Aquatic Biosecurity Specialist – NGO Jobs 2021

Job Title: Aquatic Biosecurity Specialist

Country: New Caledonia (France)
Organization: Pacific Community
Closing date: 16 Jan 2022

The Pacific Community (SPC) invites applications for the position of Aquatic Biosecurity Specialist within its Coastal Fisheries and Aquaculture Programme located at its headquarters in Noumea, New Caledonia.


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 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 and Aquaculture Programme (CFAP). CFAP’s goal is to ensure that inshore fisheries, nearshore fisheries and aquaculture in Pacific Island countries and territories are managed and developed sustainably. The programme assists governments and administrations to develop scientifically informed and socially achievable coastal fisheries management policies and procedures (national and community-based). It provides support for sustainable aquaculture, including planning, research and development, aquatic biosecurity and trade, for Pacific Island governments, the private sector and other stakeholders. It assists in developing sustainable nearshore fisheries in Pacific Island countries and territories to provide for food security, sustainable livelihoods, economic growth and assist climate change adaptation.

The role The Aquatic Biosecurity Specialist will provide technical assistance, support and advice to governments, stakeholders, and private sector in developing national aquatic biosecurity standards, risk assessment criteria and strengthening national capacity to be able to manage biosecurity risks in aquaculture.

The key responsibilities of the role include the following:

1. Increased skills and knowledge base in the SPC region in the areas of aquatic biosecurity and risk assessments for introduced non-native species

• Strengthens skills of national government authorities in undertaking import risk assessment for imported species for aquaculture.

• Provides technical support and trainings to farmers, farm clusters and enterprises to improve farm level biosecurity.

• Design and implement a regional surveillance system for regional priority diseases and supports members to develop targeted surveillance systems at the national level.

• Assists member PICTs through increasing skills and capacity to meeting national OIE disease reporting requirements for export of cultured products.

2. Improved capacity for strategic policy and planning to establish clear priorities in aquatic biosecurity

• Provides input to implementing regional and subregional framework for aquatic biosecurity for aquaculture/mariculture sector.

• Collaborates and provides technical assistance to countries to develop national aquatic biosecurity plans and regulatory frameworks in line with the regional approach.

• Identifies and addresses gender and human rights issues affecting national aquatic biosecurity plans.

• Provides training and supervision for national staff on the development of aquatic biosecurity plans and risks assessment.

3. Promote inter-agency networking and cross-sectoral collaboration in aquatic biosecurity

• Liaising and working with Aquaculture Section staff to integrate the work of these different areas into aquatic biosecurity.

• Liaising and working with Coastal Fisheries and Aquaculture Science & Management Sections on areas relating to aquatic biosecurity policies.

• Maintains regional cooperation and coordination on aquatic biosecurity with relevant organisations to ensure standardised approaches to aquatic biosecurity are maintained in the region.

• Implements joint activities with other Divisions within SPC, agencies and international organisations and avoid any overlap of work.

4. Section management, administration and communication

· Assists the Adviser, to develop the annual work plans and work plan reports for the Section, consistent with FAME Business Plan.

· Maintains up to date corporate and administrative procedures for all activities undertaken.

· Contributes where applicable to Programme and Divisional publications, such as Fisheries Newsletters, annual reports, and Divisional annual results stories .

· Produces reports for all activities undertaken in the appropriate format for the activity.

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

Key selection criteria

1. Qualifications

• Master’s degree in a field relevant to aquatic biosecurity and aquaculture.

2. Technical expertise

• At least 8 years’ practical hands-on experience developing aquatic biosecurity policies or plans.

• Demonstrated experience in developing import risk assessments for introduced species preferably for aquaculture purposes.

• Demonstrated experience in delivering trainings to manage aquatic biosecurity risks in aquaculture.

• Experience in working with Pacific Island private sector and government systems.

• Experience in writing reports, reporting against project work plans and managing project expenditure.

• Demonstrated experience in working as part of a team or alone with minimal supervision.

• Willingness to travel and undertake overseas assignments in SPC member countries.

• Excellent computer skills across necessary applications.

3. Language skills

• Excellent skills in cross-cultural communication (written and oral) in English.

4. Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

• Experience and ability to work with people from different ethnic, cultural and educational backgrounds.

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

Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – This vacant position is budgeted for 3 years and is subject to renewal depending on performance and funding.

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 Aquatic Biosecurity Specialist is a Band 11 position in SPC’s 2021 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 4,113–5,045 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately XPF 602,042–738,463 (USD 5,717–7,012; EUR 5,045–6,188). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration being given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be 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 faire, 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.

How to apply:

Application procedure

Closing date: 16 January 2022 – 11:00 pm (Noumea time)

Job Reference: AL000443

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

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

All positions at SPC have specific screening questions. If you do not respond to all of the screening questions, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage.

Screening questions

  1. Briefly describe your experience in consulting, communicating and collaborating with stakeholders in developing national aquatic biosecurity policies and plans.

  2. Describe your experiences in conducting training in import risk analysis for aquatic products; and describe specific areas which should be covered in import risk analysis training.

  3. Describe your experience in working with producers and government institutions in the area of aquatic animal health management and provide specific aquaculture related examples from your experiences.