World Health Organization - Programme Manager

To support the WHO engagement in multisectoral partnerships for environment and health. This includes, particularly, to lead the European Environment and Health Process (EHP) and the Transport, Health and Environment Pan European Programme (THE PEP, ensuring coordination and synergy with the work undertaken by WHO in relation to environment and health. To advise and guide on healthy and equitable policies, measures and strategies in public health and health systems and in other sectors, and involvement of stakeholders with clear lines of accountability and transparency; to design, organize and implement policy activities facilitating the integration of health considerations in decisions, planning and investments of Member States affecting natural and built environments, particularly in transport and mobility.

Objectives of the Programme and of the immediate Strategic Objectives:
All Member States of WHO in the European Region share the common value of the highest attainable standard of health as a fundamental human right. All of WHO actions are based on this and rooted in the underlying values of equity, solidarity and participation.

The 13th General Programme of Work defines the mission of WHO as one to promote health, to keep the world safe, and to protect the vulnerable. The GPW calls for heightened accountability, prioritizing impact and outcome at country level, and to improve the lives of three billion people, through universal health coverage, through addressing health emergencies, and promoting healthier populations.

WHO’s mandate revolves around six core functions: (i) providing leadership on global health matters; (ii) shaping the health research agenda; (iii) setting norms and standards; (iv) articulating evidence-based policy options; (v) providing technical support to countries; and (vi) monitoring and assessing health trends.

The European Region (EURO) of WHO is made up of 53 countries, with over 880 million people. The diversity of people and health situations requires, on the demand side, a solid understanding of the emerging socio-economic, epidemiologic and demographic patterns and trends at both aggregate as well as national and sub-national levels, with due sensitivity to disadvantaged populations and vulnerable segments of the society. On the supply side, it is equally crucial to have a solid understanding of the commonalities and divergences of the health systems, the circumstances and political economy under which they have evolved and operate and, more specifically, how these bear upon the way the health system stewardship function of health ministries is carried out.

The Division of Policy and Governance for Health and Well-being (PCR) The Division of Policy and Governance for Health and Well-being (PCR) leads the implementation of Health 2020 – the European Health Policy Framework supporting governments and societies towards their implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). PCR specifically targets SDG 3 by aiding national and sub-national health policy development in countries.

The PCR division has two core missions. In addition to leading and coordinating the SDG roadmap and implementation of Health 2020 and supporting Office-wide implementation of the WHO's 13th General Programme of Work, the division provides strategic and technical leadership in a number of cross-cutting programmatic areas that have a strong relevance to the work of the whole Regional Office. This technical leadership on governance for health and health equity extends into particular focus on the social and environmental determinants of health, gender, migration, human rights and vulnerabilities.

PCR is also responsible for the coordination a several networks, such as the WHO Healthy Cities Network, the Small Countries Initiative and the Regions for Health Network, bringing together policy-makers and stakeholders working to put health high on the social, economic and political agenda. The division also hosts the secretariat of the European Environment and Health Process, a regional intersectoral process and platform for the development and implementation of policies advancing environment, health and well-being. The European Interagency Platform for Working Together for Better Health and Well-being for All and the UN issue-based coalition on health and development are also run by the PCR. These programmes were launched in 2016 and are pan-European approaches aimed at strengthening and enabling intersectoral cooperation. Areas of interest include between the health, education and social sectors, and facilitating and promoting the implementation in the Region of the targets of SDG 3 and the many other health-related SDG targets.

The Division has staff located in the WHO/EURO main office in Copenhagen and in two technical centres: the European Office for Investment for Health and Development in Venice, Italy and the European Centre for Environment and Health in Bonn, Germany. Additionally, PCR has staff in several country offices.

WHO/ECEH (European Centre for Environment and Health) is the technical and scientific centre of the WHO Regional Office for Europe for addressing environmental impacts on health. It provides Member States with state-of-the-art evidence on existing and emerging environmental health risks and assists them in identifying and implementing policies to protect and promote health. It develops policy advice and international guidelines, methods and tools to inform and support decision-making by governments, health professionals, citizens and other stakeholders, and contributes to shape the environment and health research agenda WHO/ECEH supports Member States to implement their environment and health-related commitments, in line with relevant World Health Assembly and Regional Committee Resolutions, as well as multilateral environmental agreements and multisectoral policy platforms. These activities contribute to improved and more equitable health for all people of the WHO European Region through the development of healthy environments and strengthened community resilience. In turn, they support the attainment of the global environment and health-related targets of the Sustainable Development Goals, and of the WHO Thirteenth General Programme of Work.

WHO/ECEH is organized in four technical programmes:

The programme on healthy living and working environments addresses air quality, noise, chemicals, occupational health and aspects of climate change mitigation and environmentally sustainable health systems.

The programme on water and climate addresses the health-related aspects of water, sanitation, hygiene and climate change adaptation.

The programme on environment and health impact assessment addresses crosscutting issues: economics of environment and health, environment and health impacts assessment, urban and built environments, waste management and health, industrially contaminated sites and environmental health inequalities.

The programme on multisectoral partnerships for environment and health supports the European Environment and Health Process, the Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme, and promotes the establishment of partnerships with environment and health stakeholders including Inter-governmental Organizations, Non-government Organizations and actors at the regional and local level.

