The European Union (EU) has championed rural development for many years and has developed an architecture and framework within which Member States formulate strategies and seven year programmes to implement rural development activities. The EU’s three long-term strategic objectives for rural development covering the 2014-2020 period are:
N.B. Regulation (EU) No 1305/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on support for rural development by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32013R1305&from=en).
The need for rural communities to approach development from an integrated perspective has created more focus on a broad range of development goals using territorial approaches rather than merely creating incentives for sectoral or resource based activities. Education, entrepreneurship, physical infrastructure, biodiversity protection and enhancement, climate change adaptation and resilience and social infrastructure all play an important role in developing rural areas, and can be integrated into a single strategic framework for social, environmental and economic development, as successfully applied throughout the EU. Rural development is also characterized by its emphasis on locally-owned identification and implementation of territorial strategies using the LEADER approach. In contrast to urban regions, which have many similarities, rural areas are highly distinctive from one another (Info about LEADER is available on: http://enrd.ec.europa.eu/en/leader).
The EU signed an Association Agreement with Georgia in June 2014. This aims to deepen political and economic relations between the EU and Georgia and to gradually integrate Georgia into the EU’s internal market. This entails, as one element, creating a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area between the EU and Georgia. Under Article 333 of the Association Agreement (Cooperation between the Parties in the field of agriculture and rural development), there is provision for ‘facilitating the mutual understanding of agricultural and rural development policies’. This is the basis for the formulation of a Rural Development Strategy for Georgia which will in turn yield specification of measures which will benefit from the support under the European Neighborhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD).
Under ENPARD I (2013-2017), the primary focus of the programme was on support to agriculture through institutional capacity building and support for the development of small farmers’ cooperatives and the piloting of the LEADER approach to rural development in Borjomi, Stepantsminda and Lagodekhi municipalities. Building on this support, ENPARD II integrated support to agriculture, food safety, sanitary/phyto-sanitary and rural development with the aim to improve employment and living conditions in poor rural areas of Georgia, with subsequent impacts on poverty alleviation and growth.
Under ENPARD II, 5 new municipalities were added for piloting of the LEADER approach: Keda, Khulo, Tetritskaro, Akhalkalaki and Dedoplistskaro.
On the policy front, ENPARD supported the preparation and approval in 2016 of the first Rural Development Strategy of Georgia and Ajara for 2017 – 2020, evidencing the commitment by the national and Ajara regional authorities to support rural development.
The goal of the Rural Development Strategy of Georgia for 2017-2020 is to support sustainable economic development through enhanced social-economic activities in rural areas and improved living condition of rural population. It provides the country’s vision for 2017-2020 in key areas of rural development – growth and diversification of local economies, improvement of social and public services, sustainable use of national resources and local engagement in the development process.
The adoption of these two strategies was followed by the establishment at central and Ajara regional level of Inter-Agency Coordination Councils on rural development led by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia and the Ministry of Agriculture of Ajara AR, respectively. Both Councils coordinate the implementation of the strategies with technical support by ENPARD in terms of policy and capacity development. To this end, Rural Development Action Plans for 2017 and for 2018-2020 have been adopted by the Government of Georgia and serves as the major instrument for consolidation of state budget funds and implementation of public programmes for rural development.
UNDP has been part of all EU-ENPARD initiatives in Georgia. Many of the above achievements, especially in policy and institutional reforms were facilitated by the EU-UNDP project “Support to rural development in Georgia - ENPARD II”, which started in 2016 and is coming to an end in Jun 2018. In parallel, in January 2018 UNDP started implementation of the project Improving Rural Development in Georgia (ENPARD III).
As part of ENPARD III, the project “Improving Rural Development in Georgia (ENPARD 3)” is further supporting the Government in Georgia in their efforts to improve employment and living conditions as a result of better quality and quantity of available services for the rural population in Georgia. The expected outcome is that more diverse rural services are delivered to population in more efficient, effective and sustainable manner in the eight pilot rural development municipalities referred to above. The project will be complementary to the "FAO support to Georgian agricultural sector under ENPARD III", which will deliver agricultural services to the rural population in the same target areas.
In this respect, the project is expected to deliver the following outputs:
In this context, UNDP seeks a qualified candidate for the position of the National Project Manager to continue and bring the ENPARD II project to successful completion and lead the ENPARD III project till its end. The National Project Manager will be responsible for the implementation of the capacity/institutional development part of the project, administration and internal controls. Information on the project is available at: http://www.ge.undp.org/content/georgia/en/home/operations/projects/poverty_reduction/ENPARD-3.html.
The National Project Manager (NPM) is responsible for:
The National Project Manager will work in close coordination with the Project Technical Leader and they will be jointly accountable towards the project's Steering Committee (SC) for achievement of the project objectives. The Project Technical Leader will be in charge of: (1) Strategic guidance and technical support on rural development; (2) Coordination and technical supervision of rural development policy and implementation for all activities related to rural service delivery, including for improved rural economic diversification, employment and services (output 2 and result 4.2 under output 4 of the project); and for improved environment, sustainable management of natural resources and climate action (output 3 and result 4.3 under output 4); and (3) Communication and representational tasks of the project.
As part of the tasks, the National Project Manager will be in charge of management and supervision of institutional relations with concerned government institutions and directly responsible for the management of project activities related to improved governance for effective implementation of rural development strategies and action plans (under output 1 and under result 4.1 / output 4 of the project) as well as Administrative and financial management and oversight in line with UNDP procedures and- contractual arrangements with the EU. S/he shall ensure an effective implementation of the project nation-wide and in Ajara Autonomous Region, in order to achieve the expected results related to the improved governance for effective implementation of rural development strategies and action plans, as follows:
For this purpose, the National Project Manager is expected to provide support in communication and coordination with the policy makers and government institutions (at national and Ajara level) playing active role in rural development in Georgia.
The Project Manager and the Project Technical Leader will be jointly accountable towards the project Steering committee for achievement of the project objectives. Internally within UNDP, the project manager will report to UNDP Economic Development Team Leader, and the Project Technical Leader will report to UNDP Deputy Resident Representative.
In particular, the National Project Manager shall carry out the following tasks and responsibilities:
Management and supervision of institutional relations with concerned government institutions:
Management of project activities related to improved governance for effective implementation of rural development strategies and action plans:
Administrative and financial management and oversight in line with UNDP procedures and- contractual arrangements with the EU:
Knowledge management and learning:
Development and operational effectiveness:
Management and leadership:
Important applicant information
All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.
Applicant information about UNDP rosters
Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement. We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.
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Contract Duration: 6 months with a possibility of extension
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