Social Development Specialist

World Bank

The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans and grants to the governments of low and middle income countries for the purpose of pursuing capital projects. It comprises two institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), and the International Development Association (IDA). The World Bank is a component of the World Bank Group. The World Bank's most recently stated goal is the reduction of poverty

Job Information

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    Duty Station Kathmandu
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    Type of Appointment Contract
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    No. of Openings 1 opening
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    Salary Negotiable / Monthly
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    Job Level : Mid-Level
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    Job Experience : 5+ years
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    Job Category Development & Project
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    Job Qualification : Master
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    Posted Date : Jan 20, 2022

Job Description

Job #: req14623
Organization: World Bank
Sector: Social Development
Grade: GF
Term Duration: 3 years 0 months
Recruitment Type: Local Recruitment
Location: Kathmandu,Nepal
Required Language(s): English, Nepali
Preferred Language(s):
Closing Date: 1/31/2022 (MM/DD/YYYY) at 11:59pm UTC


Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? The World Bank Group is one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries; a unique global partnership of five institutions dedicated to ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity. With 189 member countries and more than 120 offices worldwide, we work with public and private sector partners, investing in groundbreaking projects and using data, research, and technology to develop solutions to the most urgent global challenges.  For more information, visit

The South Asia Region comprises eight countries (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) that range in size from India (with a population of over 1 billion) to Maldives (with 0.3 million people). The region has experienced a long period of robust economic growth, averaging 6% a year over the past 20 years. It was the second-fastest growing region in the world in the aftermath of the global crisis. This strong growth has translated into declining poverty and impressive improvements in human development. The percentage of people living below the poverty line fell in South Asia from 56% to 16% between 1981 and 2013. Still, the region remains home to a third of the world’s poorest, with 216 million people living below $1.9/day.

The South Asia Region:

The Sustainable Development Practice Group

The Sustainable Development (SD) Practice Group (PG) helps countries tackle their most complex challenges in the areas of Agriculture and Food, Climate Change, Environment, Natural Resources & Blue Economy, Environmental and Social Framework, Urban, Disaster Risk Management, Resilience & Land, Social Sustainability and Inclusion, and Water.

Social Sustainability and Inclusion Global Practice:  

The Social Sustainability and Inclusion Global Practice (SSI GP) helps countries tackle deep-rooted social problems stemming from fragility, climate change, exclusion, and the digital age with people-centered solutions that build on local values and institutions. The GP engages with citizens, communities, and governments to deepen resilience, build inclusion, and empower vulnerable and marginalized groups to have influence and voice. The GP prioritizes participatory, multi-sectoral approaches that build on norms and informal institutions to address social challenges and to build more inclusive, empowered communities. It also works across the Bank’s portfolio to implement the Environment and Social Framework (ESF) standards and strengthen inclusive development.

The Social Sustainability and Inclusion (SSI) GP team in Nepal is responsible for: (i) undertaking social analysis during project preparation and implementation to mainstream social sustainability and inclusion issues throughout the World Bank’s (WB’s) work in Nepal; (ii) ensuring compliance with the WB’s social safeguards policies and the implementation of the ESF; (iii) undertaking analytics in the form of thematic studies on social development issues; (iv) leading the preparation and supervision of lending operations that promotes inclusion of vulnerable groups including women and youth; and (v) facilitating partnerships and dialogue with civil society through outreach and engagement. A key responsibility of the group is to provide professional expertise and operational support to other GPs to implement the World Bank safeguards policies and the ESF to deliver sustainable development results that ensure that any adverse impacts of WB interventions are limited and mitigated and to promote opportunities for social inclusion and benefit sharing.

The work on inclusion of vulnerable and excluded groups covers, among others, issues related to ethnic minorities, Indigenous Peoples, marginalized castes, people with disabilities, sexual orientation and gender identity, migrant and displaced populations. Work on gender is aligned with the implementation of the World Bank Group Gender Strategy (FY 2016-2023) and guidelines including on gender in operations.

The South Asia SSI Unit (SSAS1) is recruiting a local Social Development Specialist to provide support in meeting the Bank’s expanding and complex social safeguards, ESF and sustainability agenda as well as SSI’s agendas on inclusion, resilience and empowerment. The selected individual will be expected to work closely and collaboratively with the Nepal SSI Team, country unit and task teams working on the Nepal portfolio. The position will be based in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Duties & Responsibilities:

The specialist will be responsible for providing ESF and safeguards advice to ensure compliance with World Bank’s ESF and safeguard policies. More specifically, s/he will:

