Principal/Program Director - Nature Based Solutions

Earth Security is an innovative organisation, working with financial institutions, companies and governments to develop innovative financing mechanisms and strategies to link global finance with nature’s capital.

Our programmes deliver new ways of quantifying the value of natural assets, practical investment opportunities that help companies and financial institutions have a positive impact on nature, and the development of transformative global initiatives to scale investments in nature across regions. The programmes uniquely blend the use of data analysis and research, the convening of multi-stakeholder design processes, and strategy and partnership development.

The Principal/Program Director will work alongside other senior team members to develop one of our leading programmes, as well as grow the range of strategic engagements to create new financing and investment mechanisms for nature-based solutions (NBS). Day-to-day, you will partner effectively with other colleagues to enable compelling and impact-driven work to be conceived, produced and delivered at country, regional or global levels, as the lead on one of our core initiatives.

This role will be expected to drive exceptional programme management, as well as high quality output such as proposals, reports and research outcomes, and multi-stakeholder design processes. You will play a significant role in enabling us to develop innovative financing mechanisms for NBS beyond our current global initiatives, and ensure our work is expertly delivered.

About the role

  • Ultimately accountable for the successful scoping, management and delivery of one or more of our existing and future programmes for high-impact NBS projects.
  • Specifically responsible for the programme leadership and direction of one of our core, multi-year programmes focused on development and incubation of new NBS financing mechanisms.
  • Organise and oversee (including line management where relevant) available resources (internal and external) against the programme scope and delivery.
  • Ensure that we deliver brilliant work to agreed timescales and budgets.
  • Produce scheduled donor / grant funder financial and operational reports, according to the programmes’ proposals and activity plans; ensuring all deliverables, resources and budgets are being effectively and efficiently deployed and delivered.
  • Produce timely, accurate, insightful and action-oriented Work In Progress reporting (e.g. budget, status, outcome, output, milestone, risk management, KPI’s, service agreements, etc.) to senior management and external stakeholders as appropriate.
  • Design and uphold appropriate Project Management processes, frameworks and templates that are adaptable and flexible - use smart thinking and deep experience to produce delivery methodologies that can guide the work of distributed teams and partners and exceed expectations.
  • Engage with senior colleagues, internally and externally, to nurture the conceptual development of our programmes. Generate an idea-led way of working, which proactively fuels the innovative and creative thinking that is at the heart of our organisation and culture, whilst also ensuring we are set up for success from a delivery perspective.
  • Practise a credible and reassuring approach to managing strategically and politically important stakeholders and formal partnership relationships across all of our cross-sector activities related to the programme.
  • Oversee, with the support of the communications manager, communications strategy and activities relevant to your programme.
  • Support donor and investor engagement, stewardship, and ensure compliance with donor expectations.

About you

  • Demonstrable experience in country-level partnerships and programme implementation - an impressive background in leading large programmes of innovative and creative work in impact-driven environments - possibly from within a management consulting, not-for-profit, or governmental organisation.
  • Working knowledge in sustainable finance, ESG investing, nature-based carbon markets, investment analysis related to nature-based solutions.
  • You have an obsession with quality, effectiveness and efficiency - in life, not just work.
  • You are experienced in partnering with highly creative and academic people and are able to bring out the best in them, and to represent their work with pride.
  • You are fastidious with detail, and understand the art of delivery excellence.
  • Your content, communication and presentation output is faultless, professional and compelling.
  • You want to work with an inspiring and innovative group of people that are actively creating the future, and you are comfortable navigating uncertainty, and proactive in moving from open creative processes into practical outputs and delivery.
  • You want to have a significant impact on aligning global investment with practical opportunities to address climate change, biodiversity and sustainable communities.
  • You combine the pragmatism, objectivity and tone of an investment professional with the aspiration, spirit, and higher purpose of making the world a more sustainable and equitable place.

Initial key role objectives
The initial scope of work for the candidate is focused on a multi-year donor-funded programme to develop and incubate new solutions for the financing of tropical forests in terms of both carbon and ecosystem services such as water. This programme is launching an original analysis and blueprint in December 2022, and based on this, it will focus on three-pronged strategy:

  • Developing a 'country pilot' for an innovative sovereign financing mechanism for forests. This combines our research, identifying, convening and combining the insights of experts and stakeholders in a country-specific process, to design a new financing programme, and mobilising key stakeholders (global, regional and country-specific) to develop a partnership that co-designs and implements such a new financial mechanism. It would be important for the candidate to have experience managing country programmes that combine research, convening and partnership/product development.

  • Incubating a global investment platform to accelerate action and replication at scale: We'll be designing and developing the proposal and funding for a multi-country Investment Initiative, as a platform that builds the capacity of key countries to drive finance at scale, designing the coordination and delivery of resources, data, advisory services and blended finance at scale. It would be important for the candidate to have experience designing, structuring and managing global programmes.

  • Developing bespoke consulting and business development opportunities for solutions: In addition to the two areas of focus above there will be a range of opportunities to develop potential advisory projects that focus on internalising knowledge and designing better products, it would therefore be beneficial for the candidate to have an appetite for and experience of, generating and developing new business opportunities.

Location: We have a strong preference for candidates based in London where the programme team is based, but will consider exceptional candidates based in Europe, within short distance travel to London.

To apply: Submit your CV detailing your relevant experience to (only shortlisted candidates will be contacted).