Director, Natural Climate Solutions Alliance (NCSA)

Location Geneva, Switzerland
Date Posted 12 April 2021
Category Fixed-term
Job Type Manager


Deadline for applications: 26/04/2021

NCSA Background

The NCS Alliance was formed in 2018 as a multi-stakeholder group committed to supporting the acceleration of affordable and scalable natural climate mitigation solutions for achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change.  We aim to catalyse the broader policy and regulatory changes needed to make this possible for us and all other relevant stakeholders. The Alliance also serves as a forum for knowledge sharing and technical capacity building to ensure Natural Climate Solutions reach their full potential in abating climate change. We are convened by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).

All members of the Alliance agree with a set of four founding principles that can deliver environmental and social integrity, in order to build on a track-record of successful delivery:

  1. NCS can and should raise ambition with respect to climate action, enhancing rather than diluting a nation’s or a company’s contribution to the Paris goals. NCS should be used in conjunction with the GHG emissions mitigation hierarchye. avoiding and reducing emissions should be prioritized and continue in addition to the use of NCS credits.
  2. NCS credits can provide an interim solution for hard-to-abate emissions, but not a permanent one. For certain unavoidable emissions, carbon sinks - potentially including natural sinks - will always be needed to achieve net zero. NCS credits should be considered an enabling solution that will support long-term sustainable land use.
  3. NCS investments should follow rigorous environmental and social safeguards, which may help generate other benefits in line with UN SDGs, in addition to GHG emissions reductions. For example, the preservation of a given forest could enhance a wide variety of ecosystem services to the benefit of local and indigenous communities’ livelihoods
  4. Sound and verified carbon measurement and accounting methodologies must be applied to ensure high integrity of NCS credits. Emissions reductions and removals must be real, quantified and verified, with issues of additionality, leakage and permanence appropriately addressed and tracked through robust accounting to avoid double counting.

WBCSD Background

WBCSD is a global, CEO-led organization of over 200 leading businesses working together to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world. We help make our member companies more successful and sustainable by focusing on the maximum positive impact for shareholders, the environment and societies. Our member companies come from all business sectors and all major economies, representing combined revenues of more than USD $8.5 trillion and 19 million employees. Our global network of almost 70 national business councils gives our members unparalleled reach across the globe. WBCSD is uniquely positioned to work with member companies along and across value chains to deliver impactful business solutions to the most challenging sustainability issues.


WEF Background

The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business, cultural and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. The World Economic Forum provides a platform for the world’s 1,000 leading companies to shape a better future. As a membership organization, the Forum engages the world’s 1,000 leading companies in projects and initiatives – online and offline – to address the world’s most significant challenges. Through the Platform for Global Public Goods the Forum accelerates actions on climate change and environmental sustainability, food systems, the circular economy and value chains, and the future of international development.


Job overview

The Alliance is governed by a Steering Committee with day-to-day support from a Secretariat, supported by the convening organisations the World Economic Forum and WBCSD.  With a new funding commitment from We Mean Business we can now hire a full-time Director to oversee the operation of the Alliance and provide leadership to the Secretariat.

The Alliance will operate as a hosted platform within the WBCSD in partnership with the Forum. The Director will report to the Senior Director for Net Zero Transformation within WBCSD. The Alliance Director’s accountability however will be to the Alliance Steering Committee and to the Alliance’s broader membership.

The role will be supported by personnel from WBCSD and WEF.

The positions is full-time and for a fixed period of time of 18 months.

Qualifications and Skills

With new funding, stand-alone management and a shift in focus from system design to NCS implementation, 2021 will be a highly important transitional year for the Alliance.  We are seeking a world-class leader to drive this transition with key skills including:

  1. An understanding of the importance of Natural Climate Solutions to decarbonisation and nature restoration and an understanding of the interplay between compliance and voluntary carbon markets
  2. A proven ability to manage complex stakeholder relationships while moving progress forward
  3. Credibility at a senior level in developing NCS policy and/or generating international NCS solutions
  4. A commitment to teamwork but also an ability to work independently in matrix-based organisations
  5. Excellent team management skills
  6. Competent and confident communication and facilitation skills

Both the Forum and WBCSD are based in Geneva, however we would consider candidates located elsewhere in Europe (CET or GMT time zones)

Responsibilities and duties

Key Performance Metrics will include:

  • Successful development and implementation of the Alliance workplan
  • Successful migration of the Alliance from design to implementation of outputs including guidance for members (and the broader voluntary markets) on appropriate standards for NCS demand, supply and market measures
  • Support the dissemination of a number of “lighthouse” NCS projects in 2021 demonstrating adherence to the standards agreed by the Alliance
  • Management of a strategic communications campaign to strengthen the positive narrative on the necessity of investing in NCS for climate mitigation and adaptation
  • Develop, launch and recruit private sector companies to an NCS demand campaign that raises ambition and profile ahead of COP26
  • Developing deep and beneficial relationships with the intergovernmental programme, driving developments in the compliance market and demonstrating confidence in the Alliance as a pathfinder/solution provider
  • Expansion of the membership of the NCS Alliance, especially in Asia
  • Building broad and deep working relationships with other organisations that are building capacity in voluntary NCS market development
  • Coordinate fund-raising to secure necessary resources to execute on NCSA mission if and when additional resources are required

Please note that WBCSD will only respond to selected candidates for the interview process.