Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Specialist: Africa Climate Strategy

  • Full Time
  • Zambia

The Nature Conservancy

Job Description

The Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Specialist provides technical and scientific support to TNC’s Africa Climate and Forest Protection Strategy team, TNC’s Africa Forest Carbon Catalyst (AFCC) program, TNC Country Programs working on Climate and Forest Protection, and other TNC staff as appropriate to advance the Africa Climate and Forest Protection Strategy under TNC’s 2030 Goals. They strengthen MEL processes and build capacity of TNC staff, partners, community members and the implementing agencies in designing and executing relevant trainings and providing technical assistance in relation to monitoring, reporting and data management.

The MEL Specialist sets targets and collects data in priority areas. The MEL Specialist conducts scientific surveys and research, records data, writes reports, and develops proposals in order to support implementation of conservation programs within Africa Climate and Forest Protection Strategy in the target countries. The position develops a systematic and functional monitoring framework to collect and aggregate the qualitative and quantitative evidence gathered by the various projects, including reporting on outputs and outcomes. They formulate the overall MEL plan, tracking progress, and ensure the implementation of the plan. The role also provides technical support toward design and implementation of specific Africa Climate Strategy projects. The position will report to the Africa Forest Carbon Catalyst Director with a dotted line to the regional MEL Director for technical MEL guidance and linkage with MEL actions across ecosystems and countries. The position will be based in TNC office in Kenya or Tanzania.

No relocation or visa sponsorship or assistance is being offered with this position. This is a two-year term limited position. Extension of tenure will be subject to performance and availability of funds.


The MEL Specialist will be responsible for the design, coordination, and implementation of the MEL framework for the Africa Climate Strategy, and they will also support other strategy programs such as the Africa Forest Carbon Catalyst.

The responsibilities and scope for this position are:

  • Design an M&E system that supports the development of both project M&E plans and the overall framework, including indicators for all Africa Climate Strategy programs and AFCC projects, in order to effectively capture project performance and continuous monitoring.
  • Facilitate the project teams to develop relevant MEL Plans. Including, outlining the key objectives along the results chain with clear and agreed outcome, result and output statements combined with the SMART indicator sets and the MEL arrangements for data collection, analysis and reporting.
  • Set the baseline studies as required for the key indicator sets.
  • Ensure MEL arrangements are clearly agreed and suitably tailored to TNC’s, the project partners’ and relevant stakeholders’ MEL mechanisms, capacity and resources.
  • Manage partners to ensure all relevant indicators pertaining to their projects are regularly tracked, updated and reported as agreed.
  • Provide MEL capacity-building support to relevant team and project partner members.
  • Provide timely updates in the regional performance dashboards and manage the TNC Hub database for the TNC Africa Climate and Forest Protection work.
  • Undertake data quality assurance of partners’ self-reporting of progress; Coordinate follow-up with partners to address any gaps and/or inconsistencies.
  • Conduct site visits to promote appropriate monitoring of project activities and to enhance data validity and quality.
  • Participate in evaluation exercises including, mid-term program evaluation and project review and learning sessions.
  • In collaboration with project leads, strengthen MEL data aggregation and analysis to measure and present a robust assessment of progress and lessons of performance against output, outcome and impacts targets. Utilize the MEL findings to generate lessons and provide clear evidence-based recommendations to inform adaptive implementation by the projects and/or strategy.
  • Contribute to the preparation of project proposals and reporting according to donor requirements.
  • Organize review of program work plans with partners and other stakeholders in liaison with Project Managers.
  • Foster and support cross-project learning, lessons learning workshops and strengthen a Community of Practice for the sharing of best practices and lessons for adaptive management.
  • Participate in and provide MEL support in specific coastal and marine conservation projects as needed as will be assigned by the Supervisor.


  • B.S. Degree in science or in a related field and 5 years of experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience in MEL, conservation practice, social sciences, development studies, statistics, project management, or related disciplines.
  • Supervisory experience, including motivating, leading, setting objectives and managing performance, workloads and finances under deadlines.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in climate mitigation and or adaptation.
  • Experience in developing and implementing monitoring and evaluation systems and plans including,

A. The development of quantitative and qualitative MEL tools and methods

B. Data analysis skills using GIS and knowledge of statistical software such as Excel.

C. The selection and definition of SMART indicators

D. Data analysis, aggregation and reporting methods.

E. The production of MEL performance reports.

F. Data quality control, overseeing data collection and quality assurance.

  • Experience in providing MEL capacity building, mentoring and delivering MEL technical support to project implementors and partners, preferably to multiple projects across various locations/ countries in Africa.
  • Experience in evaluating partner MEL performance reporting
  • Experience in designing and maintaining a database for monitoring data for multiple projects.
  • Excellent facilitation and communication skills (oral and writing) and fluency in in English.
  • Technical writing and communicating scientific information to a broad range of audiences and stakeholders desired.


  • Over seven (7) years of experience working with MEL in the field of environment conservation, biodiversity conservation, natural resource management, development and/or other.
  • Multi-lingual and multi-cultural or cross-cultural experience appreciated.
  • Strong expertise in the social sciences and social-ecological systems.
  • Specialized training in M&EL and experience incorporating project learning into adaptive management.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with web-based data management and visualization systems for monitoring performance and outcomes.
  • Strong knowledge of common software applications especially Excel.
  • Demonstrated experience collaborating with other parties to obtain different data sources.
  • Strong oral, written and presentation skills, communicating clearly via written, spoken, and graphical means in English and other relevant languages.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively with diverse stakeholders.
  • Experience in conducting training and building capacity of teams in M&E.
  • Experience in partnership development with non-profit partners, community groups and/or government agencies.
  • Knowledge of methods and standards of biodiversity information systems and initiatives or related field.

Deadline: May 26, 2024

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