Project Manager

The Nature Conservancy

Project Manager – Ecosystem Conservation and Community Livelihood Enhancement


Lusaka, Zambia


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 and providing food and water sustainably.  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.

The Nature Conservancy Africa program follows a holistic approach to protect vital lands and waters, transform the way natural resources are used and managed and inspire to equip others to contribute to the shared vision of a healthy and sustainable future for Africa’s lands, waters, wildlife and people. We use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.orq or follow @nature press on Twitter.

In Zambia, TNC has a primary geographical focus on the Greater Kafue Ecosystem (GKE). This is Zambia’s largest conservation landscape, a 66,000 sq. km complex of great biodiversity value, dominated by the 22,000 sq. km Kafue National Park and nine Game Management Areas (GMAs) under communal tenure that span an additional 44,000 sq. km. TNC is working with communities and diverse public and private stakeholders in and around this ecosystem to strengthen community tenure over natural resources, develop effective


TNC seeks a Project Manager to lead a five-year project, “Ecosystem Conservation and Community Livelihood Enhancement in North Western Zambia” funded by the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), through the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Working with Government, forest-dependent communities and other stakeholders in the landscape, the Project, focuses on three districts of NW Province to address the direct and indirect causes or drivers of deforestation and of the degradation of forest and agricultural lands; the barriers to sustainable management of forests and other natural resources and the barriers to the development of sustainable agriculture. The Project Manager position is term-limited for five years (or the duration of funding from GEF for the project), reports to the Zambia Country Director, and will be based at the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) in the Lusaka offices of the Forestry Department, TNC’s strategic partner in the implementation of the project


The Project Manager oversees all aspects of a major multi-sectoral project encompassing a large, remote geography and a wide range of diverse stakeholders. T/hey lead and manage the PIU team and serves as the principal contact to external project stakeholders including UNEP, Forestry Department, Department of National Parks and Wildlife, Ministry of Agriculture, private sector project co-financing partners and other project partners. The Project Manager manages the relationship with UNEP and is responsible for all performance, financial management and budgeting, reporting, administration, and compliance related to the project. They will provide technical support to all components of the project and ensure that the project coordinates activities with other complementary GEF funded projects and with TNC’s wider Zambia conservation programme.


  • Provides technical leadership for and supervisory management of the large, multi-sectoral GEF/UNEP-funded project and manages all the project’s sub-contracts
  • Responsible for project compliance, financial oversight, operations and quality assurance for all activities including budgeting and financial reporting
  • Serves as the primary project liaison with UNEP, communicates regularly with UNEP and attends all UNEP partner meetings as required
  • Supervises the monitoring of key deliverables, outputs and outcomes as per Work Plans and grantee/contractor agreements.
  • Works closely with the Director of Forestry as the primary Government counterpart and cultivates and develops partnerships with key stakeholders including the Forestry Department, Department of National Parks and Wildlife, Ministry of Agriculture, other government agencies, the project’s private sector co-financing partners, implementing partners, collaborating partners and communities
  • Recruits, retains and manages a high quality and effective multi-disciplinary TNC staff for the PIU with responsibility for performance management, training and career development and provides assistance to all levels of personnel on expertise related issues and requests.
  • Ensures the TNC staff in the PIU work closely and productively with the Forestry Department and other Government staff in the PIU and in the field.
  • Prepares and submits annual work plans and quarterly and annual performance reports, and ensure progress towards program objectives, including through field visits
  • Supervises and provides technical input into the project’s monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) functions and supervises compliance with UNEP MEL requirements including data quality assessments
  • Provides robust technical input and support to all components of the project and the staff and partners responsible for them, ensuring the project achieves lasting and meaningful outcomes and results
  • Serve as Executive Secretary and provide support to the Project Steering Committee in coordinating policy-related project implementation at the national level: 
  • Organize, conduct and participate as Executive Secretary in the Project Technical Committee meetings where technical advice will be generated to advance the project
  • Disseminates best practices; provides training and analysis to best implement organizational measures of success; and develops key partnerships with public and private organizations in order to identify and resolve technical issues and to widely communicate solutions, innovative scientific methods and tools to address the natural system and human wellbeing needs of the project area
  • Works as part of TNC conservation team, ensuring close communication, collaboration and learning with peers in the country, regional and international team
  • May require frequent travel domestically and evening and weekend hours.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations and under physically demanding circumstances.


  • BA/BS degree and 10 years’ experience in conservation and/or natural resource management or equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Prior experience with large donor project operating procedures and financial management and reporting requirements
  • Record of managing donor-funded projects that include collaboration with government agencies and the management of subcontracts.
  • Experience working with current trends and practices in conservation and sustainable management of natural resources
  • Supervisory experience, including motivating, leading, setting objectives, training and managing performance of multi-disciplinary teams.
  • Experience in partnership development with government agencies, non-profit partners, private sector partners and community institutions at the provincial/district level.
  • Experience influencing, developing and implementing conservation and/or natural resource management policy and plans at the subnational or country level.
  • At least 5 years’ experience leading and managing complex conservation or development programmes and multidisciplinary teams in Zambia or Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • GEF-funded project management experience preferred
  • Understanding of biodiversity conservation and natural resource management in a Zambian or Sub-Saharan African context, including the socio-economic aspects of conservation.
  • Sound technical knowledge of best practice in forestry and/or sustainable agriculture preferred
  • Multi-lingual and multi-cultural or cross-cultural experience appreciated.
  • 10-12 years’ experience in conservation and/or natural resource management practice or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Developing practical applications of scientific concepts and technical innovations for conservation purposes.
  • Knowledge of methods and standards of biodiversity information systems and initiatives and experience conceiving and implementing strategic initiatives.
  • Communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English.
  • Politically savvy.

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