Abt Associates Technical Specialist / Renewable Energy Policy Expert / Task 2 Lead in Thailand

Organization Overview

The International Economic Growth Division manages projects that are pioneering new approaches to agriculture, food security, climate change, and competitiveness—as well as monitoring and evaluating projects within these sectors. We work throughout Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East for chiefly governmental clients, including the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Millennium Challenge Corporation, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Opportunity

Abt Associates seeks qualified individuals to fulfill the position of Renewable Energy Policy Expert (Task 2 Lead) to support the International Economic Growth Division for the USAID Clean Power Asia program, reporting to the Renewable Energy Policy Expert. This position is full-time, based in Bangkok, Thailand, and is open to Thai Nationals ONLY. No allowances or relocation will be paid.

The purpose of USAID Clean Power Asia is to accelerate the regional transition to high performing, low carbon power sector. The Activity will assist the governments of the Lower Mekong and other developing countries in Asia in energy planning and help establish effective policy, regulatory, and technical environment for low-emissions growth in the power sector, while simultaneously attracting public- and private-sector investment in Renewable Energy (RE) development. USAID Clean Power Asia is focused on the following resources: solar, wind, small hydro (<15 MW), and biomass residues.

The program will initially focus on the four Lower Mekong countries of Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam, and will include activities on the ASEAN regional level.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

  • Work in close coordination with the project team, under the direct supervision and guidance of the Chief of Party, to improve the enabling environment for large-scale renewable energy deployment; accelerate private and public sector investment in renewable energy; promote U.S. government energy sector activities; and share lessons learned with the broader community;
  • Support future energy policy development related to setting and meeting national RE targets
  • Develop and nurture relationships related to each task with other donors, government counterparts, private sector actors and others in the region who share the program’s goals.

Potential activities that the Task 2 Lead will be expected to direct include, but are not limited to:

  • Task 2.1 Support government entities in designing and implementing smart incentives and removing disincentives to promote investment in RE, and bring lessons learned to workshops planned under the program:

  • Establish regionally scalable RE FIT, competitive procurement or other policy incentive options to promote investment in grid-connected RE

  • Improve regulatory framework for RE including streamlined permitting
  • Studies, followed by workshops, on existing smart incentives outside ASEAN (including the US and Europe), among ASEAN countries and for individual select LM countries
  • Conduct research and implement pilots on distributed PV in selected LM countries, including net metering and addressing other barriers to achieving goals for Distributed PV. The pilot programs could address setting goals and developing approaches; tariff design; quantifying economic impacts; codes, standards and interconnection processes; modeling and mitigating impacts on the electric distribution system; and (re) aligning utility interests with distributed PV. Share lessons learned in such a manner that all countries receiving Clean Power Asia assistance benefit.
  • Lead Clean Power Asia efforts to support or develop an ASEAN Regional Workshop on Competitive procurement in coordination with the Asia Clean Energy Forum (ACEF) in June, 2017. Thailand would likely have a key role in this workshop to share its experiences with the current biomass “FIT bidding” process and other experiences with competitive procurement.
  • Study on impact of fossil fuel subsidies on RE investment and options for restructuring/removal of subsidies to support achieving RE targets incorporated into various policies and plans. Coordinate with ADB/WB/KFW as this is an issue included in their policy loan.
  • Task 2.2 In the area of Variable Renewable Energy (VRE) Integration, CPA will:

  • Link to tasks 1.1 (RE target-setting) and 1.2 (RE Zones) which will aim to support planning for VRE integration (generation and transmission planning, market planning and other issues impacting the transmission and distribution grid)

  • Improve capacity of policymakers to understand VRE integration challenges and solutions including system limits
  • Support development of grid codes that facilitate VRE integration and other grid and interconnect requirements for VRE connection in LM Mekong countries
  • Improve capacity of system operators to integrate VRE into the power grid
  • Participate in developing and monitoring implementation of the annual work plan
  • Manage staff and consultants under Task 2
  • Draft scopes of work and select consultants (and staff as needed)
  • Manage any part-time staff or consultants
  • Review and approve deliverables and final work products of staff and consultants
  • Other duties to be determined in conjunction with the COP and USAID.

Preferred Skills / Prerequisites

  • Minimum of a Master’s degree in a relevant discipline is required
  • Experience in the policy aspects of energy issues in Asia, preferably in the Lower Mekong countries and/or ASEAN;
  • Progressive experience working on donor-funded – preferably USAID-funded — energy and/or economic growth projects in the ASEAN region;
  • Proven ability to manage logistical aspects of donor-funded project activities with multiple actors including energy ministries, regulators, universities, domestic banks, equity firms, and utility and planning agencies across the ASEAN region;
  • Applicants must bring native-level proficiency in one or more of the following languages: Lao, Khmer, Vietnamese, Thai , or Burmese; and
  • Fluency in English is required.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates may express their interest by emailing cparecruitment@abtassoc.com referencing “Policy Expert ” in the subject line.

Candidates will be evaluated on a rolling basis. To be considered, your email MUST INCLUDE the following information; failure to provide this information will result in your application being discarded.

  1. A written expression of interest summarizing your qualifications for the scope of work.
  2. CV clearly indicating work/consulting history and either daily consulting rate or annual compensation for each consultancy/position, stated in currency of payment.
  3. Preference will be given to Thai nationals.
  4. Preference may be given to candidates with immediate availability.

Additional Documentation

If a candidate is selected for an interview, the following documents will be required (while not required in application, you may choose to submit these with your application package:

  1. US Federal Form 1420 (EBD) https://www.usaid.gov/forms/aid-1420-17
  2. Proof of Education/Degree attained (transcript or diploma)
  3. Proof of annual salary or daily consulting rate as stated in the EBD (acceptable forms include employment agreement, pay stubs, employer verification letter).

Due to the volume of anticipated applicants, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Interviews will be scheduled as warranted and may be conducted in person or via electronic means.

Abt Associates is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer committed to fostering a diverse workforce. Abt Associates provides market-competitive salaries and comprehensive employee benefits.