Senior Fisheries Technician

Nouméa, New Caledonia

  • Noumea-based position
  • Attractive expatriate package
  • Join the principal development organisation in the 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 27 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our unique organisation works across more than 25 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 Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Ecosystems (FAME) Division includes the Oceanic Fisheries Programme (OFP) and Coastal Fisheries Programme (CFP). The goal of the OFP is to ensure fisheries that exploit the region’s resources of tuna, billfish and related species are managed for economic and ecological sustainability using the best available scientific information. In pursuing this goal, the OFP provides scientific support for the management of fisheries for tuna and associated species, with a strong focus on stock assessment and modelling, fisheries and ecosystem monitoring and analysis and data management. The OFP works closely with member countries and territories, the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, the Forum Fisheries Agency, the Parties to the Nauru Agreement and other regional and sub-regional entities.

The role – the Senior Fisheries Technician will provide technical and logistical support and expertise to scientific research activities.  Its primary focus is the Pacific Tuna Tagging Project with responsibilities for coordinating tag recovery and training agents and observers throughout the Pacific region in tag recovery protocols.  This includes the development and improvement of standard operating procedures and the use of fisheries intelligence information to maximise tags recovered from the fishing industry.  The position also contributes to the region’s biological sampling projects.


The key responsibilities of the role include the following:

Data collection

  • Ensure supervising, monitoring and co-ordinating of SPC agents and regional collaborators to implement tag recovery.
  • Implement and promote tag recovery throughout the region’s fisheries administrations, industry and associated communities, including the novel reward schemes or structures.
  • Supervise the tag validation process and lead the development of new tag validation standards and methodologies.
  • Provide logistical and planning support for research cruises and projects.

Data analysis

  • Develop methods and analyses to use fisheries catch, unloading and scientific monitoring data for the characterisation tuna product networks to improve tagging data quality and recovery.
  • Undertake regular analysis to identify poor performing tag recovery locations.
  • Prepare quantitative updates on tag recovery and reporting.
  • Contribute to the preparation of project reports.

Other duties

  • Improve and maintain effective relationships with fishing industry stakeholders in the Pacific.
  • Perform such duties consistent with the objectives of the Project as directed by the Principal Fisheries Scientist.


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


Key selection criteria


  • A relevant tertiary degree in fisheries science, oceanography, biology, ecology, or a related discipline or equivalent experience.

Technical expertise

  • At least 5-6 years of experience in the planning and implementation of field research programmes.
  • Thorough knowledge of tuna fisheries in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean and scientific methods for tuna tagging and biological sampling (including at least 3 years of practical experience).
  • Experience in manipulation, presentation and analysis of ecological, biological or tagging data. Understand and has experience in working with relational databases.
  • Proven ability to work as part of inter-disciplinary and/or multi-cultural teams.
  • Demonstrated ability to meet project deadlines under difficult circumstances.

Language skills

  • Excellent English language oral and written communications skills.

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  • Knowledge of Pacific Island countries and territories is an advantage.


Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – This vacant position is budgeted until 31 December 2026 and is subject to renewal depending on funding and performance.

Remuneration – the Senior Fisheries Technician is a band 9 position in SPC’s 2023 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,209–3,915 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately XPF 486,099–593,079 (USD 4,300–5,246; EUR 4,074–4,970). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration being given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale is based on annual performance reviews. SPC salaries are not presently subject to income tax in New Caledonia.

Benefits for international staff employees based in New Caledonia – SPC provides subsidised housing in Noumea. Establishment and repatriation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave travel, health and life and disability insurances and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their eligible dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 working days of annual leave per annum and other types of leave, 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 bilinguism, 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 begiven to the Pacific Islander. Applicants will be assured of complete confidentiality in line with SPC’s private policy.


Application procedure

Closing date: 17 December 2023 – 11:00 pm (Noumea time)

Job Reference: CR000148

Applicants must apply online at

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

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

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

Your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage if all the above documents are not provided. Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference.

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

SPC does not charge a fee to consider your application and will never ask for your banking or financial information during the recruitment process.


Screening questions (maximum of 2.000 characters per question):

  1. Briefly describe what protocols are necessary to maximise the information that can be obtained from recovered tags?
  2. Briefly describe what protocols are necessary to for implementing biological sampling programs in the Pacific?
  3. What activities does the Pacific Tuna Tagging Programme implement?

Position Description

Type: Contract - International

Category: Fisheries - Aquaculture and Marine Ecosystems

Reference ID: CR000148

Date Posted: 10/11/2023