Deputy Director - Oceans and Maritime

Suva, Fiji

  • Suva-based position (Fiji)
  • Competitive expatriate package
  • Join the principal development organisation in the Pacific region


The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 26 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our organisation works across more than 20 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture. 

The Geoscience Energy and Maritime Division provides advice, technical assistance, research and training support to Pacific Island countries and territories (PICTs). There are three (3) areas of scientific programming and two areas of focus within this division:

  1. Oceans and Maritime Programme (OMP) – assists member countries with services that provide applied ocean science and knowledge for evidence-based policy-making and technical solutions for improved ocean and maritime governance, management and capacity development.
  2. Georesources and Energy Programme (GEP) – assists member countries by applying technical knowledge in the areas of geoscience and sustainable energy use.
  3. Disaster and Community Resilience Programme (DCRP) – assists member countries to demonstrate strengthened resilience through integrated action on disaster risk management, climate change adaptation, natural resource management and increased access to water and sanitation.

The other two focus areas within this division are Programming and Operations, which is responsible for driving integrated programming excellence and operational support across the division, and Geoinformatics, which is responsible for providing diverse, integrated, and unique and demand-driven services across SPC work programmes, projects and countries.

The Deputy Director – Oceans and Maritime will oversee the people and technical programmes within the functional area of scientific programming, and drive the delivery of sustainable development outcomes across: Oceans and Maritime Governance, Maritime Transport and Navigation, Ocean and Coastal Monitoring and Prediction, and Ocean and Maritime Literacy and Capacity. This role will work closely with the Deputy Director – Georesources and Energy, and the Deputy Director – Disaster and Community Resilience, to support the integrated programming approach to achieve successful sustainable development outcomes.

The key responsibilities of the role include:

  • Leadership and Management
  • Technical excellence of Functions and outcomes of the portfolio
  • Resource Mobilisation and Financial Management
  • Integrated Programming

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the job description provided.


Key selection criteria


  • A master’s degree in a relevant subject area from a recognised institution
  • Experience in scientific programming areas such as Ocean Science and Maritime transport – desirable
  • Management qualification – desirable

Knowledge and experience

  • At least 15 years of demonstrated management experience in a public sector or research environment in managing science related resources or a similar field, including financial management
  • Demonstrated ability to lead strategically with a solid understanding of Programme Management
  • Demonstrated experience in relationship building and working with a wide variety of donors and development partners with awareness of their policies and procedures

Essential skills

  • Proven history of successfully building and leading multi-disciplinary teams, including people of different national and cultural backgrounds
  • Demonstrated skills and experience in continuous improvement and facilitating innovation across teams
  • Proven ability in project design, management and reporting

Language skills

  • Excellent English communication skills (oral and written) with a working knowledge of French being an advantage

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  • Ability to work in a multicultural, inclusive and equitable environment
  • Excellent interpersonal skills in the multicultural environment of the Pacific Islands


Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – 3 years

Due to the current travel restrictions caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, and the priority SPC places on its staff safety, health and well-being, please note that there may be delays in taking up the appointment. These matters will be discussed thoroughly with successful candidates. In most cases, any appointment and on-boarding would only commence when relocation to the duty station is permitted.

Remuneration – The Deputy Director – Oceans and Maritime is a Band 14 position in SPC’s 2020 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 4,667‒5,834 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 13,908–17,385 (USD 6,441–8,051; EUR 5,741–7,176). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be based on annual performance reviews. Remuneration of expatriate SPC staff members is not subject to income tax in Fiji; Fiji nationals employed by SPC in Fiji will be subject to income tax.

Benefits for international employees based in Fiji – SPC provides a housing allowance of FJD 1,350–3,000 per month. Establishment and relocation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave, medical and life insurance and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their recognised dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 days of annual leave and 30 days of sick leave per annum, and access to SPC’s Provident Fund (contributing 8% of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

Languages – SPC’s working languages are English and French.

Recruitment principles – SPC’s recruitment is based on merit and fairness, and candidates are competing in a selection process that is fair, transparent and non-discriminatory. SPC is an equal-opportunity employer, and is committed to cultural and gender diversity, including bilingualism, and will seek to attract and appoint candidates who respect these values. Due attention is given to gender equity and the maintenance of strong representation from Pacific Island professionals. If two interviewed candidates are ranked equal by the selection panel, preference will be given to the Pacific Islander.

Applicants will be assured of complete confidentiality in line with SPC’s Privacy Policy.


Application procedure

Closing Date 4 November 2020 at 11:45pm Fiji time

Applicants must apply online.

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

  • an updated resume
  • contact details for three professional referees
  • a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
  • responses to all screening questions

Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference. These documents may be requested at a later stage.

For international staff in Fiji, only one foreign national per family can be employed with an entity operating in Fiji at any one given time. The Pacific Community does not support dual spouse employment.

Please ensure that you respond to all the screening questions.  If you do not respond to the screening questions, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage.

Screening Questions:

  1. What is your motivation for applying for this position?
  2. Please share your experiences in scientific programming, with specific emphasis on implementing Ocean Science or Maritime transport work in a Pacific development context?
  3. Please outline where you can see strategic opportunities for this role and SPC more broadly in the context of the upcoming UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development?

JD Deputy Director – Oceans and Maritime.pdf

Type: Contract - International

Category: Geoscience - Energy and Maritime

Reference ID: JM000223

Date Posted: 07/10/2020