Consultant, Advocacy & Biodiversity and Desertification (CGIAR - Rome, Italy)

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CGIAR is a global research partnership for a food-secure future, dedicated to transforming food, land, and water systems in a climate crisis. CGIAR science is dedicated to reducing poverty, enhancing food and nutrition security, and improving natural resources and ecosystem services. Its research is carried out by 13 alliances/centers in close collaboration with thousands of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations and the private sector.

This consultancy will be supported by the Alliance Bioversity International & CIAT. The Alliance is part of CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future.  


About the position

The Advocacy for Impact Unit (A4I) collaborates with Regional and Science Groups to work with, for, and through partners, to ensure research findings and evidence are used to inform decisions on national policies and regulatory systems, financial subsidies and incentives, knowledge management and dissemination systems, and international agreements and conventions. The Unit advances the creation of an enabling environment for scaling innovations, solutions, and technologies, and bringing evidence in support of the policy environment and investment decisions of private and public stakeholders at global, regional, and national scales. The Unit leads on identifying and coordinating action on global advocacy priorities, offering CGIAR’s key assets, knowledge and evidence on key issues and effort in high-level policy dialogues.

Reporting to the lead of the A4I Unit within the Partnerships & Advocacy Global, the consultant will gather and assess intelligence on stakeholder and lead coordination of advocacy engagement plan at the 16th Conferences of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) being held in Colombia and Saudi Arabia in October and December 2024 respectively. The consultant will undertake background and other research to better understand the priorities of critical countries and global partners, identify entry points and engagement opportunities, and coordinate the development of robust, coherent, advocacy engagement plans for the two international conferences.



  • In collaboration with the Platform Director and Senior Strategic Advisor, develop a comprehensive action plan for the implementation of terms of reference within the contract duration.
  • In collaboration with the Platform Director and Senior Strategic Advisor, develop criteria for selecting critical stakeholders for the CBD and UNCCD CoPs.
  • Conduct desk research on publicly available information on the CBD and UNCCD COP priorities of identified country stakeholders and partners.
  • Based on the desk assessment findings, consult with key internal stakeholders to develop questionnaires and conduct in-depth interviews with selected critical stakeholders to:
    • Understand the key successes and challenges facing identified countries in implementing biodiversity and desertification commitments.
    • Ascertain a more detailed understanding of country and other stakeholder priorities for negotiations at COP 16 of CBD and UNCCD.
    • Identify topics of interest under negotiations at the COPs that could benefit from CGIAR positions and the key entry points in the negotiations where these issues will be addressed.
    • Make recommendations on possible joint engagement opportunities.
  • Develop a report on the priorities of identified critical country stakeholders and global partners, ensuring it is periodically updated to maintain a robust process of policy advocacy intelligence analysis.
  • In collaboration with center engagement experts and based on feedback from intelligence gathered, develop a CGIAR advocacy plan for engagement at CBD and UNCCD, with clear proposed activities, deadlines, and goals, and coordinate its delivery.


Essential Requirements

  • Master’s degree in social science, political science, international studies, or other related field.
  • Previous professional work experience (minimum 5 years) in :
    • Supporting global advocacy in international decision-making processes.
    • Undertaking assessments of stakeholder priorities, identification of entry points for advocacy.
    • Preparing high quality analytical reviews/ assessments
    • Developing/ coordinating development of advocacy plans, preferably with international organizations and large international NGOs.
  • Fluency in both written and oral English is essential, while fluency in another UN language would be an asset.
  • Excellent knowledge of the functioning of CBD and/or UNCCD.
  • Excellent analytical and report writing skills.
  • Demonstrated success in undertaking stakeholder analysis and designing and delivering engagement plans in complex environments.


Desirable Requirements

  • Experience working for international research organizations based in the global south.
  • Experience in evidence-based advocacy with partners based in the global south.
  • Experience working with government partners and international organizations.
  • Experience undertaking advocacy related to CBD and UNCCD.


Terms of employment

This is a full-time consultancy opportunity until December 2024, renewable based on extended needs and requirements. All consultancy fees and conditions will be administered in line with the Alliance approved policy for consultants.

The position is remote, preferably based in Rome, Italy with periodic meetings to review the status of delivery at the Alliance Headquarters.



Please apply online through the website ( no later than 4 July 2024, attaching a curriculum vitae, motivation letter (outlining your interest and suitability for the consultancy, as well as your proposed consultancy fees for the period, indicated in daily USD), both in English, and contact information of at least three references, we can contact (name, organization and position, relationship to you, telephone number, and email).


Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.


Closing date for applications: 4 July 2024

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VA – Consultant,Advocacy & Biodiversity and Desertification (CGIAR – Rome, Italy)

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