Manager - Our Ocean Conference Secretariat

Program Management Worldwide

This is a full time, limited term hybrid position which requires 8 days/month in the office and has an end date of 30 April 2027. You can be based in our office in Washington DC. London, or the Hague. Existing work authorization is required at the time of application submission as WRI is unable to sponsor any visa work sponsorship for this position.


About the Program:


The ocean is fundamental to the future of people, nature, and climate. More than 3 billion people depend on the ocean for their livelihoods and food and the ocean ecosystem generates numerous ecosystem services that benefit humanity. Moreover, ocean-based climate solutions can potentially reduce the “emissions gap” by up to 35% on a 1.5°C trajectory by 2050. Recognizing this importance, the Ocean Program at the World Resources Institute (WRI) seeks to catalyze a world where effective ocean protection enables sustainable production of what the ocean provides, yielding prosperity for all. In other words, we seek a world where not only Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 is met but also many of the other SDGs for which the ocean can provide solutions.


Job Highlight:


Reporting to the Global Director, Ocean Program, you will be responsible for managing the secretariat of the Our Ocean Conference; an inspiring opportunity to stimulate global commitments to ocean conservation and sustainability. This significant undertaking involves meticulous preparation, seamless operation, and diligent follow-up, all of which are critical for the success of the event. You will lead a dedicated team to achieve this. The post-holder will support agenda and program development, support and track invitations, track country and private sector ocean commitments, streamline operational support, and enhance OOC continuity over time across host countries. You will be responsible for supporting each host country, advancing the host’s OOC vision while ensuring relevant standard practices are carried out year to year. You will be supported by the Ocean Program Communications Team and a dedicated OOC researcher.


What will you do:


Overall Management (25%):


  • Coordinate and lead all activities of the Secretariat in alignment with the objectives of the OOC
  • Organize and facilitate meetings of the OOC Advisory Group, ensuring effective communication and follow-up
  • Manage budgetary allocations for Secretariat activities, ensuring responsible stewardship of funds and adherence to financial guidelines
  • Secure additional funding (as needed) to support the functions and operations of the Secretariat
  • Provide a comprehensive handover document to the host country to ensure sharing of institutional memory about the OOC
  • Carry out a post-event review to determine learnings & feedback
  • Develop a results framework, with indicators, to demonstrate the effectiveness of the secretariat


Planning & Logistics (25%): 


  • Provide strategic input and recommendations to the host country on the agenda, topics, and participants for the conference
  • Maintain and expand the database of invitees from a diversity of sectors, including government, business, civil society, academia, and philanthropy
  • Assist the host country in managing invitations, tracking responses, and engaging with invitees and session participants


Outreach & Communications (20%): -


  • Oversee the development and maintenance of the OOC website to provide up-to-date information and resources
  • Manage the OOC's social media presence to enhance outreach and engagement with stakeholders
  • Collaborate with the host country to develop and implement communication plans, ensuring consistency and coherence across OOCs


Commitment Mobilization & Tracking (10%): 


  • Support the host country in mobilizing commitments under the six priority areas of the OOC
  • Support the OOC Secretariat Researcher in the establishment and maintenance of a commitments registry that records commitments made at each conference and tracks progress on previous commitments
  • Provide strategic guidance to ensure that commitments lead to tangible and systemic changes in ocean conservation and sustainable development
Stakeholder Engagement (20%):
  • Liaise with host countries, governmental agencies, international organizations, and other stakeholders to foster partnerships and collaboration in support of the OOC goals.
  • Represent the Secretariat at relevant events, conferences, and meetings to promote the conference and build networks within the ocean conservation


What will you need:


  • Education: You have completed a Master’s degree in a relevant field (e.g., the natural sciences, international relations, law, economics, or other discipline relevant for marine and coastal systems and/or the ocean economy.
  • Experience: You have a minimum of 10 years of full-time professional experience in relevant fields, including at least 2 years in a management position
  • Track record of strategic thinking
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and wide-ranging intellectual curiosity
  • Strong organizational skills, with the ability to manage multiple activities simultaneously
  • Excellent presentation skills (ability to communicate clearly and compellingly)
  • History of effectively motivating and connecting people to fulfill their potential and achieve results
  • Demonstrated fundraising track record
  • Strong network of relevant relationships
  • Ability to travel, especially internationally, about 10% of time
  • Languages: Fluent in English with additional languages a bonus
  • Requirements: Existing work authorization is required where this position. WRI is unable to authorize visa work authorization


Potential Salary: US salary range is between 116K and 139K USD. UK: 65K - 82K GBP. Salary is commensurate with experience and other compensable factors.


How to Apply: Please submit a resume with a required cover letter by the date of May 28, 2024. We are unable to consider your application without a cover letter.


You mustapply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.


What we offer:


  • Access to the WRI global network with the opportunity to exchange with and learn from passionate colleagues working at the cutting edge of their fields across Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and the US
  • The chance to have an impact and to develop your career within a mission driven organization with access to varied learning and training opportunities. 
  • A workplace that strives to put diversity and inclusion at the heart of our work
  • The opportunity to join and get involved in different working groups and affinity groups to shape the future of WRI
  • Commitment to hybrid working model with flexible working hours
  • Generous leave days that increase with tenure


About Us:


Founded in 1982, World Resources Institute(WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organization that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity, and human well-being. We are working to address seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean. WRI has a global staff of over 1,800 people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia and the United States, as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps, and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business, and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.


Our mission and values:


WRI’s mission is to move human society to live in ways that protect Earth’s environment and its capacity to provide for the needs and aspirations of current and future generations.


Our values are shared ideals that bind us together: Integrity, Innovation, Urgency, Independence and Respect.


Our culture:


WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organizational and programmatic practices. We are committed to providing equal opportunities in employment; we embrace all diversity and encourage women, the LGBTQ+ community, persons with disabilities, Afro-descendants, and Indigenous people to apply. Recognizing our strong commitment to gender equality, WRI has also been awarded EDGE certification.


Our team in Human Resources carefully reviews all applications.