Urban Resilience Intern

We are seeking analysts to support a public investment program in Vietnam that includes US$2 billion of ongoing investments, and US$1 billion of investments in preparation. The objective of these investments is to increase the resilience of cities to climate change across Vietnam, while increasing the efficiency of cities to unlock economic potential. Prior experience in international development is not necessary; rather, we are seeking hard working and ambitious individuals that would like to join a strong team environment to create a positive impact on society. The role will focus on Vietnam but would expand to other large countries in East Asia as the work program evolves.

The selected candidate(s) would begin as an intern and, based on performance, may be upgraded to analyst. To succeed in the role, the selected candidate will be trained on the job to support policy advice, investment planning and the implementation of policy reforms through investment projects. Key areas of focus include the integration of climate change and disaster risk into city and regional master plans and the integration of new technologies to build thoughtful cities initiatives.

Background

Urbanization is the defining phenomenon of the 21st century and government investment priorities are shifting as a result. For the first time in history, more than half of the world’s population lives in cities, with 90 percent of urban growth taking place in the developing world. Cities provide a diverse range of services to their residents and are increasingly responsible for finding the means to fund them. Engaging directly with cities provides opportunities to holistically address multi-sectoral development challenges and to bring to bear alternative sources of finance, including from the private sector. This includes investments in city resilience that require an approach beyond the scope of single sector engagements.

As cities grow, so does their exposure to natural disasters. Increasing population and wealth lead to an expansion in the quantity and value of the building stock and infrastructure. The risk that growing cities face may further be exacerbated by haphazard and unplanned development. Many of the disaster risks in urban areas are created by the ways that people locate, design, construct, and provide services. In the absence of formal solutions, the poor and vulnerable disproportionately build their lives in areas where they are highly exposed to natural disasters.

Strategic context. Targets for climate change adaptation, mitigation, and poverty reduction are all impossible to meet without city governments becoming much better at creating resilient urban environments. Along with addressing the challenges of disaster and climate risks, the additional complication of rapid urbanization in developing countries requires substantial and well-planned infrastructure investments to meet resource demands and enhance economic growth as well as to mitigate potential damages and losses from natural disasters.

Most city-level projects supported by the World Bank have focused primarily on one of three streams: infrastructure, governance and systems, or finance. However, to become resilient, cities need to better connect and demonstrate value across all three. In a single stream approach, a public transport project (infrastructure) may only consider overall economic impact in terms of change in transport user benefits, change in system operating costs and revenues, change in externality costs and investment costs. This would provide a quantification of a tangible benefit but not a long-term solution to improving the resilience of the client city’s economy.

Responsibilities

Working under the supervision of the task team, as part of a core team, the selected candidate will provide support across the portfolio of investments that are ongoing and in preparation. S/he will support the team’s overall program with a focus on support the city engagements in HCMC, Danang and Haiphong, while also supporting the secondary city engagement strategy. S/he will hold the following duties and accountabilities:

  • Support the team in developing and advancing policy dialogue with government counterparts and strategic partners on how to: i) build resilience; ii) support digital transformation, iii) guide the transition to a low carbon environment; and iv) improve waste management. This includes support to the conceptualization, development and dissemination of policy reforms and lending opportunities considered global good practices.
  • Support in the development of knowledge products through the preparation of presentation materials on: (i) qualitative and quantitative analysis that identify key city challenges and offer solutions to these challenges; (ii) the identification of investment and policy solutions to improve waste management, low carbon and digital transformation; (iii)) best practices for the integration of urban development and resilience principles into national and sectoral development strategies.
  • Support task team(s) in the design and supervision of urban and disaster risk management projects, including the preparation, presentation, and processing of: (i) project concept notes; (ii) project appraisal documents and Board packages; (iii) operation manuals, procurements plans, disbursement schedules, and project activity matrices.
  • Ensure that presentation and communication materials use precise language in both Vietnamese nd English, while providing quality control to translation in both written and spoken formats.
  • Revise and edit final presentation materials to revise grammatical and formatting mistakes
  • Perform any other business as needed and agreed with the task managers in support of urban development and disaster risk management projects.

Deliverables

The engagement will include the following results: i) just in time reports on project progress and reporting; ii) mission and project organization activities; iii) aide memoire inputs; iv) inputs to technical project implementation documents; and v) specific reports, concept notes, and presentations based on agreement with the Task Team.

Selection Criteria

The analyst shall have the following:

  • Communication and Interpersonal Skills – Highly developed skills, including ability to (i) write concisely and clearly in both English and Vietnamese; (ii) synthesize sophisticated documentation and ideas into fluent and understandable English and Vietnamese; (iii) communicate best practice, trends, and lessons learned, with clients and partners, articulating ideas, verbally and in writing in a clear and compelling way across audiences of varied levels in English and Vietnamese.
  • Teamwork (Collaboration) and Inclusion – Proven record to work effectively on multi-disciplinary teams while actively seeking and considering diverse ideas and approaches.
  • Drive for Results – Proven track record to (i) identify the needed resources to accomplish results involving multiple partners and find solutions to obstacles affecting key results; (ii) work under pressure while retaining perspective and professionalism.
  • Integrative Skills – Able to undertake cross-sectoral work, applying a climate resilience lens to lending and non-lending operations. Able to deliver in a multifaceted environment with multiple demands and quick turnaround of outputs.
  • Others – High degree of motivation, initiative, flexibility, reliability, and responsiveness to changing demands; capacity for effective multi-tasking, with demonstrated ability of being an independent starter with minimal direction, and a high capacity to persevere for results.

Qualifications and experience

  • Between 1 and 3 years of experience in international development, consulting, banking, etc
  • Advanced university degree in international relations, economic development, economics and finance, urban planning, and/or any relevant social science fields relating to international development and policy analysis
  • Fluency in written and spoken English and Vietnamese

Competencies

  • Ability to deliver in a dynamic environment with multiple demands and quick turnaround of outputs.
  • Ability to work under pressure while retaining perspective and professionalism.
  • Results oriented, with an ability to work independently as well as devise and produce results in collaboration with departments across the WBG.
  • High degree of motivation, initiative, flexibility, reliability, and responsiveness to changing demands; capacity for effective multi-tasking, with demonstrated ability of being an independent starter with minimal supervision, and a high capacity to persevere for results
  • Highly developed communication and advocacy skills, including ability to write concisely and clearly in English and synthesize complex documentation and ideas into fluent, understandable, English.
  • Strong interpersonal, organizational and team management skills, with demonstrated ability to build strong networks and teams to achieve results. Strong team skills with successful history working effectively across organizational and units and/or sectoral boundaries.

Application

The initial duration of the paid internship will be four months. Based on performance, the intern may be upgraded to analyst. Interest candidates should send their latest CV and a cover letter to Mr. Marc Forni (mforni@worldbank.org) by May 15, 2022.

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