learned, best practices, trends, and the latest RE industry developments within and across the region. The Director of Operations leads these efforts
  • The communications staff (Director of Operations and Communications Specialist) work directly with technical staff to identify audiences, messages and channels for using communications and outreach to achieve technical results. The DCOP will work with these staff and the Task 3 Lead to incorporate communications and outreach into existing and new Task 3 activities and to achieve results
  • Clean Energy Windows of Opportunity Fund:

  • The USAID Clean Power Asia contract includes a Clean Energy Windows of Opportunity Fund (CEWOOF). The fund’s resources are intended to be used to augment program interventions and further contract objectives. The DCOP will lead the operationalization of the CEWOOF, preparing the parameters of the fund, including the process required to present funding concepts to USAID, and if approved, the steps necessary to incorporate the activity into the current program

  • Smart Development Screens:

  • The DCOP is the project focal point for USAID RDMA Smart Development Screens: Gender equality and female empowerment; Science and Technology; and Partnerships

  • The DCOP works across technical task teams, with the COP, USAID, and program counterparts and partners to ensure the Screens are incorporated into program activities
  • Partnerships:

  • Expand existing engagement with donor coordination groups: Manage relationships and develop partnerships with other donors, donor-funded programs and international/membership organizations. Host a regular quarterly meeting of donors and organizations working in the region and manage partnerships developed with these organizations. Maintain regular contact with any donor coordination groups (including those in which other USAID missions and our country coordinators participate, in order to identify immediate opportunities to expand existing and/or form new partnerships to build on USAID Clean Power Asia successes and to support future outcomes

  • Develop new partnerships: Identify other entities, including the private sector, with strong potential for good partnership and recommend those that the program should try to engage. Establish criteria that potential new partners should meet in order to justify the effort and resources to pursue a formal partnership
  • Advance joint activities with partners: Coordinate the implementation of partnership agreements and activity plans to advance joint activities and enhance USAID Clean Power Asia program impact
  • M&E:

  • The COP is responsible for M&E, supervising the M&E manager and holding periodic reviews of project results with the DCOP and Task Leads.

  • Operations:

  • With the support of the Director of Operations, the COP is responsible for ensuring overall compliance with USAID rules and regulations, financial management, international and local personnel recruitment and management, subcontractor management, and project close-out. The DCOP will work with the Chief of Party and Director of Operations to develop, manage and monitor project budgets; work with the Task 3 team to ensure Task 3 consultants and subcontractors comply with the terms of their agreements; and lead efforts to identify the need for and hire Task 3 staff and consultants

Preferred Skills / Prerequisites

  • Minimum 10 years of leadership experience managing large, complex multi-disciplinary energy programs including donor funded programs
  • Minimum of an MBA or master’s degree in finance, energy planning, policy, international development, or other relevant discipline is required
  • Proven experience working with the private sector to mobilize large-scale investment in energy projects
  • Fluency in English is required; strong skills in oral and written English are essential
  • Progressive experience working on donor-funded (preferably USAID) energy and/or economic growth projects in the ASEAN region
  • Extensive experience facilitating significant investments in grid-connected renewable energy projects (including distributed generation) in the Lower Mekong and broader ASEAN region
  • A firm understanding of the interest of the investors and project developers, as well as banking and other financial institutions, as it relates to grid-connected renewable energy
  • Demonstrated capacity in facilitating in-depth and effective dialogues internally in support of the team as well as with external actors
  • A creative, entrepreneurial and a proactive attitude, able to manage multiple activities across multidisciplinary teams, while meeting tight deadlines
  • Strong management and organization skills
  • Proven ability to manage logistical aspects of donor-funded project activities with multiple actors including energy ministries, regulators, universities, private sector entities and utility and planning agencies across the region
  • Outstanding interpersonal, engagement and consensus-building skills, ability to foster strong relationships with key agencies
  • Some knowledge of one or more of the following languages is an asset: Lao, Khmer, Vietnamese, Thai, or Burmese
  • Highly self-motivated and adaptable to learning and understanding new things
  • Ability to work both independently and in a team-oriented, collaborative environments
  • Ability to build and maintain relationships with development agencies, non-governmental organizations, and relevant private sector players
  • Ability to produce timely quality work products with attention to detail

Minimum Qualifications

  • MA/MBA (7 – 10) years of experience OR PhD (4 – 6) years of experience OR the equivalent combination of education and experience

Application Procedure

The deadline for submission is November 21, 2018, and interested candidates may express their interest by applying on-line at: https://www.abtassociates.com/careers. Applications received after this date will not be considered. Failure to provide the required information may result in your application being removed from consideration.

To be complete, your application MUST INCLUDE the following information:

  • A written Expression of Interest summarizing your qualifications for the position. The expression of interest must address each of the preferred skills/prerequisites AND minimum qualifications
  • Resume or CV clearly indicating work/consulting history and either daily consulting rate or annual compensation for each consultancy/position, stated in currency of payment
  • US Federal Form 1420 (EBD) https://www.usaid.gov/forms/aid-1420-17
  • Proof of Education/Degree attained (transcript or diploma)
  • Proof of annual salary or daily consulting rate as stated in the EBD (acceptable forms include employment agreement, pay stubs, employer verification letter)

Due to the volume of anticipated applicants, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. Interviews will be scheduled as warranted and may be conducted in person or via electronic means.

Abt Associates is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer committed to fostering a diverse workforce. Abt Associates provides market-competitive salaries and comprehensive employee benefits.

Abt Associates is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer commited to fostering a diverse workforce. Abt Associates provides market-competitive salaries and comprehensive employee benefits.

As an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, Abt Associates is committed to fostering a diverse, multicultural work environment where our employees respect one another and share a commitment to our firm's values, mission, and strategies. Abt Associates Inc. provides equal employment to all participants and employees without regard to age, race, color, sex, creed, citizenship status, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, marital status, or veteran status.