The programme on multisectoral partnerships for environment and health (MPE) leads the implementation of commitments taken by Member States through multisectoral policy platforms and fosters the participation of WHO in these platforms. In particular, MPE provides secretariat functions to the European Environment and Health Process (EHP), and to the Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme (THE PEP), jointly with the Unites Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). It coordinates and leverages the input of the ECEH technical programmes to the EHP and THE PEP and develops and promotes partnerships and collaboration with ministries of health, environment and transport, as well as with relevant intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, and sub-national and local levels of government. The work of the MPE programme aligns with the strategic WHO directions, as set in the 13th General Programme of Work (13 GPW), relevant WHA resolutions and roadmaps, including the Global Strategy om health, environment and climate change, and contributes to the achievement of the 2030 global Agenda for Sustainable Development. At the regional level, MPE activities align with priority areas of Health 2020; the 2017 Ostrava Declaration on Environment and Health; the 2016 New Urban Agenda; the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement; the 2002 Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme.

Summary of Assigned Duties:

To support the WHO engagement in multisectoral partnerships for environment and health. This includes, particularly, to lead the European Environment and Health Process (EHP) and the Transport, Health and Environment Pan European Programme (THE PEP, ensuring coordination and synergy with the work undertaken by WHO in relation to environment and health. To advise and guide on healthy and equitable policies, measures and strategies in public health and health systems and in other sectors, and involvement of stakeholders with clear lines of accountability and transparency; to design, organize and implement policy activities facilitating the integration of health considerations in decisions, planning and investments of Member States affecting natural and built environments, particularly in transport and mobility.

Key duties:

Under the guidance of the relevant supervisors, the incumbent will assume the following responsibilities and achieve the following objectives:

Core responsibilities in assisting Member States in relation to environmental health issues, the policies in other sectors with impact on health and related to transport and health, as part of country efforts to strengthen public health systems and policies:
1. lead the secretariat services to the European Environment and Health Process, working closely with the European Environment and Health Task Force, its Chair and Co-chairpersons and its Bureau;
2. lead the secretariat services to the Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme (THE PEP), jointly with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, working closely with THE PEP Steering Committee, its Chair and Co-Chairpersons and its Bureau
3. promote coordination and synergy between the work under the European Environment and Health and the WHO engagement in relevant multilateral environmental agreements;
4. supporting Divisional efforts to implement follow-up of the commitments taken through declarations at the various Ministerial Conferences on Environment and Health, including preparing forthcoming high-level/ministerial meetings;
5. support Member States in the development and implementation of national portfolios for action on environment and health
6. establish a dialogue with and provide advice to policy makers on healthy and equitable policies, measures and strategies. Advise and guide on responsibilities in public health and health systems, roles of other sectoral policies on health, and involvement of stakeholders with clear lines of accountability and transparency;
7. articulate consistent ethical and evidence-based policy and advocacy positions and develop and implement innovative approaches, adapted to regional/country needs, in the selected technical areas;
8. bring emerging issues and challenges in environment and health to the attention of Member States, by providing fora and platforms to discuss and address them, including policy dialogues and meetings of the EHTF, working closely with the environment and health programmes based in the ECEH;
9. provide technical assistance with the development of mechanisms, instruments and tools (such as national health strategies and policies, monitoring and evaluation, performance assessment and performance management and approaches to enhance effectiveness of stakeholder involvement) as well as the estimation of the required resources (human, financial, infrastructure and technological) and knowledge (i.e. through research, evaluation, performance measurement and knowledge management) to build understanding and capacity for improving and assessing issues relating to environment and health (i.e. leading policy development and coordination, transforming information into intelligence and applying this to the development and assessment of health policies and strategies; mobilizing its legal and regulatory powers to attain health system goals; recommending that the health system is designed to adapt to changing needs; exerting influence across other sectors than health and advocating for better health;
10. advocacy, knowledge transmission and advice for the enhancement of the capacities and skills of health ministries and other authorities in carrying out their functions, and in areas related to environment and health and health.

Educational Qualifications:

  • Essential: University degree (Master-s level) in public health, environmental health, epidemiology, natural sciences, or related disciplines.

  • Desirable: Post graduate degree in one of the above disciplines or post-graduate training in public health, environmental health or other relevant areas.

Experience:

Essential: At least ten years of relevant work experience attaining senior managerial rank in environment and health at national and international levels. This includes three to five years of practical experience implementing or advising on key domains of environment and health or public health and experience in the development, implementation or support to the administration of relevant international environmental agreements, and/or policy platforms, and/or World Health Assembly and WHO Regional Committee Resolutions, related to environment and health. Sound technical understanding of a broad range of environment and health issues. Experience advising on environment, health policies or technical areas and environmental emergencies in lower and middle-income countries.
Demonstrated ability to develop new initiatives and programmes at the international level. Experience in working with external partners in an effective and competent manner and with due regard for cultural diversities;
Experience and proven ability in project planning, coordination, budgeting and management;
Demonstrated track record of publications in environment and health and other related fields.
Desirable: Experience working in multi-national environment and health partnerships and/or implementation of multilateral environmental conventions and agreements concerning health. Experience in resource mobilization. Experience in project planning, budgeting and management;

Languages:

  • Essential: expert knowledge of English;

  • Desirable: working/intermediate knowledge of French, Russian or German.