  • Work closely with the task teams and other social development colleagues to address ESF and social safeguards challenges in the Nepal portfolio, as well as provide support on corporate commitments on Citizen Engagement and Gender;
  • Provide operational support on social risk management including undertaking regular operational missions to assist task teams in reviewing social risk management documentation and implementation to ensure that social issues have been adequately addressed and that projects are in compliance with the ESF or Social Safeguards policies;
  • Prepare Environmental and Social Review Summaries and relevant social sections for Project Appraisal Documents and complete activities and reporting in the Environmental and Social Management system;
  • Support efforts to build capacity among colleagues and counterparts including understanding and significance of Social Impact Assessments, vulnerability and inclusion, Indigenous Peoples, stakeholder engagement/citizen engagement, grievance redress, labor and working conditions, community health and safety, cultural heritage, and other requirements for management of social sustainability and inclusion issues in relation to projects. Where appropriate, promote and contribute substantively to analyses and efforts to strengthen country systems for social risk management;
  • Review and guide the preparation of terms of reference for social assessments and other assessments, and other analytical tools required for investment design and implementation. This will require helping the client to ensure the quality of project documentation and supporting analysis and participation in training sessions and other capacity building exercises;
  •  Undertake analytical work on land acquisition, resettlement, Indigenous Peoples, vulnerability and inclusion, and other social risk management issues;
  • Engage in the WB-wide professional community of staff in social development and social standards/safeguards by participating in thematic groups, exchanging best practices, and drafting technical notes;
  • Help develop sustainable local and national consultation mechanisms and strategies; and
  • Participate in the broader social sustainability and inclusion work of the team.

Required Qualification & Experience

  • Advanced university degree (Master’s) in a related social science (e.g., Sociology, Anthropology, Human Geography, Economics, Political Science, Social Policy, Social Development /Work, Development Studies/Policies, Gender, etc.) with at least five years of relevant work experience in social sustainability, social standards/safeguards and/or social development strategies; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Knowledge and experience in addressing issues covered by the WB’s ESF and social safeguards policies or similar policies in other international finance institutions. This includes experience with: social assessments and analyzing social risks and impacts on different population groups; involuntary resettlement in different socio-economic contexts and land tenure systems; Indigenous Peoples’ issues; coordination of transparent consultative and stakeholder engagement processes and grievance redress mechanisms; integration of relevant planning instruments such as Resettlement Action Plans and Indigenous Peoples Plans in overall project planning and implementation; labor and working conditions; community health and safety; gender based violence including sexual exploitation, abuse and sexual harassment; and cultural heritage.
  • Experience in areas of social inclusion such as gender; Indigenous Peoples and other historically marginalized and underserved groups; fragility, conflict and violence; and disability inclusion.
  • Ability to present complex social development and ESF/safeguards issues to task teams and Bank audiences, and to engage effectively with government counterparts, the private sector, project beneficiaries and civil society.
  • Excellent interpersonal, analytical, problem-solving, communication and team skills, and ability to think innovatively and strategically to find balanced solutions to complex development problems, with a strong client focus.
  • Ability to operate in a multi-cultural environment, manage multiple tasks, identify and respond to needs as they arise, and remain self-motivated in a dynamic and fast-paced work environment.
  • Acting with integrity at all times to build trust and to support an enabling work environment.
  • High level of energy, initiative and self-motivation; willingness to travel and work under challenging circumstances.
  • Ability to work across practices, work in cross-thematic teams, and support team work.
  •  Fluency in English and Nepali is a prerequisite. Excellent communications and writing skills in English are essential.In addition, the successful candidate is expected to exhibit the following core competencies:
  • Policy Dialogue Skills – Identifies and assesses policy issues and plays an active role in the dialogue with the government and/or other stakeholders.
  • Integrative Skills – Working to develop an integrated view across all facets of the sector.
  • Analytical Tools for Social Sustainability – Proven ability and substantial experience to conceptualize, design and implement major projects and to produce major/complex reports or studies.
  • Participation and Consultation – Substantial experience in conducting social development consultative and participatory approaches and applying the approaches in the course of an operation.
  • Client Orientation – Maintains client relationships in the face of conflicting demands or directions and provides evidence-based advice and solutions based on sound diagnosis and knowledge.  Achieves results and identifies mission-driven solutions for the Client.
  • Drive for Results – Identifies the needed resources to accomplish results involving multiple stakeholders and finds solutions to obstacles affecting key deliverables.
  • Teamwork (Collaboration) and Inclusion – Demonstrated professional ability to work in a team of professionals.  Demonstrated ability to actively seek and consider diverse ideas and approaches.
  • Initiates collaboration across boundaries and broadly across WBG and brings differing ideas into the forefront.
  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge – Creates, applies and shares knowledge from across and outside WBG to strengthen internal and/or external client solutions.

How to Apply

World Bank Group Core Competencies

The World Bank Group offers comprehensive benefits, including a retirement plan; medical, life and disability insurance; and paid leave, including parental leave, as well as reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce, and do not discriminate based on gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.

Learn more about working at the World Bank and IFC, including our values and inspiring stories.