Program Consultant - International Rivers, China

China Program Consultant

International Rivers is a non-profit analysis and advocacy organization with offices in the United States, Brazil, South Africa, Thailand, and India. International Rivers protects rivers and defends the rights of communities that depend on them. We work to stop destructive dams and promote water and energy solutions for a just and sustainable world.


China is the world's biggest dam builder at home and overseas. Chinese dam builders and financiers often do not follow international environmental and social standards, and many of their projects have serious impacts on ecosystems and local communities. International Rivers' China program aims to strengthen the policies and practices of Chinese dam builders and to stop the most destructive projects from going forward.

Since 2006, International Rivers' China program has increased awareness about the role and impacts of Chinese dam builders and financiers in China and internationally. We work on several levels, including policy reform, capacity building of Chinese and host country NGOs, and research and monitoring. Our program focuses both on the role of Chinese dam builders in Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America, as well as on dam building within China, particularly with the unprecedented increases in hydropower capacity proposed under China's 12th Five-Year Plan.

Position Description

International Rivers is currently seeking a Consultant to the China Program who has experience working on environmental issues in China, possesses solid research, writing and communication skills, and is a Chinese native speaker. The consultant will be an integral part of the China Program, communicate with International Rivers' staff and partners, and contribute to print and web publications. The position will be full-time and will be based in Beijing. Travel within China will be required for 10-20% of the time.

General responsibilities will include:

• Providing support to existing partner NGOs in China and in host countries.

• Engaging new NGOs and institutions in China on program topics.

• Conducting desk and field research related to specific projects and topics.

• Working closely with the China team in Berkeley on achieving program goals.

• Communicating on key issues and disseminating new research and news items to partners.

• Other tasks such as answering questions from interested stakeholders and members of civil society.

Specific activities will include:

• Addressing China's 12th Five Year Plan's Renewable Energy plan by researching alternative energy solutions particularly to new dams proposed for southwest China.

• Increasing our and our Chinese and Mekong NGO partners' understanding of the impacts of new and existing Lancang dams and other projects.

• Supporting the program's policy advocacy objectives, which include encouraging Chinese dam builders to adopt environmental policies of the highest international standards.

• Providing training opportunities and materials to Chinese NGOs working on river protection and China's global dam building role.

• Assisting local NGOs in China and abroad in addressing the problems of specific projects with Chinese involvement.

• Supporting our online presence and increase awareness about dam building in China and abroad through our website and social networking sites.

Skills and experiences required:

• At least five years of experience working at an environmental non-profit or research institution, with experience conducting field site visits.

• Ability to work independently on multiple tasks and with tight deadlines.

• Strong written and verbal communication skills in Chinese and English, including the ability to communicate technical information to non-technical audiences.

• Willingness to travel to project sites and meet with partner organizations.

• Education background in energy planning, environmental policy or science.

• Commitment to transparency and empowerment of local communities and NGOs.

• Demonstrated ability to work within a team and in challenging political environments.

• Experience working with communication technologies including social networking, websites, etc.

Desired qualifications:

• Familiarity and interest in international environmental and social standards.

• Strong commitment to human rights, economic justice and the protection of natural resources.

• Familiarity with river conservation and/or dam impacts.

Compensation and Duration:

Consultant will be paid at an hourly rate based on experience. The consultant will be expected to work 40 hours per week. The contract will be a one-year commitment with the possibility of extension.

Application Procedures:

Qualified applicants should first send an expression of interest and a current CV to Katy Yan,, with the subject line: China Program Consultant. NO CALLS, PLEASE. The deadline for applications is January 9, 2012.